Taylor Scheuermann young Snipe sailor from Miami
I want to start by saying that this is an incredible honor! I’ve always wondered if I were to ever receive a “14 Questions” request … and now here it is! I couldn’t have helped but to grin in amazement when I received your request for this interview.
– 1) Your first time on a sailing boat?
My first time on a sailboat was when I was around the age of eight, sailing on a Tartan 28 keelboat named Maiden with my parents, out in Biscayne Bay in Miami. My parents had met through sailing, and they were very eager to instill the same love of sailing in the heart of their daughter.
– 2) Your first time on a Snipe?
My first time on a Snipe was with Augie Diaz in 2008. He took me sailing for a day of practice to serve as a reprieve from my Optimist training. It was a day that I shall never forget, and that I shall never be able to repay Augie for, as it introduced me into this amazing fleet.
– 3) The most bizarre thing that happened in a regatta?
Coming from one of the warmest cities in the United States, I had never seen snow. Yet, while sailing in Boston at a Women’s College regatta in my Freshman year, we found ourselves racing in sleet! Needless to say, it felt incredibly bizarre to be sailing in such conditions.
– 4) What is the thing that most angers you in a race/regatta?
Personally, the most infuriating occurrence in a race is the inability to make up for a mistake, despite giving 110% of your efforts to regain the boats that were lost. Mistakes do happen, and how one comes back from these mistakes is far more important than the mistake made.
– 5) Which is the race/regatta that you remember with the most pleasure?
With the most pleasure, I remember the Snipe Junior Worlds in Denmark in 2011. I had recruited Jessica Claflin to sail with me, and the regatta was forecasted to be windless and warm. Considering our combined weight of about 285 pounds, we were thrilled to see that forecast. What was not anticipated was the front that came through the day before the regatta began. Temperatures dropped quickly, and the wind picked up to a solid 18-20 knots. Up against a fleet of mostly heavy, strong, and tall boys, we had a difficult challenge ahead of us. With mental and physical strength, incredible teamwork, and some luck, we finished the regatta in 8th of 19 boats. Not only was it a great feat, but we had a great deal of fun sailing the regatta, and learned an incredible amount from the racing!
– 6) And the race/regatta you would like to forget?
I am a firm believer that no experience, particularly in sailing, ever deserves to be forgotten. Out of every failure or defeat comes a valuable lesson.
– 7) Your “dream in the peak”? (Your sailing dream?)
I hope to qualify for Snipe Senior Worlds in the years following graduation from my University, as well as to complete a solid campaign in preparation for the regatta. Perhaps I will determine my goal for results at Worlds when I qualify, or perhaps I will determine my goal after the first race of the event!
– 8) Sailing goals for 2014, and beyond?
For 2014, I hope to qualify for College Nationals with the sailing team at my University. As for the Snipe, I hope to practice and compete more often than I did in 2013.
– 9) The most important people for you in sailing and in the Snipe?
The list of the most important people for me in sailing, and in the Snipe, is a lengthy one. My parents have been immensely supportive of my sailing exploits, funding my travels and providing me with funds to purchase boats, sails, etc. Jessica Claflin and Carol Cronin have both been a direct and constant inspiration to me in my Snipe sailing. Bill Johns, my coach at the University of Miami, has always been dedicated to pushing me to be the very best that I could be, as a sailor and as a person. Doug Broeker and Augie Diaz have helped me from the very beginning, providing me with as much knowledge as I would be able to digest, and then a great deal more. Lastly, I would be remiss if I did not mention Peter Commette; he has pushed me to my limits, picked me up when I was nearly out of commission, and has been a constant inspiration to me in everything that I do.
– 10) Why the Snipe?
The Snipe is an Internationally recognized boat that not only teaches more advanced tuning techniques, but it also teaches the sincere importance of tactics with boatspeed. As an 380 pound monohull, the Snipe is not one of the fastest boat that I’ve ever sailed. However, there is a lot more to learn about the essence of racing in Snipes than those other, faster boats. The Snipe fleet, most of all, is the friendliest, most helpful fleet that I have ever been a part of, and the parties are great!
– 11) Your perfect sailing venue and your perfect sailing conditions?
My perfect sailing venue would have to be my home waters of Biscayne Bay, with the venue of Buffalo Canoe Club in a very close second. Both venues can be breathtakingly gorgeous, and with minimal current!
– 12) Besides sailing which other sport do you practice?
Unfortunately, Sailing is the only sport that I practice! If I had more free time between Sailing and Studying for my classes, I would want to try Rowing for the teamwork and the physical challenge that it provides.
– 13) Are you superstitious?
Personally, I do not believe in most superstitions. I tend to bring bananas on board with me during regattas without a second thought, and I tend to sail better in those regattas! But, I do still sometimes knock on wood …
– 14) Your perfect holiday?
My perfect holiday would be a trip to Auckland, New Zealand for a week of sailing. Although I have never been there, I have heard only superior recommendations of such a trip.