It is with great sadness that we have learnt of the passing of Richard Thompson. Richard was well known to many in the Race Officials community, and he made an immense contribution to racing rules and to team racing through both the RYA and World Sailing.
Richard was first appointed to the RYA Racing Rules Committee in 1998 and became Vice Chair in 2002. Since then, he has been the key contact in the rule’s submission process, as well as serving as the Principal Official of the UK Team Racing Association for over ten years.
Richard was responsible for organising the National Team Racing Championships for many years for the Prince Philip Trophy, and chaired both the Team Racing Working Party (since 2009) and the Racing Rules Working Party (since 2013) of World Sailing, stepping down only in 2021. He also supported and showed exceptional commitment to team racing, volunteering at many school, university, and club team racing events as an umpire.
Over the years, Richard attended nearly 200 RYA committee meetings in London, always demonstrating diligence and attention to detail. His contribution has had a significant impact on the sport of sailing, both nationally and internationally.
Richard was presented with an RYA National Award in 2021. Our thoughts and condolences are with his family and friends at this sad time.
A service of thanksgiving will be held in St Mary’s Church, High Street, Fairford, Gloucestershire, GL7 4AF on 21 March at 2pm. The service will be followed by refreshments in the church rooms opposite.