14 Questions to … Maria Fiestas

Maria Fiestas, Snipe sailor from Marbella, Spain

– 1) Your first time on a sailing boat?

My first time on a sailboat… Hmmm I don’t remember very well, but I guess that was on one of my uncle ́s boats or maybe on one of my father ́s cousins’. It was long time ago… And then I started sailing by myself on an optimist boat when I was 9 years old.

– 2) Your first time on a Snipe?

My grandmother gave me my first Snipe as a birthday present. I really loved it! Then, there came a time when I had to leave Marbella to go to the university and work. With time I was sailing less and less, just sporadically for many years.

– 3) The most bizarre thing that happened in a regatta?

I don’t have bad memories sailing Snipes. But I remember a race in a J24 when we broke the rudder in the middle of the Strait of Gibraltar. Honestly, it wasn’t very pleasant, but in the end nothing bad happened and now it ́s a story to tell.

– 4) What is the thing that most angers you in a race/regatta?

What is the thing that most angers you in a race/regatta? What makes me angry? When a sailor is a sore loser. And the lack of respect that sometimes others have to bear because of the poor behavior of some.

– 5) Which is the race/regatta that you remember with the most pleasure?

All the regattas in general… I am someone who tries to enjoy myself everywhere I go, independent of how I finish in the races. But I have to admit that in sports everyone likes to be on top.

– 6) And the race/regatta you would like to forget?

The European Championship 2016 in Santiago de la Ribera, Spain. On the first day, a few minutes before going out onto the water, my skipper’s father (Javier Contreras) had a heart attack in the entrance of the club. Thanks to the quick reaction of some sailors who are also doctors, he recovered well, but for us those are days to forget.

– 7) Your “dream in the peak”? (Your sailing dream?)

To be able to continue enjoying sailing, as I always have, and in a few years to be like many of our Legend Masters.

– 8) Sailing goals for 2020, and beyond?

2020?? Let’s see what we can do after this pandemic that is keeping everyone at home. It’s a terrible thing and I hope it finishes soon and with the best possible outcome.

– 9) The most important people for you in sailing and in the Snipe?

I could name many world renowned people with great achievements, but for me the most important people are those who are close to me, those who give me the opportunity to sail and learn from them: Javi Contreras, Alvaro Martinez, Yuyu, my teammates from Woman Essentia, Jorn Haga, Martin Bermudez and a long list of names, all in the great Snipe family.

– 10) Why the Snipe?

In my club (R.C.M. Marbella) there were 4 or 5 snipes that I saw when I was a child, and I absolutely loved them. So, when I finished sailing in the Optimist and Cadet fleets, I asked my family for a Snipe and I was lucky that they gave me one.

– 11) Your perfect sailing venue and your perfect sailing conditions?

A lot of places, I cannot pick just one, but I love Marbella. The perfect sailing conditions for me are sun, with a calm sea and 10-12 knots… What more can you ask for?

– 12) Besides sailing which other sport do you practice?

Horseback riding, skiing, snowboarding, and daily exercises to stay in shape.

– 13) Are you superstitious?

No

– 14) Your perfect holiday?

Your perfect holiday? On a sail boat with friends.

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