Hebe Jebes 2015 Issue JAN/FEB - Page 16

SLAM Sailing Centre SLAM Sailing Centre Hebe Race Week Interview with Rafael Di Donna championships I have ever competed in in a Laser was when I was I was 17 years old—the championship to qualify for the Olympic Games in Atlanta 1996. Of course, I was the youngest in a 40 Laser Standard, but for me it was an incredible experience. I raced in keel boats, crossing Argentina to Uruguay, and lots of long races in big boats. me and, as I am still sailing in Optimists, I have been able to discover what it is like to be a sailing coach. I started to coach in my club when I was 20 years old—that day was one of my best days of my life. Five years later I was designated the national coach of Uruguay. I have coached in three South American championships and one world championship. What is your worst memory while sailing Optimist (or another boat)? My worst memory in an Optimist was in a regional championship 140 Optimist race in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay­ a very windy day with big waves. I rounded the — first mark in 3rd position and after the mark I floundered head down—oh my goodness, I remember that. Tell us a funny story about your time sailing or coaching… For the second year in a row, the Development Fund for Youth Sailing invited international coach Rafael Di Donna from Uruguay to train our Hebe Dragons and Hebe sailors over the Hebe Race Week from 21–25 October. 青年航海發展基金已連續兩年邀請來自烏拉圭的國際主教練 Rafael Di Donna來港,為參與在10月21到25日所舉行白沙灣 遊艇會賽事週(Hebe Race Week)的Dragons隊和其他選手 們提供實時訓練。 Rafael has an impressive pedigree in sailing and coaching: Head Coach + Optimist Advanced Coach, Uruguayan Optimist National Coach 2005–2007, sailing instructor in various South American countries, adult sailing instructor, sailing manager… The Dragons also had an extra chance to practise with Rafael before and after the Race Week. In 2005 I won my first National Championship as a coach in Uruguay. It was winter, with very cold weather. One of my students—Diego—finished first out of 60 boats. All the team was so happy on the dock celebrating the championship, in a moment of distraction all my team tripped and accidently pushed me into the water with Diego. After 2005, we won the Nationals in 2006, 2007 and 2008—four years non stop. Good memories. Rafael在航海及擔任指導教練的工作方面都有豐富的經驗: Before he left Hong Kong, Hebe Jebes had the opportunity to interview the master (see below). Please introduce yourself, for those who do not know you… My name is Rafael Di Donna. I’m 35 years old. I’m from Uruguay, a small country in South America. My father is Italian and my mother is from Uruguay. My job title is Sailing Manager and Head Coach for the Optimist class at my club— Nautilus Yachting Club. It is the same club where I started sailing when I was a child, so it is my second home. My grandfather was an Italian naval officer, that’s my only connection with 14 Hebe jebes • jan/Feb 2015 It is the second time you have come to Hong Kong for the Dragons and Hebe Haven. Have you noticed any change from 2013 to 2014 in our sailors’ skills? 他曾任多個南美洲國家的主教練及Optimist級別的高級教練, 2005﹣2007年烏拉圭Optimist級別中的國家隊主教練,帆船監 察指導員,成人帆船教練及帆船經理等工作...... Dragons隊的隊員也有機會在白沙灣遊艇會賽事週的賽前和賽 後與Rafael一同進行訓練。在他離港前,《Hebe Jebes》有 幸訪問到這位大師: the sea, but when I was very young I always enjoyed the adventure and everything related with the sea. At the time of sailing Optimists, how often were you training and racing? In an Optimist I trained every Saturday and Sunday, and sometimes after school during the week. During the holidays I trained all week. I raced two weekends per month, small championships and big ones. If I had the opportunity, I wanted to race in them all! What is your favourite memory of sailing an Optimist? When did you start sailing? I was ten years old, walking with my father in Montevideo (capital of Uraguay) and, looking at the view, I asked my father what type of boats the small and amazing boats were. He told me he had no idea but that we were close to a yachting club, if I wanted to ask right away. That day, my life changed—I started sailing an Optimist. I bought my first Optimist five months later and I started to race all over Uruguay as well as Argentina, sometimes getting first place. After the Optimist, which boat did you sail and up to which level? After the Optimist, I bought a Laser when I was 15 years old and very soon I was racing in a Standard. One of the best My best memory in the Optimist class was when I won my first championship—the anniversary of another yachting club in Uruguay. Even now I have the trophy on display in my home. I have enjoyed every day I have spent in an Optimist. I have very good memories of my first coach, he continually inspired This was my second time training with the Dragons and I saw great progress in the skills of each and every sailor. They have worked very hard and I have noticed more concentration and analysis of the regatta course. That’s what it’s about. Improvise with a solid base of information of the course and the co