Sailors, tug boat drivers, paddlers and radio control sailors are included in a regatta that marks 175 years since the day that Lieutenant Governor William Hobson took formal possession of what would be come the city of Auckland, in the name of Queen Victoria.
The first regatta on the Waitemata Harbour was an impromptu three-race event between rowing gigs, a match for a purse of five pounds between two whale-boats pulled by sailors, and another between two large canoes paddled by natives.
These days, at least 15 sailing and watersports participate from all over Auckland, in boats of all shapes and sizes, including SUPs, remote controlled sailboats, dragonboats, tug boats, 100-year old yachts and modern skiffs and harbour blasters.
“The Ports of Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta is good fun,” says regatta spokesperson Eric Mahoney. “It’s a day that all eyes turn to the water, and we invite everyone that has a boat of just about any type, to join us, and anyone that loves boating, to watch. Thank you very much to Ports of Auckland for its continued support.”
The historical trophy cabinet is much prized, and earning a name on one of the silver cups, ensures a place in New Zealand sailing history for the winner.
The 175th Ports of Auckland Anniversary Day Regatta will take place on Monday 26 January 2015, and is one of a range of events that will celebrate the long weekend in the city.