CNN’s Shirley Robertson takes a look at women “at the sharp end of the sport.” (Don’t you love how the Brits use their language?) She’s a double Olympic medalist, so well qualified. In this 22 minute video that’s getting a lot of play interenationally, she interviews Ellen MacArthur, Sam Davies, Dawn Riley and others. I love it when she talks to Ken Read about why he hadn’t recruited more women, and he admits “shame on me.”
It’s pretty clear that there isn’t gender equality at that sharp end, especially when it comes to the America’s Cup. The argument that it’s difficult for women revolves around size and strength.
I’ve always thought that the Northwest had a relatively (to other areas) high percentage of women skippers and crews. Almost all the crews I’ve been a part of have had a mix. And Ellen MacArthur and Sam Davies reinforce what I’ve always felt, that the best way into the sport for women is to just ignore the few bone-heads out there that think that women don’t belong, and just sail the boat. I can’t speak for the sharp end of the sport.
Check out the video below. I’d love to open up the conversation about Northwest women racers. Are there more bone-heads out there than I think? Is the racing climate conducive or prohibitive to women? Start it up in the comments below and if there’s interest I can open up a forum.