London Olympics Hometown Heroes: Stu McNay
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It's a return visit to the Olympics games for Bay State native Stu McNay.
Stu McNay is hoping for smooth sailing in the Olympic waters. But whatever happens, the Bay State native will always stay on course!
Olympic sailor Stuart McNay grew up in Chestnut Hill and spent summers close to the Cape. He says no matter where in the world his sailing takes him, he will always have a soft spot for Boston!
“I really love it in the spring and in the fall. The changing seasons are just -- are fantastic. It’s cool how you have the city aspect, but you’re also by the water too. There’s the Charles here with all of its boating, Boston Harbor, outside the city you can go to some really great sailing places,” McNay said.
Stu learned how to sail when he was eight and was already competing in races by the time he was 10.
During high school at Roxbury Latin, Stu was finishing in the top of the pack in national competitions!
“When I was 16 or 17, I was really aware of the Olympics as the top level of any sailing. And so that’s like where it kind of became a dream, a possibility,” McNay said.
While attending Yale, Stu made the U.S. sailing team. And by 2008 he made it to his first Olympics.
He and his teammate Graham Biehl sailed in the men’s 470 division, finishing 13th. But Stu says that's okay, he just loves to be out on the water.
“Sailing is sailing. And for me, just getting in touch with the boat, with the wind,” Stu said.
Now the 30-year-old, who calls Brookline home, is heading to London, looking to take a medal this time.
And what's he going to do with that medal after he wins it?
“I'd carry it around with me for a bit,” Stu said.
Stu's girlfriend, who is at the games with him, says sailing is more than just a sport to Stu; it's his way of life!
Stu and his partner finished 14th in the men's 470 division, just shy of making it to the finals.