It's been a long and complicated journey for a number of companies to get to this wonderful service that we now provide you. NB Laser Sales originated around 20 years ago and has provided quality customer care based Laser dealership to domestic and international sailors. It has a strong reputation which we at NBsailsports intend to uphold.
A similar company, Finnports, the child of Rob McMillan, is a bit younger then NB Laser but has been providing the same quality service to Finn sailors in Australia and around the world.
NB Laser Sales was acquired by Finnports and Rob created NBsailsports.
NB Sailsports aims too meet your racing needs, we sell, charter, fit out, trade in, freight and upgrade everything for your Laser, Finn, Optimist, Ribs the list goes on. If we don't have it in store, we have the connections to obtain it. So come to our premises or give us a call and find out how we can service you!
Rob McMillan is the sole Director of the business he is a multiple champion in the Finn Class - one its true stalwarts and still a force on the ISAF circuit. He has sailed the boat since he was fifteen years old and is recognised as an elite sailor. His NB team comprises Warwick Crossman, running the Operation, with the able support of Ben Franklin (ex-Australian Laser Radial National & Youth Champ) and part time support from Tom Burton (Worlds best laser sailor?), Daniel Smith (5th at recent Radial Worlds) and Emily Carstairs. Ann, Jasmine and Joseph McMillan are also invloved.
Shown below is a bit of background on Rob...
I started sailing in 1979 with the support of my school club in west London and quickly gravitated toward the Laser class, where I demonstrated little or no talent for sailing! My mates convinced me to attend a regional training camp at Queen Mary Sailing Club in 1980 where during the process of frightening myself to near death, realised that to progress in sailing much work was needed in more challenging surrounds than his home club (now called Hillingdon outdoor activities centre). With lots of time in the boat and support from the RYA I did improve. It seemed a long time but in the space of three years, the endless hours of drills under the guidance of Jim Saltonstall and others, a difference was made. With great friends Lawrence Crispin, Paul Lovesey, Simon Cole, Mark Littlejohn, David Nichols, John Greenwood, Stuart Childerley, Jez Fanstone we had a ball in Lasers!
The Finn was always where I saw my sailing heading - and finally in 1983 I had the courage (and the money from my parents) to buy a Finn - a bright and shiny 1978 Taylor from Tim Law who was always really frank with his advice. The boat was immense, a brute and so was the four bottle weight jacket!
Things progressed for me from there, not always for the better and for those that know me, well I was always my own worst enemy! Looking back could I have performed better? Oh hell yes? Was it worth the angst? Yes. Whilst it was sad to stop sailing in 98 with an illness, it gave me time to think and work through my performance issues. What brought me back to the boat was the eduring affection I have for the Finn and wanting to be more active rather than waiting for my son and family at the yacht club to finish their sailing.
I think sailing provides a unique environment for personal development, friendships, rivals - even passing ones, transition into long lasting friendships and connections of a unique nature - that few outside of sailing understand. For Finn sailors that understand the history of the boat and what it represents today, this is especially true.
I am of course an Englishman at heart and immensely proud of my homelands achievements in sailing - it’s a great testament to the diligence of Rod Carr and his team at the RYA, but especially John Derbyshire to turn around the performance of UK sailing into what Team GBR is today. There was always talent - such as Stuart, Lawrence, Mike McIntyre and the likes. However, the money contributed by the UK government combined with foresight from the management team, and experts such as Tim Tavinor and David Howlett have made the difference to UK Finn sailing. This golden period in UK Finn sailing with Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy, Ed Wright, Bart Simpson, Giles Scott, Charlie Cumley, Dave Mellor, Andrew Mills and others (too many too list!!) is as much about the creation of champions, my belief is Champions are made not born in life.
It is clear that private enterprise helped in this quest - Victor boats, North sails, Needlepsar, Boyce and a range of others we involved at the start of the resurgence and hence why I thought Finnports might have a role to play here is Aus.
So what of Australia? A country with an equally impressive Sailing heritage! Political correctness prevents me from saying too much about YA and its approach to the management of Olympic sailing. But the words short term do spring to mind. Through Finnports I want to change the fortunes and perceptions of the Finn class in Australia, the current view of the average sailor in Aus of the Finn, its representation at the State level and support from YA is an anomaly amongst developed sailing nations.
Whatever your view of the above I hope through Finnports to change the domestic scene for the good of all Finnsters. Here's hoping we can create a great local fleet, a vibrant masters fleet, an elite squad worthy of YA support and a medallist in 2016.
Sailing is a family sport;
William McMillan, 'Opti Legend aged 2'. Jasmine McMillan Mirror win with dad. Joe McMillan, at Hyeres 1995