Been a little while since we did any sort of updating, so thought it was well due!
As seen above, we are currently in Palma, back in our ‘Cookie Monster’ – Thanx to Nigel for the photo too!
So where to begin… after our Miami trip in January, we had a good month and a half at home, getting in lots of off the water training (or in Jo’s case – also some on the water paddle-board training), lots of meetings and planning, making sure we are on track and organised – this is a rather big year for us with over two hundred days overseas. We even managed to fit in a little sailing – at the NZ 470 Nationals and Sail Auckland, where we had some rather fun battles with the NZ boys, Paul & Dan, it was a case of match racing from 3 min to go every single start – awesome fun!!
The NZ Nats came down to a who beats who in the final race, which we thought we had nailed down with a big lead halfway down the first run, but with the wind dieing out, the boys staged a mammoth come back and pipped us in the last 100m.. Painful… Hmm, its all on next year!! Sail Auckland was a regatta of two halves, with Polly at a family wedding for the middle two days, so Jo took out Abby Goodwin (who sailed a 420 at the last ISAF Youth Worlds), which was a steep learning curve, but she sailed awesomely! We didn’t quite manage to beat the boys in any races but we led around the track a few times and had them a little worried… it was good enough!
After Sail Auckland there was a bit of a change of plans with Jo leaving NZ nearly two weeks early to go to Israel to be with her dad’s side of the family, after her sister Shefa passed away quite unexpectedly. Shefa had Cystic Fibrosis, and was in and out of hospital a lot of the time, but was always excessively full of life and enthusiasm! So much so that the thought of her passing away so early (she was 14 years old) just never seemed a possibility. As a little side note: Jo’s cousins Ari & Rachel, ran the Motutapu Off-Road Marathon last weekend to raise money on behalf of Shefa for Cystic Fibrosis NZ, a bit of an epic run off no training!
After all of this, Jo had a few days holiday in Palma before the rest of the team arrived last Tuesday, then we got the boat rigged and sails stickered (we did remember how – even though Nath and Pol were rather jetlagged…) and we have been out on the water for a few days trying to get ready for the Princess Sofia Regatta, which starts tomorrow. So not quite an ideal build-up we have to admit, but we are happy to be here, really looking forward to the racing, keen to get this European season started!!