Getting to know Team Manager Jake LaDow, the self-proclaimed ‘Burrito King’, and water sports enthusiast…
You turned 20 this past Monday (6/17). What would you say is your most memorable sailing experience in these first 20 years of your life? Probably the most memorable sailing experience was the 2008 San Diego to Puerta Vallarta race on board Dennis Conner’s Farr 60, Stars & Stripes. This was by far the farthest race I had ever sailed, being over 1000 miles. It was a surreal experience sailing for days and nights not seeing anyone else or any piece of land.
As an avid waterman, you enjoy surfing, water polo, spear fishing and many other water sports. Which is your favorite aquatic activity? The obvious choice for me is sailing, probably since I have logged so many more hours sailing than doing any other sport. I still surf, so I am thankful for that, but water polo is something I stopped after high school and I really miss it. The team aspect of the sport and the physical challenge was something that really kept me interested and motivated.
Can you go into a little bit of detail about your role as Team Manager? My role as a team manager was more crucial in the months leading up to the qualifier, and the two months after. Since then we have been led by Doug Augustine, Matt Reynolds, and our coach Charlie Ogletree. I do help coordinate and do some extra things, but my focus now is with the sailing team and improving my individual performance levels and the teams.
What are some of the main differences and similarities about trimming a wing sail compared to a ‘regular’ sail? Sailing with a wing is something new to me, and new to all of our team. The design is complex, but sailing with the wing is very adaptable to other sailing. There is a camber adjustment that controls the depth, and a control for the twist. Believe it or not, the 70 foot tall wing is controlled by a wing sheet that is rigged 1 to 1! It is so efficient that no purchase system is necessary.
You’ve done a bunch of sailing with your dad, Andy. Knowing that he’ll probably read this article, what is your favorite part about sailing with him? Sailing with my Dad is always a blast. Not only do I get to spend time with him doing the sport we both love, but I have learned so much. I can be pretty demanding as a skipper, but he always is able to keep a level head and not get frustrated with a crewing mistake or a bad shift. It is something that allows you to keep progressing throughout a race and regatta and hopefully has been rubbing off on me!
Rumors are flying around that you once ate five burritos in one day from Hector’s in your hometown of Point Loma, CA. Can you please confirm or deny this? I am an avid burrito connoisseur, but unfortunately my record holds at 3 burritos and 4 fish tacos. The burritos are massive so it will be a challenge, but I think I am up for it. Next time I am home I’m bringing my game face.