Ulsan PWA World Cup

Day 3: Finian Maynard discusses new diet, optimum weight for slalom & aim for season

For a while it looked as though the wind would kick in on the third day of the 2017 Ulsan PWA World Cup, but despite teasing the competitors for most of the late morning and afternoon it never properly filled in - with the cloudy blocking the local thermal effect.

Throughout the day most of the fleet were tempted out at one point or another, but that would be as good as it got as the waiting game continues in South Korea.

With plenty of downtime once again we caught up with Finian Maynard (99NoveNove / Gun Sails), who is a multiple-time speed world champion as well as being one of the old guard of the world’s top 10. In recent years he has struggled somewhat in the lighter airs, but over the winter he has taken a radical approach, which has seen him drop 10 kilos in order to try and make himself competitive again in the lighter winds. 

Over the winter you switched up your diet - why did you choose to mix things up and what does your new diet consist of?

I realised that the game had changed and that that had been coming for a while, traditional slalom was about strength and weight and today's slalom is about light and nimble on your feet because the equipment is so much more stable now than it used to be. In recent years it became a disadvantage at the marks to be heavy and this is where the majority of the overtaking happens. 

On the basis of this in La Torche, France, last year I decided to compete for another season, but I also decided that I wanted to lose 10 kilos…

How did you go about?

I researched online and spoke to a few people and decided the best way was to cut out all processed sugar, to consume no carbs after lunch - if at all during the day - eat loads of salads and gain the majority of my protein from vegetarian sources.

What’s a typical day?

Fruit in the morning

Salads for lunch

Evening salads and fish / other non-carbohydrate meals

Did you also make some changes to your training routine?

No, I just changed up my diet and kept my normal routine of sailing, running etc.

What made you decide on 10kg?

I just felt like 100kilos would be a competitive weight, but I need to see how it works out in competition.

While training can you notice any difference on the water?

It doesn’t seem to have affected my top speed, but I seem to be a bit quicker away from the marks. Also I’m using slightly smaller sails, closer to the size of the other guys, than before. 

Do you have a figure in mind that you think is the optimum weight for a slalom sailor right now?

It depends on your body type, but for my body type I would guess about 100kg. I would say for the taller, skinnier guys then around 93-94kg or something like that. 

What have you cut your weight down to? 

I have definitely been way too heavy… last year in Sylt I was 113kg and now I’m 103kg. So, I lost 10kg over the close season and I’m pretty happy about that.

With your change in weight have you changed any of your equipment choices compared to last year?

No I didn't make any changes actually, so I hope that’s the right choice (laughs). It’s something that I really considered, but I got a little gun shy at the end… I was thinking about taking 9.6m as my biggest, but Gun Sails have a 10m registered and I used that quite a bit last year, so I just angled towards keeping my stuff the same as last year and hope for the best.

So, what board and sail sizes are you running again for the coming season?

Boards wise - 99l, 119l and 139l

Sails wise - 6.3m, 7.1m, 7.8m, 8.6m, 9.6m and 10m

How was your winter training in Tarifa?

Yeah, it was good. We had a really, really windy winter, which is a bit different to the situation we currently have here in Korea.

Have you got any specific aims for the season?

I want to have fun, but I also want to try and realise my potential to get back to the top. 

Thanks Finian, good luck for the rest of the event and the season.

Tomorrow will see an extremely early start with the possibility of northerly winds in the morning, so the skippers’ meeting has been called for 6am with the action commencing from 6:15am (GMT+9) - if conditions allow. If the early morning gamble doesn’t pay off then the afternoon looks good again on paper with clear skies and southwesterly winds of 13-19 knots being forecast. 

To stay up to date with all the latest developments from South Korea — including the live stream, elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply click HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.

go to related event