Saturday, 18 April 2015

FW Worlds summary

The last day
Sunday was the hardest racing day of my life. With the wind gusting up to 30 knots and the sea state best described as – boiling (2.5m sea swell + many different directions of wind chop), holding on to 10.7 was a challenge. Everybody who had 10 or 9.5 were using it - only me, Maciek POL 23, Nico GER 7 and Vincent GER 1 were on 11s. I have never seen so many catapults in races as I have seen on that day. Personally I was using the second chicken strap to have at least a tiny bit of control on the downwind run and I only felt once, - when I was standing in both FRONT footsraps – don’t even ask. By the end of the second race most of the guys in the fleet looked pretty much done. And that gave me a chance to rack up some better results. Even though I was on a bigger sail, due to my good physical conditioning I still had plenty of energy left for 3rd and 4th race of the day. So I focused up pushed through pain and discomfort of holding on to 10.7 on the upwind in 30 knots and finished 15th and 17th. These results allowed me to move into 23rd spot in Overall ranking of the event.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

FW Worlds, Day 4 (AKA 57 knots day)

No races today. And the reason is....(drum roll) we had to much £$%% wind and then we got rain, cold weather and that was it for the day. And when I say too much wind I mean it was hard to walk,  gusts were measured up to 57 knots

Saturday, 11 April 2015

FW Worlds, Day 3

Today we had 4 races.
In the morning it looked like a calm day, and the AP was put up. But soon the wind increased to 10-15 and we went racing. On the course there were some lulls, but I think the average was 14-17 knots. I was overpowered on 12.5 but so was half of the fleet. The other half went out on 11. Nevertheless, I finished in 19th place.
I managed to change down to 10.7 between the first and the second race. And that was great because when I went back out I was already overpowered on 10.7 and so was everyone. I was so eager to do well in this race that I jumped the gun and got an OCS. Too bad, I think I finished that race in TOP20 as well.
Then we had a short lunch break, during which almost everyone changed down to 10s, But as you know I don't have a 10. So I was a big boy and went out with 10.7 again. This time I lengthened my harness lines by around 3 inches, and that made going in these hard conditions so much easier. I was still slow as a dog on the upwind, but I wasn't flying away and on the downwind I was going at the speed of light - so much fun. Surprisingly people on 10s were not much faster than me and after the break I finished 20th and 22nd.

Still not perfect result, but taking into account that I never liked strong wind and now after 6 months break I haven't started liking them any more I consider this a fair result in this very strong fleet.
Tomorrow there is a storm coming through, gusting up to 47 knots - so it is gonna be interesting.
Sorry, no photos today.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

FW Worlds Day 2

In the morning it seemed like it is gonna be another great day for racing just in a bit lighter winds. We were sent out on the water according to plan at 12. However, the wind wasn't strong and consistent enough to do races. Therefore, the RC made the right decision to sent us back to the beach. After 3 hour break the wind turned a bit and got stronger again. We were sent out on the race course again and we even did two starts. however, the wind was too unstable to keep the races going.
At least today I finally learned how to tape my feat so the power tape doesn't get washed away.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Formula Worlds, Day 1

We had 4 races today in 7 to 25 knots wind, and 2.5m swell. The swell was a bit smaller than yesterday, but I got to know that in the boat they measured the wave up to 3.5m yesterday (at least so I heard). The conditions were super tricky. I went on 10.7 as did most of the guys, some choose to go with 10s.

1st race I got quite a good start on starboard tack at the pin end, and after the tack was coming into the top gate in TOP 10 position. However, I got into a hole and stopped 10 meters to the mark. A few people around me stopped as well. Then Janis Preiss cam from behind, tried to stop, but unsuccessfully and crashed into the back end of my boom. I went for a swim and he went away, but to be fair the only other option he had was crash into someone else. Plus he apologized afterwards. Anyway, after getting back on the board I felt down once again (not that easy to pick up the bloody sail in 2.5 meter wave with guys passing all around you). Then I had to go back up to the mark and I was taking it one place before the last. During the 3 lap course I gained back a few places then lost a few and finished 24th in the end.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Formula Windsurfing World Championship, Registration Day

Today is the first day of 2015 Formula Windsurfing World Championship. Although we only had registration, practice race and opening ceremony today.
The conditions - wow. Again very gusty and very shifty (5 to 25 knots), but on top of that we had huge swell rolling into the bay. I mean sometimes you couldn't see the guy who was sailing 50 meters in front of you. I would say the wave was around 2.5 meters. Nevertheless it was quite a soft one, so it wasn't to difficult to go over it. Anyway, I haven't sailed in waves that big for a few years now so it was quite scary at first.
I did to sessions today one in the morning where I was so scared by the wave I didn't really think about sailing. And then in the afternoon I did the practice race. Only 4 guys came to the starting line (out of 29 registered sailors). I didn't have my starting watch so my start wasn't the best but later I was just happy to be able to sail quite comfortably in these conditions. Everyone was confused about the course, how many laps we had to do and so on. In the end no one finished the race, but it was fun just to go around the course, check your laylines and get acquainted with the gusts.

Monday, 6 April 2015

7th Day in Azores

It has been a week since I came here and today was the first day I did not go on the water. Don't get me wrong it was windy. Kind of similar like yesterday just a touch stronger, gustier and 1.5m swell rolling in through the gates of the harbor. I decided to save myself for the competition. To be honest, most of the guys did the same,-  the conditions were not exactly perfect.
Thus after finishing the first draft of my uni essay (yep, I manage to find time for studying here) I went to the local wave spot. Which is just 10min walk down, inside the harbor. Two surfers were trying to get waves, while Ross, Janis and a few other guys were sailing on their formula boards just 50 meters away. 

Sunday, 5 April 2015

6th Training Day in Azores

Guess what?
It was windy again. This place just keeps delivering sailable conditions every day. It was super gusty and super shifty again as yesterday, but still sailable. In the morning it was 4 to 15 knots increasing over the day to around 10 - 25 knots. In the morning the guys were choosing between 12s and 11s and in the afternoon between 11s and 10s.I was sailing on 10.7 and tried to test my fins. Unfortunately, after 6 months break I can barely feel the difference between fins. Nevertheless, I think I found quite a good downhaul setting for my sail - so I am happy about that.