Today I was accused of asking "whether words of wisdom are just crap."
No. I don't think words of wisdom are just crap.
Having pondered the matter over a few glasses of good Scotch whisky in the intervening week, I think I have finally seen the truth.
The reason why all sailing regattas are won time and time again by the same few sailors, less than 5% of the total number of competitors, is that the rest of us non-winners simply fail to apply and execute those basic racing principles as consistently and well as the winners do.
Sure the winners may have excellent boatspeed, may even know the odd go-faster secret, but when they regurgitate the same old well-known principles such as how to get a good start, how to sail a beat in shifty, puffy conditions, or how to sail fast in waves downwind... they are really doing us non-winners a huge favor. They are telling us what we need to hear. "Get the basics right and you too will have the chance to be a winner."
Yes, it may also be true that we non-winners aren't as fit as the winners, and that we may not have practiced as much as the winners; but the fundamental reason we don't win is that we don't have the right habits, the habits of applying those basic principles every time in every race.
So how do you change habits? How do you develop good habits? Read any book on the subject or just do the 21st century thing and google it. You will get the same answers. All the experts will talk about the same things...
Write it down
So no, I don't think words of wisdom are just crap.
Actually I think I need to read and study and write about and blog about those words of wisdom even more. Because then I might actually remind myself to apply those basic principles of how to win sailboat races, and convince myself I can really do those things well.
So I'm going to start blogging even more about words of wisdom, about all the well-known advice on how to race well, about how to win.
It might do me some good. It might even do some of my readers some good.
Watch this space...