Imua 'Iolani

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Honolulu, Hawai'i

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Sailing Past The Competition: Isabelle Tsuchitori

May 13, 2019

     Isabelle Tsuchitori ‘22 is no stranger to competition and has literally sailed across the world in search of it.

     Tsuchitori began sailing when her mother enrolled her and her oldest brother Aaron Tsuchitori in the Waikiki Yacht Club sailing camp for the summer. She was only eight years old but she loved doing it.

     “I had made some close friends over the summer that I wanted to see more often and I also found sailing very fun and wanted to continue,” Tsuchitori said, “Plus, I would much rather be on the water than in a classroom taking summer school.”

     In seventh grade, Tsuchitori came to ‘Iolani wanting to join the ‘Iolani sailing team. However, she was told that she was too young to participate. In response, she took her skill to the other side of the world the next year.  

     Along with several other members from the Waikiki Yacht Club, Tsuchitori traveled to China to participate in the 2018 International Topper Class Association World Championships; winners of these annual championships are recognized as world champions. Racing against sailors from China, Britain, Ireland, Japan, India, and many other countries, Isabelle placed 12th in the juniors bronze flight. She was only 15 years old.

     A year later, Tsuchitori started as the only freshman on the `Iolani Varsity 1 sailing team.

     “It was really intimidating at first,”  Tsuchitori said, “but then I got really close to my crew mate, Sarah Seto ‘19. Even though she’s a senior, I feel comfortable around her.”

     When asked about Isabelle, Seto said, “Isabelle is definitely one of the kindest, most honest person I’ve ever met so it’s very easy to talk to her. I think we work well together because we always communicate and listen to each other.”

     While sailing has gotten her far, Tsuchitori sails out of passion and not for the glory.

     “I like going fast,” Tsuchitori explained. “It’s also really cool because sometimes when we go out we see dolphins and whales and that’s really fun.”

     With so much potential, Tsuchitori is on her way to achieving big titles. She even has a clear path for her future in mind: “I am really excited to win awards with ‘Iolani and I definitely want to sail in college.”

     While Tsuchitori does not imagine herself as an professional sailer she contemplates, “If I had the opportunity to go professional, I would definitely take it. But for now, I think I still have a few years to think over.”

 

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