Windsurfing FreeRace #5

DSCN3598 DSCN3573 DSCN3574 DSCN3564 DSCN3558 DSCN3538 DSCN3530 DSCN3529 DSCN3524 DSCN3512 DSCN3508 DSCN3504The Question is should a Novice/Beginner/intermediate windsurfer go out in strong off shore breeze?

Last Windsurfing Free Race for the season at Sandgate – the inaugural ‘Jetty to Jetty’ 

Let me set the scene – forecast was 20 – 25 knot  westerly winds – that is straight off shore breeze.  MMM probably not for a novice like myself and Jaye but, we are up for it.  Pack the gear in the trailer and off we go.  Smallest decent sail we have is a new 6m Naish sprint – Jaye used that and I rigged the Avanti 6.6m.  mmm the problem with that was, the really experienced guys were using 7’s.

Anyway we registered for the gig, rigged up and watched with much trepidation as some of the experienced guys went out for a test run.  Jaye and I were the least experienced of all sailors there and I could sense the organisers were getting nervous about us even being in the race.  (rightfully so I must say – I have a diploma in OHS and train in safety for a job)  They asked us to withdraw from the race – I would have done the same in their place.   A little disappointed oh well, going out for a sail anyway.  All adds to the adventure and experiences of windsurfing.

We did however have a little trick up my sleeve if I was to run into trouble – tell you later.

Jaye and I discussed how far out we will go and what direction we will head and the wind was gusting big time he headed out first and did really well.

The first race was underway and everyone was smashing it out in the water, incoming tide and off shore winds surely made for rough conditions.

We on the other had decided to head in the opposite direction and keep in close.  Jaye did well at that but Whoa!!!!!!! I found it really difficult to hang on to the 6.6m sail in that wind and took several goes at getting going.  I couldn’t even beach start as I kept on going straight off the other side of the board – uphauling was the only way and even with that I struggled.  Had to be done…. – it was sooooo hard to sheet in or do anything in those conditions – wow  But once I had hold of it, stayed on the board – hooked in – both feet in the straps and locked in ———-> WOO HOO LETS GO 🙂 the feeling of acceleration was exhilarating.  How much fun was that 20.98 knots for me and 23.5 for Jaye and climbing.

What was the trick I had up my sleeve?????  I am glad you asked……..

Ben my older son had bought his Jet Ski down to go out with us for a bit of fun and to make sure we were all good.  I am glad he did as I was struggling to get back in.  He and mate Gavin came out and lucky for Jason from the Goldy who had rigging failure and was heading very quickly towards Moreton Island – as I was being collected by Ben I noticed Jason on the horizon waving – Gavin shot out and grabbed him and bought him to shore.  Nice

Having the boys there with the Jet Ski’s made for a great opportunity for Jaye and I, as improvers to actually see for ourselves, why they say not to venture out when it is blowing off shore.

NOTE TO SELF (and other Improvers) –  ‘Don’t go out in off shore breeze’

Very interesting the relationship between off shore winds and a learner beginner novice greenhorn intermediate inexperienced – the answer is THEY DON’T MIX.

Had a great day anyway thanks to all the organizers and sponsor

See you out there


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