My experience participating in the OBS Cutter Race at the Singapore Regatta 2022
Having the chance to finally sail in a cutter boat was something I couldn’t turn down.
As an Outward Bound Singapore (OBS) alumni, I was beyond excited to hear about the Singapore Regatta 2022.
The event, organised by OBS in partnership with the Singapore Sailing Federation (SSF) and Better Trails, is part of this year’s Youth Month celebrations.
The Singapore Regatta 2022 featured the OBS Cutter Race and a coastal clean-up at East Coast Park on 23 and 24 Jul respectively. I was notified of the event by Murali, the OBS staff in charge of Alumni, and jumped at the opportunity to be part of the OBS Cutter Race.
In my 21-day OBS course back in March 2022, we did kayaking instead of the cutter expedition due to the safe distancing measures at that time. Having the chance to finally sail in a cutter boat was something I couldn’t turn down.
During the preparation day on Jul 23, we did a lot of turning practices to familiarise ourselves with the craft. The experience was rather fun but also tiring as I had to handle the main sail.
Due to strong and unpredictable wind, it was challenging to manoeuver the boat as I had to tighten and loosen the sails. However, I believe that my OBS experience helped me be prepared for such challenges. The 21-day course made me step out of my comfort zone and I was able to apply that adaptivity to this race.
My current course (Diploma in outdoor and adventure learning) also helped equip me with the necessary knowledge on tides, and I could understand why we were moving (or not) at certain times.
On the actual day of the race, it was calmer and less windy. While it meant that the handling of the main sail was easier, it also posed another issue – moving at a very slow pace.
With my team of eight, we were able to overcome these circumstances and came in first place.
I’m thankful for the opportunity to sail in a cutter at this year’s Regatta. It is an experience that I would recommend to those interested. Even if you are new to sailing, you can still give the race a try.
Through this event, I learnt the importance of going out of your comfort zone. And even if you are scared or worried you should still give it a chance!