Techno 293: the Optimist of windsurfing

The International Windsurfing Association (IWA) is the governing body for the sport worldwide. If you ever thought of buying yourself a complete windsurfing kit get to know more about the most famous classes.

The RS:X is the official Olympic windsurfing class. It was designed by NeilPryde in 2004 and replaces Mistral in the Beijing 2008 Olympics. Male athletes use a 9.5m sail while women and youth use an 8.5m sail.

Formula Windsurfing was born in France, in 1998. The first race was held with the best French Funboard sailors in 12-knot winds. After conquering several new enthusiasts with its incredible performance, FW got the support of the Professional Windsurfers Association (PWA). The Olympic dream has grown and Formula Windsurfing is considered the biggest windsurfing class in the world.

Techno 293 is seen as the "Optimist" of the windsurfing classes. It was designed for the youngest windsurfers willing to reach the Olympic Games with the RS:X equipment. From 2009, the class has adopted One Design rules, with the BIC One Design 6.8 and 7.8 sails.

Raceboard is a windsurfing class open to several manufacturers. AHD, Alpha, BIC, Exocet, Fanatic, F2, Kona, Lechner, Mistral, Neil Pryde, Starboard, Surfers Group and Tiga have been producing gear for this popular class, adopted internationally in 1990.

Funboard is a popular all-round windsurfing class, with enthusiasts all around the world. The International Funboard Class Association was adopted as an international class in 1987.

Formula Experience was introduced in 2001 as an affordable and simple racing class. BIC and Starboard were the first manufacturers. Today, Starboard and Severne are working together for the One Design and the Experience windsurfers are actually finishing in front of the Formula Windsurfing racers, particularly in the youth category.

The Mistral class was founded in 1978 and is one of the oldest ways of getting into windsurfing. The Mistral One Design (MOD) board was first produced in 1989, by Mistral Sports. There are an estimated 30,000 boards worldwide. In 2009, Anders Bringdal acquired the Mistral license and has committed his company to the relaunch of the MOD class.

Kona One is one of the fastest growing windsurfing classes in the world and part of World Sailing. It is a One Design class in which all sailors use identical boards. One sail is used in all conditions, and its size is a function of the sailor's body weight. In order to place the emphasis on on true sailing skills and tactics, pumping is not allowed in this windsurfing class.