Hello and Welcome to another team update from Williford Brothers Racing.
We are back on the water at home in South Florida, looking forward to a big winter season in preparation for 2023. (Look back, look ahead)
We spent August training in Hubbards Bay, Novia Scotia, Canada culminating in the 2022 World Championships in the first week of September. We had a great lead up to the event, enjoying some competitive training with Hubbards Bay providing a great venue to focus on improving our boat speed. The six day event was broken into a three day qualifying series, after which the fleet of 75 teams split into 2 groups for the final series, the first group consisting of the top 25 teams from qualifying with the remaining 50 teams competing in the second group.
We ultimately fell short of our goal to qualify for the gold fleet and finish in the top 20. Despite feeling good about our boat speed and awareness, too many costly mistakes around the course left us outside the top 25 at the end of the qualifying series.
We left Canada with a lingering bitter taste in our mouths, but with a clear image of where we fell short and how we must grow as a team. A characteristic that our team shares is that we hate to lose. However, we are forced to acknowledge that losing is an uncomfortable but critical part of the process of growth that our team is committed to.
We finished our 2022 season with a win at the Triple Crown Series in Oyster Bay, NY. The annual event offers prize grants for the top teams that have been critical in supporting our campaign over the last few years, and we were ecstatic to be able to get a win to wrap up our season. We took a week to recharge and headed back to our home in South Florida to kick off our winter season in preparation of a big year ahead.
2023 will be a pivotal year for our campaign, as this November marks exactly one year until the Olympic trials for the 2024 games. After reflecting on the event (Worlds) and our year as a whole, there are several key steps that we must take if we hope to be able to achieve the progress over the next 12 months necessary to put our team in a position to be successful at the end of 2023. We are competing against fully professional and highly experienced teams, and in order for us to (take advantage of our strengths) and close the gap to the top contenders in our game, we need to become more professional in how we operate as a team.
We are looking at adding a full time coach to our team starting in November, an integral part of every successful Olympic campaign. Having a full time coach at our disposal will allow us to maximize our development with our training, and reflects a major step in putting us on an even playing field with the top teams (we are aiming to beat). In addition, a priority for us over these next 12 months is gaining the critical experience to close the gap) with the top teams and allow us to perform at our best in the big events. This means increasing the amount of international events that we will compete in (in) 2023, as well as committing to making the necessary investment to obtaining the equipment that allows us to compete at the highest level and having a coach at our disposal that gives us the best chance to perform at our best.
The effort required to make this transition is no small task. This winter is a critical time period for us, as we look to put in the work on the water and in the gym to continue to develop our boat handling and technique in the boat, and take our performance on the water to the next level. An equally (critical) component to this next block will be raising the necessary funds so that we can execute on the plan we are confident will set us up for success in (this critical 2023 season).
We want to thank everyone who supported us over the last year in making our efforts possible. We were able to compete in three international events this year in Spain, Denmark, and Canada, including our first World Championships as a team. This was made possible thanks to the generous support of the fantastic community that we have around us. Special thanks to the Lauderdale Yacht Club community for their continued support, the Olympic Development Program and Thomas Barrows for the support in our lead up to the World Championships, and the Windmark Sailing Foundation. As we look towards the task at hand over the next year, our team that we have around us will play a critical role in helping us get to the next level. We could not express our gratitude enough for the opportunity we have to compete every day to chase our dream of winning an Olympic medal. We look forward to the work that lies ahead and are confident that we are up for the challenge.
If you are interested in supporting us in our campaign for the 2024 Olympics, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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2022 Winter Events:
US Open Series 1 - Miami, FL - Jan 2023
US Open Series 2 - Clearwater, FL - Feb 2023
Princess Sofia Regatta - Palma - (March 31st- April 8th
Kiel Week - Kiel, Germany - (June 21st - June 25th)
2023 World Sailing Championship* - The Hague, Netherlands - (August 10th - August 20th) *country qualifier
2024 Olympic Trials - Miami, FL - January 2024