Waiheke sailing star Serena Woodall has been hand-picked to compete in next year’s Youth America’s Cup.

The 18-year-old has just been named by the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS) as part of its White team. It is entering two teams, which each have four starting sailors, plus a reserve male and female for each team, a role Serena has been selected for.

Speaking to Gulf News the young sailor said she took a fitness test on Saturday, was interviewed via FaceTime on Sunday and just a few hours later got the good news that she was on the team.

“For me it is something I have been aiming for and dreaming of since I was really little,” she said. “I didn’t think it was going to happen, especially this soon, I thought maybe potentially if I kept training and put in the time and effort maybe the next campaign in four years’ time I could have a shot at trialling. It was such a surprise, really.”

The reinvigorated Youth America’s Cup regatta will be raced in a brand new class of foiling mono-hull, the AC9F.

It is a multi-leg event with match racing in Auckland in February with the finals held in March right outside the RNZYS in the shadow of Auckland’s iconic Harbour Bridge.

 Liza Hamilton

Full story in this week’s Gulf News… Out Now!!!

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