Olya Raskina talks Red Bull, waves and Windsurf Beauties

A few days ago it was announced that Russian gem Olya Raskina (JP / NeilPryde) is the latest PWA sailor to join their (Red Bull's) prestigious team. Raskina finished fourth overall last year in the PWA Women’s Freestyle, but her real passion lies with the waves. Last year Raskina was absent from the wave competitions, so will 2014 see her return? Read our interview with her below to find out and hear her thoughts on joining the Red Bull Team.

PWA: Hi Olya, firstly congratulations on joining the Red Bull Team, how does it feel to join such an illustrious team?

OR: “I'm very grateful to Red Bull for giving me this chance, as it's definitely a great opportunity for me to make my creative ideas come true, rather than struggling to make ends meet. Being a girl in our industry is a difficult one, as you must have a solid income from somewhere outside in order to travel and live a dream. I've always worked and focused on my camps, also Roxy Russia and Russian JP/NP dealers Vneshtradeservise guys helped me a lot, but now I finally have a chance to fully plunge myself into waves, travel where I've never thought would be possible and work on various projects for a wider audience than windsurfing fans only.”   

PWA: Will you now be involved with any projects with Red Bull?

OR: “Yes, absolutely, we have a few interesting ideas and definitely a bunch of crazy projects that we will try to do. Some in Russia, some in other places.”

PWA: And if so can you share any details of what might be to come?

OR: “Haha it's a little bit too early to ask, but I can say that we'll work on a movie, a few travel episodes and collabs with other Red Bull athletes. My goal is to focus on Russia as we have an incredible seaside, landscape, lakes, the potential is insane, hopefully the forecast will be on our side as well. It won't be windsurfing only projects. That's basically what I can say for now.

PWA: You've been training a lot in the waves lately, how’s that gone and will we see you return to the PWA Wave scene this year?

OR: “Yes I've tried to sail waves as much as I could this year, however I can't say that the season in SA was very windy, so I think I surfed more than I sailed. Nevertheless, yes I will be happy to join PWA Wave Tour but I won't be able to come to all the events, because of my camps and other projects.”

PWA: You also run Windsurf Beauties Camps, what was the motivation behind starting these?

OR: “Me and my friend Sveta Martynova figured out that ladies learned much faster if you teach them differently and if they stay together in a camp. They actually push themselves more by looking at other girls making progress so we started making camps with yoga, fitness, trips, different stuff involved, not only windsurf courses. We definitely had a lot of fun together and hopefully there's more to come. A lot of our students became our good friends now who help us when we travel around. It was an amazing time, all these years in Dahab, but now we do things a bit differently and go to other places as well.”

PWA: Where's next for the Windsurf Beauties and what level of windsurfer do you need to be to attend?

OR: “It will be in Rhodos, Yalissos from 1st until 10th of May and you don't need any level to take part in it. We teach everyone, from beginners to freestylers and wave riders. So, ladies, you are welcome to join in. Send me an email to windsurf.beauties@gmail.com and I'll send you more details. Thank you!

PWA: Thanks Olya, congratulations on joining the Red Bull Team again and we look forward to seeing you competing again very soon.

If you don’t already follow Olya Raskina on Facebook, then be sure to ‘like’ her Facebook Fan page, which can be found here.

Photo Credit: Kirill Umrikhin