Sam Sills

Barnsdale Lodge Hotel in Rutland played host the UK Windsurfing association for its annual prize giving dinner on Saturday 14th November.

Some 75 awards were made across the various disciplines supported by the association including slalom, wave, speed, freestyle and course racing. A spectacular evening of awards and dancing to live band ‘Under Construction’ was enjoyed by all.

As the UKWA crowned its champions special awards were also made to Ian Jones retiring chairman and John Ellis standing down after years of service was awarded life time membership to the association an honour rarely awarded, but well deserved.

The first major trophy of the evening was the young windsurfer of the year award which went to European silver medalist and World Techno 6.8 Girls champion Saskia Sills.

The highlight however was the awarding of The UKWA Windsurfer Of The Year trophy. The Nominees were Max Rowe (Freestyle) Ross Williams (Slalom) Robbie Swift (Wave) Pete Young (Speed) and Sam Sills (Racing). After a close public vote and almost a 1000 votes cast.

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Brazil Windsurf Slalom Nationals

We just finished today our slalom nationals.

The event was held in Camocim. This place is around 350km in the north of Fortaleza.

The event was very well organized by Ta’i events.

We had international competitors racing with us, like Alberto Menegatti from Italy and Kurosh Kiani from Denmark.

The venue for the races was amazing, the course is exactly where the river gets together with the ocean.

So there was strong current and big choppy. The wind conditions were very good for slalom racing, from 17 to 30 knots.

I was using most of the races my TR5 7.0 with Starboard Isonic 86 and 111.

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John Papaspirou

Wind was gusty 12-20kts. Forty competitors registered for the Championship.

We had only one slalom. In the semi-final I was using 8.4 TR-5 and Falcon 125 with 42 sl2 Deb. The course was figure eight with long legs. After the start the wind picked up and I was really powered up but no problems handling the 8.4.

In final I was using 7.6 TR-5 and Falcon 110 with 40 sl3 Deb. Not a good start but I had a lot of speed for passing almost everybody till the second half of the first leg. 100 meters before the first mark the guy who was in first had a crash because he caught something on his fin and in the first gybe I turned alone easy in first and I finished in first with no problem.

Second day - Wind was forcing 35-45 kts.

It was time for using my high wind slalom. I picked my 5.5 TR-5 and my Falcon 79 with 28 Falcon tech. We had two slaloms. For both of them it was easy in the semi-finals. The speed and the control was the reason for having good time in the heats. In the first final I caught a bag on my fin and I finished 5th. In the second final I finished easy 1st. In that final the wind was forcing more than 40 kts but I was in control with really good speed. The 5.5 is great.

Final day - Wind is forcing more than 40 kts.

Nothing changed regarding the equipment of the last day. We had four slaloms. I won easy the first two. I had a lot of control and as much speed as I wanted to have. I knew that if there is a need I can push easy for enough speed for passing everyone but there was no need.

Control was the most important thing as everybody was out of control. After winning the 2nd slalom there was no reason for racing the other two slaloms because I already secured my first place in overall and I could discard the other two races.

Report by John Papaspirou GR 71