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Predictwind Girls Regatta proves popular and set to expand next year

by Michael Brown/Yachting NZ 28 Mar 15:41 PDT 29 March 2021
Predictwind Girls Regatta - March 2021 © Yachting New Zealand

The PredictWind Girls Champs has been a fixture on the sailing calendar for more than 30 years and its success has prompted the Kohimarama Yacht Club to look into turning it into a two-day regatta in 2022.

As many as 120 female sailors across seven junior and youth classes competed in Saturday's event and there's a feeling it would attract more sailors from further afield if it became a two-day regatta.

Sailing is rare in that both girls and boys compete against each other most of the time until they work their way up the pathway, and many females are motivated to beat the boys.

Gyanne Garner, who sails a 29er with Emma Packard, summarised what many of the young sailors felt.

"It's just girls which makes it easy to make new friends," she said. "I feel a lot more comfortable here."

Yachting New Zealand surveyed 35 competitors at the regatta, on everything from what they like about the sport, to what's missing and what they would like to know, and will use the information to continue to support young females in the sport. There will be further opportunities to fill out the survey at future regattas.

Yachting New Zealand was well represented by women's sailing manager Rosie Chapman and national sport development director Raynor Haagh as well as Erica Dawson and Liv Mackay who are Olympic campaigning and are also part of the New Zealand SailGP team. Elana Connor, who is sailing solo around the world to raise awareness of children in foster care, was also on hand.

"It was really exciting to see so many females participating," Chapman said. "The Kohimarama Yacht Club created an amazing atmosphere where the emphasis was on connection and making friends. This was a really good opportunity for people to do that.

"The level of sailing was really high. Even though the winds were really light, you could see the potential, and it's really positive to have so many females coming through who will continue to push each other and have fun along the way. Here at Yachting New Zealand we're in a position to help guide them through the pathway and make it more enjoyable for them.

"The overall feeling when everyone got off the water was a level of excitement to be able to race against just girls for a change; a level playing field."

It was a view echoed by Starling sailor Grace Still from the Glendowie Boating Cub.

"[The thing I like most about this regatta is] definitely the start and the no yelling," she said. "On a normal start like, people are yelling 'don't go in there' even though they don't own that bit of ocean. At this regatta, there's none of that and I love it."

Full results can be found The PredictWind Girls Champs has been a fixture on the sailing calendar for more than 30 years and its success has prompted the Kohimarama Yacht Club to look into turning it into a two-day regatta in 2022.

As many as 120 female sailors across seven junior and youth classes competed in Saturday's event and there's a feeling it would attract more sailors from further afield if it became a two-day regatta.

Sailing is rare in that both girls and boys compete against each other most of the time until they work their way up the pathway, and many females are motivated to beat the boys.

Gyanne Garner, who sails a 29er with Emma Packard, summarised what many of the young sailors felt.

"It's just girls which makes it easy to make new friends," she said. "I feel a lot more comfortable here."

Kohi Girls Regatta Gyanne Garner, crew, and Emma Packard were second in the 29er. Photos: Yachting New Zealand. Yachting New Zealand surveyed 35 competitors at the regatta, on everything from what they like about the sport, to what's missing and what they would like to know, and will use the information to continue to support young females in the sport. There will be further opportunities to fill out the survey at future regattas.

Yachting New Zealand was well represented by women's sailing manager Rosie Chapman and national sport development director Raynor Haagh as well as Erica Dawson and Liv Mackay who are Olympic campaigning and are also part of the New Zealand SailGP team. Elana Connor, who is sailing solo around the world to raise awareness of children in foster care, was also on hand.

"It was really exciting to see so many females participating," Chapman said. "The Kohimarama Yacht Club created an amazing atmosphere where the emphasis was on connection and making friends. This was a really good opportunity for people to do that.

"The level of sailing was really high. Even though the winds were really light, you could see the potential, and it's really positive to have so many females coming through who will continue to push each other and have fun along the way. Here at Yachting New Zealand we're in a position to help guide them through the pathway and make it more enjoyable for them.

"The overall feeling when everyone got off the water was a level of excitement to be able to race against just girls for a change; a level playing field."

It was a view echoed by Starling sailor Grace Still from the Glendowie Boating Cub.

"[The thing I like most about this regatta is] definitely the start and the no yelling," she said. "On a normal start like, people are yelling 'don't go in there' even though they don't own that bit of ocean. At this regatta, there's none of that and I love it."

Full results can be found The PredictWind Girls Champs has been a fixture on the sailing calendar for more than 30 years and its success has prompted the Kohimarama Yacht Club to look into turning it into a two-day regatta in 2022.

As many as 120 female sailors across seven junior and youth classes competed in Saturday's event and there's a feeling it would attract more sailors from further afield if it became a two-day regatta.

Sailing is rare in that both girls and boys compete against each other most of the time until they work their way up the pathway, and many females are motivated to beat the boys.

Gyanne Garner, who sails a 29er with Emma Packard, summarised what many of the young sailors felt.

"It's just girls which makes it easy to make new friends," she said. "I feel a lot more comfortable here."

Yachting New Zealand surveyed 35 competitors at the regatta, on everything from what they like about the sport, to what's missing and what they would like to know, and will use the information to continue to support young females in the sport. There will be further opportunities to fill out the survey at future regattas.

Yachting New Zealand was well represented by women's sailing manager Rosie Chapman and national sport development director Raynor Haagh as well as Erica Dawson and Liv Mackay who are Olympic campaigning and are also part of the New Zealand SailGP team. Elana Connor, who is sailing solo around the world to raise awareness of children in foster care, was also on hand.

"It was really exciting to see so many females participating," Chapman said. "The Kohimarama Yacht Club created an amazing atmosphere where the emphasis was on connection and making friends. This was a really good opportunity for people to do that.

"The level of sailing was really high. Even though the winds were really light, you could see the potential, and it's really positive to have so many females coming through who will continue to push each other and have fun along the way. Here at Yachting New Zealand we're in a position to help guide them through the pathway and make it more enjoyable for them.

"The overall feeling when everyone got off the water was a level of excitement to be able to race against just girls for a change; a level playing field."

It was a view echoed by Starling sailor Grace Still from the Glendowie Boating Cub.

"[The thing I like most about this regatta is] definitely the start and the no yelling," she said. "On a normal start like, people are yelling 'don't go in there' even though they don't own that bit of ocean. At this regatta, there's none of that and I love it."

Full results can be found by clicking here

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