Monthly Archives: April 2012

I DIDN’T GET WHERE I AM TODAY…

I am going to tell you about my first ever experience of windsurfing. Brimming with excitement and antici…………pation, my mate and I rocked up at a local lake, hired a board and sail each and off we went. Easy as that! Everyone was clearly confident that we could figure it out…

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I didn’t know that I needed to put my feet either side of the mast, so every time I tried to pull up the sail, I fell in backwards. I spent the whole session falling in and drifted into the furthest corner of the lake. Time up; and I was ignominiously towed back by the rescue boat. A whole hour – and I had not even got the sail out of the water!

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It was nothing less than a tragedy. Tragedy is a strong word, but I really do mean it! I thought that this was what windsurfing was all about – and didn’t try it again for another 15 years. WHAT A WASTE!
A lack of proper tuition can hinder your progress with any sport, but is particularly problematic with something as counter-intuitive as windsurfing. A few pointers would have made my first experience so very different. The most basic coaching – and I may never have had to go endure that 15 year windsurfing desert!

For me, one of the real highlights of the N.W.F is the free coaching from the very best technique gurus in the sport. Sure, reading the magazines or getting tips from your mates can be really helpful. However, that can’t produce the same results as a professional coach watching you, fine tuning your technique and conveying the information in a way that you can easily understand and put into practise – and at N.W.F this could all be happening on your own kit! What a way to break through that plateau!
I have seen a lot of forum threads debating “Which magic bit of equipment can I buy to transform my windsurfing?” In my experience, professional tuition is what will make the single biggest difference to your sailing. Sure, equipment plays its part – but I had exactly the right equipment on my first ever attempt; all the gear and no idea – my problem was ALL about technique!

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Thank goodness that I was stupid enough to try windsurfing again – but I didn’t get where I am today without proper tuition! And just imagine how much better I’d be ripping if I’d had 15 years of extra coaching…
Jackie Lambert
Come along to one of the FREE guru clinics at N.W.F, with the likes of Ant Baker, Simon Bornhoft, Jim Collis, Jem Hall, Peter Hart and Dave White. Besides being demon windsurfers and brilliant coaches, they are all very approachable and all-round bloody good blokes!
This year, the coaching sessions will also run on Friday 7th September. The Friday clinics will be longer and may include forays on the water as well as the shore-based sessions. With no distraction from races, this gives you the best EVER opportunity to tickle up your technique with the top tutors!

Spirit FM Radio Road Show comes to NWF & NSUPF Sat 8th Sept 2012

We have just signed up Spirt FM Radio who will be coming to support the festival and having an onsite live road show on the Saturday PM

We have also booked an exciting band for the Fri night W4CR Charity Auction evening called Halflight.

Hopefully you are following the National Windsurfing Festival on FB, so you will know that there is an opportunity to win the latest NWF designed hoodie…. All you have to do is post a pic of you wearing your NWF rashie in a unique, unusual place and the winner each month will win a hoodie. Just ensure you tag me into the pic so I don’t miss it……… Talking of which have you seen the new hoodie? Two colours Green and purple and white and pink, we have sold the first batch within a week.

WHAT HAS THE N.W.F EVER DONE FOR US?

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I’ll give you a clue. It wasn’t Roman Roads, Roman Blinds or Roman Polanski.

We are the ordinary ‘Weekend Warrior’ Windsurfers and Saturday SUP-erstars. We are the Peoples’ Popular Front! (Or was it The Popular Peoples’ Front?) Whatever. We want to know;

“What has the N.W.F ever done for us?”

Well, it did bring us the biggest windsurfing and SUP festival in the UK, with events designed specifically around recreational sailors like you and I. And the biggest trade show in the industry, with all the latest gear on show and demo. And the opportunity to rub shoulders with the pro-riders you see in the magazines and even race alongside them. And a free rash vest for all participants. Fair enough, you might say. But other than that, what HAS the N.W.F ever done for us?

OK – there’s the incredible, floodlit Night Windsurfing. And the Master Blaster races with literally oodles of great prizes. Races for ladies and juniors. And don’t forget the classes for pre-2000 and pre-1985 long boards, Wind-SUPs and fancy dress, so literally everyone could take part, whatever their age, gender, kit or skill level. There were even taster sessions if you think “I would LOVE to give it a go…” – but have never tried SUP-ing or windsurfing before.

Oh – and the free coaching sessions. Of course there are the free coaching sessions. But not just with anyone. These are with the top windsurfing gurus, such as Peter Hart, Simon Bornhoft, Jim Collis, Jem Hall, Ant Baker and ‘The Mighty Whitey’ Dave White, all of whom are champion sailors in their own right.

And what about the parties? We don’t even need to mention the parties. Goes without saying, the parties…on the beach; live music; rocking into the night…

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So, apart from the biggest windsurfing / SUP festival AND trade show in the UK, races for everyone, free rash vest, hundreds of fabulous prizes, brand new kit to try out, taster sessions, the Night Windsurf, free coaching sessions with the best in the business, the sensational parties on the beach, live band – and this year it’s even bigger than ever; WHAT HAS THE N.W.F EVER DONE FOR US?!!!

Jackie Lambert

Watch this space to find out just how much bigger and better! Make sure that you don’t miss out on the greatest celebration of our sports in the UK. Put the dates in your diary and come along to find out what the N.W.F can do for YOU!

The National Windsurfing Festival runs from 7-9th September 2012 at Beachlands, Hayling Island, Hampshire. Parking is free.
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2012 NWF Entry begins 1st June 2012

This years entry and additional party tickets will go on sale from 1st June 2012.

NWF Trade show

The windsurfing/sup extravaganza of the year comes again to the shores of Hayling Island.

This year NWF and NSUPF is going to be bigger and better and will take place between 7-9 Sept 2012.

On Fri 7th will be a windsurfing trade to public day giving the opportunity to demo equipment and attend a series of industry presentations plus the option to join the on/off water clinics by our loyal supportive windsurfing gurus.

On the evening we will be hosting a charity auction night for W4CR plus entertainment. O no not another party I hear you cry…..

Anyway more info in due course, so get the dates in your diary and keep up with the regular updates on www.nationalwindsurfingfestival.com and also the NWF Facebook page….. What your not already a fan….. Tut tut your going to miss out with all the latest info…..

Check it out the awesome NWF hoodies on FB page with the opportunity to purchase or win one, plus our unique NWF designed mugs….. This year entry opens 1st June 2012.

The Inspiration behind the NWF

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Welcome to the first ever NWF blog which I intend to post on a fairly regular basis, but don’t worry – it won’t be just me posting as we have a few guest bloggers lined up too. However, as it’s the first one, I thought it was only right I started the ball rolling……… So what do you guys and gals want to hear about? I must admit the most popular question I get asked is, what was the inspiration behind the concept of the National Windsurfing Festival (NWF)…… Boy it seems like a long time ago now, well it is when you think it is now in its 7th year since its inaugural NWF kindly sponsored by Fat Face back in 2005 who supported the original concept of a windsurfing festival designed for the mass free-ride/intermediate sailor.

After competing for more years than I’d like to mention and throughly enjoying the feeling of attempting to sail faster than your mates , which lets face it, we all do, yeh like it or not its a form of racing………… So when I hear people say I don’t race, I say really!

I asked the seeking question- Why aren’t there more people enjoying the thrill of racing ? I realised that not everyone had race equipment never mind the latest go faster kit, Nor did people want to abide the complex race rules and timed start lines or indeed race numbers all over their sails……. What was wrong with their own free-ride kit irrespective of age as it was always been competitive on their local lakes, beaches etc and lets look and simplifying the rules….. e.g keep it simple…..

So it was obvious, a simple format “master blaster” beach start off the beach sail out to a mark attempt a gybe/swim and come back to the beach as fast as you can…………. Which If we were to admit, sums up about 80% of windsurfers who go by the name of the free-ride sailor…… And we incorporated a few additional categories to enable maximum participation for pre millennium equipment, pre 1985, fancy dress and even teams…… With the main emphasis on Fun for all…. So we really did want to change the normal concept and make the normal spectator into the competitor, but in a fun and friendly environment which caters for all abilities.

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So thats the format sorted, but what about the winning ingredient or the possible lack of it… Wind…… To be honest this was one of my first considerations, e.g. wet weather programme, or the what ifs, e.g. no wind…….. How many times have we got it wrong, the forecast that is and stranded on the shore line waiting for the wind. So we needed back ground activities, thats why we have the clinics from the UK’s finest guru’s on hand for all those tasty tips, plus the opportunity to ogle/touch and play with the latest newly released toys on exhibition each year…..

Then of course, no festival is the same without entertainment, not just on the water but off, so then the famous VIP party with the night windsurf was introduced….. The rest is history I suppose, with a total of 500 competitors attending last year taking part in the windsurf or sup festival and taster sessions.

But one of the most important ingredients is the team…. Thats right ,we are only as good as the team, and in this case its the whole windsurfing industry coming together to deliver the festival extravaganza of the year designed purely for you….

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However, the best aspect of the event without doubt is the atmosphere generated by the NWF community itself, yes the buy in from the UK free-ride community is staggering, everyone of them young and the old have become ambassadors of this event and witnessed its growth each year. If you haven’t entered to date you really don’t know what your missing, if you can sail in a straight line and turn round in a fashion then this is the event for you……

The peoples windsurfing event…. And yes its thats time again to spread the word, as I oil up the cogs once more in readiness for this years NWF and NSUPF. Which is a 3 day event Fri 7th – Sun 9th Sept 2012…….

Anyway, I wish you all a windy summer and see you all in Sept.

Al Cross