11 May Beginners guide: “from passion to job” part 2

Why work all week to sail on the weekend, if you could be sailing all the time.
In 2006 I started to realize that my Olympic sailing carreer would end someday, and that I needed to find a way to make a living.

After doing an internship at Unilever in 2005 I was also quite convinced that a conventional job, at a conventional company would most probably not be perfect for me.
The words of Henri van der Aat resonated in my ears: “write about something you are passionate about”. I reasoned that the theory on work should be the same; “work on something you are passionate about”.

Perfect, I’ll become a professional sailor. Making my money with sailing yachts all over the world, hopefully competing in the America’s Cup and Volvo Ocean Race.
I asked Dirk “Cheese” de Ridder what would be necessary to achieve this. He gave me a few tips:

·      Learn a second skill
·      Keep banging on doors, until you can get your foot in

In the years to come this turned out to be valuable advice.

In the meantime the foiling moth was not just something you read about in Seahorse Magazine anymore. Andrew McDougall had teamed up with an investor from Melbourne and McConaghy’s in China to build the first production foiling moth – I simply had to get involved.
I tried out the “Bladerider” and I was hooked. It truly was the most exiting sailing moment I had ever experienced. I could fly! And then the main foil snapped……

Ok, so this was a prototype, I’ll order one, become a Bladerider dealer and by the time I’ll get my production boat (my first one was the 003) all should be fine. This could be the way to reach my goals! Combining my passions and be busy with sailing all the time!

It was not… Although they did sell well, the quality issues, production delays and complete boat write-offs that needed replacements eventually bankrupted Bladerider.
And left me with big boat repair bills…
it was time to go back to the drawing board…..

Kalle Coster
kalle.coster@sailmon.com

Bachelor Business Administration three time Olympian in the 470 class, professional sailor/ Navigator turned entrepreneur. With a great passion for both sailing and technology Kalle is always looking how to integrate the latest technology into Sailing. In his spare time Kalle races his Moth. Together with his wife Carolien he has a daughter Liv and another baby on the way.