Why did you want to sail? How long have you been sailing for? asked by Kiri, Hawkesdale, Australia


Dear Kiri,

I started sailing with my Dad when I was about three years old I think (I can’t really remember, but I’ve seen the pictures!). It was fun, and I had so much to learn that it was always interesting. Also, since I have asthma, the air on the ocean was clear and fresh, and I could breathe better than when I was on land.

As I grew up, I continued to sail. I learned to race in small boats, then bigger coastal boats, then an overnight (that was huge), then some overnight races, and then offshore races. It has been a slow progression up the ladder, but it has allowed me to learn lots of new things along the way. I like sailing both with a crew, which is more companionable, but also shorthanded (solo or double-handed).

The great part about shorthanded sailing is that you have to know so much. If you sail with a big crew, your task becomes smaller. If you sail with no crew, every task is yours. It’s more challenging and interesting, but also more tense, because if something goes wrong, there’s nobody to help.