Joel Rodríguez joined the Spain SailGP Team for its debut campaign with four youth world and five youth European titles under his belt, strengthening the team of up-and-coming athletes looking to further establish themselves in the global sail racing championship.
Born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Rodríguez is no stranger to high performance sport and was influenced early on by his father – a professional rugby player who competed for Wales. After trying a variety of sports, sailing was his passion and he quickly progressed from the Optimist class to the Laser Radial and on to the full-size Laser.
Rodríguez won his first world title at the 2014 Laser Radial Youth World Championship, also taking home the gold at the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship and Youth European Championships that same year.
He was a member of Spanish Impulse – along with several other members of the Spain SailGP Team – in the 2017 Youth America’s Cup in Bermuda.
Having won an impressive number of youth championship titles, Rodríguez made the jump to the senior ranks in 2018 where he continued his successes. That year, he finished in tenth at the European championship in the Laser Standard, while winning a bronze medal in the class at the 2018 Mediterranean Games.
He is currently campaigning for the Tokyo Olympics and hopes to represent Spain in his second attempt at competing in the Games.
Rodríguez was in the Becas Pódium Movistar program for Spain's most promising sailors. He studied physical education at the Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.