Two teams of women sailors from Royal Vancouver Yacht Club had the tremendous experience of racing in this international women’s sailing event in Hamburg, Germany at the NRV Yacht Club on Lake Alster.
"There were 55 teams in the regatta, from over seven countries. The Helga Inclusion Cup was also part of the event, with seven teams competing in this section.
Alexa Edgar, Rebecca Harper, Eleanor Hawkins, and Kyla Sanderson were Royal Van 1, and Tara Smith, Paula Levy, Anne-Marie Kroitzsch and I were Royal Van 2. Sarah Isaak and Hannah Ker were our spares. They ended up sailing with a local German team and having a very good regatta.
In the Helga Cup races, each team raced 11 races over the three-day period, with 6 boats per race. Teams changed boats every 2 races and raced against different teams in a round-robin format - a total of almost 50 races! The Race Committee did an incredible job of getting all the races off without a hitch.
The racing took place in J70s in generally blustery and shifty winds. Racing in the windy conditions was challenging, but a fun experience! And the J70 was the boat to do it in! It is a sporty and speedy boat with lots of spirit and a responsive helm. Gybing the asymmetrical kites in the gusty conditions was often a challenge! Luckily, we had prepared how to deal with broaching situations. There were a few times our lessons were put to good use.
Royal Van 1 finished 16th overall and Royal Van 2 finished 32nd. The last race was a championship race with the top 10 teams competing. It was thrilling to see at least 100 people standing and cheering at the finish line. We were so proud to see Hannah and Sarah in the final.
A big thank you to RVYC for supporting our teams with funding for the regatta. Thank you to all our families, coaches, and supporters who encouraged us all to compete at this high-level international event.
We made many friendships and connections over the three-day event, leaving with several invitations to sail at other yacht clubs around the world. It was an honour and a privilege to go to Hamburg for this event. We all enjoyed the life experiences and racing around the Helga Cup so much and anticipate many return visits to Hamburg."
Submitted by Judy Day
RVYC’s Helga Cup Team:
- Judy Day
- Alexandra Edgar
- Rebecca Harper
- Eleanor Hawkins
- Sarah Isaak
- Hannah Ker
- Anne-Marie Kroitzsch
- Paula Levy
- Kyla Sanderson
- Tara Smith