He is one of Sweden’s strongest, funniest, and hungriest sailors. Hungry for fame, sure, but mainly just hungry - there is a reason his team mates lovingly call him trashcan - he will eat everything.
Always with a smile on his face, this bundle of sunshine has guns bigger than Arnold and a sailing resume that would make most sailors green with envy, and he is only 21…
Jes Gram-Hansen said the he thinks Julius Hallström will have a great future in front of him – it is hard not to agree!
Hanna: So, what boats do you sail and for which teams?
Julius: I am a grinder on the Artemis RC44 team and on Elvis, the Swedish boat on the Fast 40+ Circuit. I sail with Johnnie Berntsson’s team on the M32 and am floater in the SAP Extreme Sailing Team on the Extreme Sailing Series, where we sail the GC32. So, mainly physical roles, I don’t really see myself as a tactician. On Elvis we call ourselves “the Sherpas” because we do all the heavy lifting… With that said, the Elvis crew is absolute magic, so much fun on shore, yet super dedicated on water. The owner, Philip, has really put together a great team.
H: What is your sailing background?
J: Dinghies! Started in the Opti, then moved on to 29er and 49er… I also got briefly sidetracked in the Laser.
H: How did you graduate from dinghies to what you do now?
J: During the winter 2015-2016 my skipper (Emil Järrud) was in Rio with the 49er FX girls, and I was in Sweden alone, not sailing. I remember being home, calling everyone I knew, looking for opportunities to get out on the water, and luckily Hans Wallén rang me asking if I was interested in sailing the M32. I ended up staying with him in Gothenburg (Julius is from Vaxholm, outside of Stockholm) back and forth for two months. It was great, I learnt so much from Hans: he is really tough on the water, but nice and super helpful on land. Things really picked up from there and I got drafted to be part of the Artemis Youth team and participated in the Youth Olympic Camp.
H: How did you end up on Bermuda with Artemis Racing?
J: During the Youth Olympic Camp I did a 4 minute max rowing test and performed ok, apparently I impressed someone, because they flew me to Bermuda for a 2 month “internship” because of it. After those two months they asked me if I wanted to stay along for the cup as a spare sailor.
H: What do you do when you don’t sail?
J: Exercise, sail other boats…
H: Okay, rephrasing the question, what do you do on your days off?
J: Hahaha, I haven’t really been home that much, or had that many days off. But you know, normal stuff: hang out with friends, sleep, kite surf, ski. I like to go watch ice hockey games.
H: How many hours do train per week?
J: When I am home, I work out twice a day, with one day off, so somewhere between 10 and 18 hours a week. But when we are out sailing I don’t exercise that much, just sailing the GC32 is like a work out itself. But I really love working out, I have always done a lot of it.
H: If you weren’t a sailor what would you be then?
J: I have never thought about it. Something to do with sports, I can’t sit still. I did a lot of hockey as kid. Maybe study, but meh… some other sport! As a kid I wanted to be a sea captain.
H: What do you want to be when you grow up?
J: Bigger, haha? For now, I want to keep doing what I am doing. Right now I am doing a lot of high performance sailing, but there are so many other niches to explore - like offshore. Before I turn 25-26 I want to have done some proper off shore racing, like the Volvo Ocean Race. In the future would also like to run my own campaign. That is part of why it is so cool to be part of the SAP team, because I get to work with and learn from Jes Gram-Hansen and Rasmus Køstner. They inspire me to think about how to take my sailing to the next level, beyond grinding.
H: What is left to do on your bucket list?
J: Win Extreme Sailing Series! This could actually happen - if we win in Mexico and Alinghi end up in third, we could take the title this year. I also want to win the America’s cup, and some big of offshore race… So yeah, I have a lot more winning to do!