Rear Commodores Report – September

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Rear Commodore Katie Hakes joined the High Voltage team for the Mudhouse Women’s regatta

The Waikawa Boating Club hosted over 100 sailors and competitors travelling from Auckland, Wellington, Nelson and Canterbury for the Mudhouse Women’s Regatta. It was the place to be over the weekend of the 14th & 15th of September.

RPNYC members Sophie James, Shelene Parone, Kate Robinson & TZ Zandelivet headed over and competed on Kaimai Flyer and Deb Williams and I joined up with the Christchurch crew on High Voltage.

Friday afternoon saw those that had managed to get the day off work head over to Kumutoto Bay and partake in a sponsor beverage or two and got to know one another.

Saturday morning we all rigged the boats in the pouring rain looking up wondering where the breeze was. This meant the R.O. had to postpone the start by at least an hour while we all waited for the breeze to build.

I would love to say build it did, but true to Sounds weather there was wind and then there wasn’t, and then there was from all different directions. At one stage we were going upwind to the top mark and having rounded Satellite Spy was coming towards us also upwind!

Saturday had two harbours races scheduled and Sunday was for round the cans racing. For us on High Voltage we thought this was great as it would allow us to ease into the regatta and learn how we would all work together as we have never sailed together before, and some of us the first time on the boat.

In our Division Satellite Spy took out the first race followed by Global then Kaimai Flyer and us in fourth on line Once Handicap were involved this meant that Global was first, Kaimai Flyer second and Satellite Spy third and High Voltage 4th.

Race Two the breeze built a little more and we decided to put the big kite up. This meant we moved down a head sail size to the number two (it wasn’t much smaller than the number one to be honest) which was a good thing as we had put a hole in the number one sail in the first place when we had a wee lie down. Results for High Voltage were better for us in Race Two, as we beat Kaimai Flyer who had the other Port Nich Ladies onboard.

This was the last race of the day to give us enough time to pack down the boats, warm up and head back to the club for the evening dinner and listen to guest Speaker Jo Aleh (who sailed on Satellite Spy). This was a Question and Answer session run by the MC for the weekend which was fascinating listening her talk about build up to Olympics and move into keelboat sailing.

Sunday most of us woke up to no hangovers and no rain, but also no breeze. We headed out onto the race area straight after briefing where the R.O. managed to get a race in in what I would call a patchy, dying breeze. This saw Satellite Spy first, Global second and Kaimai Flyer in third.

Race two Viv the R.O. shortened up the legs which proved very interesting and put the crew work under the pump – they were a little too short for us especially as the breeze had built – finally. This meant that Satellite Spy once again first, Kaimai Flyer second and Global third.

Even though Global got third it still wasn’t enough to move them off the podium for overall regatta winner as once Handicap were involved it meant they got another first – well sailed by Sally Garrett, current National Womens Keelboat champ and her crew.

While we didn’t place in the regatta we didn’t do too badly and came in a comfortable 6th and Kate, TZ, Sophie & Shelene over on Kaimai Flyer came in 4th.

High Voltage was the only fully female crew but we had a blast and the talk on the boat was the same as what normally happens on Whistler or The Guarantee. The quote from the weekend was that we sailed with a great bunch of sailors – who all happened to be women. A big thanks to Victoria Murdoch for the invite to join High Voltage for the regatta. It was a great Waikawa weekend and up there with the Waikawa Regatta – the only real difference from my perspective is there are a whole lot more pleases and thank yous on the boat!

It brought all sailing abilities together from complete novices through to National Keelboat Champions and Olympic Sailors. If you are considering heading over then I do recommend this as a regatta to do.

Katie Hakes – Rear Commodore

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