NWF have announced they will run The Howard Plumb Memorial Race during the National Watersports Festival (NWF) on Saturday 5th September this year. Howard was a successful British windsurfer who sadly lost his life last year…
HOWARD ‘HOWIE’ PLUMB
Howard ‘Howie’ Plumb was loved and admired by all those who knew him because he was exceptionally modest, funny and sincere. He Was the antithesis of a bragging PR merchant. Instead he was the sort who let his windsurfing do the talking. The fact is, he had plenty to brag about. He was one of our most talented and successful racers with a cabinet stuffed full of National and European titles, culminating in him qualifying for the Atlanta Olympics in 1996.
It all started for Howie right here on the Hampshire coast. In 1978, our sailing mad parents introduced him to the sport when he was 10. He took to it from the get go, wrestling manfully with an enormous board and sail. Then Peter Williams of Hayling Windsurfing helped source a junior board called a ‘Jumbo.’ From memory it was a strange sackcloth-powered piece of sponge, but it did the trick and Howie’s windsurfing was on track.
He immediately became a part for the hard core Hayling Beach Sailors along with the likes of Dave Thompson, Dave Cordell and Malcolm Oliver. He started a long association with the Mistral brand and soon started racing the Mistral Equipe at Hayling Island at both Northney and on the seafront, quickly establishing himself at the front of the fleet.
It was a position he maintained as he moved to Division One UKBSA circuit He won the Nationals in his first year on the circuit, got selected on to the National Youth Squad; and in the same year became part of the prestigious Mistral Carlsberg Team along with the likes of Dee Caldwell, Peter Hart and Jonnie Hutchcroft.
The rest as they say is history. His rise through the international ranks was meteoric. Sailing on the IMCO board that was to become the Olympic Class, he entered his first event outside of Europe, the Mistral Worlds, Corpus Chrisi, Texas and brought home trophies. In the following years Howie became European champion twice and UK champion innumerable times.
By the mid 1990s, Howie had competed and won on nearly every continent, setting up 2 Olympic campaigns that would see him compete for team GB at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
Words by Roland Plumb