US Sailing Team Clinic: Miami

This past weekend I went with my teammate Sam Armington down to Miami to train with the US Sailing Team. This was a fantastic training opportunity because some of the top sailors in the country, including numerous medalists and Olympians, gathered in one convenient location to push each other to higher extremes. Each of the three days that we were there, Friday through Sunday, we listened to several talks on sail shape and characteristics, downwind strategies and tactics, physical fitness training, communication, and medal winning attitudes and mentalities. For the first time multiple high performance classes, namely the 470, 49er and 49er FX, F16 and Nacra 17, all united together to utilize each other's different strengths and focus on each other's weaknesses. F16 youth teams were invited to attend in an effort to incorporate more sailors into the clinic. On the final day, Sam and I sailed a Nacra 17 for the first time and on the water we trained several stadium-style races in an enclosed area. The flat water and puffy breeze presented tricky conditions that challenged even the most experienced sailors. After sailing the Nacra 17, all I can say is that this boat really flies! We only had one major wheelie on the downwind but it was a wild sensation, feeling the boat lift and smoothly exit almost completely out of the water. This clinic was an excellent opportunity to meet more speed-loving sailors and learn from highly renown coaches and competitors. I'm very happy we accepted the offer to sail at this clinic and I'm looking forward to utilizing more of these opportunities in the future!