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If you're sure you want to know what went on at the Bristol Beachside Fetish event, read on...

23-25 February

Bristol bore an influx of over 100 student windsurfers for the weekend of 23-25 February – all wanting a piece of the action at the SWA south west regional event hosted by Bristol and UWE’s windsurf clubs.

Club members from Kingston, Imperial, Exeter, Southampton, Cardiff, Sheffield and Nottingham joined the Bristol contingent for Beachside Fetish – an unforgettable weekend of on and off water action.

Friday night saw a slave auction of club presidents and anyone else willing in aid of children’s charity Coco’s (www.coco.org.uk), which aims to make a big difference to the lives of children affected by poverty, famine, war and disease. Bids reached £70 – each contributing to an impressive final total of £450.

On the water at Axbridge Reservoir there was beginner tuition as well as the southwest legs of the Neilson Race Series and the Boardwise Freestyle series. Southampton dominated the racing, with Al Graham winning the Advanced division and Giles Munro-Faure coming first in the Intermediate Division, but a Nottingham student called Kate took the beginner crown.

The freestyle competition was won by Bristol newcomer Jon Palmer, who pulled off a vulcan and some upwind 360s in the gusty force 4 winds to impress the judges.

The kind hosts at Axbridge also pulled out their ‘tridem’ windsurf board (think tandem but for three people) for keen kids to take on in between races, with varying success.

On Saturday night the competitors and mincers descended upon the Medic Beach Party in Bristol’s Student Union, organised by Bristol student and SWA-Team member Hugh Sims Williams, but not without adding a twist to the suggested fancy dress theme of beach attire.

The windsurfers decided to spice things up and confuse the other party-goers a bit by attiring themselves in beachside fetish outfits – complete with hand cuffs, whips, dog collars, and gimp hoods, all teamed with the standard flip flops, board shorts and aviators.

The party was pretty sophisticated by SWA standards – with various bands and DJs playing, a break dancing display (which onlookers and SWA bigwigs JP and Beaker looked desperate to join in with) and a surf simulator.

The next date you should have in your windsurfing diary is the Nationals in Southampton on 21-22 April – watch this space for more details, coming soon…

words by Emily Koch

photos by Javier Choi (apart from the big group one)

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