“It’s all about respect … I’m not going there looking to hurt someone, that’s not my mindset. My mindset is to show them that I’m not afraid of anybody. In a race, if you come close to me, I’ll do whatever it takes for me to win. I’m not going to just let you pass just because I’m afraid of you.”
Jet ski racing has been Mouad Salhi’s passion from a young age. He’s stuck with the sport for years despite the costs, both financially and in the form of injury.
When you’re maneuvering large, heavy vehicles across the water at high speed, you’re bound to get hurt, Mo says—and he’s experienced some serious crashes. But to him, it’s all part of the sport he loves, and has excelled at (he’s claimed world, U.S., and 3 European championships, among other accolades).
In this week’s show, he describes how he redirects emotions like fear and anger into a bold racing style—which, while it seems risky, is actually part of a strategy for staying safer. He also shares some of the other struggles and setbacks of a solo rider in an expensive sport, and how much support means to him along the way.
Note: Because of an equipment problem, Mo didn’t race April 17 after all, as discussed in this episode. His first competition back for the season is May 1, in Kissimmee, Florida—check his Instagram and YouTube channel for updates!
A huge thank you to our sponsors for this episode: Fluid Running and 2Toms. Fluid Running makes it possible to maintain your peak physical fitness even when you’re injured through the power of deep water running. And 2Toms provides advanced sweat proof, waterproof blister and chafing protection products that keep you moving. Listen for special discount codes in the episode!
In this episode, we discuss:
- Some of the basics of jet ski racing (5:34)
- How injury is viewed in the sport (7:35)
- His experiences with injuries—including serious crashes (8:48)
- How he’s learned to manage his fear to dominate on the water (13:17)
- The knee injury he’s currently rehabbing, and how jet ski racing involves strength and endurance through his whole body (18:27)
- Financial issues, and how they play a role in succeeding in the sport and recovering from injury (23:17)
- How representing an entire country adds to the pressure (30:17)
- What it was like to come back after his most serious crash (34:45)
- How it feels to now race for a new country, the United States (38:25)
- What it took to come back to the sport after an 11-year break (39:01)
- His best advice for other injured athletes (42:15)
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