Interview with Sarah Hauser
JH – Hi Sarah. Congratulations on the recent event wins on the AWT (American Windsurfing Tour)
SH – Thank you!!! It is really nice to see that people from everywhere around the world follow the AWT. The more it grows, the more I feel like it complements the PWA, not as another “pro world tour”, but by offering the opportunity to all levels of windsurfers (women, pro, amateurs, masters, grandmasters and youth) to celebrate their passion together, inspire each other and travel to beautiful waves like Pacasmayo or Punta San Carlos! At the end of the event in Baja there was a “Pro/Amateur Party Wave” contest, which I thought was one of the coolest idea ever!
JH – Lets start with Baja. How did the conditions stack up compared to previous years and how did you find the competition?
SH – We were only two women in Baja this year. It was me and Ingrid Larouche who’s been my main rival for the last 4 years. She won the AWT 4 times, always been in the final of the Aloha Classic and finished 5th on the PWA last year. She rips! We ran 5 heats against each other and I ended up with 3 heats win, so I won the event! Competing this way gave us the opportunity to challenge each other many times and to enjoy riding perfect waves with only us two on the spot! I wish there were more girls this year, but with Ingrid being there I had so much thrill during the event! I’ll remember it all my life!
JH – Did you drive down there? I did it once and it’s a pretty crazy drive.
SH – So crazy, right!!?? Hahahah 😀 It’s a 12 hours drive from Los Angeles and the last 2 hours are on a gnarly rocky dirt road in the middle of the dusty Mexican desert, going through cactus forest, trying not to explode the tires of the van… It feels like you’re going into the middle of nowhere!! I love it! It is so disconnected. I just love it!
JH – Peru looks incredible and I saw that you timed the comp with a sizable swell. How did the conditions turn out?
SH – Peru was insane! Casey (my husband) and I got back from Baja for a day after 13 days of camping in San Carlos. We took off at LAX with our dusty board bags. I remember the big wave tour was considering doing there event in Chile, so we knew it was gonna be sick in Peru!
JH – I can’t even imagine riding a wave for so long. Can you explain what it’s like to ride a wave like that?
SH – It’s insane to be able to do 20+ turns on a wave. You just have to hook in sometimes cause your arms get so tired! One morning I went stand up paddling and the first wave I caught lasted 1 minute!!! Insane!! I can’t explain, you just got to go! Go to El Faro resort so you can end your endless waves in the pool with a pisco drink! 😉
JH – Who were your closest rivals on the AWT?
SH – The women division in Peru was from all around the world: Italy, Chile, Switzerland, Australia, Peru, New Caledonia… The Peruvian girls Bettina Gonzales and Maria Bellen were sailing really good, I could tell they knew their spot and were into competition as they were part of the very active Peruvian Windsurfing Association. Annamaria Zollet (Tabou/Gaastra) from Italy put on a great show too during the event and her free sessions! I ended up taking the win in a very tricky final, the very last heat of the day with super light wind. I was stoked to win this event on port tack right after winning in Baja which is starboard tack!
JH – So how are you ranked now and what events are left for you to try and claim the AWT overall title?
SH – After a second place in Pistol River and 2 first places in Baja and then Peru I’m now tight with Ingrid who also had two wins and second place this year. The Aloha Classic will determine the AWT champion. No pressure… it’s just the biggest wavesailing event of the year 😉 Hahaha ! I can’t wait to get back to Maui in 2 weeks and start training on that tricky spot again!
JH – And finally, tells us about the ‘Girl on Wave’ project and when we can expect the full movie?
SH – I was in Phoenix in June recording the voice over for “Girl on Wave” and taking part of the editing process. We’re making great progress but our budget is so tight, we’re gonna have to wait till next year for the movie to be properly finished. We’ll keep people posted on our website (girlonwave.com) and social media (@girlonwavemovie). It would have been so cool to have the movie ready for the Aloha Classic to do a premiere, but we don’t want to rush. What matters to us is the quality of the movie so it will (hopefully) be a great success!
JH – Again congrats and good luck with the final events