Sail Lake Taupo: Meet Your Captains

Sail Barbary is a locally owned and operated company.

All of our captains/skippers are fully qualified and over-experienced in sailing yachts.

Each of our skippers hold a minimum/equivalent Skipper Restricted Limits (with passenger endorsement) licence and a Level 2 First Aid qualification.

All of our captains are Kiwis from various parts of the North Island.

They have all had extensive backgrounds in sailing, and sailing is so much more than a job to each of them – it’s a passion.

Jamie (company owner)

Being a Kiwi, Jamie grew up on and around the water. He spent his childhood boating around the Bay of Plenty. Fishing with his dad and surf lifesaving in the weekends put the salt in his veins. At 11 years old, Jamie’s dad sold the family home to spend 4 years sailing and exploring the South Pacific. This put the gypsy in his heart and the remainder of his life has been spent on the water operating commercial vessels. From dive vessels & teaching SCUBA diving in Australia, the Caribbean and Mediterranean to sailing super-yachts and chasing summers between the Med and Caribbean, before returning to NZ to start a family and build a variety of businesses. It didn’t take long for the water to call again, and although Jamie misses the salt, Great Lake Taupo is an amazing and fun playground that he has called home since 2011. Jamie loves what he does, is very proud of the business they’ve built over the years and seriously enjoys sharing it with others.

Best sailing moments:

  • Playing on Mayor Island (Bay of Plenty) as a child
  • All 4 years in the South Pacific
  • First Atlantic crossing (one of many!)
  • Soaking in the history of the Mediterranean ports & harbours
  • Obtaining his 3000 tonne international yacht masters
  • Building this business to what it is today!


Born & bred here, Sarah has been sailing on Lake Taupo & lakes all over the North Island since she was knee high to a grass hopper. Sarah spent 2 years in Bermuda racing and cruising keelers around the island, and was rapt to watch her old sailing grounds showcased for the most recent America’s Cup and to see that Silverware come back to our shores! Her first offshore experience was delivering a race boat from Bermuda to the USA (in a dying hurricane!), then she crossed the Atlantic from France to the British Virgin Islands (probably the longest delivery trip ever, with many island stops along the way!). At this point, Sarah became so passionate about sailing she chucked in the 9-5 lucrative career to be become a full-time sailor! She then spent a lot of time sailing around the straights of Gibraltar and the South of France… then ran into work permit issues and had to return home! Sailor Sarah is one of the only female skippers operating the Central Plateau region, and we think she’d give most blokes a damn good run for their money.

Best sailing moments:

  • Sailing over a picnic table on Lake Tarawera because the water level was so high
  • Approaching Mindelo Marina as the sun came up in the Cape Verdes
  • Playing with dolphins in the Gulf Stream
  • Deciding if it was Africa or Spain for lunch
  • Praying the last space shuttle flight was diverted to Bermuda as I sailed past the end of the runway
  • Every day on the lake with Sail Barbary!


Sailing all his adult life, with many years spent cruising and competitively racing in the Hauraki Golf, Kerry has found his calling working on Lake Taupo. A born and bred kiwi, Kerry spent many years sailing around the world – adventure racing to Fiji, captaining private yachts in the Mediterranean Sea for 5 years, before taking that vessel across the Atlantic to the Caribbean, Bahamas, then touring the eastern sea board of the United States, as well as 3 years of captaining an expedition vessel that extensively cruised New Zealand, Fiji, New Caledonia and the eastern sea board of Australia. Kerry and his wife have also both volunteered on the race committee for both Louis Vuitton cups in Auckland. Kerry is so passionate about sailing he would rather watch a yacht race than a Rugby Game!

Best sailing moments:

  • Sailing into Grand harbour in Malta for the first time
  • Admiring the wildlife on Mediterranean beaches
  • Sailing into New York Harbour and through the East river to long Island Sound
  • Cruising Fiordland, New Zealand
  • Sailing in a hurricane on my first Atlantic crossing
  • Any day sailing on Lake Taupo
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