The first Irish Sailing Pathfinder Women at the Helm regatta takes place next week 17 & 18 August at the National Yacht Club in Dun Laoghaire writes Treasa Cox of Irish Sailing.
Women have been sailing against each other for decades, but this is the first time a regatta will be held at a national level. In addition, this is the first event to actively encourage women to step up to leadership roles by only allowing women helms.
40 boats entered and all welcome
There are 40 boats entered so far for the regatta - from Lasers to Beneteau 31.7s and everything in between. Men are welcome, but women must make up 50% of the crew, and all boats must be helmed by women. There is a non-racing option through the Cruising Association of Ireland (CAI) and the event is open to all sailors aged 16+ and on into the 60+ ‘Silver Sailors’. In addition, we have a goal of 50% female race officials and organisers.
Ireland’s first club perpetual prize
Among the prizes is the new Roy Family Trophy, given by Irish Sailing President Jack Roy. This Perpetual Trophy is the first Irish Sailing official interclub award and is open to all members of Irish Sailing Affiliated Clubs that enter a team of three or more boats of any mix of class. “I grew up in a family of sailors” says Jack Roy. “Both my parents were a big influence in my sailing life. My mother crewed for me in my early years in Mirrors helping me to win the Club Championships in Greystones Sailing Club where my father was one of the founding members. And both our daughters are keen sailors. Gender balance is important in all walks of life and sailing is no different. I am delighted to present this trophy as part of the first Irish Sailing Pathfinder Women at the Helm Regatta and I hope the event will prove to be successful in contributing to the growth in numbers of women entering our sport”.
Friday night showing of “Maiden” film
On Friday evening, 16 August there will be a showing of the film “Maiden” – the story of Tracy Edward’s record-breaking Whitbread Round the World boat with the first all-women crew. Angela Heath, the only Irish crew member on the boat will be joining for a Q&A session afterwards.
We are delighted that Pathfinder, specialist change management consultants, have agreed to sponsor the regatta for three years. Sara Davidson, Marketing Director commented “Pathfinder are proud to be advocates of diversity and high performing teams, and in partnering with Irish Sailing, we are helping to bring these beliefs from our work to the water”.
To register for the Irish Sailing Pathfinder Women at the Helm here