In celebration of International Women’s Day, we would like to introduce you to a few women sailors who each, in their own right, has made a difference within the sailing community and beyond. Before we begin, we know we have missed more than we have mentioned so if you have a suggestion for future women of sailing pieces please share your suggestions in the comments below.
The sailing world is dominated by men but the number of women making giant strides in the sailing community is ever growing and soon we will no longer have to distinguish between men and women and simply say “meet these five sailors.” For now, meet these five women sailors who are making a difference in the sailing world.
If there is a story about empowering women to break down barriers Tracy Edwards is the lead character. Her story chronicled in “Maiden” a documentary about the first all-female crew in the Whitbread Round the World Race is about more than sailing.
One could say that Laura Dekker is a byproduct of the groundbreaking actions of women such as Tracey Edwards. Whether you approve of her actions or would even consider what she did the fact that a 13-year-old young woman decided to fight for her right to set off on a solo sailing round-the-world trip is something to behold. What were you doing at 13?
ASA featured the path of Ayme Sinclair as a model of diversity in sailing. Ayme’s story is one of breaking down the barriers of race and gender in her own sailing community. These days she sails with her racing team, Sweet Caroline Sailing, and her crew is anything but homogeneous while at the same time all sharing a love for sailing.
Nikki has just been named Yachtsmen of the year for her role in being the youngest ever skipper to compete in the Clipper Round the World Race. This race, which is made up of amateur sailors who learn to compete while on this journey, was skippered to a second place finish by Henderson.
A sailor her entire life Susie Goodall set off last year to conquer a solo voyage around the world without the aid of modern technology. She would rely on traditional instruments in the Golden Globe Race. She failed to finish. Those that break barriers do so because they attempt the unthinkable not because they finish the possible. Her failure occurred because in sailing mother nature treats every sailor with equality. The wind, weather, currents, and conditions do not discriminate between genders. For that, she is making a difference.