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Warkworth's self-described 'rope nerd' using her talents to help sailors around the world

A self-described rope nerd's niche occupation rigging boats has her taking calls from prospective clients around the world.

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Many exotic racing machines rely on Robin Marsh’s talent. Source: Seven Sharp

Robin Marsh’s quiet haven near Warkworth is oceans away from some of the high performance vessels relying on her expertise.

"It's a really unique world, there are just a handful of us in the world who have taken it to this next level," the "ropesmith" told Seven Sharp.

Central to Marsh’s craft is tailoring and strengthening rope to perform under heavy loads.

"In this day and age, rope is lighter and stronger than metal, so we generally replace all metal shackles or attachment points with rope these days," she explained.

Marsh found her way from Canada to New Zealand aboard her family’s yacht in her late teens, arriving here just before the 2002 America's Cup.

She has since gone on to work as shore crew for two Round the World campaigns: Team Russia and Team Sanya.

Marsh said her first encounter with Team Russia's team boss was disconcerting, explaining he "just assumed a rigger would be a male".

She met her husband Brad, a crewman on Grouparma, during her campaign with Team Sanya. Grouparma won the race despite losing its mast in the Southern Ocean.

Marsh said while some people may say rope is just rope, she would disagree.

"I would just smile and nod and go, 'Yes, to most people it is, but not to me'."