On the 2nd of March, I was in London for the RYA Dinghy Show. Whilst I was there I saw the new rig for the laser, I spoke to lots of people in the British Sailing Team and looked at a range of boats including a 29er. When I spoke to lots of the British sailing team they suggested
moving into a 29er as a crew as it could help me with my knee issues because it puts less stress on them. This has given me something to think about. I have planned a few try outs in a 29er to see if I’d consider moving to a different class. Overall the dinghy show was a success as I met many people and learnt lots of new things from the RYA talks. Royal Torbay Yacht Club also won the Yacht and Yachting Club of the Year which made me even more proud to be part of the club.
On the 5th, I had my driving test which I passed, this will be great in the future to take myself to sailing events and get more training in as I won’t have to rely on anyone to tow my boat.
On the 9th, I was at the WPNSA for a qualifier and once we got there in the morning, we had a struggle to get my carbon top section into the aluminium bottom section but after a lot of WD40, different tactics and a bit of luck, it went in perfectly. The wind was strong and was borderline on whether or not we were going to race. In the end, the race committee decided to send us out to race. During the race, my knees started to hurt a lot so after the first race I was forced to retire. Once I got in, my knees started to hurt more and more so we decided to return home and not complete the 2nd day of racing however in the end, racing was cancelled for the Sunday anyway so I didn’t miss that.
On the 13th, I went to the VIP evening for the new Rockfish Exeter, this was amazing to meet lots of the Rockfish sailors and speak to them about how their season is going and how last year was for them. It was great to see Mitch, Ed, Laura and many other members of the Rockfish team.
Throughout the next week, my knees carried on getting worse and worse, we decided to cancel my next 2 qualifiers which were the next 2 weekends. We decided to see the NHS Physio and he was certain I had ruptured both of my ACLs, this is bad as it would be 2-3 months until an operation and then up to a year for a full recovery. Just over a week later, I saw the consultant who didn’t think I’d ruptured my ACLs (anterior cruciate ligament) but could say for definite, I could’ve damaged my MCLs (medial collateral ligament) and LCLs (lateral collateral ligament) along with my meniscus cartilage, I also I have a low muscle mass around my knees which could contribute as a factor although I do try to build my muscle around my knees. It also may not just be my knees but also an issue with my hips causing the instability. The consultant said that I am hyper-mobile which causes an unusually stretchy ACL and other ligaments which could contribute towards the pain and instability.
I am currently waiting for a date for my MRI to find out and confirm what is wrong with my legs, however long it may be I’m going to come back fighting and I’ve never been more determined to reach my goal.