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The Student Windsurfing Association
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For three years running Liverpool has held the infamous windsurfing event ‘Northern Monkey’ in the deep dark depths of the north and this year they did not disappoint!

Friday Night
Friday night kicked off in the uni bar, the Sphinx, with its famously cheap pints before congregating in Einstein’s. Here windsurfers grabbed some steins, caught up with old and new mates and danced the night away, moving on to see the wonders of concert square. This night also saw the Taffy Osborne winning event occur, where Kai Davies was accidentally run over by his Uber twice in the space of 5 minutes. (No Kais or Ubers were hurt in this accident).

Saturday day time
Saturday was absolutely howling with wind speeds in the early twenties and the gusts even higher. Our most skilled windsurfers braved the nuking conditions and they sent it! The freestyle and advanced racing were held and boy did they bring it! In the freestyle things started getting aerial with chop hops and attempted front loops. The advanced racing was a different story with some of our most weathered windsurfers stacking it at the gybe but enough pulled through to make an interesting final race with Liverpool’s Teifion Luckett taking the gold! Unfortunately, we had to call it a day soon after as the tide was creeping up on us and even the BBQ lunch couldn’t keep windsurfers warm. It was time to head back to the host houses for a pizza feast and some surprising pres.

Saturday night
The big bash started out with some killer house parties and the coveted return of the dioctabong. This legendary piece of drinking paraphernalia was originally created by Taffy and an ex Liverpool windsurfer and brought to life at a Pondlife event, so we only saw it fit to make its return at the 10th Northern Monkey! Once pres had come to an end and everyone had donned their video game, it was time to move on to Soho, where the first 50 received free drinks. We had a separate floor, where we could boogie the night away. The partying carried on into the night, Marios found their Princess Peaches as well as some . Shout out to the Edinburgh lads for their amazing arcade game cardboard get ups! 

Sunday day time
Sunday proved to be a better day with sunshine and perfect conditions to blast up and down the west wall! The first beginner session was underway and it was great to see so many keen beans getting out on the famous West kirby marina.

This was followed by team racing where Swansea, with the help of Bristol’s Luke Leckie, claimed first prize, Liverpool chasing their tail in second and Notts bringing up the rear. Next up were the intermediates with some fierce heats followed by the all determining final, seeing Bristol’s Chris Law taking top spot, closely followed by UWE’s Hettie Rogers and Liverpool’s Angud Jones in second and third respectively. After this, it was time to pack up and for awards with some pretty tasty prizes. 

 

Results
Team Racing
1st - Swansea
2nd - Liverpool
3rd - Nottingham

Freestyle
1st - Robbie Hobson (Sheffield)
2nd - Luke Leckie (Bristol)
3rd - Jake Roberts (Swansea)

Advanced Racing
1st - Teifion Luckett (Liverpool)
2nd - Jake Roberts (Swansea)
3rd - Luke Leckie (Bristol)

Intermediate Racing
1st - Christopher Outlaw (Bristol)
2nd - Hettie Rogers (UWE)
3rd - Angus Jones (Liverpool)

Unfortunately no beginner racing took place as the conditions were too strong for the heats to take place. 

 

After a teary thank you from the Liverpool president, it was time to conclude a sick weekend at West Kirby and say our goodbyes until the next event. 

Back in February a humble detachment of the SWA set out into the mists of Wales, in search of a monster. After three days' travel we found the shores of Bangor, where the local scholars welcomed us with shelter and respite from our journey. Their home was novel, to say the least. It stood alone on a sheltered beach, windows gazing out to the Menai Strait. We were cautioned of the perils of the water: Strong currents that would drag us away to be taken as hostage by sirens, or as food for a kraken. And so; it was with great care that we tiptoed with our belongings, along the narrow beach towards our accommodation.

After resting our feet, we made to explore this welcoming city, stopping by taverns of the names of The Tap & Spile, Belle Vue, and the O2 Academy. We awoke to the familiar smell of bacon and eggs the following morning, and read reports of a great monster out on the island of Anglesey. We began to ruminate upon how to set about the hunt, but the bravest among us were already packing for the fight.

It was on the beach of Rhosneigr we found our quarry. Local hunters were already out at sea, tackling the beast before us. Two veteran huntsmen came to offer wisdom, one named Jim from the guild of Puravida, and another called Nigel, of the guild of BWA. The boldest of our party, Sarah, brought gear-aplenty. Boards and sails from the marketplace, which we were to ride out on, and face our brutish opponent. In fact in competition, it was Sarah to deliver the final blow; with Rob and Shaun as much needed backup, in what was a very close fight.

Finalists

1st

Sarah Jackson

Bath

2nd

Rob Loescher

Sheffield Hallam

3rd

Shaun Ashmore

Manchester

RUP

Miles Walker

Loughborough

RUP

Petar Ivanov

Oxford Brookes

Having beat our foe, we retreated back to the comforts of our seaside house. After warm showers and a few shanties, we returned to Belle Vue for a hero’s dinner of Bangors and beans*. We then made for a tavern called Patrick’s, where several of our party fell victim to the inferno of the wicked landlord’s tabasco shots. Finally, we returned to the O2 Academy, and this time discovered its luxurious ball pit.

On the second day at Rhosneigr, Jim and Sarah shared their knowledge and experience of monsters, and we spent our remaining time in Wales honing our skills for the battles to come next monster season.

Awesome thanks as always go out to everyone: Candace & Bangor Uni, Jim & Puravida, Nigel & the BWA, Sarah & Duotone/Fanatic/ION, and everyone who came along to hunt the RhosNess Monster.

*Bangors and beans pun courtesy of Conor Fitzpatrick, Loughborough.

Up the Brum IV

For the second year in a row, windsurfers around the country descended upon the second city for some boozing and blasting (blasting not guaranteed). From all corners of the country, universities arrived on Friday evening at their luxurious Selly Oak accommodations. After some hastily executed pre-drinks, 150 windsurfers descended upon Selly’s Friday night Mecca: Circo. The cheapest drinks in Brum ensured a lengthy and messy night was had by all, with the wide selection of takeaways fuelling windsurfers to stagger back home. Full stomachs and spinning heads made for an always comfortable night on the hosts’ floors, ready for a full day out on the water the next day.

Just a matter of a few hours later, with heads still spinning, we all awoke. The smell of bacon frying ultimately got everyone out of bed, and a slow start to the morning ended with all up at Chasewater, greeted with a blustery 3 knots howling in our ears. This wouldn’t stop the beginners who flocked to the water in numbers, and backed this up with some competitive racing. Some bending of the rules occurred with Ben from Brum resorting to paddling and was disqualified rather swiftly. This was followed by intermediate racing, where some enthusiastic pumping was needed in the absence of any kind of wind and resulted in a tiring workout for those involved.

’Twas windy, and the slithy toves
Did tack and carve-gybe in the waves:
All whimsy were the windsurfers,
And the Swankers outgrabe.

Beware the stopped taxi, my son!
The doors that swing, the drivers that catch!
Beware the cat litter, and shun
The frumious taser device.

Now that was a very soggy but absolutely brilliant weekend… A massive thank you to everyone that helped out, all of our sponsors and everyone that came for helping us have so much fun despite the mud and rain!

 

Friday night's arrival had an element of shock; we arrived to more of a lake than a campsite. However, as we ventured further in we realised, to great relief, it was only the parking field that was flooded. So tents were put up, and before long the party commenced.

The party was wild as it always is, although this year ended considerably muddier than usual. By 2am a section of the party tent had descended into somewhat of a slip n slide, with mud-men performing some strange ritual in the sludge. All in all a brilliant night though, as long as you didn't lose your wellies!