Boys' School Experience The Legacy of Sir Peter Blake

November 20, 2014 at 11:38 AM

The Boys’ School Year 8 boys have been fortunate to experience the legacy of Sir Peter Blake and his teams through a day out sailing on the iconic maxi yachts, Lion New Zealand and Steinlager 2. This experience focused on the values of leadership, teamwork, communication, courage, determination and respect as each team member learnt the various sailing roles on a true racing yacht.

Divided between the two boats, the first groups sailed downwind through the Rangitoto Channel amongst the inner islands of the Hauraki Gulf. The boys were responsible for trimming the sails, taking the helm or adding additional weight to the rail.

Class against class, each boat was pushed to its limit towards the morning finish line near the northern tip of Motutapu Island. After a lunch break ashore, the boys explored Motutapu’s coastline, went swimming, built sun shades and some even hiked to the observation post high up on the island.

The afternoon forecast of easing winds didn’t hold true as 25, pushing 35 knot westerly winds howled across the Gulf! The now able-bodied seamen of Year 8 took their positions, all hands on deck and battened down the hatches. A strong beam reach sent the boys high upon the rail clinging for dear life as each maxi yacht raced towards the East Coast Bays. The standard ‘macho’ expression was soon replaced with concerned looks of doubt and concern as they winced and squinted into the headwind and foamy white water spray.

However, as time passed, and upon hearing the Skipper’s screams of excitement, the boys soon realised that these maxi yachts were supposed to be on a 40 degree lean and that the opposite side of their comfort zone was actually a thrill-seeking rush!

Some brave boys took the plunge to head up on the bow just in time for a rogue wave to drown out their screams but certainly not their spirits! The boys were now in charge and tacked and jibed their way home into the sun and back to the Viaduct. Wow… what a day! 

Check out the video here

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