Former Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop supported the Wild Oats X women's crew as they take part in the Rolex Sydney Hobart regatta. Bishop was on board at the start of the race and jumped into the water at 20 knots as the boat took to the water. A couple of minutes later, the woman was picked up by the escort boat, which had been warned in advance about the upcoming «performance».
«I hope I manage to avoid other boats, sharks, fish, jellyfish, plastic bottles and swimmers»," Bishop told reporters on shore before the regatta began.
There was a logic to this seemingly bizarre act. Bishop is an ambassador for the Ocean Respect Racing environmental campaign, under the auspices of which Wild Oats X is running in the regatta. The campaign is designed to draw people's attention to the problem of ocean pollution and advocates limiting plastic use.
According to Bishop, no other meanings should be looked for in her jump - especially political ones.
«It was a necessity, otherwise we would have had to stay as far as Hobart»," Bishop added.
Wild Oats X finished sixth out of the fleet in Hobart on 28 December and at the time of writing was second in IRC Division 0 and the overall IRC rankings.