Racing with the Wind: Mind of a sailor - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Racing with the Wind: Mind of a sailor


For sailors like Pat Marcum, sail boat racing is less about the destination and more about the motivations of the people that guide the boat.

“When you sit on these boats for as long as you do, waiting for wind,” Marcum said. “You get to know people pretty well.”

Getting to know those people quickly reveals that sailors have an interesting makeup.

“(It's) half stupidity, half-adventure,” Marcum said. “The ability to sit and learn and's hard to explain.”

It takes a little bit of both to learn a spinnaker sail is best for breeze coming from the side or back and a dancing shoulder catches the most wind.

The internal desire to learn those things is all in an effort to fulfill a desire to make sleeping ships sail.

“There is definitely the desire to learn how to sail, to learn how to make the boat work,” Justin Gallion, sailor for 7 years, says. “But also the desire to be on the water and have a sense of self-sufficiency.”

On a boat with nothing but thirty miles of water whether you look port or starboard (left and right), there aren't other options waiting on deck.

“There is no giving up, there is no giving in,” Danielle Dickert, sailor of 25 years says. “If you quit, you're letting yourself and everyone else down.”

“It forces you to become the best version of you that you can possibly be and that's what is so beautiful.

Marcum agreed that there has to be a persistence to be successful on a boat.

“It's kind of what sailing is about,” Marcum said. “is not being defeated and making the best out of every situation.”

Flexibility of direction and duty can result in a new personality when feet return to land.

“It gave me the opportunity to say that I am somebody new,” Dana Robb, sailor of 7 years said. “I am somebody different than I used to be.”

“Often times we come to that through tragedy or loss. But I got it through the opposite way.”

The sailors took part in the 32nd annual Hook Race on Lake Michigan last weekend.

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