Enigma crew after a Magic Performance at the CBRE City Of Sails Auckland Regatta
Chris Hirst has been a stalwart of New Zealand’s Sports Boat racing scene aboard his Hobie Magic 25 ‘Enigma’, and is looking forward to yet another CBRE City of Sails Auckland Regatta where the 2022 Sport Boat National Championships will be decided
Enigma has been a part of every CBRE City of Sails Auckland Regatta since it started, with her first entry being when the regatta was under the BMW Auckland Regatta name.
“Having a one design like Enigma means you know how well you are going sailing and tactically as all Magic’s are the same and all are capable of winning – you are always learning and if you have a spell of winning you know it will be short-lived as others catch up and beat you or just recover from a bad spell” says Chris. “With one main, one jib and one gennaker, it means you always have the right sail up”.
Enigma keeps a consistently busy race schedule, competing in the RNZYS Doyle Sails Wednesday Series and Winter Series, as well as Richmond Yacht Club’s Wednesday Night racing. “With the boat on a trailer we do various regattas across the North Island – we have just returned from a windy Port Nicholson Regatta and regularly do regattas in Taupo, Auckland and the Bay of Islands, with the occasional trip elsewhere” says Hirst. Chris also runs the NZ Sports Boat Facebook page, which keeps the fleet of sports boats across the country notified about any upcoming regatta’s and sports boat news.
Over the years Chris and his Enigma crew have managed to win a few regattas, as well as Sports Boat and Magic National titles. “We are pretty happy about that, but it is the competition and competitors who keep us coming back for more”
‘We have had many hotshot sailors racing Magics and sports boats over the years and it is always good to sail with and against them” states Chris. “It all reinforces the fact that most of us sail because we like the competition and the friends you make”.
“I’d like to give a big shout out to Peter Davidson who has endured sailing with me on Enigma for almost 20 years and is an all-round legend and brilliant sailor and Stephanie Hazard who has sailed with me for coming on 10 years – she really keeps us guys honest if not in her wake and both are great examples of the high level of sailors that New Zealand produces”.
Chris also mentions his former Enigma crew mate, Andy Stuart, who has now retired from racing. “In his time he was a staunch and awesome helmsman who always made sure we put the genny up regardless of the wind strength”
Chris feels honoured to awesome crews of brilliant sailors aboard Enigma who are “always teaching me new things and correcting my many mistakes”. “It does mean the person on the helm aboard Enigma does often have to act as a spam filter, due to the volume of often conflicting information being sent their way”.
Join Chris and the Enigma crew on the start line of the Sports Boat National Championships, or register for the plethora of races as part of the CBRE City of Sails Auckland Regatta at https://www.rnzys.org.nz/rnzys-events/city-of-sails-auckland-regatta/