Hi. There are a few considerations surrounding your question.
First the Minis are not like any other keel boat. They perform much more like a dinghy, and a high performance one, NOT a 420-think 49'er Aussie 18's dinghy at that. So for an idea of sailing a mini at speed, get a ride on a 505 at AYC some day or an international 14. Even sailing a laser is better training for a Mini than a IOD or what ever, Sonar.
Second, I think that because of its performance aspect a pretty good technical base is desirable, not super required, but desirable. Despite this comment many sailors of minis are not particularly skilled/experienced but just keep going at it. Actually sailing a mini because the easy part after raising money building rigging and so on to get the boat in the water in the first place. Most mini sailors over the years, until say the last 3 MT, ave really been of the adventure school, only the top half a dozen have been historically really skilled sailors. Yeah I know this is a broad blanket statement but I base this on nearly 20 years of watching Minis and building my own and almost getting to the MT in 1995. Only in the past 3-4 editions of the MT have the skilled and experienced sailors from up the food chain gone down to Minis and that has pushed the performance of the fleet up as a total.
There are about 5-6 minis around the NE, between Larchmont and Newport including one in Port Washinton I think.
If you feel like you have adequate seamanship skills, that is a good thing coz you will need them.
Overall the Minis are actually pretty easy to "sail" most of the time, under planning speed, because they are set up for one bloke to do it. They tend to be not as fast as they are rated in under 12 knots sailing locally because mostly they have lots of wetted surface for a 21 foot boat, and so are kinda sticky.
Sailing hard, fast for a long time in 25 knots is a different animal. You definitely need to understand how to keep the boat under the kite. The impact of heel on a wide boat and surfing waves. Unless you can do that hard down wind sailing will be pretty frustrating for a while.
I would look at either getting a ride on one or if you want to go for it, there are plenty of Pogo ones around, in France for not much money although you are going up hill versus the Euro and there is freight and so on. They sail 'em like J 24's in weekend OD races and it is probably already sorted. IF you don't like it you have a liquid market to sell it back into . Unless you are planning on trying to do the MT then you can futz with it for a bowsprit, composite rigging and so on and speed it up a bit for local PHRF racing which will be the main outlet for sailing it.
There a lot of dh and solo races around now. On the sound the Vineyard race is just waiting for them to show up. Block Is race will let em in, Gear buster, Solo twin in Newport, Ida lewis DR and so on.
Hope this does not put you off. Not intended to but to answer your question. They are a wild boat and the guys are good fun.