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A Girl At Sea

Sailing Tales from RQYS Junior Sailor Tay

Technique and Breaking Habits

Hey guys, it’s me again. Today my friend Evie and I went out sailing again and I learned quite a few things, that I shall talk about today. One of these things was the importance of technique. We learned that when I’m skippering (we switch around) my technique means I have the tendency to sit on the tiller which today caused it to break (for the second time in a row). We figured out that I sit on the tiller because when I pass it behind me I don’t pass it the full way around so the corner of my butt sits on it. I know I can fix this by passing it the full way around, the trick is to get out of my current habit. Another thing I learned today was that I can skipper and actually be a good skipper, when I’m focused. Another thing I have to work on my focus, not drifting off when it gets slightly boring. One thing my crew and I did great today was communication. Both my crew and I are chatterboxes (which can be good or bad depending on the situation) so talking is probably one of our strengths. Anyway, today was a good day even if it was a little windy and our tiller snapped. I think that today pushed my limits and made me improve my skippering. See you guys  soon, Tay signing out.

Transitioning Boat Classes

The most annoying thing about transitioning from one boat class to another without plans being made is the lack of sailing. Now most of you readers know this but I have been transitioning from Optis to Flying 11’s. Now the thing with that is (as I have just found out) I’m a bit too heavy for them. The good thing about sailing is that when you weigh out of one boat there are many more that you can choose from. So it was a bit difficult to decide but now I’m happy that I made the choice to go into 420’s with my bestie Evie. Thanks for reading and until next time, see ya!

Maintenance is Key!

Minor boat maintenance is CRUCIAL if you want to win a race. You don’t want to be coming first in a race only to pull our because your mainsheet snapped. Another thing to maintain is your trailer (nobody likes a squeaky trailer). This can be simply done by lubricating (I think I read a little too much) it once or twice a week. To make sure your ropes don’t snap, a trick I do is just to wash them down once every two months in hot, soapy water (make sure you leave it to soak for at least a day). So now that we’ve covered that, stay tuned for next week’s article and until then – keep sailing! Tay out. 

Here’s the first of my out and about chats!

Here’s an Interview I did with Lisa, Queensland President:

Me: “What’s your role in organising Nationals?”
Lisa : “So I’m the Queensland president of the fantastic Queensland team, we have 60 something kids sailing this regatta, it’s amazing! They come from Bowen all the way down to the Gold Coast”
Me: “How long have you been sailing?”
Lisa: “I’ve sailed since I was five or six, and I started sailing Sabots because back then we didn’t have Optis and I sailed sabots until I was about twelve and then I went to catamarans (Hobie 16’s) and then I went to big boat’s ocean racing”
Me: “Is this your 1st time being the Queensland President for Nationals?”
Lisa: “It is, this is my 1st year as Queensland president, before that I was Queensland Secretary and Queensland training officer”
Me: “What do you like most about organising Nationals?”
Lisa: “I love it! The kids at the beginning of the week might be a little bit scared of the wind or scared of the waves, and by the end of the week their doing it all and their out there having fun and their competing with people from all around Australia and all around the world, and their all having a good time and their all learning how to be a great sailor!”
Me: “What’s it like having a Daughter who’s sailing?”
Lisa: “I love it, my little girl Adelaide is competing and this’ll be her 5th Nationals and she’s only 12, so her first Nationals she started in Melbourne when she’d only been sailing three, four weeks because she was the younger kid and she’s done Melbourne, Perth, Sydney then Adelaide, so Adelaide went to Adelaide at Adelaide Sailing Club and the regatta was in Largs Bay”
Me: “Wow, Thank You for your time”
Lisa: “No Worries, thanks

Gill 2018 Australian Optimist Championships Day 1

Day One of Nationals: Today was great! I woke up, got dressed, rigged and sunscreened. Then it was out on the water. That was fun! That day I was a little tired, but excited. I was so proud that I finished ALL my races. We also tried new snacks to figure out which ones work best (we found that muesli bars with oats in them worked best!). Boy I was tired after that.


Day One of Training(Wednesday): I’m super excited! Nationals is just around the corner! Today was mildly windy, but it was more about getting back the feel of the boat. As well as that it gave me some time to catch up with my friends! A downer on the day was it was soooooo hot. Everyone on my team was practically MELTING!!! Which is a nice segway to my next topic: staying hydrated. Now I get told over and over again, drink water, stay hydrated and sometimes it does get annoying! But here’s the thing, if I don’t drink water I become disinterested (my dad calls it vague), I don’t pay attention to things I should, I become irritable and very, very, very annoyingly slow to the point where my parents can pick when I have been drinking water to when I haven’t! Imagine how that effects you when you don’t drink? Stay tuned for my evaluation of Thursday!!! Sorry if I don’t get this up in time, we’re just figuring out some kinks in the system!!!

Painful Parents

Okay so let me talk about one of the most challenging topics I’ll probably ever talk about and one that can be EXTREMELY difficult to manage: Parents. Now these are the people that have raised us, and love us to bits, but sometimes they can be a bit of a pain right? Now by this I mean when your Dad barges in and takes control (used to happen to me a lot!) or when Mum decides that as your de-rigging would be the appropriate time to ask whether you drank any water, “sigh“.

Now most of you come from families that sail (for those who don’t we’ll all have to stick together!) and most of the time that can be good right? Because they understand better what is going on out there. I’m sure you can all relate to what I am saying. Well why don’t we talk about how to manage our Parents. One of the ways I manage my Parents (specifically my Dad) when they try to take control is by giving them the odd nudge (eg: “Hey Dad I’ve got this” or “Hey Mum I’m right”) The key here is to use a nice tone (your Parents have feelings too!) and if this doesn’t work have a chat about it later with them.

Now onto another annoying habit Parents do, nagging. This is probably one of the most annoying things Parents can do. But there’s an easy way to stop this: answer them the first time, because if you answer them the first time they can’t go on asking the same stupid question over and over again! Easy fix right? Now there might be days where you don’t answer first time, just answer as quickly (and nicely) as you can! That’s all from me this week, stay posted for my review of the Opti Nationals but until then bye!!!!!

My weekend at the battle of Waterloo

Day One (Saturday): Today was great! My Good friend and fellow sailor, Adelaide was there, which was nice. The morning had very light winds but in the afternoon things sped up and the wind became heavier. I got a little freaked out racing in the afternoon, but after a talk with my coach I soon realised that it was my fault that I was nose diving a lot (because I had my weight TOO far forward) The good thing that came out of that was that I ended up learning what I was doing wrong and ended building on the experience, (pro tip for any novice opti sailor: In heavywinds DON’T be afraid to sit at the back corner, just find what works best for your weight!)

Day Two (Sunday): Sunday was fun!!! After learning what I did yesterday, today provided the opportunity to build on what I had learnt, and it worked! Because I had my weight (and a few other things) right I ended up going SUPER fast (well fast for an opti!) Then in the afternoon (those damn afternoons!) things got a little rougher than I was prepared for, so I ended going in early. If there was a few things I learned from this weekend, they would be: 1. How to sail in light winds 2. It’s okay to back out if your unsure, because there’s no point in endangering you and your crew and 3. That there’s always someone there if things do go wrong!