The Incredible Saga of Tracy Edwards: A Real-Life Female Superhero Who Sailed Around the World

Sony Pictures Classics

In 1989, the first-ever all-female team entered the Whitbread Race to sail around the world. Everyone, from the (male) sailors who scoffed at their efforts to the (male) journalists who took bets on how far they’d make it, was convinced that they would never finish. But the Maiden team, led by the indefatigable Tracy Edwards, not only completed the race but won two legs of it.

On paper, the story of the Maiden yacht reads like documentary catnip. On screen, reanimated through old media clips and exclusive on-board footage, salty shots of the ship pummeling the water and a deck full of women the moment when they realize that they’ve taken the lead, it somehow manages to exceed expectations. Alex Holmes’ Maiden is fun to watch on so many different levels, whether it’s witnessing world-class athletes push their bodies past what even they thought possible or listening to a bunch of old men admit, on the record, that they were wrong to ridicule and underestimate them. At 22, Tracy Edwards decided to put together an all-female crew to sail around the world. Thirty years later, she’s a delight as chief narrator, insightfully and humorously ushering viewers along through the stages of that historic journey.

While the bulk of the film focuses on the race, with all of its built-in drama and visual majesty, we start by getting to know Edwards. It takes a special kind of twentysomething to dedicate her entire life to a project that no one thinks she is capable of, and Edwards is certainly that. Rebellious, stubborn, and adventurous, the teenage Edwards took her school expulsion as an opportunity to travel around the world. By chance, she was offered a position working on a charter yacht. As she became increasingly involved in the sailing world, Edwards learned about the Whitbread Round the World Race, and liked the sound of it. She convinced an entrant to take her on as a cook during the 1985-1986 race. Of the 230 crew members taking part in the race, only four were women.

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The Incredible Saga of Tracy Edwards: A Real-Life Female Superhero Who Sailed Around the World

Sony Pictures Classics

In 1989, the first-ever all-female team entered the Whitbread Race to sail around the world. Everyone, from the (male) sailors who scoffed at their efforts to the (male) journalists who took bets on how far they’d make it, was convinced that they would never finish. But the Maiden team, led by the indefatigable Tracy Edwards, not only completed the race but won two legs of it.

On paper, the story of the Maiden yacht reads like documentary catnip. On screen, reanimated through old media clips and exclusive on-board footage, salty shots of the ship pummeling the water and a deck full of women the moment when they realize that they’ve taken the lead, it somehow manages to exceed expectations. Alex Holmes’ Maiden is fun to watch on so many different levels, whether it’s witnessing world-class athletes push their bodies past what even they thought possible or listening to a bunch of old men admit, on the record, that they were wrong to ridicule and underestimate them. At 22, Tracy Edwards decided to put together an all-female crew to sail around the world. Thirty years later, she’s a delight as chief narrator, insightfully and humorously ushering viewers along through the stages of that historic journey.

While the bulk of the film focuses on the race, with all of its built-in drama and visual majesty, we start by getting to know Edwards. It takes a special kind of twentysomething to dedicate her entire life to a project that no one thinks she is capable of, and Edwards is certainly that. Rebellious, stubborn, and adventurous, the teenage Edwards took her school expulsion as an opportunity to travel around the world. By chance, she was offered a position working on a charter yacht. As she became increasingly involved in the sailing world, Edwards learned about the Whitbread Round the World Race, and liked the sound of it. She convinced an entrant to take her on as a cook during the 1985-1986 race. Of the 230 crew members taking part in the race, only four were women.

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Tracy McMillan Of OWN’s New Show ‘Family Or Fiancé’ Shares Relationship Advice

Tracy McMillan

Source: Oprah Winfrey Network / Tracy McMillan

OWN’s latest reality TV show Family Or Fiancé focuses on couples who are headed down the aisle but are having a hard time getting their family’s approval. The future newlyweds are paired in a home with their loved ones and Tracy McMillan, a relationship expert who challenges the couples to find middle ground before their wedding day.

You may know of McMillan via a viral article seven years ago titled “Why You’re Not Married” that solidified her as an expert.

We caught up with Tracy ahead of the premiere and she gave us some insight, tips and advice on relationships.

Tell us about Family Or Fiancé?

Tracy McMillan: These couples are amazing and you may not relate to every couple’s journey, but you’re going to relate to somebody in that family because you’ve been on one side of this before. You’ve either been the person where your family is not really down with BAE or you’ve been the person.

Source: OWN Communications / OWN

What were some of the exercises you did with the couples?

I meet with them every morning and I give them things to do that first of all are going to help. Like let’s say the couples haven’t met the parents, well this is going to be an icebreaker activity or an activity that’s going to show the parents something related to what their concerns are. One of the things that we do quite often on the show is play 20 questions. he family members will write down the questions that they want to know the answers to and then the other person has to answer it. And it’s anything from ‘have you been faithful’ to ‘what would you do if the baby mama came for some child support and that part of that was your money?’

What can the everyday couple do as an exercise?

We’ll have the mom and the new daughter-in-law cook a meal together. When you have to cooperate with somebody, you find out really quickly whether that person is kind of really open hearted toward you or is this just like a lot of power struggle?

Which family member is the most problematic?

TM: Mama is the most committed to a point of view. She’s the least likely to just go, ‘okay, it’s fine.’ She’s not just going to go along with something. She has a strong feeling, she becomes mama bear. You know? So it’s not that she’s a problematic, it’s that she her feelings on the strongest, she got the biggest investment.

You went viral for your piece “Why You’re Not Married,” what was that about?

Marriage is a spiritual path and if your focus is on getting something you want or you’re going to get a big wedding or you’re going to get a white dress and like marriage isn’t really going to change your life, you’re just going to be you at twice as much laundry in that it’s really about giving and receiving love.

Source: OWN Communications / OWN

 What are some common problems that you see in relationships? 

They don’t understand that relationships are challenging. People are like, wait, what? Why should I have these problems? This is a place where you practice loving. It’s not a place where you go to feel good and get what you want. That’s not why that other person is in that relationship to give you what you want and make you feel good. So a lot of times when people, when it stops feeling good after like the first nine months or a year, then like, yeah, I don’t think this is working. In fact, it’s, it’s working to grow you up that cause that’s what it, that’s what a relationship is all about. It’s about growing as a human.

What advice do you give couples coming off the honeymoon phase?

The thing about coming out of the honeymoon phase is first of all, to know when you’re in one and that it’s going to end. So even when you’re in it, you got to know it’s going to end. So when it ends, it’s like coming up and moving. So I brought out the airport and so it’s not like, oh shit, what just happened? It’s more like, I know it’s going to be a very different pace than this first part. It’s not going to be as easy. Relationships bring up every unresolved thing. And that starts to happen right after the honeymoon phase. So whatever you’ve got going on, whatever you brought in from childhood, it’s going to get triggered, it’s going to get triggered and then you’re going to get to deal with that.

Catch Tracy McMillan on Family Or Fiancé on OWN every Saturday night at 10pm EST.


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Colton Underwood Doesn’t Believe in Tracy Shapoff’s Offensive Tweets

Colton Underwood has something to say about those offensive tweets written by Bachelor contestant Tracy Shapoff, who will vie for the former NFL player’s affections on season 23 of the show.

Underwood, 26, told Us Weekly and other reporters during a conference call on Thursday, January 3, that he didn’t “believe in whatever Tracy liked and tweeted at the time. [But] I think that’s a growing thing.”

Colton Underwood Sounds Off on Tracy Shapoff's Offensive Tweets: 'I Think That's a Growing Thing'
THE BACHELOR – Tracy Shapoff and Colton Underwood ABC/Rick Rowell

Shapoff, 31, was bashed ahead of the show for resurfaced tweets in which she used the R-word and made nasty remarks about fellow gym-goers.

“Wish these fat old women on the treadmill would shut the hell up stop dancing and just work out,” a March 2010 tweet read, while another, posted in November 2010, said, “Liposuction is retarded…stop wasting your money and just get your fat ass to the gym.”

The wardrobe stylist also shared some cynical remarks about the ABC hit in 2009, tweeting, “Do ppl really think they’re finding love on reality tv … or am I just the idiot that watches it?”

The reality contestant apologized for her words with a lengthy Instagram post on December 7. “I want to start by expressing my sincerest apologies for the extremely hurtful words that I said many years ago. I’m so sorry for those who I have offended,” she wrote. “I am beyond mortified that I ever had those thoughts and then proceeded to express them. By no means does this reflect the person who I am today.”

She continued: “I am not mean-hearted or hurtful … in the many years since writing those tweets I have made a conscious effort not to be judgmental and to be accepting of all people.”

In conclusion, Shapoff wrote that she would not defend her former words, and instead wanted to “deeply apologize and learn” from her mistakes. “I wholeheartedly reject those sentiments … I take full responsibility for my tweets and will use this as a learning experience.”

As for Underwood, he deleted all of his own tweets ahead of the series’ premiere, leaving only a peace-sign emoji, which he tweeted on December 20.

Season 23 of The Bachelor will air on ABC on Monday, January 7, at 8 p.m. ET.

Us Weekly

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