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Customer Review

5 October 2014
Born to Win: The Power of a Vision is one of the most thrilling books I have read and I reread it often. It is set against a backdrop of frustrated attempts to wrest the America's Cup from the New York Yacht Club, the journey to build a team of professional sailors, the personal story of the skipper of the 1983 challenge and the roller coaster ride through the 1983 seven race series. This is a book that profiles the struggle for excellence and illustrates the power of team work and courage that can transcend the institutional, technical and financial power of an opponent. The psychology of winning is a key element in this book that not only shows how to prepare for the campaign, but what it takes to unsettle your opponent by observing and digging out their weaknesses, then developing a game plan around how to exploit them. The myth of the winged keel and how it undermined their opponent's confidence, the imagery of the famous boxing kangaroo, the battle hymn by Men at Work music icon, "We come from a land down under", all combined to build a narrative that entranced the world . This book appeals on many levels. There is a personal story to achieve excellence, a potted history of the Australian challenges for the America's Cup, the tenacious character of Alan Bond, the financial backer for the 1983 challenge, the innovative way that the team was developed to meet the trials of the campaign using sports psychology, the story of a small Australian nation swept away by the courage, audacity and the ultimate success of their team, and the international aspect of the David & Goliath struggle by a tiny country punching away to win against a mightier opponent. As an Australian, I too was swept away by the romance of this story and the immense national pride it engendered. If you were alive to witness this challenge you will remember the time and place and what you were doing when Australia won the America's Cup in 1983. But this story transcends the nation state interest and is a book that will resonate with anyone who seeks to understand the tenacity of the human spirit and how it can achieve what it strives for. I would recommend this book to anyone seeking to learn, explore and be entertained about the 1983 America's Cup challenge.
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5.0 out of 5 stars