Which PWA Slalom star is preparing to embark on the challenge of becoming a mother for the first time?

2013 represented Cagla Kubat’s (Starboard / Loft Sails) finest year to date on the PWA Slalom World Tour as she claimed fourth place overall, only missing out on a place on the podium due to a tiebreak. Kubat also eclipsed Lena Erdil (Patrik / Loft Sails / Mystic / AL360) to become the highest ranked Turk on the tour. After a fantastic year of sailing, the good news continued to flow both on and off the water. Firstly by  tying the knot with the PWA’s very own chairman Jimmy Diaz (Starboard / North) and secondly with the very exciting breaking news that the two of them are about to become parents, with Cagla now in her 8th month of pregnancy. Everyone at the PWA would like to take the opportunity to extend their congratulations to both of them. After a groundbreaking year we managed to catch up with Kubat for an exclusive interview:

PWA:  Hi Cagla. First of all congratulations on the news of you having a baby.  

CK:  “Thank you very much.  Jimmy and I are extremely excited!”

PWA:  Last year you had your best year on the PWA tour finishing on the podium at the Pegasus Airlines PWA World Cup event in Alacati and tying for third in the overall year ranking only to lose the podium spot in the tiebreak to Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne).  How did you feel about that?

CK:  “I was very happy to finish on the podium in my home country.  This has always been a dream for me.  As far as the overall, I was actually not too happy with my results in Korea last year.  I had been training quite hard in and out of the water and working on everything from my fitness to my equipment, board speed, and of course racing and tactics.  In Korea I just couldn’t put it all together.  I made some bad decisions and had some things not go my way and in the end I finished a bit far from where I had wanted to.  In Alacati, I feel I raced much closer to my potential although there I had some issues also.  I raced very well in the Turkish league winning quite convincingly and there I understood I was putting all the elements together to consistently race well.  Now I just have to execute it.”

PWA: And how about now taking this break to have a baby?

CK:  “Being pregnant right now is the best thing that could happen to me.  My desire for racing has not diminished one bit and the only difficult thing right now is not being able to windsurf and knowing I will have to miss the racing this year…at least some of it.”

PWA: Were you able to keep training through your pregnancy? 

CK:  “Right now I am 8 months pregnant.  I did a lot of research when I found out I was pregnant and well understood that being in shape is a great benefit not only for the baby but also for the Mom.  My main priority has been to have a healthy baby and have been doing everything possible to help that.  Up until now I have not stopped going to the gym.  I have adjusted my training regimen but until last month I was following a very similar program to my normal racing workouts.  At 8 months I have had to make adjustments to make sure I am not exaggerating as I tend to do.”

“I windsurfed until about the 6th month but of course being very careful.  The thing I currently miss the most is going as fast as I can on my race gear but that will have to wait for this summer.”

PWA: And how have you been spending your time?

CK: “I’ve been spending my time working on numerous projects.  In 2014 I will continue being the face of FA in Turkey which has used some surfing and windsurfing themes in their advertising.  I love when companies do that!  I have also been spending a lot of time on a new social responsibility project with students from the university I have my engineering degree from, Istanbul Technical University (ITU).  This is quite an exciting environmental project called STEP which ultimately hopes to raise the profile of environmental problems that we are facing in Turkey and throughout the world, and to help inspire the younger generations to start becoming aware of the world they are inheriting and the solutions that are needed.  I am also working on a television program with a new TV station in Istanbul that I hope gets off the ground in 2014.  I have been balancing my windsurfing with my television work all these past years so this is another exciting project that really keeps things interesting.  And lastly, my favourite project, I have been working on our windsurfing school with Jimmy.  We are constantly trying to motivate more and more people to learn to windsurf and inspire those that already do.  Together with Jimmy we are developing programs for kids from different parts of Turkey and trying to develop programs to inspire and motivate those that already do.  Jimmy is training some young sailors at our school one of which (Poyraz Akay) became IFCA Youth Slalom World Champion in 2013.  Hopefully we will continue to see successes like this in the future.”

PWA: And what about your racing for 2014?

CK:  “Great question!  Right now I feel very very good.  I have stayed fit and am incredibly anxious to get back on the water.  However, having a baby is not necessarily very predictable and we will have to wait and see how everything goes.  I am certainly hungry to race and if all goes well I might just have to give it a go.  I feel I raced much better last year than ever before but I feel I can still race better.  Jimmy and I have been working quite hard and I would love to be on the podium again.  But we will have to wait and see.  Hopefully I can have one or two surprises this summer.”

PWA: Thanks for your time Cagla, congratulations again on the news of your pregnancy and we look forward to seeing you competing again in the near future.

For more information about Cagla and her Academy you can go to: 

instagram: #caglawindsurf