Her Royal Highness Karima had requested my participation in the 2nd Annual Red Bra Regatta. I almost did this race last year, but I was unable to make the practices so it didn’t quite work out. Thankfully this time not only have I raced the Midwinters, I’ve crossed an Ocean too! In other words, I’m much more prepared to do a race without much practice with the crew.
All I knew is that me and three other ladies would be racing an Islander 30′ out of South Beach Harbor in the beginning of October, the only requirements are that you be female and wear a red bra. HA! The only bra I have right now is red (maybe a little more on the “magenta” side). I didn’t even hesitate when asked. I know Karima has been working her booty off getting her boat ready to sail, but I didn’t realize that she hasn’t sailed Las Brisas in five years! What an honor to be a part of her maiden voyage crew.
We arrived at the South Beach Harbor with more than a few stares. We were in fact wearing red bras and no we weren’t just wearing them on the outside of boring white t-shirts. The air in the uptight yacht club was so stiff you could slice it with a knife. This is supposed to be fun, right?! We got the rules and regulations and got out of there, retreating back to the boat for some adult beverages until the race was due to start.
Karima has raced but not ever driven or navigated, and recently crossed the Pacific. I’ve also raced but done little more than be rail meat. I was ok with foredeck but the majority of racers weren’t using a spinnaker, so my skills were needed elsewhere. Miri hasn’t raced but has done several ocean crossings, and Linda has done ocean racing and several of her own solo crossings. Basically, we were a crew of bad ass female sailors and we were ready for this race even though we were just winging it.
The race was delayed a couple of hours because of the lack of wind. That actually gave us time to get comfortable with the boat that literally had no winches or tracks or sails the day before. I was happy to hear the race would finally be starting so we could put our skills to the test.
The Gorilla Hookers, as we named ourselves, did awesome! None of us really had a specific job but we did what needed to be done and piped up when something wasn’t right. I navigated, Karima drove, Linda and Miri helped on tacks and everywhere else in between we all chipped in and worked well together. At the end of the day we came in 6th out of 11 boats. That’s amazing considering that the boat mast and new rigging went on just days before this race. Seriously, its amazing the boat was able to come together so quickly and do better than half the fleet who probably practiced their boring white socks off. And we had fun while doing it! More fun than the others I am sure. It was a lovely day with lovely ladies, what more could a sailor girl ask for?!