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Meet the US Sailing Team – Laser Radial helm Paige Railey

by Dana Paxton, US Sailing 4 Jul 2012 18:08 BST 4 July 2012
Paige Railey, US Sailing's Laser Radial representative © US Sailing Team

In this edition of the Meet the Team series, we introduce readers to Laser Radial sailor Paige Railey of Clearwater, Fla. About to compete in her first Olympic Games, Paige Railey takes us through her routine, describes her hopes for London 2012, and shares what advice her brother, 2008 Olympic silver medalist and 2012 team mate Zach Railey, has given her.

Describe the Laser Radial to someone who is a sailor but may not be familiar with the boat.

The Laser Radial is a one design boat. Meaning when I arrive to the Olympic Games I will be chartering a boat from the organizing committee. Every athlete who competes in my class will have the same equipment and gear, thus creating a field that is equal. Basically, it’s a 14 ft boat that is good for a body weight of 150 pounds.

Take us through your typical routine before the start of a race.

I wake up and eat a huge bowl of oatmeal and some kind of protein such as egg whites. I then meet with my coach Luther (Carpenter) and go over the day’s conditions and what to expect. At two hours and fifteen minutes before the scheduled race time I head to the club and rig up, then head out (on the water) an hour and 30 minutes before the start. I stick to my strict routine because it helps set the day up.

On average, how many hours a week do you spend training?

A lot. My days can be 6-14 hours long.

What’s it like to be on the Olympic team with your brother Zach?

It’s a very special time for my family and brother. We are best friends and it has been a family goal for us to go together. I always state that I sail an individual boat, but I am part of a team. The Railey family has been working towards this for years so it is so exciting to be competing with Zach.

What are you most looking forward to about competing in the Olympics?

I am very excited for the Opening ceremony and to show the world who Paige Railey is!

What will be your biggest challenge during the Games?

Watching my brother sail! I get so nervous!

Have any veterans given you advice for your first Olympics?

My brother has. He has given me so many tips and advice. I feel so thankful to have him on the team because he teaches me a lot.

Describe your “Olympic Moment”, that first time you realized you wanted to compete at the Games?

I actually never really had one. I was told that this was what you did when you were serious with your sailing. So, I saw other people going to the Olympics and I didn’t want to miss out. I was like hey, if they can do then so can I.

Is there one moment in your sailing career that you will never forget?

When I won my first ISAF Youth Worlds in Madeira, Portugal. I was 16 and it was a monumental moment in my career. I worked very hard for it and I was so happy to see my work pay off.

What is the television show you are most looking forward to catching up on after the Olympics?

Hart of Dixie

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