The windsurfing world gathered on Hayling Island on 5th and 6th of September for Britain’s largest National Windsurfing Festival.
Over 300 competitors took to the water and good weather conditions resulted in exciting race action over both days and even into the night. The beach was filled with spectators and all the riders thoroughly enjoyed the festival programme.
This included two main fleets: one for national circuit sailors and the other for freeride, non-national circuit sailors (i.e. - most of us!). On-shore clinics were provided by experienced coaches Jim Collis, Dave White, Peter Hart and Ant Baker for riders to brush up on their skills.
The windsurfing traders provided exhibits and demonstrations including new 2010 equipment. However the highlight of the event was undoubtedly the night race which took place under floodlights. It’s a truly spectacular sight and the only race of its kind.
Event organiser Allan Cross says: “The festival’s mission was to deliver a non-intimidating, fun windsurfing event with great atmosphere that caters for sailors of all abilities. We certainly delivered on all fronts and feedback from the riders has been extremely positive”
Kyle Hanna, Sports Development Officer at Havant Borough Council says, “We are delighted to support this prestigious event and were pleased that many local residents came down to experience the unique atmosphere and enjoy a fantastic weekend of exciting racing.”
The Mayor of Havant, Councillor Jackie Branson was on hand to help present the awards. Enthusing about the event she said: “It’s very inspiring to see so many windsurfers enjoying the conditions and battling the wind and waves. The Council are committed to helping this prestigious event to grow and become even more successful. What better place to hold the National Windsurfing Festival than on Hayling Island, the acknowledged birthplace of the sport”.
For a full report and pictures, be sure to pick up the next issue of BOARDS.
Above image shows the top 3 windsurfers in the Freeride Series, which was sponsored by Havant Borough Council. The Freeride Series is for participants who do not compete on the national circuit and just want to have fun and enjoy their sport.
1st place - Dave Dobrijevic
2nd place - James Morris
3rd place - Adrian Barber