Sparring partner

Zhik has confirmed its partnership with Gentoo Sailing Team’s Dee Caffari and James Harayda.

08 July 2021


Australia-based water sports apparel company Zhik has announced that Dee Caffari and James Harayda, of Gentoo Sailing Team, have joined the Zhik Team of sailors.

The news comes as both Caffari and Harayda prepare for their UK double-handed offshore series, which includes their participation in the upcoming Rolex Fastnet Race.

The pair, who teamed up in 2020, present a competitive ocean sailing duo with Caffari’s experience of two solo circumnavigations, both west and eastbound, a Vendee Globe and two Volvo Ocean Races complementing the 22-year-old Harayda’s skill, aptitude and ambition.

Last September, Team Gentoo was selected for the EUROSAF Mixed Offshore European Championships last September in Genoa.

For this season, Team Gentoo has recorded a successful start, winning both the 2021 RORC Spring Series in April and the Myth of Malham Race two-handed class.


Team Gentoo is also currently leading the overall series, the Jeanneau division, the mixed crew division and the youth division.

The pair’s next planned competition is the Royal Ocean Racing Club’s Cowes-St Malo, scheduled for 9 July 10:30am BST, and the Channel Race, scheduled for 24 July 11:00am BST.

Both races culminate with August’s Rolex Fastnet Race.

“I’m thrilled to be working with Zhik, a dynamic, forward-looking brand that is working hard on its ECO agenda too. Sailing double-handed with James has been a fabulous reminder to me of just what fun sailing is. For me, this campaign is a superb follow on from Turn the Tide on Plastic, working with young sailors and bringing out the best in everyone,” said Caffari.

“With highly competitive short-handed racing you get to do everything on board. We are learning and building confidence together – and clearly every second counts!

“With Zhik on board we are free to focus on our racing, knowing we’ll be warm and dry, or cool and comfortable, throughout everything that super-intense offshore racing throws at you, night and day.”

Zhik CEO Piet Poelman added, “We are delighted to welcome Dee and James to our Zhik Team.

“Having been inspired by Dee’s impressive racing career and ambassador roles, I’m particularly looking forwards to learning from her and James, whether it’s about our gear, ECO policy or diversity and inclusion in sailing!”

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