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Local Man Coastguard’s Best Skipper

5 December 2005

Local Man Coastguard’s Best Skipper

Our local boaties can take a lot of reassurance knowing that Coastguard train their crew to be amongst the best in the country. Coastguard New Zealand CEO, Kevin Rangi, today named Riverton’s Chris Musgrave as the winner of the 2005 / 2006 Caltex Skipper of the year Award.

Chris began his involvement as a Coastguard volunteer when, as a commercial fisherman he became aware of the invaluable work the organisation did. Just a year after joining the Unit, Chris was one of the Riverton Coastguard crew that rescued five of the eight people on board a Cessna that crashed into Foveaux Strait. That incident was the catalyst that saw him dedicate his time to Coastguard.

Coastguard New Zealand’s, Vice President, local man Ian Coard says of Mr Musgrave ”Chris’s abilities have been well recognised for some time by the Riverton crew. As Coxswain he has put in a lot of time and lifted the team’s skills in seamanship and boat-handling to a very high level – he’s always to be found somewhere around here.”

Chris’s win will take him to Canada’s highly esteemed RHIOT (Rigid Hull Inflatable Operator Training) School in Canada. Professional American and Canadian seamen eagerly contest places on these courses where their boat handling skills are challenged and developed in the most extreme environments.

Chris is only the second winner of the Caltex sponsored national competition. Caltex Card Marketing Manager Chris Souness says of Musgrave’s award: “He is a very worthy winner, and we are extremely confident that he will bring back from Canada some particularly valuable knowledge and experience to pass on to the Southland Coastguard Units.”

Fiercely parochial, the winner himself said jokingly “We may be falling off the edge of the earth down here but we can foot it with the best of them. It's a great honour to represent Coastguard internationally, and to be recognised for all the hard work we do as volunteers.”

Those doing any of Coastguard’s Dayskipper, Boatmaster, GPS, Radar, and elementary marine engineering courses in Riverton might be lucky enough to benefit from Chris’ expertise. He tutors courses regularly at the Riverton Coastguard’s Headquarters.

ENDS

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