Four Shorecrest alumni have had tremendous success navigating their collegiate sailing careers and were recently recognized for their hard work and dedication to the sport. Following the Gill College Sailing Coed race, part of the Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association National Championships, Nicholas (Nic) Baird '15 (Yale), Kathyrn Booker '15
(Stanford), Patrick Shannahan '15 (Brown) and Hannah Steadman '16 (Brown) were all named College Sailing All-Americans.
While at Shorecrest, these sailors along with their teammates won the National Championship in 2015 as well as the SAISA District Championship in 2014. Matt Thompson, Assistant Athletic Director shared, "They laid the foundation for what has become one of the most successful athletic programs at Shorecrest. To celebrate them now as College Sailing All-Americans is truly a proud moment for us."
Nic Baird also earned top honors with the Everett B. Morris Trophy for the Marlow Ropes College Sailor of the Year, an award given by a committee of college sailing coaches. In his four-year sailing career, Baird earned All-American honors ever year.
We had the opportunity to congratulate Nic and learn more about his love of sailing and what has been his recipe for success.
To Nic, sailing isn't just a sport, it is multi-faceted and requires the balance of many components. “You have to know about physics, meteorology, hydraulics, how to use tools and how the machines we use work. You have to be an engineer, but also a psychologist, reading the weather, current, and other boats is extremely difficult mentally. Then you get to add in the physical aspect, which can be strenuous cardio in heavy air or rapid explosive movements in light air, all requiring perfect accuracy and smooth movements so as to not waste any speed through maneuvers. And that's just the actual act of sailing, then there's the sport. Sailing has taken me all over the world and introduced me to not only many new people, but also my best friends. Patrick, Hannah, Kathryn and I have remained very close since our time at Shorecrest, and I have sailing to thank for that.”
He remembers his Shorecrest sailing days fondly, crediting his fellow teammates for pushing and raising the bar. "We challenged each other each day to get better and helped each other improve to a point where we became the best team in the country. That mindset, just pushing hard to always improve and succeed, is what Shorecrest instilled in us that made all of us successful in college.”
When considering advice to give to future sailors and our current Shorecrest sailors, he replied, "If you like doing it, just go do it! Many people are scared of trying something they might not be good at, but trying a new activity is the only way to get good! Even for those who are less experienced, you can find success in the sport of sailing. I know just as many legendary sailors who started sailing in their twenties as I do sailors who started when they were kids, so get out on the water and see what you can learn!”
We know Nic and his fellow sailors had their sights set on that finish line and most importantly it looks like they enjoyed the journey along the way.