As some of you may know, there is a flourishing relationship between the Royal Akarana Yacht Club and the Windrider Sailing Club in China. Part of this relationship has seen more than 30 young Chinese sailors visit RAYC for the Windrider Sailing Clubs “Winter Camp” (their winter, our summer). Reciprocally, RAYC’s Head Coach, Nathan Laurie, also spent three months in 2016 at WSC, helping to upskill their coaches and work with the kids while in China.
This relationship has additionally seen RAYC gain more international memberships. In particular, Vela Huang, who works for WSC as a coach, media personnel, and is the direct liaison to RAYC, has become a member for the next three years.
Vela has been sailing for a number of years now with the Xiamen University Sailing Team. She was one of the original women in what was previously a male dominated team. The team has since grown to have an all female division to compete in the J80 class at regattas across China, a team which Vela skippered to many fantastic results against strong international competitors.
Along with this on water contribution, Vela has also written many articles promoting sailing in China, and in particular has been an advocate for Chinese women to take up sailing and mix it with the men!
For all of her achievements to date, Vela has been nominated as one of five finalists for Chinese Female Sailor of the Year! This is an award that is open to voting by the public through WeChat, so if you have WeChat and can spare five minutes to vote please do so! It is a little tricky as the page is in mandarin, however you need to make a vote in each category and then click the writing in the box below “Cruiser 37” to submit your votes.
Good luck Vela! We are extremely proud to welcome you into our club! We can’t wait to see you back at RAYC later in the year.