Listen to the interview here:
Sara Hasteiter on following your dreams.
Sara Hastreiter doesn’t like sitting around watching TV. Her life has taken some interesting turns, but one thing has remained constant: When she wants something, she goes for it. This has lead her to fight for HIV/AIDS in Africa and now as a member of Team SCA, currently participating in the Volvo Ocean Race — basically sailing through very dangerous waters around the entire world. Sara explains how she developed her passion for sailing and her exciting journey on this episode of the How to Quit Working Show.
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Sara Hastreiter hails from landlocked Wyoming, where she grew up on a farm with loads of animals and dreamed of being a rodeo princess. Her journey to Team SCA and the Volvo Ocean Race (VOR) is far from average and filled with twists and hardships that might have kept a lesser individual from seeing their dream through.
Well, before joining the round-the-world adventure, Sara traveled to raise awareness of HIV/AIDS in Africa and the Caribbean. It was on the crystal Caribbean waters that she fell in love with sailing, working as a deckhand on a day-charter catamaran in 2008, and dedicated herself to the goal of becoming a professional sailor.
Following her charter cat introduction, Sara sought rides on the Caribbean winter circuit and then hustled her way onto racing programs and offshore deliveries. She racked up the miles (40,000 and counting) and the experience, and made contacts. If you’re serious about this racing thing, her new sailing friends told her, then get yourself to Newport, R.I., stat. Sara did, promptly hooking into the scene and onto the Cookson 50 Privateer and other top area teams. Then came SCA’s crew call in August 2012.
Like several hundred other girls, Sara applied right away, but she broke her ribs shortly after that. Once she recovered, she started physically training and continued to sail competitively. In February 2013, Sara had just finished the Pineapple Cup – the only female to do that race – and was introduced to SCA shore manager Richard Mason. He said he’d pass along her CV – with no promises.
But her persistence paid off. Sara was called back in November, and, like a rookie at an NFL training camp, she stuck it out for five months – never knowing whether she’d make the team. In March, the team’s coaches, including Brad Jackson, a VOR winner, finally gave her the news she’d been hoping for: They wanted to keep her. “I just knew I had to show dedication at all times,” Sara says.