Leaving the channel en route to open water, we hit the gas and got up on plane. Before we gained too much speed, Fountain gestured toward the horizon, telling us to keep our eyes up and look far ahead, not just at the water right in front of the boat. He also stressed the need to use peripheral vision. The idea is to see and forecast situations long before you have to confront them, giving you time and room to plan your reactions. "See that big cruiser about a half mile ahead, running at about 20 mph?" Fountain yelled over the wind blast. "You'll be dealing with its wake real soon." This advice is similar to what is taught in auto and motorcycle road-racing schools: Plan ahead by focusing on where you'll be in about 12 seconds, which when running at 40 mph, means about 700 feet. Also be aware that your hands tend to turn the wheel toward where your eyes are looking. If you stare at that log in front of you, you'll likely run over it instead of going around it. Keep an eye on your surroundings, and don't fixate on any one object for too long.