As proud as I was about what our team accomplished last season, I have to admit it was strange waking up as the winner of the 2018 Union Internationale Motonautique F1 H2O World Championship after working so hard for the past 20 years with the same goal in mind, becoming the world champion. At first I thought, what do you do now? You had this goal, this drive, this obsession for so long, now what? I’ve never been in that position before—maybe with smaller things but nothing this substantial.
Shaun Torrente’s Team Abu Dhabi boat is going to have the No. 1 on it this year when the UIM F1H2O World Championship season opens at the Grand Prix of Saudi Arabia in Dammam next weekend. Photo courtesy F1 H2O
After a couple of weeks of being at home, soaking it all in and relaxing and spending time with my wife and my daughter, I told myself it was time to keep grinding like normal. So I kept waking up at 4 a.m. to go to the gym with the same goal in mind; the only difference now is I’m the champ.
I’m just as excited to get back in the boat and on the course to represent Team Abu Dhabi. I’m blessed to be on this team. We have extremely knowledgeable people and really good equipment. Like last year, if I do my job and drive like I know I can, I will have a chance at the world championship.
I have the same anxious feelings with the start of the season approaching in Saudi Arabia at the end of March, and the drive to be the best at my job is as strong as ever. The mentality is a little different because people are coming for our stuff now. Everything I did for the last eight years was with the mindset of going after that No. 1, so I know what’s happening—the other teams are doing the same thing to take that No. 1 from us. Our mentality is to work twice as hard and stay focused to keep that title with us.