SUP Women | Susak Molinero
Susak Molinero has a thirst for competition—and it’s driven her to the top ranks in SUP racing. After a career in competitive swimming had wrapped, the Spaniard found herself atop the podium at an amateur Italian SUP Championships event. Shortly thereafter, Susak got serious about a competitive career in standup paddling. Now, alongside her Italian-pro-SUP-racer-boyfriend, Paolo Marconi, Susak eats, sleeps, and trains SUP—and it’s all paying off as she continues to climb the ranks of professional SUP racing. —Shari Coble
SUP: After college you moved to Italy, where you were introduced to standup paddling. How did you get into SUP racing?
SM: In my second summer in Italy I started to do some amateur races with a group of friends. At the end of the season there was the final championship and I won the amateur category, so a SUP team proposed me to start racing. I was missing the competition after my period on swimming, so I started this new adventure.
What other sports or activities do you like to participate in for cross-training?
The last season I started training with Jacopo Querci at the FitlabExtemefit following Paolo. I really noticed the difference! Not only do we train a lot on the water, but we mix a lot of other sports in our training sessions—cycling, running, boxing, and cross-fit. It is a very complete training because it pushes our body to the limit, mentally and physically. I love to slackline, skate-longboard, climb and snowboard, too.
How has your background as a competitive swimmer helped you now as a competitive paddler?
I think the training before and after school for my several years of competitive swim gave me the discipline, the mental strength and cardio [endurance]. Also, I did competitions in open water, and, I always felt close to the sea.
When back home in Barcelona, where's your favorite place to SUP?
Maybe it's unreal, but I don’t have any boards in Spain yet. Last summer I did SUP with Paolo and some friends near my village, in Sitges. There are beautiful places, but here, in Tuscany, the water is really amazing!
Tell us about some of the staple foods in your diet.
I have a really simple diet: lots of vegetables, fruits, legumes, fish, white meat… and beautiful Italian pasta—but not always! No fried food; no packaged food.
Also, I use some supplements to help myself to recover from heavy training.
You had an eighth-overall world-ranking on the 2015 Standup World Series (SUWS). Will you be competing in more SUWS events this year or trying to improve upon your world-ranking?
The last season I increased my experience a lot competing in some races in the European Cup of the SUWS, and, in the EuroTour. I think it’s really important to compare yourself with other international riders; I felt the difference and I’m really happy for that! This year I want to do all the races of the European Cup and maybe our team RRD (Roberto Ricci Designs) will take us to the USA to compete in some race of the SUWS and in the Pacific Paddle Games.
What are some of your goals in SUP?
I want to surf a lot with the race board, and improve my technique to do better in the technical races! I hope to get better position in the world ranking! We don’t know yet when the ISA Championship will be, but the last season I won the Spanish final and I hope to do a good result in the World’s!