The weather was ideal for the Helly Hansen Women’s Challenge, sunny with a very light SE breeze. Bruce & Pam Davis and Graham Radford managed the racing, for the first time on the brand-new starter boat Ready, Set Go! Charlie’s Chariot with John, Kerry and Jeremy on board laid the marks for the race and shepherded the boats around the course and official photographer Marg was also on board to capture all the action.

The first race saw Woody, sailed by Sophie and Skye take the southerly side of the course and round the top mark just ahead of Lisa and Felicity in Vin. Macie and Lily in Alex Martin followed closely behind, then Ragnhild and Eli in Eli D. Lyn and Francesca in Dolly Wallis then led in Helene and Ros in Ralph Newman, and Black Swan sailed by Catherine and Mabel.

The second race saw all boats initially take the preferred southerly course, and the light breeze meant that sailing was very close. Alex Martin managed to hold off a fast-finishing Black Swan and win by 9 seconds followed by Woody, Vin, Dolly Wallis, Eli D and Ralph Newman. The racing was very competitive, with only 95 seconds between first and last place.

Once again, in a tight third race, with a little more breeze from the southeast, the fleet were very competitive. Alex Martin led throughout the race from the start, closely pursued by Woody, Vin and Eli D. They were followed by Black Swan, Dolly Wallis and Ralph Newman.

Following our very successful morning sailing and a welcome lunch on the dock, Macie and Lily were awarded first place overall for the regatta, with Sophia and Skye second and Lisa and Felicity in third place. Catherine presented the winners with prizes generously provided by Helly Hansen, for which we are very grateful.

Thanks to all the competitors, Graham Radford, Bruce and Pam Davis, the support boat crew and all the onshore supporters, particularly Wilma, Denis, Michael, David and Wolfie. Thanks also to Eli and Wilma for supplying the sandwiches and drinks. The efforts of all our wonderful women sailors and supporters contributed to making the day a huge success.