About The Team
DARREN: MANAGER/SAILING COACH
Darren came from a background in Fire, Ambulance and Education, Darren fell in love with sailing at the age of 13 and has since sailed both competitively and just for the fun of it. Any excuse for him to go for a sail. Darren loves nothing more than seeing people benefiting from learning more about sailing and enjoying a boating holiday with family and friends in the bays
Wendy is the 'Mother Hen' she looks after the comfort side of things, making sure everyone is well looked after. Wendy's love of boating came from a life of water based holidays. She is well travelled and Dutch speaking
IAN: SAILING COACH
Ian sailed with his wife Merry from England to the Bay of Islands and decided to stay, fortunately for Great Escape. Ian is a delight to sail with, calm, capable and never flustered, he is the James Bond 007 of sailing and his position as Vice-commodore of the Opua cruising club shows his commitment to sailing and ensures a warm welcome at the club.
In 2002 Michelle Elvy sold everything she owned (including her red motorbike) and moved onto her sailboat. She has been sailing and writing her way around oceans, bays and fjords ever since. Her articles, short stories and poetry - gathered as she's crossed oceans with babies - have been published internationally in many journals and magazines and have been nominated for several awards.
JOHNNY P: SAILING COACH
'Captain Johnny P' we call him! Johnny comes from a significant cruising and yacht delivery background, he hailed from England and has spent many years sailing the Caribbean, Europe in fact you name it he's sailed there. Johnny is a great story-teller and has a wealth of knowledge to impart. The jetty always comes to life when 'Captain Johnny P' arrives. He often has a harmonica in his pocket and can belt out a good tune if the mood dictates.
TERRY: SAILING COACH
Terry has a wealth of sailing experience, too extensive to list. Famous for his smile and cheeky humour. Terry started sailing as a sea scout and will recite the scouts' honour on request. Terry loves a sing-along but don't worry it's not compulsory.
Shagalicious is the resident Shag. She seems to have a friendship with the two plastic 'Pink Flamingos' that adorn the jetty. She is a regular visitor at the jetty and appears not to be bothered by humans; she seems to think if the Flamingos don't see the need to fly away, why should she! Quiet cool watching her catch fish and dry her wings around the jetty.