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A group of 17 year 9 and year 10 students constructed their own rafts, paddles and sails and attempted to cross the 4km distance from the Akaroa Boat shed to Tikao Bay.
Students Tai Bristowe, Tilly Davies, Lily Roberston and Mason Rogal were first across in a record time of 2hr and 7min, beating the previous record of 2hr and 10min.
Said Tilly: “It was an event that really brought our team together and gave us memories we will never forget.”
Worsley was born in Akaroa in 1872. At 10-years-old, he delivered a horse to Wainui with Henry. Instead of walking the long journey back home, the two boys made a raft and paddled back across the harbour.
Worsley sailed one of the party’s lifeboats, the James Caird, 1200km from Elephant Island to South Georgia.
Brittenden explained, for the past 12 years, Akaroa School students have been attempting to replicate Worsley’s feat. It is now a multi-curricular project involving social science, mathematics, science, technology, PE and health.
Only about one third of the teams complete the journey unaided each year.
“It really is a challenge for the students and a feat to feel proud of when they make it,” Brittenden said.
“This year two teams made it across.”
Lily said: “I enjoyed the team experience . . . we had some great conversations in the middle of the harbour. It took a lot of effort to get across but I felt proud of our achievement.”