August 18, 2011

20 Questions with Joseph Hou 2011 Junior Sabot national Champion

20 Questions with Joseph Hou, #9153
2011 Junior Sabot National Champion

***Joseph, Congratulations on winning the 2011 Junior Sabot Nationals!***

Pre Race:

1.         What kind of sailing/training had you done in preparation for the 2011 Sabot Nationals?

      Well, my mom makes me sail 24/7 whether I like it or not.  Just kidding.  I do attend most of
      Practice clinics and racing regattas year round.

2.         Who are the people and coaches that helped you prepare for the regatta?

Chris Segerblom, Mac Mace and Payson Infelise at NHYC have been coaching me this summer.  I also worked with Freddie Stevens for a few weekends before the Nationals.

3.         How do you prepare yourself the day of a large regatta such as Nationals?

            I go into a large regatta such as the Nationals just as any other regattas.

4.         What did you do to prepare your boat?

            I washed and polished my boat on Monday since I did not have to race the qualifier.   When I rig
            My boat, I always triple check my rigging.

5.         What do you like about your Ullman Sail that led you to choosing it to help you win the Nationals?

            I first used Ullman Sail because it was recommended by Mr. Jim Otis who has won Nationals when he was younger.  Now I have used it for the last two years, I really like it because I can use it in light air days and windy days.

6.         How old are you and how old were you when you started sailing?
            I am 11 and I started sailing when I was 9.

7.         What sailors do you look up to and admire?
            Chris Barnard because he is an awesome sailor who has won many Nationals all over the world. 
            Jim Otis who I know very well and he has taught me a lot about Sabot sailing.

8.         Do you sail any other types of boats?
            I am currently only sailing Sabot.  But I would like to sail 420’s

9.         When you are not on the water, what do you like to do?

            I read books about sailing tactics or watch somebody sailing if I am there.  I also like to
            play video games when I am finished with all my homework.

The Race:

10.       After winning the last race on Saturday, were you nervous one Sunday morning?
            I was very nervous, but I got over it.

11.       You were 4th in the flight selection Series, did you change anything to win the regatta?
            No.  I stuck with what worked.

12.       Tell is about the wind shifts and weather, Newport Beach can be a tricky place to sail.

            Well, it was very shifty and one can be easily fooled.  You have to be patient.

13.       We know you can’t give away all of your speed secrets, but could you share just one with us? Tell us how to go fast…please?

            Okay!  One of my “speed tricks” is to keep my mainsheet in at the right spot.  If it’s too tight,     then Air won’t flow.  If it’s too loose, the air will spill.

14.       What piece of equipment do you relay on most when racing?

            My sail and my boards.

15.       The points were very tight going into the last race. Did this play into you decisions or did you just sail your  own race?

            A little bit of both.  I knew what it takes to win so I sailed my own race.  I would have been very
            happy to finish in the top five of the Gold Fleet since I am racing against the best Sabot sailors. 

Post Race:

16.       How did it feel when you lifted the trophy knowing that you will be joining great names such as Earl Elms, Jeff Lenhart, and Bill Hardesty?

            It felt great but oddly heavy.

17.       What advice do you have for other young juniors out there who aspire to become Sabot Champions and more?

            Patience.  As my mom says “you have a chance of meeting your goal, you just have to go out
            there, work hard and get it”.

18.       What is the most important thing you learned during this regatta?

            Sail you own race and be patient.  Even if there is a sweet righty on the right and you are on the
            left, stay patient.

19.       What is the next big regatta for Joseph Hou?

            Jr. Fall Invitational/North Series ¼ at ABYC

20.       What is the next class you are going to attack?

            Hopefully, if my mom let’s, me and I get a little bigger, 420’s.

Bonus Question: Do you have any “groupies” now that you are a National Champion?

            NO.  But sometimes that’s a good thing. 

Thank you for your time Joseph, and thank you for flying with Ullman Sails