Red Bull Team's Roman Hagara talks about his first experience in the Extreme Sailing Series Europe
Extreme 40s interview part 2: Roman Hagara, Red Bull Team
To do a sport like this you’ve clearly got to be an adrenalin junkie, but apart from sailing what else do you do to get your kicks?
RH: I do a lot of other sports like; mountain biking, skiing and those kinds of things. Sailing is the first love though.
GO: Outside of sailing I love off-piste. Where I come from in Italy is close to the mountains so it’s very easy for me to go skiing… and go-karting as well, I really enjoy that.
We’ve seen some bad collisions and accidents in this competition are you at any point scared when out on the water?
RH: Yes, sometimes it’s pretty scary. You lose your rudder, the boat is going straight and then if another boat is in front, it can miss by just centimetres – it is scary. We saw a lot of videos of capsizes which looked really bad so again there’s always a concern.
GO: Well it is difficult to say, if you don’t push these boats hard enough – like we did when we capsized – then you’ll never reach the podium. So of course you get scared sometimes but that is just part of the game and you have to be on the limit otherwise others will be faster than you.
It is scarier for the 5th man, they come onto the boat and see these scary people shouting all the time, flying around they get more scared then what we do. No doubts about it.
Sailors are known to be superstitious creatures have you got any rituals you do before going out for a race?
RH: No, not really. We just check everything on the boat, so it is the same sequence and then come out to the starting line – so nothing really special.
GO: No not me, even though I’m Italian in general I’m not superstitious.
How does this competition compare to that of your previous sailing achievements?
RH: Oh, it is completely different. When we started our Olympic career in the tornado we did four to five hour races and it then changed to one hour races but still far out on the water so nobody could see it really. Now we are on 15 minute races and close to the shore so completely different.
You’re currently in fifth place, how would it feel if you ended up on the podium come Almeria [the last race]?
RH: It would be perfect for us, because we said in the beginning of the season we’d like to be reaching for the podium in the European Series after missing out in Asia.
And lastly, where’s your favourite place to go sailing?
RH: Further south where it is warmer. I loved sailing in Australia at Sydney it was a perfect place and of course we won the gold medal there. Home [Austria] is also nice; the seas are a little bit better.
GO: It all depends on what you want to sail. If you like day sailing the Canary Islands are beautiful, Portugal as well and of course Sardinia. But for me personally, I love to be out on the ocean.