Sabina Rosser and AWKR founder Gai Clough..... 29 years of AWKR and still going strong
Twenty eight years ago two female sailors were inspired to create a women’s only regatta after attending the New Zealand Women's regatta. Their goal was to encourage women to get involved in the sport of sailing. This goal is still very much at the heart of the Australian Women’s Keelboat Regatta.
The original regatta was held over Melbourne Cup weekend and after four years, was moved to the Queen's birthday long weekend in June. Over the years, the event has grown to become Australia's premier women's regatta and one of the largest in the southern hemisphere. By 2016 we had 26 boats with 168 competitors from every state and territory in Australia and New Zealand.
The regatta includes two divisions scored across AMS, IRC and PHS and includes class racing. Awards include owner-skipper, best novice helm, most improved, sportsmanship and award for showing particular endeavour during the competition.
While sailing is a sport where men and women compete side by side as equals, the AWKR serves as a vehicle for women to try out new positions, expand existing sailing and leadership skills and become more actively involved in yacht racing. It is also an occasion to make new friends and have a great time – the feedback we hear time and again!
Photos from past years:
If you have any photos which capture some of the history of the regatta (or memorabilia) please email them to the editor for inclusion here. Don't forget to add a caption and as much information about the image as you can.