This day last week I set out on my first of many Helly Hansen adventures, Cowes Week 2015 – the UK’s biggest leisure sailing regatta.
So, how did it all come about?
A few months ago a member of the Helly Hansen team contacted me as they were looking to work with a handful of high-end, lifestyle bloggers to promote the idea of getting out of the city and on to the water, “We want to take you on a Helly Hansen adventure, inviting you to become immersed in a luxury, marine inspired lifestyle!” No better woman to take on the challenge – sure I’m up for anything!
A plane from Dublin to Southampton, a train from Southampton airport to the city centre, an automobile to the port, a super fast ferry to the Isle of Wight and I had finally and excitedly, arrived in Cowes. The hustle and bustle of 1000’s of sailors, skippers, sea dogs and buccaneers was all I could see as we approached the island. From the moment I stepped foot off the Red Funnel ferry and onto land the atmosphere was electric – I immediately thought what a fantastic spot for a girlie getaway or couples party retreat.
After checking into The Fountain Inn hotel it was time to explore the island and get a real feel for Cowes. I met a friendly pirate, made a real boo boo with my choice for lunch (cold crab that smelt like the sea) and stumbled across a fellow blogger Faya from Fitness On Toast – I spotted her HH bag and ran after her through the crowds. We chatted blogs and deets on our amazing Helly Hansen opportunity – we were both totally buzzing to be part of the ‘On The Horizon’ campaign.
I was super excited to meet the rest of the Helly Hansen team and get to know my fellow crew mates. We were wined and dined and got the low down on what to expect for the following day and the following year to come.
Monday morning it was time for business – game face on, ready to face the elements, kitted out head to toe in the latest technical sailing kit form the Helly Hansen collection. Team HH bloggers here to take over Cowes week and win the regatta for Helly Juell Hansen himself – but first we have to learn how to sail!
Always make time for a #selfie
All aboard our yacht, “Crusade” for the day, where we were joined by Sally Barkow team SCA Crew member, who had just returned from 9 months at sea, taking part in the Volvo Ocean Race. Sally shared some of her experiences with us and explained how she became a professional sailor. It genuinely blew me away, I admire her passion for the sport – and to think, that could be me in a few years 🙂
No one said it would be smooth sailing. After an hour at sea I was like a drowned rat, my blow-dry was a distant memory, the makeup was literally dripping off my face and Antony Potts (Helly Hansen photographer) was snap happy, doing his best to get my good side. I’ll have to do some research on makeup for sailing and report back to you.
What’s next for this blogger?
Over the next year, I will be learning how to sail with Helly Hansen. HH will organise 1 on 1 sessions with their HH ambassadors so that I will learn to sail like a pro. I will be supplied with HH lifestyle clothing and shoes so that I look and feel the part. Then in August 2016, Cowes Week, our team (of HH bloggers), will enter into a race where we will actually compete with real life sailors! I’m totally confident that we can do it 🙂 Meet the team of HH bloggers, Sharon sportswomen.ie , Stuart averagejoesblog , Faya fitnessontoast and Dannii hungryhealthyhappy.
If you have any sailing tips or trick, please let me know 🙂
Photo credit: Antony Potts