It is not often that we win anything on Wildwood.
This is mainly because we race around with things like hand crank blenders, a fridge full of beer, scatter cushions and magazines, when all the other yachts are stripped completely and even have special ‘racing’ floorboards and light weight anchors.
It might also be because we sail around with the stereo cranked a beer in one hand – which makes grinding winches a bit tricky, while the other yacht crews are hiked out and concentrating!
It could also be that instead of watching the woollies and steering to the mark, I get distracted by the crews hilarious gossip of how their weeks have been.
Sometimes we get very serious racers come out with us. Like my friend Craig for example. He gets us all hiking out and makes me concentrate – calls good tactics and we end up winning!
This year we won two trophies. One for lady skipper – which I won by default as there technically wasn’t a lady skipper race as such, it was just that I was the only lady skipper out on a keelboat much this season. I had previously won this trophy in 2006! So nice to have Wildwood’s name on there twice.
We also won the Pigeon Bay Race! This one we did actually win for real – however it was very close with all the yachts. We sailed out of the harbour and then everyone was caught in a patch of no wind for quite some time. Luckily for us the wind filled in on our sails first and we managed to almost win over the line too – but we did get it on handicap.
The other convenient thing was that some of my main competitors were sailing around from Akaroa having been competing in the South Island Champs over there. But we won’t mention that! A win is a win and so I am going to take it!
I mainly enjoy racing as it is a great excuse to get out on the water with the crew each week. Racing means we try our best (well in between beers and gossip anyway) and there is great camaraderie with the other yachts too. It is just good fun, and whilst we aren’t usually very competitive (unless we are winning!) we do really love it when we win a trophy every now and then. for me it means that Wildwood has a tangible memory engraved on some of these historical club trophies. I am really proud of that.