Terry Hutchinson: How to Sail Like a Corinthian

Published on April 15th, 2015

by Terry Hutchinson, Sailing World
At a recent Melges 20 event we had a close situation at a top mark where we fouled another boat and if we did not foul it felt close. Nothing was said; both boats bore away, set kites and went about their business.

Inevitably my counterpart on the other boat is an Olympic gold/bronze medalist, multiple world champion, America’s Cup, Volvo ocean race etc…. all around sailing stud. I would also say that Jonathan and I are about as different of people that you could meet. Jonathan reminded me about the meaning of respecting your competitors, pushing the limits, and racing hard while not losing sight of the big picture.

How? Ashore I went up to Jonathan to apologize for what I thought was a foul on our part and thanked him. He was quick to point out that we do a lot of racing in an environment where we are coaching owner-drivers and sometimes things are just close. Yet, he also said that racing against each other hard is a give and take on the water and without saying it reminded me in a very simple gesture that there is a lot to gain by racing hard and in a professional manner.

Lesson learned again! As potentially my own worst enemy with intensity and for those of you who have the same tendencies, there are some good takeaways from this exchange and experience. Full report.

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