The Isle of Tiree, Scotland

Saturday 10 – Friday 16 October, 2009

Tiree is known well by the windsurfing elite for waves and lots of wind, and the westerly isle has lived up to its reputation as the UK’s premier windsurfing competition, the Tiree Wave Classic, kicked off this weekend.

At the 6-day event, extreme adrenaline fuelled action is guaranteed as the world's best windsurfers come together to brave the full Atlantic furies of wind and waves off this remote and exposed island. The Isle enjoys a mild climate and claims the most sunshine hours in the British Isles, as well as the highest average wind speed. Exposed to powerful North Atlantic swell, extreme winds and breathtaking white sandy beaches, Tiree is proving to be a mobile event with a vast range of conditions to determine a worthy winner.

More than 70 windsurfers registered for this year’s event to battle it out for one of the most sought-after prizes in world windsurfing. Duncan Coombes, Head Judge from the World Tour, is judging this year's Tiree Wave Classic and the windsurfers competed on Sunday for what was the longest day of competition in the event's 23 years history. Irish Timo Mullen is currently leading the competition for the pro-windsurfers and John Skye, currently 5th on the World Series, is running a close second. The event has been on hold for the last couple of days due to the lack of wind but is hoped to be back up and running tomorrow.

The Caledonian MacBrayne Coll Challenge, a tri-sport adventure race, is due to return for its second year and will take place on Thursday 15 October. The Cal Mac Coll Challenge, pegged as 'the most remote adventure race in the UK', includes running 2 miles along Crossapol beach in Tiree, windsurfing from Crossapol round the coast to Gott Bay and then over to the neighbouring island of Coll where the competitors will race a half marathon on a bike.

To coincide with both events, Caledonian MacBrayne Ferries are offering a fantastic opportunity to visit the Isles of Tiree and Coll on Thursday 15 October and be back on the mainland within one day. The return crossing from Oban to Tiree is only £10 per person and this will help reinforce Tiree’s current number 2 ranking in Lonely Planet’s “Best British Holiday Bargain” category which For Argyll, the region’s Information and Communications Service, recorded earlier this year.

Rachel Cavers, Spokeswoman for event organisers GMFCo commented:

"The weekend has got off to a fantastic start and we have some of the world's best competitors up at Tiree this year including Dany Bruch from Germany and John Skye who is currently running fifth in the World Series which is very exciting. We also have Skykon and Strathclyde Fire & Rescue on board as 2009 sponsors and it is great to see an international company involved in wind power supporting our event. Skykon really know the wind power market and have so much synergy with The Tiree Wave Classic. With international TV lined up and a number of media contacts coming up to cover this year's event, the 2009 Tiree Wave Classic is shaping up to be one of the best.”