Sailor Spotlight: Bella Grey
Bella is an 11 year old 6th grader who sails for CERT and LEHYC. She is part of the up-and-coming contingent of young Little Egg sailors who have really upped their games lately. She and her LBI teammates have started practicing hard in the off-season, they're traveling to as many regattas as possible, and they are loving the sport. Their time on the water is starting to pay dividends too as their results improve every time they sail. LEHYC is going to have a power-house junior sailing program for many years to come!
Name: Bella Grey
Age: 11 years old
Grade in School: Sixth grade
Yacht Club: Little Egg Harbor Yacht Club
Bella, you have travelled to a lot of regattas lately and have really made an effort to improve your sailing skills. Which regatta was your favorite and why?
I have two favorites. My first would probably be Nationals. It was my first big regatta since Orange Bowl 2016, and I had recovered from a concussion two weeks before. I also qualified for Team Trials, so I was super excited at the end. Also, I enjoyed spending time with my teammates and feel like we got to know each other better. ACCs was also great. The activities after sailing were awesome, and the zip-line was definitely the highlight of the regatta. The heavier wind on the second day was also enjoyable.
Tell me about your concussion last year and what you did while you were recovering.
Last year I got a concussion by falling on my head doing a back-bend. Honestly, it was awful. I also got whiplash from doing flips at a trampoline park, which added to my head pain. While I was recovering, all I did was sleep and eat for the first week. After I got a little better, I learned how to bake. So many batches of brownies and cookies were made (and eaten) during my recovery.
What’s something you do really well in the boat?
Something I do well in the boat is sailing downwind. I plan ahead and know if I should jibe or keep going at the weather mark. I am also good at mark roundings, and I pass boats while rounding marks.
What’s a short term goal or something you want to improve on?
One thing I want to improve on is starts. I am usually on the favored side and have a good hole, then I lose it at 20 seconds. My goal is to get consistent front row starts and not lose my hole.
What’s your favorite drill on the water?
My favorite drill is probably rabbit starts. Strangely enough, I used to despise them. I finally got good at rolling my boat to get speed off my rounding. It's fun to see if I can pass the boat that rounded before me and to try my best not to get passed.