SailGP
Team ROCKWOOL Racing

Team ROCKWOOL’s Anne-Marie Rindom going for gold in Tokyo

Jonno
Jonathan Turner
26 July 2020

She took a bronze medal in the Laser Radial class at the 2016 Olympics, and is currently competing in Tokyo hoping to go even better this time around.

Anne-Marie Rindom, SailGP, Female Team ROCKWOOL, sailing,
female team, Olympics 2020

As 2019 World and European champion and World Sailor of the Year, Anne-Marie Rindom requires no introduction in the sailing world.

But as the newest member of the Denmark SailGP Team presented by ROCKWOOL, she is beginning a completely new challenge – getting to grips with the foiling F50 catamaran which hits speeds of up to 100km/hr.

We caught up with her to chat about the transition into SailGP, and how it feels to be part of ROCKWOOL and Denmark’s campaign in the F50s.

Anne-Marie – how did you come to join Denmark SailGP Team presented by ROCKWOOL?

Well, normally I sail the Laser Radial, so it’s a completely different game, but I've been following SailGP for a long time, and since I saw on the website, that they're trying to have female sailors into the programme, I was really stoked and I was thinking, should I call Nicolai, or should I not? Luckily, he called me and asked if I wanted to be a part of it.

You’ve joined the team alongside Katja Salskov-Iversen as part of the SailGP female development programme, how is that?

I’ve known Katja a long time, we went to the Games together in 2016 and she is really great. It’s really nice to be able to share this journey and new challenge with her.

How was your first experience onboard the foiling F50 in Bermuda?

I honestly don’t think you can imagine what it’s like until you’ve been onboard. We hit a max speed of 43 knots which is double the speed I’ve ever been at on a boat. It’s absolutely amazing!

Anne-Marie Rindom, SailGP, Female Team ROCKWOOL, sailing,
female team, Olympics 2020

What did you do onboard?

For now, while Katja and I gain experience, we are just kind of shadowing onboard – watching the guys, learning what they do and how they do it. I was following Nicolai. It’s amazing how the team works and communicates.

What are the biggest differences between sailing the F50 and the laser?

Well, the laser is a one-person dinghy, so it’s much smaller. It takes like 10 minutes to rig it, and then 10 seconds to pull it in the water, and I’m off sailing. But the F50 is so technical and cutting-edge that it can take sometimes two hours just to get it on the water. There is a lot of things happening, and you don’t get a lot of time on the water.

Why does SailGP attract you?

I’ve been sailing the Laser Radial for 12 years, so I needed some new perspective in sailing. I haven’t really sailed a lot of different boats. So this is a great opportunity for me to be a part of, and learn from, the guys in the SailGP team. But it’s a huge learning curve and challenge to get up to speed on these boats. They are completely different machines.

How have you combined SailGP and your Olympic campaign?

Of course, going to Bermuda just a few months before the Games isn’t the greatest timing – but I think it’s giving me more than it’s taking from my campaign. It’s one of those opportunities that you don’t say no to.

What does it mean to Denmark to have a team competing – and an event – in SailGP?

I'm really stoked that a small country like Denmark can have a team in the SailGP. It’s amazing. The ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Aarhus is going to be SO big. I think it’s the coolest sailing event in Denmark in 2021 and I can’t wait to show everyone these boats first hand.

How is it to be a part of a team, rather than sailing solo?

Normally, in the laser, I'm alone in the boat… we’re still a team on shore, but it’s different. Because at the end of the day, it's me who has to perform and only me, and I can blame myself, but here, to be a part of such a big team is really nice. It’s not just the sailing team – it’s the tech team on shore – and it’s all good guys.

How important is the female development pathway initiative from SailGP?

I think it creates a pathway for female sailors. It’s a male-dominated world, and it can be hard when you don’t have the experience that they have. I think it’s a step in the right direction because there are also a lot of good sailors out there who are female. We lack the experience in the F50 but if I have a question or comments, the team is really willing to listen to me and that’s important that everyone can contribute to the team. We just need opportunities like this, and that’s what this initiative is giving us.

Anne-Marie Rindom is competing for Denmark at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in the Women’s One Person Dinghy – Laser Radial class. Click here to follow her progress.