When Bill Blaikie's name was drawn out as the winner of the Great Barrier Reef Masters Games Ultimate Reef Adventure we were excited. Bill hails from Upper Hutt in New Zealand and is travelling to the Games to support his wife who is playing softball. We were pleased that one of our international visitors would get the chance to explore the magnificent Reef and the more we found out about Bill the more pumped we became. Bill shared his story with us below - what a great recipient!
"I have followed my Nanc in her softball career for decades and watched as she played at both domestic and representational level. I have also followed her attendance at Masters Games. I traveled to Auckland to watch the World Masters in 2017. I have also supported her at other Masters Games afar from home. It's fantastic to be able to accompany her to Cairns for these games.
"I am looking forward to coming to Cairns in May this year to watch her play softball again. I last went to Cairns back in the 1990's and look forward to seeing the changes and progress that have been made.
"I am am a sort of athlete in my own way as having attended the first Invictus Games in London in 2014. As a veteran of Afghanistan and wounded in 2004, I have discovered the important role sport plays in my recovery and that of my family. Last year I participated in Operation Ride 2018. This what sport does in the recovery of veterans.
"I am looking forward to coming to Cairns in may and especially the helicopter ride and reef visit.
Congratulations Bill and thanks to Sunlover Reef Cruises and Nautilus Aviation for the Ultimate Reef Adventure.