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The SWA made the best of the fantastic swell and wind in December by holding back-to-back wave events to kick off the SWA RRD/Ezzy Wave Series

Exeter ‘Wave X’

 

Saturday

On the weekend of the 1-2nd Decemeber, whilst the Irish coast was being battered by the biggest waves ever seen, the bravest (or most foolish) of the SWA’s sailors and supporters headed to Marazion Beach, Cornwall, for the first of round of competition. Owing to the tide dropping and conditions building, by the time the competitors headed out the whole scene was beginning to look pretty good. The weapons of choice for most were small wave boards and 4.0-4.7m sails. The first few heats were well powered up but a menacing shore break was getting the better of some sailors. Unfortunately as the shore break calmed down and the waves got better, the wind decided to pack up its bag and head off down the south coast. The rest of the heats were run with sketchy wind but the occasional good ride. The odd squall of wind was enough to show the high standard of sailing with some good wave riding and big air in the mix; pro Sailors Andy King and Nick Moffat even dropped in to show us a thing or two… With the wind getting lighter and lighter and daylight running low, the decision was made to leave the final until Sunday and head back to Exeter for an evening of partying ‘Lady and the Tramp’ style.

Sunday 

With most of the South West becoming too big and unsailable for all but the most extreme on the Sunday, the decision was made to head to Daymer Bay to hold the final. Two Exeter boys made it through to the men's finals: Murray Saunders (Exeter, Edge Watersports) and Andrew French; and they found themselves accompanied by Seb Willis from Cardiff, and Steve Jarvis (S.J.) from Southampton.

There was some unreal windsurfing in winds reaching in excess of 40 knots. Insane air (and big wipe outs) and radical wave riding was seen throughout in the tricky conditions, but it was SJ who clinched victory by dominating in the air with a series of front and backloops, closely followed by Murray. Seb’s clean riding style earned him third place and Frenchie grasped a well deserved fourth.


Next up was the old boys stepping forward in the XSWA final with Big Bob and Beaker battling it out for top spot. Beaker finished 1st with a 1 handed tabletop and some smooth wave riding whilst SWA-Team's Big Bob narrowly missed out with a sweet 1 handed forward. TurfDog’s Adam Cropper took 3rd spot with some tidy forward loops followed by SWA President Sam Stevens who put in a great effort finishing 4th after only just having made it back on the water since having his appendix out.

Results:

Men's

1st - Steve Jarvis

2nd - Murray Saunders (Edge Watersports)

3rd - Seb Willis

4th - Andrew French

Women's

1st - Sarah Bibby

2nd - Ala Rozwadowska and Liss Earle

XSWA

1st - Anthony 'Beaker' Lindley

2nd - Bob Shelmerdine

3rd - Adam Crooper (Turf Dog)

4th - Sam Stevens

Many thanks have to go to the judges John Palmer and Ben Hedley, the Exeter girls, who sold cakes to raise money for Surfers against Sewage. Thanks also to Exeter president Liss Earle, her Exeter committee and the SWA for making the event happen, and all our sponsors Edge Watersports, Reactive Watersports, Rowsell Sail, Urban Surfer and Red Bull.

Cardiff ‘Pura Vida’ Wave

The second event in the SWA RRD/Ezzy Wave series was the one-day Cardiff Wave Event in association with new local shop Pura Vida Boardriders. And what an awesome end to a great late season’s windsurfing it was too! In the morning the wind worked it’s way round from a NE cross off to a very strong SW cross on at Trecco Bay with waves climbing to Logo high in the sets. The wind was gusty and strong, threatening a few people on to the rocks in front of the judges throughout the day and a few victims of broken sails to boot. The men’s heats saw some great sailing with most guys on 4.2 to 4.7m sails all day, owing to a harsh shore dump, some didn’t make it out through one punishing break, but 3 sailors really stood out from their first heats all the way through to the final as the ones to watch, with some really impressive riding, high jumps and loop attempts.



The final moved over to the point with peeling waves breaking right off the rocks for the best wave riding of the day, all competitors were ripping with second and third place closely fought, but Seb Willis from Cardiff University really shone throughout: he managed to score more rides and consistently made the conditions look smooth and much easier than they actually were. With hot favourite, Cardiff’s Ellie Boyle, out and injured on the beach it was down to only two women brave enough to take on the waves at Trecco. With some great forward attempts in the shallows and a few good runs from both sailors.


Student Mens Results:

1st – Seb Willis, Cardiff

2nd – Steve Jarvis, Southampton

3rd – Chris Beng (BooHai, Boardwise), Imperial

Student Womens

Results: 1st – Aleksandra , Cardiff University

2nd – Liss Earle, Exeter University

3rd – Ellie Boyle, Cardiff University

All students who missed their heats from late night drinking and a handful of locals were judged on their sailing all day and into the last half hour for an open expression session. This saw some awesome performances in such tough conditions as the tide climbed so did the waves. Local boy: Ben Warwick was shining all day on the Naish Pro Wave 75 constantly pulling forwards, getting some massive air, several backward attempts and one of the few guys getting frontside on the way in! John Greatrex and Jamie Cattle were battling closely on their Angulo 75 and 82 Changos for many hours, with Jamie throwing in some sweet freestyle moves to boot, and John hitting some of the biggest air of the day and the best sail we’ve seen from him yet! But it was latecomer student Tom Malin who clinched the top spot with riding and forwards to match Ben and some nice table tops in front of the judges to just sneak out in front.


Prizes were sponsored by Naish Uk. All in all a great weekend for student and local sailors and the start of more to come, a big thanks to Guest Judges Ian Ross (RB Sails/Pura Vida) Rich (Naish UK) and Jim (Pura Vida) Thanks must, as always go to the SWA sponsors: Club Vass, Boardseeker.com, Boardwise, RRD/Ezzy, Naish, Starboard/Tushingham, Turf-Dog, Boohai clothing, Bic Sport, F2

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