Tuesday, July 13, 2010

60 - Day 4: Slalom 101

It has been almost a year since I got my hands on some borrowed slalom gear at the 2009 VMAX speed series (hopefully there will be some 2010 events coming up) and I am planning to compete in the Maui Race Series this weekend so want to get out there and see how things are. I used to race on the UK circuit when I was at school and sailed slalom gear full time until I was 18, then discouraged by my results at the 1994 Youth World in Denmark I quit racing (I know it might have been a bit rash), swapped all my slalom gear for wave kit and bought my first ticket to Hawaii. Racing was very different back then but interestingly many of he names are still about and it seems that many of my peers from that era seem to have landed themselves in Maui with the likes of Jon Smalley, Matt Wicks and Dan Ellis all regulars at the beach here. The gear has changed dramatically and the lighter winds today were a perfect opportunity to get out and try some more modern gear and see if I can still race. I wasn’t that good back then so hoping that some maturity may help me out a little!

This is Tom on his race kit and I would like to thank him and HSM for all their help so far in making this slalom dream a reality.

The first thing that has not changed is the amount of kit you need – tons! At the start of the day I had a board, 2 sails and a in but it but somehow by the end of the day I seem to have begged, borrowed and bought rather more and now boast 4 slalom sails 8.0m thru 6.0m and more masts and booms to fit, I do need to get another mast and think that with the added load of the bigger rigs I should invest in some new extensions and bases that up until now have just had to cope with my 5.0m wave sail.

With the wind steady between 16 and 18 knots (not wanting to push myself too hard) I took the 6.6m, I should have had the 7.3m up but I don’t have a mast for that yet. What was clear from my some what brief session is that I will need rather more practice over the coming days if I am going to be able to compete at the weekend. What is for sure is my level of tiredness today and the big smile on my face it was great to be out and I was amazed that it had been almost 15 years since I owned a slalom board!

GoPro Update: Managed to get a good mount so tomorrow looks like it will finally be operational so there should be some video on the next post.

Wider Windsurfing Community: I have just had an email to say that the WindSurfer International Magazine is now live which is always worth a read, thanks for your hard work Brian.

Coming up tomorrow: I need to step up the slalom training so I am considering a Sprecks to Kanaha loop. I was reasonably pleased with today’s effort but I will need to be MUCH better by the weekend that is for sure!

More to follow…

1 comment:

  1. well done. try the 8.0 in that wind strength. there will be more power to fly over the chop