New to the United States SailGP Team roster this season, four-time Formula Kite World Champion and foiling superstar Daniela Moroz joined the American team hailing from San Francisco as one of two new athletes chosen through the team’s open application process for female athletes this past spring.
The recruitment process was part of SailGP’s inclusive Women’s Pathway Program supporting the league’s #RacefortheFuture purpose-led agenda advocating for a better sport and a better planet.
As part of a multi-pronged approach introducing her to SailGP’s F50 racing platform, Moroz has attended each event to date on the SailGP Season 2 calendar where she has started to rotate into active roles on the catamaran during practice, receiving valuable coaching from the team on the water and on shore. Additionally, this training has been coupled with a development program which includs remote debriefs and data analysis with team coaches, regular fitness training, WASZP coaching, and F50 systems training designed to bolster her progress as she kicks-off her SailGP career.
Though an existing commitment to compete at the 2021 Formula Kite European Championships will keep Moroz from attending France Sail Grand Prix | Saint Tropez this weekend (September 11th-12th), we caught up with her ahead of racing to ask: what advice would she give aspiring athletes who want to join a SailGP team one day?
Daniela, what are the biggest lessons you've learned this season as part of the United States SailGP Team?
I think many of the big things I learned were about how to work with a team, a dynamic which was pretty new for me coming from singlehanded sailing. I also learned a lot about racing strategy and tactics and how it changes when racing on a course with boundaries and a top gate. There were a lot of new lessons for me about sailing the F50 itself – how the boat handling changes in different conditions and what it’s like to sail with different configurations of 3 to 6 athletes onboard. Finally, one of the biggest lessons was focusing on the process and making the most of your time to make as many improvements as possible.
What advice would you give to female athletes who want to join a SailGP team?
There are plenty of talented and skilled sailors out there that want to be on the team and while it is of course very important to have that talent, what I think is even more important is having the right attitude and being able to come in every day and give it your all.
Any advice for youth athletes who want to see themselves on a SailGP team in 5-10 years?
Embrace the boring and the monotonous. Your goals should not be oriented around a particular result or endpoint but rather, focus on the process and the day-to-day practices and sessions. Make your goal to get better every single day. Strive for a sustainable process and system that allows you to improve and perform.
What was the biggest surprise for you this season? On shore and on the water?
On shore the biggest surprise was how much work and effort goes into just getting the F50 on the water. It is a huge operation with many different teams of people involved and there are lots of moving parts. It was also surprising to realize how little practice time we have in the week before racing. Teams usually only get about 4-6 hours of training time and so it was important to make the most of that time.
What training plans do you have as you prepare for your future at SailGP?
I really want to learn as much as possible and get into any other foiling boats I can. I plan to spend a lot of time in WASZPs over the winter and continue to learn more of the mechanics of the F50.
Anything else you'd like to say looking back at your first 4 events with the United States SailGP Team?
Just a massive thank you to the team and especially Jimmy for inviting me to join the team. I am thankful to join the team and help wherever I can. It’s been an awesome journey so far and I’m excited for the future with the team.