We are honoured and excited to have been selected as a charity partner for the 2017 ICAP Charity Day on Wednesday the 6th of December 2017. Click here for further information www.icap.com
Sailability Dinner 11 October 2017
Starring Team New Zealand’s JOSH JUNIOR
On a wild and windy night at the Petone Working Men’s Club the hardy souls of Sailability Wellington gathered to celebrate 15 years of serving the communities of Wellington, the Hutt Valley and lately Porirua. Started at Evans Bay, Sailability has mushroomed over the years from a handful of boats, supporters and members to over 50 volunteers catering for the needs of around 190 sailors with disabilities in the Wellington region.
The anniversary dinner began with Don Manning, the Club Captain and CEO welcoming the 100 or so Founder Members & Trustees, volunteers, sailors, together with their partners. He gave a brief resume of the changes over the years in Sailability before inviting representatives of the 3 areas we serve to cut the 3 celebratory cakes. It was then time to move on to what all good sailors do, especially those in Sailability Wellington – Dinner. As can be seen on sailing days and especially at functions, fine food and plenty of it is crucial.
The highlight of the evening was the attendance of Josh Junior, a member of the victorious Team New Zealand crew who won the Americas Cup. A well-known top Laser yachtsman from the Worser Bay Boating Club, and Finn Class Olympian at Rio De Janiero in 2016, Josh was one of the team of cyclists providing hydraulic power to operate all the equipment on the hydrofoiling catamaran. He accepted the invitation to give a talk about his experiences and also to take questions on various aspects of the Cup challenge.
He was very down to earth, talking about humorous events in the lead up to joining TNZ and his trip to Bermuda. He also catered for the active sailors in the audience by giving full details of how the boat operated in the lead up to, and during racing especially in regard to how the foils operated to achieve maximum speed. He also explained the bike concept and it was interesting to hear how the whole crew interacted during tacking. He told of his experience in, why, and also what happened after the boat did its famous capsize. He divulged how they recovered from that and believed that the great New Zealand Team ethic enabled them to not only get back racing so fast but also to carry on developing and improving performance. If they had been beaten in the Challenger Series, he did not think that Artemis could have continued developing, as New Zealand did, to beat Oracle. He was full of praise for Peter Burling the skipper of the New Zealand boat as a superb yachtsmen. Peter was both a team leader and known for his technical knowledge with foiling yachts – he was able to collect data and advice from all on-board, then make brilliant clear decisions as the boat raced around the course at 35 – 40 knots.
Following several questions from the floor and acclamation, Josh then circulated around the tables then had photos taken with almost all of the sailors attending. Josh has agreed to become Sailability Wellington’s ‘Patron At Large’
The cutting of the cake by Doris Smith (Porirua), Alexander O’Connor (Evans Bay), and Helen Rushton (Seaview)
Josh is pictured with Darrell Smith in his wheelchair and Remy Thomasson, one of our coaches.