Enrique Quintero, Snipe Sailor from Miami, 2007 Snipe World Champion
– 1) Your first time on a sailing boat?
I was about six years old when I stepped foot inside a sailboat. It was a 35 ft Catamaran. My parents had chartered the boat out with some friends and the captain offered the helm over to me. Ever since that day, I’ve been hooked to this amazing sport.
– 2) Your first time on a Snipe?
My very first time on a Snipe was with Augie Diaz sailing the Florida State Snipe Jr. Championship. It was a pretty cool feeling to have a two time World Champion crewing for a 13 year old Opti sailor. We ended up winning the event and a couple weeks later I got my first Snipe 28810.
– 3) The most bizarre thing that happened in a regatta?
Most bizarre thing that has ever happened to me in a couple regattas actually is turtle sightings whenever I win an event. Immediately after I crossed the finish line and won my first Opti event, a turtle appeared. Then at the 2007 Snipe Worlds after Tomas and I won, a turtle appeared right after we crossed the finish line. A little weird don’t you think?
– 4) What is the thing that most angers you in a race/regatta?
Being a coach you try to teach the people you are coaching how to minimize their mistakes in a regatta and how to sail simple. I have to say that when you try to teach that and then you end up making those mistakes you try to teach your sailors to avoid has to be the most frustrating thing.
– 5) Which is the race/regatta that you remember with the most pleasure?
Tomas Hornos and I were getting ready to start the first race of the 2007 Snipe Worlds, and for some reason we found ourselves at the pin with no one around us. I was completely nervous because the rest of the fleet was spread out by the boat and the middle, but Tomas seemed completely confident about what was going on. The gun goes off, and Tomas and I port tack the fleet and win the race at our first World Championship. We then went on to win the regatta by 23 points. That is a regatta that I know that he and I will remember forever.
– 6) And the race/regatta you would like to forget?
One regatta that I would like to forget is the 2011 Worlds in Denmark. Brian Kamilar and I were in the top ten going in to the 4th day of racing. The wind was all over the place. The first race we round in first in front of a couple of Brazilians, and when we got to the leeward mark to turn back up wind, our jib halyard got wrapped around our mainsheet block in a way that I have never seen before. We ended up in 9th that race. The second race we rounded the first two legs in 3rd, but then came the disastrous part of the race. As we started going up for the second upwind beat, we were leading left with the majority of the fleet and the leaders, when all of the sudden we lost all the pressure and the right side completely destroyed us. It was a complete fleet inversion putting us from 3rd to 41st! That pretty much ruined our chances of being the top ten at that worlds and is a regatta that I would LOVE to forget!
– 7) Your “dream in the peak”? (Your sailing dream?)
My dream peak would have to be to win a World Championship, a Westerns, and a Pan American Games in one year. Also as a coach to try and have the teams I coach dominate in any regatta that they sail.
– 8) Sailing goals for 2013, and beyond?
A couple of goals that I have are to finish in the top 5 at the Worlds in Rio and at the next Westerns in San Diego. I would also like to start driving again. Before I started crewing, skippering was my forte. So I would like to balance crewing and skippering more in the future.
– 9) The most important people for you in sailing and in the Snipe?
The Diaz family is the biggest influence that I have had in this Snipe and in my sailing career. They have shown me since I was a Opti sailor how to always give back to the sport of sailing and most importantly have turned me into the sailor that I am today. Also, Mark Kamilar (Brian Kamilar’s father) is another important and influential person in my career of sailing.
– 10) Why the Snipe?
The Snipe is a technical, strategical, physical, and fun class. It covers every aspect of the kind of boat that I would want to sail. The class is also so unique in the fact that everyone treats each other like a big family, but then be competitive on the water.
– 11) Your perfect sailing venue and your perfect sailing conditions?
I have four venues that I think are the perfect spots for sailing; Rio de Plata (Argentina), Lake Garda (Italy), Canary Islands (Spain), and of course my home Biscayne Bay (USA)! Ideal sailing conditions for me are 6-12. I love sailing in conditions were you need to make a lot of transitions depending on the breeze. I believe that in conditions like those some of the best crews really stand out.
– 12) Besides sailing which other sport do you practice?
Besides sailing I enjoy spending my time either kite boarding, wake boarding, working out in the gym, or playing basketball.
– 13) Are you superstitious?
I am a little superstitious. During regattas I usually don’t shave until after the end of the regatta. Sometimes, I also have an order on which board shorts to wear along with what tech shirt to wear.
– 14) Your perfect holiday?
My perfect/favorite holiday has to be Snipe Nationals. Even though its really not a holiday, its a week that I have off of work, with great friends, and doing what I love most, sailing!
(photos courtesy: Michele Postinghel and John Payne)