Yeppoon sailor steers his life towards success
From The Capricorn Coast Mirror
AT JUST 24 years of age, Yeppoon sailor Brent Pearson has overcome some major challenges in his life and now he is reaping the rewards as he embarks on a trip to England to sail in the World Moth Sailing Championships.
Having been an active sailor with Keppel Bay Sailing Club for around 17 years, just a few years ago Brent lost sight of his goals.
His weight ballooned, his type 1 diabetes got out of control and his hope of fulfilling his dream to be a world-class sailor seemed lost.
Brent said he comes from a family of sailors and has always been encouraged by his father and grandfather.
"I always wanted to compete and, from the age of about 10, I fell in love with the dream of sailing a moth in a world-class event," Brent said.
"In 2010, I sailed in the World Championship at Belmont in NSW; I came 45th in the 124-boat competition.
"After that, I took a break. I lost interest and let my health deteriorate."
Brent knew he still wanted to sail and, two years ago, approached a former coach about getting him back in form.
The coach took one look at Brent's weight, shook his head and sent him away to regain his fitness.
Brent said his former coach's comments gave him the motivation to find himself.
"I lost 23kg and turned my life around," Brent said.
"I had to get fit and sustain my fitness if I ever wanted to compete seriously again.
"It took a lot of work and a lot of help from dieticians, medical professionals, trainers and my family."
This year, Brent won equal 10th place in the Australian Championships and he is well on his way to achieving his lifelong dreams.
He will compete against world-class sailors and Olympic medallists in the World Moth Sailing Championship to be held at Hayling Island in England and will have his greatest asset by his side, his dad, Robert Pearson.
"Dad is an awesome support, mentor, coach, pit crew and boat repairer," Brent said.
"We will go to the UK Nationals on July 16-17 as a warm-up, before heading to the World Championships to be held from July 19-25.
"My advice to anyone out there who is feeling uncertain about life because of health issues - I would advise them not to let go of your goals, fight for your dreams, don't let go.''
Brent said his journey has been made easier with huge support from sponsors Keppel Bay Sailing Club, Yeppoon Health and Fitness and Vector Health Rockhampton.