- Building American Leaders Through Sailing -

Andrew O’Donnell

2012 Sapling

Andrew O’Donnell (OD) grew up on a horse farm in a rural upstate New York. Though he was helpful around his mother’s farm, he didn’t pursue a riding career. Instead he began racing downhill mountain bikes. At twelve years old he bought his first car and created a rally track around the family farm. A competitive nature was instilled from an early age by his parents and friends. Once in high school he competed on the varsity rowing team and was recruited to a college rowing program where he and his teammates won silver at the Intercollegiate Rowing Association regatta.

OD was introduced to yacht racing after college. He knew after his first race that this was the sport for him, as it intertwined logic with physical ability. He began as a grinder aboard 12M Onawa and used his grinding ability to gain spots on other boats. OD found his real niche working for a performance yacht service company in Greenwich, CT, run by Onawa’s tactician. He would work, maintain, and race on (or against) boats out of Indian Harbor, Riverside yacht clubs. He continued learning about rigging, race bottoms, and acquired a fine eye for detail while working. OD is looking forward to learning and developing his offshore racing skills at Oakcliff.