Cadets second at nationals
Nine cadets from the T S Taupo sea cadet unit, based at Ngatitoa Domain, recently spent a weekend at Whangaparaoa, north of Auckland, competing in the annual national regatta.
The cadets were aged between 14 and 18 and included students from Tawa, Aotea, Porirua and Newlands colleges.
They won the regional regatta in March, earning the right to represent the lower North Island at the nationals.
Competition at Whangaparaoa was tightly contested, with only one point separating the three teams. T S Talisman from Nelson won and T S Taupo finished second equal.
Challenges included sailing two types of boats, a pulling (rowing) race and a seamanship race incorporating pulling, rigging the boat, sailing, capsizing and righting the boat, de-rigging, anchoring and swimming. Other skills tested included ropework, chartwork, first aid and drill.
Warrant officer Matt Ohlsson, 18, said he had been in the regatta team for four consecutive years.
‘‘It has been such a great experience for me and everyone in the team,’’ he said. ‘‘We work on team building and leadership skills through the many different activities we train for.
‘‘Working my way up from being one of the new members to being the team leader and seeing the team grow and strive to take out the national competition is really rewarding.’’
He said he enjoyed seeing students come in as young keen cadets, get stuck in and grow to become leaders.
Sea Cadets is a voluntary training organisation for teenagers that focuses on maritime skills and is run in a partnership with the New Zealand Defence Force.
Sea cadets have the opportunity to pass the Coastguard boating education day skipper course, achieve NZQA credits and attend leadership, sailing and bushcraft courses.
From left, Matt Ohlsson, Austen Rangi, Mitchell Dawson and Paige Cooke during a recent regatta in Evans Bay.