Apart from regattas such as the OCR, you've become active in the Laser Masters' scene. Are you discovering you're racing against some of the same people you raced against 30 years ago?
Yeah, it's been really fun. I'd seen them around with their kids, as their kids came up through the Optimists and whatnot, so it was kind of nice to get out on the racecourse again with them. One in particular was Terry Neilson, who is a former Laser world champion. We were talking about that at the Masters Worlds in Nova Scotia [in 2009]. He and Andy Roy got boats, and their plan was to practice a couple times a week all year long and get ready for the Worlds. He laughed and said, "I think we got out like two or three times." In one race in particular I was ahead of him, and it was windy, and he's a little bigger than I am, a little taller. He was shouting at me, "Hey, you've been practicing!" As he's giving me all this encouragement, he was overtaking me. Maybe some people think of the Masters as some kind of geriatric group of people, but you get to the Worlds, and these people are in shape, enthusiastic. It was really cool. I never realized how big of a scene it was.
Now that you're back into Laser sailing, where do you see it taking you this time around?**
I'm interested in doing more big-boat sailing, and I'm interested in doing more coaching. But I also want to continue to train in the Laser, and my big plan this year is for the Laser Masters Worlds in England. Then, based on how much other work I'm able to bring in, that will determine how active the rest of my Laser campaigning will be.
You've also been actively working with aspiring Olympians, especially in the area of fundraising.**
I saw an opportunity this last quad to help a couple of sailors. Anna Tunnicliffe in particular was the one who kind of sparked the whole thing. I recognized how much help I got when I was doing an Olympic campaign and realized there was an opportunity for me to give back and honor the people who helped me be successful, so with Anna, I can tell the story. At one of the Laser Radial regattas, I noticed she had this massive sponsor sticker on her sail, and I was kind of excited to see she was getting some support. But when I quizzed her about it some more, I found out it really wasn't any support that you would think. So I said to her, if you want help in that area, I've got some experience, and I'd love to help you. She agreed, and we set her up with a website, mentored her about how to increase her profile, helped her with some private fundraising, and we were able to help her with some corporate sponsorship. The ultimate goal was to take that burden away from her so she could just focus on her training and racing. Along the way, others popped up, and we ended up working with either five individuals or five teams who were campaigning for the Olympics—all American teams.