The first tast of salt

I began along this path many months ago starting with me reading the novel ‘Close to the Wind” by Peter Gross. This is a novel of blinding passion where one man goes to great lengths to achieve his dream. Peter writes of a trip he undertook in a small catamaran (I believe it was 26ft long) that was not tried or designed for ocean sailing. Against all odds he succeeded in completing the race under such extreme circumstances that the joinery of the vessel was being torn apart by the pounding of the waves to such an extent that water would gush in through the cracks every time the boat flexed. He went on to talk about his passion to compete in the Vendee round the world race and how he risked almost everything to get there only to be willing to throw it all away to rescue a fellow competitor who was in trouble. To me he is a hero not because he sailed around the world but because he was willing to sacrifice it all to help someone else even though he could lose everything he had worked so hard to get; I think that that shows real sprit. This was my first insight into the world of professional sailing and I wanted more.

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