Paris 2024: A long and beautiful road
Published on November 9th, 2023
One of the USA teams that has been quietly rising up the Olympic ranks is Sarah Newberry Moore and David Liebenberg in the Mixed Multihull event. Sailing the foiling Nacra 17, Sarah provides an update on their activities:
This has been an epic year for our team. In 2023, we have sailed in six major championships, and in four of them secured a top 10 finish. Whoa! Best year ever for USA 50! Just days ago, at the Pan American Games, we secured a berth for the USA in the Nacra 17 at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games… a massive step for our team, and we are beyond excited. Huge goal achieved!
We’ve slowly chipped away at our weakest points. Putting in the hours on the water has been our number one tool for improvement. Tom Zajac (bronze medal in the Nacra 17, Rio 2016) has been our coach, partner, and friend along this ride.
Lately, some young blood, Ben Rosenberg, has also become a teammate… even rigging our boat up and taking it through measurement for us at the 2023 European Championship this week, as we made a two day turnaround from the Pan American Games. This allowed us to fly in the day before racing and get straight to work.
We’ve had some ups and downs this year – a rough event at Princess Sofia Trophy in March, which we followed up with a 7th overall at the French Olympic Week. We have been fast, and we have been slow. At each moment along the way, we have worked to learn why, and to either replicate a good performance, or resolve an issue that contributed to a poor performance.
We haven’t stopped grinding on the water, and it’s paying off in a lot of ways.
After picking up some silver medals at the Pan American Games awards ceremony on November 4, we packed our B boat into a shipping container and hopped on a plane to head over to Vilamoura, Portugal… where our European Championship started on November 8.
Why make such a crazy scheduling decision? This is a last chance to race with the big fleet before winter training starts. We are tired and miss our families, but it’s important to get a pulse on how the fleet is sailing so that we can keep our goals on track for winter training.
David and I have grown a lot as people this year. If you’ve ever talked to me about sailing, you know that mindset and personal growth are two of the things I am most passionate about (ok ok, and foiling too!). I think this is because I believe that personal fulfillment (and therefore success) is inextricably linked to these things.
On this team, we work on ourselves… and ask daily how we can improve as teammates and athletes. This has led us to invest energy and time in biofeedback and mindset training. We think that peak execution in this high speed, adrenaline fueled racing boat takes more than just fitness and technical skills. More to report on these cool projects as we get closer to the Games.
In December, we will be training in Vilamoura, Portugal… and in Jan/Feb another location TBD. In March, we kick off the 2024 Olympic year’s racing season in Palma. Follow us on instagram at @usa50racing for more regular updates, or feel free to message or email us at any time if you want to support, have ideas, or would like to become or renew your status as a donor.
This has been a long and beautiful road. It’s a journey that we are grateful to share with all of you, and this victory of qualifying the USA for the 2024 Olympics… well that is an accomplishment we can all take pride in!
Editor’s note: This duo has $22,000.00 left to raise this year. To make a tax deductible donation toward their road to Paris 2024, click here.
Paris 2024 Olympic Sailing Program*:
Men’s One Person Dinghy – ILCA 7 (41)
Women’s One Person Dinghy – ILCA 6 (41)
Mixed Two Person Dinghy – 470 (19)
Men’s Skiff – 49er (20)
Women’s Skiff – 49erFX (20)
Men’s Kiteboard – Formula Kite Class (20)
Women’s Kiteboard – Formula Kite Class (20)
Men’s Windsurfing – iQFoil (24)
Women’s Windsurfing – iQFoil (24)
Mixed Multihull – Nacra 17 (19)
* Quota per event in parenthesis but does not include Universality Places (2 men, 2 women)
Venue: Marseille, France
Dates: July 26-August 11