The Fort Issue 10 November 2021(clone) - Page 10

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STUDENT PROFILE

Lara Merten has been sailing competitively for the past two years, but her sailing background goes back to as long as she can remember. Her love of the outdoors and the ability to practise sailing all year round has seen Lara take on an active role in the sport. SPINNAKER speaks to Lara to get to know more about one of the RMYC Sailing School’s promising sailors.

Lara Merten: A Bright Future Ahead

Lara’s father is a sailor. From a young age all of her holidays were spent on boats, stirring her passion, for the sea, and the outdoors. Lara recalls her most memorable sailing moment as when she crossed the Atlantic Ocean on a 100-foot-tall ship, whilst when competitively sailing she is in her element in big fleets where she has the opportunity to widen her international circle of friends.

Lara, admits that it is very hard to combine sailing and studying, this year was even harder as she undertook her IGCSES. She adds that both require physical and mental effort, whilst consuming a lot of time. Sailing is a sport that needs 100 percent commitment, determination and strength. Sailing needs dedication to push through an entire race especially if one has had a bad start, meaning that they are at the end of the fleet. In these instances, one needs the dedication and drive to push oneself forward and fight through the fleet in search of a good result. Similarly, when studying one needs 100 percent focus and organization.

When it comes to sailing, Lara had big plans for 2020. In spite of not having sailed competitively for long, she set herself an ambitious target – to compete in a fleet of around 200 competitors, in the RS Feva World Championships. Sadly, the Covid-19 pandemic had other plans and the event was cancelled. The disappointment was great, “seeing all the hard work and effort put in go up in smoke was quite demotivating”.

Yet, Lara did not allow this setback to dampen her spirits and diminish her motivation to develop her abilities in the sport. Under the guidance of RMYC Sailing coach Charlie Linsell, she moved into the Laser 4.7 Class, which is highly competitive class. Nevertheless, in the two races she competed in she finished in third place, having to contend with more experienced sailors. This augurs well for her.

Although competitions are still not as frequent as they were pre-Covid-19, Lara is very much looking forwards to the time when there will be multiple international events to compete in. There is a lot of drive to get good results in the hope of possible qualification for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, France.

With such ambitions in place, we are sure we will be seeing more of Lara!

opportunity to widen her international circle of friends.

Lara, admits that it is very hard to combine sailing and studying, this year was even harder as she undertook her IGCSES. She adds that both require physical and mental effort, whilst consuming a lot of time. Sailing is a sport that needs 100 percent commitment, determination and strength. Sailing needs dedication to push through an entire race especially if one has had a bad start, meaning that they are at the end of the fleet. In these instances, one needs the dedication and drive to push oneself forward and fight through the fleet in search of a good result. Similarly, when studying one needs 100 percent focus and organization.

When it comes to sailing, Lara had big plans for 2020. In spite of not having sailed competitively for long, she set herself an ambitious target – to compete in a fleet of around 200 competitors, in the RS Feva World Championships. Sadly, the Covid-19 pandemic had other plans and the event was cancelled. The disappointment was great, “seeing all the hard work and effort put in go up in smoke was quite demotivating”.

Yet, Lara did not allow this setback to dampen her spirits and diminish her motivation to develop her abilities in the sport. Under the guidance of RMYC Sailing coach Charlie Linsell, she moved into the Laser 4.7 Class, which is highly competitive class. Nevertheless, in the two races she competed in she finished in third place, having to contend with more experienced sailors. This augurs well for her.

Although competitions are still not as frequent as they were pre-Covid-19, Lara is very much looking forwards to the time when there will be multiple international events to compete in. There is a lot of drive to get good results in the hope of possible qualification for the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, France.

With such ambitions in place, we are sure we will be seeing more of Lara!