Our first ever Philippines Sailing Challenge was a rip-roaring, wave-riding, rum-drinking success. But don’t take out word for it – find out what our Philippines Sailing Challenge Champions (our king and queen of the high seas), Amy and Mo of team California Love 2 – had to say about it all!
So the dust has settled a bit and you’ve had some time to reflect: how does it feel to have won the first ever Philippines Sailing Challenge 2016?
Mo- Feels great! What an amazing experience!! Amy – Pretty Natural. I’m a winner. JUST KIDDING! Crazy, considering Teresa and I came in second to last place last time at the Lanka Challenge. Guess we know who the weak link is…. haha 😉
Going in to the challenge, did you set out to win or did you just go with the flow?
Mo- We set out to go with the flow, however, shortly after our first sail and our first challenge we learned that our crew does not know how to lose. Their hard work and effort was contagious, it gave us the kick in the pants we needed to finish as many challenges as possible while still having fun. Amy – exactly what Mo said. What a word magician.
Did you have any kind of strategies in play to help you get as many points as possible?
Mo- Our biggest strategy was relying on our crew to sail faster than the other boats. Also, we tried to complete as many challenges as we could while soaking in the beauty of the Philippines. Amy – Yes, that. And for me to eat that dang Balut. I kept losing us points, dropping our first challenge paper in the ocean (lost 20 points), sat on our hammock during our shelter tour and broke it, and etc. Therefore, it was up to me to make those points up! At the expensive of a baby duck… oh the shame!
How did you find the challenge as a whole? How did it compare to the Lanka Challenge?
Mo- It was so much fun!! Great people and beautiful Islands!! Amy – absolutely amazing. It was so different from the Lanka Challenge. They are both amazing and rank in the top of my experiences. However, the vibes of each were so far apart. Lanka was get-up-and-go and race through the day completing as many challenges as possible. Philippines was sleep in, enjoy the island, RACE to the next island, do a couple of challenges, and drink rum. But in beautiful locations, with limited amenities, with great people and amazing experiences.
What was your favourite part of the challenge – the sailing, the food, the challenges, the locals…anything else?
Mo- I thought the home stay was going to be the worst part of the trip but it ended up being one of the best part. One member of our crew opened his house up to us for the night. We got to meet his family and they made dinner for us. Also have an awesome toilet story!!! Haha!! Amy – It’s quite a story. Ask Julian and Rachel… haha. My favorite part was being laid back, racing sail boats and doing the challenges. I liked jumping off the cliff into the sea, hiking into the forrest and swimming in the river and eating and planting trees. That was a pretty great day. Drinking rum and staying in bamboo huts is also pretty dreamy.
Do you have a favourite memory from the challenge? What was the coolest thing you did or that happened to you?
Mo- So many great memories!!! Bowling with coconuts and beer cans, cliff jumping, doing the worm at a bar after a bottle of rum. The list goes on. Amy – mine’s pretty much the same. I would add drinking rum at the homemade surf bar that Matt and Ollie made!
What was it about the Philippines Sailing Challenge that appealed to you from the outset?
Mo- Once in a lifetime experience? ummm okay lets do it!! Amy – Definitely racing sailboats from island to island. Sounds pretty adventurous. Plus, I’ve always loved the light footprint and giving spirit of Large Minority.
Do you have any advice for anyone considering undertaking the Philippines Sailing Challenge themselves?
Mo- Book the trip, you will not regret it. Amy – Ditto
What about sailing tips – any advice for staying safe (whilst having fun!) on the waters?
Mo- Trust and listen to your crew. Hold on tight when the wind picks up!! Amy – Don’t fall in!! We saw a shark and a barracuda AND a swordfish!
Do you have any plans to take on any more Large Minority challenges?
MO- Yes the Amazon Challenge Amy – Yep. Aiming for 2018. Watch out! This time bringing back Teresa as well.