The BWA and UKWA freestyle tours are full of talented pro, amateurs, ladies and more, and whilst there are also some incredible youngsters it’s always great to here of more kids coming through at other feeder events.
Recently over in West Witterings a Rippers camp and contest was held by Sam Ross and James Randall, with loads of kids hitting the water and showing that the future of windsurfing in the UK is looking very bright indeed. Check out the video and full report from Sam:
When I started putting a little more downhaul on my 4m when launching I knew it was going to be a windy day!
The fact that I was sailing on a smaller sail than most of the rest of my group wouldn’t initially worry me but the fact that the oldest was just over half my age made this slightly different!
James Randall and I were running the third annual Sam Ross/X-Train Rippers wave and freestyle camp and we had a crew of 13 youth sailors from across the country who descended onto West Wittering to take on the beginning of the windiest weekend in the UK since 1987!
Rigging up was easy on day one, whatever your smallest sail is that’s the one to rig was the call. With an early low tide we hit the pan flat trench at West Wittering where within the first 20 minutes the youngest of our team Tommy had cracked his first water start, Luke had almost sailed away from his first Spock and Jack Petitt had already racked up 30 Vulcan attempts.
The variety of moves was endless with many of the young rippers cracking into Vulcans, as well as loops, downwind 360s, duck gybes and jumps.
We pretty much sailed until arms were falling off and retired for lunch and a chat after 4 hours on the water. The group happiest in the waves hit the water straight away with James heading upwind and looking at going frontside in the pretty onshore conditions whilst those newer to waves stuck with me to get our heads around the new challenge.
Within 20 minutes we had both groups out in the waves with jumping and wave riding being the order of the day, Lucy being new to waves looked almost instantly at home and along with the rest of her group were looking at their first back side smacks and even starting to try some frontside riding.
We hit the pub in the evening (soft drinks only of course) with some tired sailors who got as much food in them as possible for day 2.
We were greeted with 40 knots of wind but this didn’t deter the team as we hit the trench again and even though the tide was low, chop and waves were starting to spill over the sandbar. After a few runs in the ballistic conditions we decided to run a fun comp and despite the fact that everyone was hanging on there was some incredible sailing going on. Everyone was in the air at some point with Alex and Jack even going one handed and one footed respectively.
Luke was still trying to throw the Spocks in and young Lucas was landing some great tweaked jumps. Ben Simmons pushed through in the amateur comp to take the win from Lucy and Alex squeezed through in his high octane final to push Lucas into fourth, Oli ‘stalled forward’ Anderson into third with Jack taking second.
On the way in we all hit the sand bar where with speed and ramps Jasper, Oli, Alexi and Luke were all sending massive jumps.
After hitting the showers and grabbing some food we checked out the footage, gave out some awards and then watched a few adults jaws drop as they realized these guys had been out in those conditions.
After the third year of the camp it has been great to see the new level these guys have all achieved and the future of our sport is surely a bright one.
Massive thanks to James Randall for his excellent coaching, Rossco and Simon for looking after us and all the parents for trekking across the land to make the storm chase happen.
Thanks to The Old House at Home West Wittering for the food Saturday night, Video to come soon by James Randall, Photos by Simon Bassett, prizes for the event by 2XS.
We are going to publish extra dates for 2014 check Sams website sam-ross.co.uk and 2xs.co.uk for details. ..