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We received this great email:
I have to thank you. I attended your Spray Beach N.J. seminar this past May (1999) and I have only raced in two regattas. But I have really improved. I used the drills that I learned from you to help train my Special Olympic Athletes. Every one of them won a medal. The first day was the divisional races to sort out the crews by skill level. We ran two races that day and I placed 2nd and 4th out of 45 boats! My typical finish is in the bottom third. Not any more. I was so thrilled after the second race. Unfortunately my crew informed me that we need to do something about that fourth place finish. Ignorance can be bliss, but it can also be very demanding. He viewed 4th out of 45 as needing improvement. To me it meant I finally can compete.
My second regatta was a Hobie Regatta where I sailed in B Fleet on my Hobie 16. I have been sailing B Fleet for the last 3 years and my best finish ever was a fourth out of seven boats. I am used to finishing in the bottom third, praying not to be DFL. Well this time I finished second. I was one point away out of first. I was sailing against many of the people who I was used to finishing behind. To me this was incredible. I have never sailed so well before. It was a light air regatta. The winds for most of the races were between 5 and 8 mph. I weigh 235 by myself and my crew weighs 145. Remember we were on a Hobie 16 in light air.
To make it even sweeter I was sailing the event with a 16 year old Special Olympian. It was truly a special moment for me. Thank you so much for all that you were able to pass on to me. In those drills on the water it may have seemed like nothing was sinking in while you were pointing out what I was doing wrong. I guess enough of it sunk in.
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