2009 Irish Slalom Series 

After four very succesful rounds of the 2009 Irish Slalom Series, Ireland’s top windsurfers will travel west for the final opportunity to battle it out for the 2009 National titles.

The event will take place on Silver Strand beach. Fleets for all levels will be run with plenty of free coaching and the buddy system.

An expected turnout of 80 competitors will ensure some exciting racing. Lunches will be provided on both days by Magnetti Italian foods.

An event dinner will also take place on Saturday night at the Galway Bay Hotel.

Whether your a seasoned windsurfer or just interested in having a look - get youreself down to Silver Strand on Sept 12th/ 13th to witness the high speed action.

Nikos Kaklamanakis

Sam Sills, 16, romped to glory in the Bic Techno Under 17 boys' division while 14-year-old Kieran Martin and Sam's sister Saskia Sills, 13, ensured Britain enjoyed a golden whitewash in the Under 15s, taking the top prize in both the boys' and girls' events at the RYA Events-run Championships at Weymouth and Portland National Sailing (WPNSA).


There was further medal joy for the host nation as no fewer than four other sailors secured podium positions - Saskia's twin Imogen took Under 15 girls' silver following a ding-dong battle with her sister for the crown all week while Ali Masters (Raceboard Youth), Adam Purcell (Under 15 boys) and Barrie Edgington (Raceboard Masters) all claimed bronze medals.
 
Across the other four classes France, Italy, Spain and Greece all notched one title apiece as Veronica Fanciulli's (ITA) dominance of the Under 17 girls' fleet was transformed into a gold medal today, Benoit Bigot flew the flag for France at the top of the Raceboard Youth fleet - as four French sailors finished inside the top five - and Gonzalez Ruiz (ESP) clinched the Techno Open title.
 
In the Raceboard Masters, a fascinating contest came to a thrilling conclusion as 1996 Olympic champion Nikos Kaklamanakis (GRE) nipped ahead of Portugal's fellow five-time Olympian Joao Rodrigues at the death to claim gold.  Opting to sail the RS:X board for the event, Kaklamanakis revelled in the heavier breezes witnessed at WPNSA this week and dominated the class from day two having decided not to sail in the lighter airs on day one.
 
However, although Kaklamanakis did not have it all his own way on the final day - as moderate breezes of 14-17 knots allowed the non-RS:X Raceboard sailors to make more of an impact - the Greek stole in to claim the crown from Rodrigues' clutches as the advent of the second discard in the 11th and final race enabled Kaklamanakis to discard his last remaining Did Not Compete (DNC) score from day one giving him a final score of 12 points to Rodrigues' 15.
 
For Sam Sills, the 2009 Techno Under 17 title is his second World crown, Sills having won Techno Under 15 gold in 2007. Sills was also crowned 2009 Techno Under 17 European Champion in Lacanau, France in April.
 
He was the standout act in the fleet, leading from day two and picking up no fewer than eight race wins in his 11-race series as Mateo Sanz Lanz (ESP) wins silver and Louis Giard (FRA) bronze. However the laidback Brit insists victory wasn't as easy as it looked.
 
He said "It was a really tough competition the fleet was double the size of the Europeans and the standard's been really high. I've been really pleased with my speed this week and have managed to stay consistent and with safe starts. I didn’t want any letter scores.
 
"I really wanted to nail this event with it being my last on the Techno and in Britain. People may have expected me to do well but I try not to let that pressure bother me and I actually tend to do better when the pressure's on a bit. The whole British team has performed and made a big statement here so I am really pleased."  

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Windsurfer One Design | Photos: Michael McGrath 

It’s never really been out of use in Australia. The Australian manufacturer of the Windsurfer One Design (Windgenuity, Sydney) reports interest from Italy & USA.

 In the latest issue of Windsurfing (US), Winter 2009 (Aug), p46 states: The Original Windsurfer was the board that started it all – and now you may be able to by one. Ted Schweitzer, son of Original Windsurfer founders Hoyle and Diane Schweitzer, has plans to reintroduce the board to the US market. “I can’t believe how many people have expressed interest in ordering, sight and price unseen”, says Schweitzer.

Some of us can remember sailing the original craft – dacron sails, teak (square-ish to rounded) booms, and manual adjust centerboard. Following the Perth worlds in 1985, a new board was introduced, and it’s still in production today. The new board has a shorter aluminium boom, retractable centreboard and mylar sail.

1985 marks the beginning of the funboard era. About that time, alternative boards began to move into the Australian market. The longboard era lasted into the early 2000’s when Formula Windsurfing took over. Longboards, and the Windsurfer one-design are making a comeback as the noughties close.

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