US Sailing Team 2012: Bob Willis

On the verge of competing in his first Olympic Games, Bob Willis shares with us some of his concerns and what he's most excited about. Click here to watch a video of Bob. Text/images courtesy of US Sailing Team.

Bob Willis
What motivated you to pursue an Olympic sailing campaign? I was in Athens in 2004 watching the U.S. 49er team compete. Pete Spaulding is my ex-brother in law and watching that 49er team compete in the Games was a big moment for me. Additionally, that same day we had sailing tickets; we also got to see the windsurfers race as they were on the same course as the 49er. That was my first exposure to Olympic windsurfing and I thought it was by far, the most interesting of all the sailing classes, particularly because it is so physical and dynamic. I watched Peter Wells race, my current coach, and I actually think he may have crashed during that race!Amory Ross/US Sailing
Bob Willis
SKANDIA SAIL FOR GOLD 2012
What are you most looking forward to about competing in the Olympics? The racing! I love the sailing in Weymouth. The course areas offer so much variety and it will be crucial to adapt to the different conditions of wind and water everyday on a different course. Specifically, racing on the Nothe course will be particularly exciting, as about a 1/4th of the course is cut off because of the Nothe fort, so there will be 38 boards, racing at 15- 25 mph navigating the tiny course area….it's going to be a lot of fun. Additionally, I am really looking forward to interacting with all the other athletes, and learning their training programs and how they got to the top in their respective sport.Mick Anderson
Bob Willis Crash
US Sailing Team 2012: Bob Willis
What will be your biggest challenge during the Games? The uncertainty. This will be my first Games and I am not entirely sure what to expect, from the food, to the supplied equipment. All the windsurfers were handed their Games gear on  July 18th, in what is essentially a wild card. You could have great equipment, and everything will be fine. Or you could have slow equipment and it will be difficult to overcome leading up to the first race, but I have no control over this, so it is what it is.Will Ricketson/ US Sailing
Bob Willis Coaching
US Sailing Team 2012: Bob Willis
Have any veterans given you advice for your first Olympics? Peter Wells, my coach and 2004 Olympian has been helping me a lot.  Essentially, I am approaching it as any other peak event and following a similar training program to that of the 2011 Sail for Gold Regatta and the 2011 Perth Worlds (Olympic selection events).  My training program is not going to change just because it is the Olympics.  I will follow what worked for me at past peak events and apply the same approach to the Games and treat it as another peak event, with a proper six-week build up.Will Ricketson/US Sailing
Sailing World
Bob Willis--Meet the Team
-Will Ricketson/ US Sailing