30 year old, Nikola Girke, from West Vancouver, learned to sail at Eagle Harbour Yacht Club and developed her racing career at Royal Vancouver Yacht Club. After graduating from West Vancouver Secondary School, Nikola received her Bachelor of Human Kinetics degree from The University of British Columbia.
In the Laser 2, Nikola was a three-time National Youth Sailing Champion, represented Canada at the 1995 Youth Worlds placing fifth and won the Women’s Title at the 1995 Laser 2 Worlds. In 1999, Nikola went on to pursue her goals in windsurfing. While living on Maui, she trained for and competed in the Professional Windsurfing Association’s World Cup Tour. The summer of 2001 was Nikola’s first season sailing in the 470 class - she managed to qualify for the 2004 Olympics. Nikola has reverted back to windsurfing after a successful four year Olympic Campaign in the 470 dinghy. Girke placed 13th at the Athens Olympic Games. In 2005, Nikola made the switch back to windsurfing.
The 5 time Canadian Women’s Windsurf Champion took on a new challenge, to compete on the Olympic Circuit on the RSX windsurfer. In July 2007, at the ISAF World Championships, Nikola qualified Canada for a Nation spot at the Olympics. At the 2008 RSX World Championships, she qualified herself for that sole spot to represent Canada at the 2008 Olympic Games. Nikola is amongst only a few athletes who have made the transition from one sport to another and to compete in two different events at the Olympic Games.