29er US Nationals/North Americans

Dear Newport Harbor Sailing Foundation:

Thank you very much for the generous grant, which allowed me to travel to Michigan as well as Kingston, Ontario to live out my passion of sailing!

Starting off with the 29er US Nationals/North Americans with the 29er Worlds following a day or two after I was able to learn more than ever and have loads of fun while doing so. I got the opportunity to meet kids from Germany, New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, and more. This experience has put me in a spot where I have a network of friends who I can reach out to whenever I am in their area.

After the first three days of the US Nationals I was in first place but a very shifty last day with only one race proved tough knocking us into second. Happy with a strong result my skipper and I were energized going into the Worlds. Kingston being a mixed bag of conditions put up a great qualifying but Jacob and I fell just short of Gold Fleet and ended up finishing 29th in the world with everything accomplished.

Once the worlds were completed we hurried back to Newport to get a few lay days before heading off to Grosse Pointe, Michigan for the Youth Champs. With four days originally planned Day 1 was canceled due to lightning and literally a storm of a lifetime that flooded all of Grosse Pointe. The second day was extremely light and proved challenging but we were able to regain composure the last two days with a stronger breeze reaching puffs to 20. With everything said and done we finished fourth and were able to come home knowing we did our best.

After a summer of sailing and over five months of preparing I had one of the best experiences of my life. I now know how to plan a campaign and the work needed to properly execute it but I also have gained a wealth of knowledge that can be applied to all aspects of life.

Heading into the school year I am preparing for an extremely challenging junior year but am thrilled to once again take up High School Sailing. Due to my rapid growth I have decided to carry over my career to the laser where I am energetic to once again take on a new challenge.

Again, thank you very much for the grant.

Rhodes Garner