If Ben Ainslie manages to win the right to compete for the America's Cup in 2017, Jimmy Spithill is the man he'll be up against. Jimmy is the world's most successful racing skipper, and at 37 has already reached legendary status. In 2013 he led Oracle Team USA to victory against New Zealand against massive odds, recovering from 1-8 to win 9-8 (the Wall Street Journal called it 'one of the greatest comebacks in sports history'), and is the skipper for Oracle's upcoming 2017 America's Cup defence as well. This is his autobiography, and it opens with a young Jimmy in hospital about to have surgery on his leg, being told by the doctors he'll never be much good at sport. This sparks a life-long determination to prove them wrong. He won his first race aged 10, and using a credit card to pay for travel he went on winning races all over the country, and then the world. He debuted in the America's Cup as a skipper at age 20, and after a tough legal battle to free himself from his contract with the Young Australia team, he sailed in the next two Cups before becoming the youngest ever winner of the America's Cup in 2010, as helmsman and skipper of BMW Oracle Team 90, only to win it again three years later in 2013. This book is far from the usual media-trained official account you often get, especially in the closed-off world of the America's Cup. Jimmy's open, honest style gives us a rare insight into what goes on in the head of an extremely focused man at the top of his game. It's a rags-to-riches story of fierce determination, court cases, seasickness, crashed boats and cars, alcohol and winning against all the odds. And it all contributed to turning a quiet, bullied, water-loving blue-collar redhead born in Sydney into one of sailing's biggest rockstars.A compelling read, with many lessons in leadership, teamwork and achieving your dreams, no matter how impossible they seem.
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