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Sarasota Thursday, Aug. 13, 2009 11 years ago

THE ATHLETE: Molly McKinney

by: Loren Mayo Black Tie Editor

When Pine View School let out for winter break last year, Molly McKinney made a break for it and landed herself in the hospital.

In addition to school, McKinney was spending 20 hours each week sailing with the Pine View sailing team and had started working 16 hours per week at Rita’s Custard. To keep herself awake, she had taken up running and, on Dec. 22, landed wrong on a road reflector and crunched her foot.

“I hopped half-a-mile home on my right leg,” McKinney said. “This happened right before Christmas and before the Orange Bowl, an international sailing regatta. I was out until February.”

Her workout regimen made her feel like she was starting all over, but when McKinney’s teammates started to surpass her during practice, it only motivated her to work harder.

“You have to have a lot of strength ability, but also endurance,” McKinney said. “Races last an hour-and-a-half, so, mentally, there are so many variables you have to go over and think about constantly. You have to be motivated and determined to take whatever comes your way.”

During regattas, sailors are required stay on the water all day for several days in a row with the sun beating down on them. They also have to handle rough conditions such as storms and wind.

“Sailing is going to be a lifelong sport for me,” McKinney said. “There are infinite opportunities, and most of the Ivy League schools are really big, major players. I’m anxious to start my senior year and get back into (a) routine again.”

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