John Ball – BC Sprint loses a dear friend

We are saddened to share the news that John Ball has passed away.  For many years John provided IT, digital and infrastructure support to all of the National Sprint Regattas.

John was the oracle of all of the start, timing and photo finish systems at Holme Pierrepont and provided an invaluable service to the regatta committee. 

John first started working with British Canoeing whilst employed at the National Watersports Centre and latterly from his own business Hudson and Ball. 

Many members and paddlers will not know John but thousands of participants and spectators at national sprint regattas will have benefitted hugely from his calm and supportive approach to keeping all the systems running like clockwork. 

National sprint regattas at Nottingham won’t be the same without his ability to solve problems and his resourceful and capable presence to fix everything with a smile.

Cathy Wynne – Sprint Regatta Chief Official said:

“John was truly the ‘backroom hero’ who will be sorely missed by us all.  There have been times when without John solving a problem the regatta would not have been able to continue.  

“Many paddlers and clubs would not actually know just how much John Ball did for our Sprint Racing regattas, but for the regatta officials he was our ‘rock’ that provided steadfast support when all else was falling apart.

“He was a lovely guy and without his calm and reassuring presence the national regattas will never be the same.”

John’s brother, Chris, said:

“John was my younger brother – 44 years old. He loved the challenges and problem solving faced in the organising of sporting events, along with the thrill and appreciation of participants and spectators benefiting from the hard work that the events teams put into such events.

“Outside of the working environment, John enjoyed life with his loving partner of 20 years; Anna and their house of dogs and cats. 

“John’s main sporting passion was sailing – having sailed and raced with friends and family since a young lad; heading off on adventures sailing around the UK coast, and across to the continent. When racing John reversed roles and was the focussed competitor rather than a competition organiser.

I know John’s contribution to the sporting community is appreciated and will be sorely missed, as he will be by his family and friends.”

Our thoughts are with Anna, his partner, his brother Chris, his family and friends.