You may have noticed the beautiful blonde gracing the Sail Couture slider images.
Monica started sailing an Optimist at 11, inspired by watching her sister’s small white sails on the water from their house. It wasn’t long until she convinced her mother to allow her so sail too.
Initially it was the social side of sailing that appealed, but after a while it was the competitive side that she really liked.
“During college I was asked to sail on the national team for the Norwegian Sailing Federation. I guess that was when the dream turned to reality and a goal,” Monica said.
The European Dingy was still an Olympic class at the time and Monica did numerous competitions with ISAF and world cups. When the Olympic class changed, she progressed to the 470 as she thought the Laser wasn’t a good fit given her size.
Monica sailed full time with her crew until they left to study in England and she joined Helly Hansen as Central Coordinator in their Global Marketing Department. She also modeled for them as you can see.
“I love the competition side of sailing, but sailing only a few times a week wasn’t enough,” Monica said. She therefore decided to focus on her job and did some sailing coaching after work and on the weekends.
After three years with Helly Hansen, Monica began studying Sports Management and then got an offer to join NORsteam, an exciting project founded by the Norwegian Sailing Federation and King Herald, the King of Norway.
“We were a group of young sailors who got our own Farr 40 on which to compete and learn how to sail big boats. We mostly ran the project by ourselves with funding and coaching support from the sailing federation,” she said. Her studies and NORSteam kept her busy for two and half years, the last of which she served as project manager for the whole project. It was an excellent complement to her studies.
Then another exciting opportunity came her way, an offer to join the legendary Volvo Ocean Race.
As the Guests on Board & Client Services Manager, Monica works with all seven teams to organize and ensure all their guests onboard the Volvo 65s have a great experience on the water while racing in a Pro-Am Race, In Port Race, or Leg Start. It’s an interesting job since she never has a ‘normal’ day.
“The best part of my job is seeing the big smiles from all the guests when they arrive to the dock after sailing,” Monica said.
Working with the crème de le crème of the sailing world has made an impression. “To see all the dedication and hard work of the sailors and the people around them… How they are willing to give up their normal life to do this race inspires me,” she said.
“It’s been amazing to travel so much with the race these last months, my favorite spot so far has been the Maldives,” Monica said.
Other passions include snowkiting, cross country skiing, snowboarding and sailing of course. Not surprisingly, her favorite sailboats are the 470 and Farr 40.
What’s next for Monica? The Volvo Ocean Race is currently mid-schedule, having left Auckland and heading to other exciting ports of call: Itajai, Newport, Lisbon, Lorient and The Hague before the finish in Gothenburg!
If you enjoyed this article, you may also enjoy Volvo Ocean Race: Meet Sophie Ciszek of the All Female Team SCA and VOR’s Team Alvimedica: Young and Hungry.