Olya Raskina joined the PWA Freestyle Tour last year for the first time, and this year she returns more motivated than ever to do well. Living and working at the moment in Dahab, Egypt, the perfect flat-water freestyle spot, its no wonder she has improved so much during the wintertime.
Check out her latest video and see what she had to say about it all.
Boardseeker.com- How has it been your winter time? Where have you been training? Olya Raskina.- This winter I spent most of my time in Dahab where I live, work and train but in November I went to Jericoacoara in Brazil for 5 weeks. Jeri is an awesome place, perfect for freestyle on the waves and it’s super windy there. Last year I went to Capetown and enjoyed waveriding, but this year I decided to focus a bit more on freestyle so I chose Jeri. I went there with my boyfriend Andraz Zan and my best friend Sveta. It was a sick holiday. But then Sveta and me had to get back to work in Dahab, which was all good, becuase this winter was quite windy. In February I went to the biggest Russian championship in Hurgada called “Russian Wave" and I won it. In March we had a Dahab Freestyle Week, which was a great comp too. So I had a lot of training this winter.
BS.- Last year you did already the PWA freestyle Tour? How did it go? How was the experience for you? OR.- Until the last moment I was not sure whether to go to PWA or not, because I knew my level was not good enough, but my friend Laure Treboux encouraged me, helped me a lot, we went there together, so it happened thanks to Laure actually. I wanted to get new experience, train with girls and see how everything goes on PWA. I should say it was quite hard for me, especially on Pozo, but very interesting and motivating.
BS.- The PWA freestyle season is just about to start for you, what are your expectations for it? OR.- This year I know I sail better, though it’s only my 4th year sailing, but I learned more moves, so I’m feeling more confident. I have no expectations, I’ll sail my best and see how it goes.
BS.- What do you like and dislike about competing? OR.- I love sailing with all the girls and guys during the competition days, it’s super motivating, everybody’s at one spot pushing each other. I don’t like the stress though and I think 1,5 months on Canary Islands is a hard mission. The best would be to go home and relax after each competition but 3 events in Canary Islands go one after another, so basically you are all the time traveling, competing, packing-unpacking, rigging-derigging, so at the end I was dead tired when I got home.
BS.- What are your expectation for your windsurfing career? OR.- Well I would love to sail as good as guys do and learn even the hardest moves but this is not the only thing. I also work as a journalist for a few Russian magazines, so my goal is to promote windsurfing in Russia. With my friends, we have a lot of projects, we organize competitions, make movies and work with a few Russian TV channels. In Dahab I teach for a windsurfing school “Five Squares" (www.go-dahab.ru), so hopefully more and more people in Russia will discover windsurfing.
BS.- Anything else you want to add? OR.- I would like to thank my sponsors – JP, Neilpryde and MFC for giving me a chance to sail on the best equipment, my windsurfing school “Five Squares" and my family and friends for their invaluable support.
Photo Credit: Valera Pistrii