Army Windsurfing - Championships 2013Join the ASA Today

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Army Windsurfing Championships Hayling Island 1 - 5 July 2013

The Army Windsurfing Championships were held during the 1 – 5 July at Hayling Island. A total of 50 competitors entered the event with over half the fleet made up of the novice and intermediate sailors, this is the best turn out we have had at an Army event for a few years and definitely a success of the new structure of Army windsurfing implemented over the last 18 months.

The racing structure now follows a new format.
(FR1) Free Race 1 made up of the top flight sailors in the Army
(FR2) Free Race 2 made up of the planning intermediate fleet.
(FR3) Free Race 3 made up of the non planning intermediate fleet
(FR4 )Free Race 4 made up of the beginner fleet

The Background

Over the past few year the FR1 fleet (especially in the course racing division) has shrunk in size with only a handful of sailors competing in the discipline. It was decided that we needed to put more effort into equipping FR2 sailors with the skills required to be able to sail a Formula board and 9m rig (a) in moderate conditions and (b) to make the transition into FR1 easier whilst creating a bigger fleet, we have been working at this now for a while and as results proved at the Forces Open in May we are seeing progress, the course racing fleet this year at the Army’s was around 15 sailors all competing on Formula based equipment. The fleet was made up from FR1 and 2. During the week we delivered coaching clinics to all FR2 sailors in setting up Formula gear, tuning equipment, and on water skill development. Due to the light winds for most of the week the majority of sailors used there formula kit with a selection of different size sails ranging from 10.8 down to 8m. Also improving is the FR3 and 4 fleets as over half the entry list were either beginners or non planning intermediates. FR3 and FR4 race as one fleet but are split in the results as there are varying levels of sailor. Over the week they completed over 30 races and received coaching and tuition everyday, so by the end of the week that had all made massive progression ready to move up to the next fleet next season, so on a whole the new fleet categorisation and competition format is working and showing results.

Down To Business

In the FR1 fleet Major Steve Jones (RE) took overall wins in course racing and slalom to become the Army champion for 2013, Steve leaves the Army next year so it will give a few of the other sailors a shot at the title as he has pretty much dominated Army windsurfing competition over the last few years.

Freerace 1

1st place - Steve Jones (RE)
2nd place - Gareth Baker (RE)
3rd place - Iain Beaton (RA)

In the FR2 fleet the overall win went to George Main (RE) who sailed consistently through out the week, making the transition onto formula equipment well and with a bit of tuning he was right up with some of the FR1 course racers. REME sailor Will Ficken a little more comfy on smaller kit had some great slalom results and took a well deserved second place overall. AAC sailor Dave Macklin sailed pretty steady all week to take third overall.

Freerace 2

1st place - George Main (RE)
2nd place - Will Ficken (REME)
3rd place - Dave Macklin (AAC)

In the FR3 and FR4 fleets the top 3 sailors in each were pretty close all week, they completed an impressive 34 races which included some long distance formats, conditions suited FR3 and FR4 most of the week with light to moderate winds from the SE or SW which made the water state manageable and combined with some coaching sessions there was a massive improvement by the end of the week. Some of the FR4 sailors had only just finished a RYA Start windsurfing course so had only been windsurfing about 5 days, a great achievement to see the whole fleet racing around some fairly challenging courses and conditions. There was a large RA contingent in FR4 due to the efforts of Maj Jed Cunningham.

Freerace 3

1st place - Ryan Kaye (RA)
2nd place - Aaran Hickman (RE)
3rd place - Kester Elms (RA)

Freerace 4

1st place - Steven Nowell (RA)
2nd place - James Brooking (RA)
3rd place - Jack Maguire (Rsigs)

Onto the freestyle which was run for the novice fleets as the wave competition didn't run this year because of conditions so we ran an ultimate move contest which was won by Aaran Hickman (RE) who showed a fine display of trickery including sail 360's no less.

Novice Freestyle

1st place - Aaran Hickman (RE)
2nd place - Gnr Brooking (RA)
3rd place - LBdr Lavery (RA)

The inter Corps series and team event was compiled over the week with each Corps selecting a team of 6 sailors covering all fleets, the team event and results were counted through all disciplines, The RE continued to dominate with an overall win.

Inter Corps Series

1st place - RE
2nd place - REME
3rd place - RA

Inter Corps Team

1st place - RE
2nd place - RA
3rd place – REME

Overall then a great week to finish the 2013 season, and Army windsurfing is defiantly healthy and growing in numbers, a special mention and thanks to the race crew and again Maj Jed Cunningham who has been inspirational in developing RA windsurfing this year and has been acting as ASA Race Secretary.

Next event Renesse in Holland 26 – 30 Aug
Article written by Jon Metcalfe


2011 Army Championships | 2012 Army Championships


Army Windsurfing Contact

Jon Metcalfe

Jon Metcalfe
ASA Regional Coach
(Windsurfing & Kite-surfing)
ASA Coaching & Inspectorate
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