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

Jamie Hancock

After three rounds of full on wave sailing the UKWA has crowned Jamie Hancock.

Jamie, who lives in Portsmouth, can be seen riding waves all along the hot spots on the south coast. Competing for many years on the UKWA wave tour Jamie previously won the prestigious indoor title in 2005 and was also the Tiree Wave Classic Champion in 2006.

This year’s first tour event saw competitors cross to Brandon Bay, Ireland, and what an event! Brandon Bay delivered like never before provideing the most extreme conditions ever seen at a UK contest. This was an extremely successful event for Jamie finishing the event in first place and getting his season off to a great start.

Event two was the Welsh leg held at Rhosneigr. With a strong southerly wind sweeping off Cardigan Bay and cross-shore at Rhosneigr Beach, there was classic port tack jumping for the wave sailors where Jamie finished in a creditable second place, therefore retaining his overall lead.

Event Three saw competitors making the long trip to the beautiful Isle of Tiree. Here Jamie in his own words ‘had a shocker’ finishing in only eleventh place, but with only two events from the three to count for the 2009 British Title Jamie was declared a worthy Champion.

Read more ...

James Briggs

Initially all racers were sent afloat when wind on the race course was a steady 10 knots.

By the time the first Formula race was due to start, the wind had dropped to a light 6-8 knots. The AP was flown whilst the fleet waited on the water to see if the breeze would return. Thankfully, within 30 minutes, the start sequence was underway with the race being two laps of a box course in 9-11 knots of breeze.

The first start was away clear with Keith Atkinson (GBR56) reaching the windward mark a boat length ahead of James Briggs (GBR848). Completing the downwind section, GBR848 had taken the lead from GBR56 which he then extended until the finish. Jason Clarke (GBR1515) finished in a comfortable third place.

The first attempt to start the second race was abandoned when the wind dropped and changed direction by 20 degrees making the pin end very biased. After a short wait, the second race was successfully away with most of the fleet starting on port and those closer to the pin sailing more the middle of the course area gaining on those on the right hand side of the course.

Tim Gibson (GBR40) was first to the windward mark closely following by GBR848. With the wind freshening to 11-13 knots, a powerful downwind leg saw GBR848 take the lead from GBR40 which he held until the finish. Ashley Barrett (GBR964) successfully led the charge ahead of the pack taking third place.

Read more ...