Sunday, September 19, 2010

There's no going back

The RS:X Olympic Windsurfing One Design Class was started in 2005. Since then, Neil Pryde (the company) has built 3,000 boards. Very busy for the first couple of years, production has now leveled off to 200 - 300 boards per year. They are currently working on a new one design class, conceived as an intermediate stepping stone to the RS:X. Prototypes of this new RS One Class are already being tested. Full on production is expected to start in a month. This new feeder class board will be  lighter, simpler and cheaper than the RS:X.

After the 2012 Olympics Neil Pryde will submit, to the ISAF and the RS:X Class, a new improved version of the RS:X which will weigh 3 kilos less: a 20% reduction in weight. Ex Olympic sailor, Mr.Neil Pryde, explains all of this and more in the video below.

On the left is the new updated  RS:X  board that will be submitted  for use at the 2016 Olympics.  

With the completion of the 2010 RS:X Worlds, all focus is now on Perth, Australia and the 2011 ISAF World Championship. The first hurdle is getting your country qualified for the Olympics. Windsurfing is allowed 38 countries for the men and 28 countries for the women. At Perth, countries will qualify for 75% of the allotments for the 2012 Olympics.  The top 28 countries for the men and the top 20 for the women will win Olympic berths. The rest of the country slots will be won at the 2012 RS:X Worlds on the Bay of Cadiz, Spain only months before the Olympics. The top country finishers, that haven't already qualified at Perth, will win the remaining Olympic berths. Only the countries that qualify at these 2 events go to the Olympics.

Klitmoller in reviewWave sailing revealed... It finally happened: the historic, first ever, live video webcast of a PWA event; beginning to end, nonstop coverage of a wave sailing contest. And...and it was supremely amazing. The video quality was over the moon outstanding. The actual video player gadget was extra large so no squint eye syndrome. In fact the only eye problem may have been square eyes caused by staring at a computer screen too long. Was there anything to improve? Sure. I like listening to Roberto Hoffman, hour after hour, but where's the second or third announcer for some variety; no instant replay; more cameras...but what the hell, overall, no complaints, only praise. Am I gushing? After all, it was the first ever...

The week of the event, my mornings started with a trip to Denmark while trying to get DaNews delivered. If you didn't watch it live, then you have a real delimma: there are hours and hours of recorded replay.  The hard part is figuring out what to watch.  More than 100,000 visited the Cold Hawaii live feed website. Congratulations to both Stream Factory who produced (camera work) and delivered the broadcast and  platform provider, Bambuser who made it possible to see the event on our computers.

For the last couple of years, I've seen almost every PWA daily highlights video. These best moments of an event led me to believe that the entire day was nonstop perfection. Point the camera and everything is going to look great. But guess what? In the real world, on the real day of an event, real things happen. My wave sailing heroes make mistakes just like you and me. What a relief, we have something in common. Don't get me wrong, there are still plenty of amazing moments, lots of them.  Watch the replays and you will see yourself out there at Klitmoller, probably going over the handlebars trying to do a quick tack.

Treat yourself to the jumbo viewer or just go full screen on the player below. Bottom right corner of the player is the More button which links you up to the replay library.

This post, I broke one of my rules tonight,  from Drysuit2 is a moving remembrance of the Twin Towers tragedy.

"And I thought…Sailing alone at dusk is dangerous. But not nearly as dangerous as continuing to work across the street from the former World Trade Center after 911. I’m sure people who saw me from shore might have thought, “what is that guy doing, sailing out there all by himself, in the rain?”, “that’s crazy”. No. I think watching the progress at Ground Zero from my office window…that was crazy...Breathing air that’s not safe, when your Government tells you it is; that’s crazy..."

It's an amazing moment when you get to share your sesh with a dolphin. The first sightings start at the 1:50 minute mark. This and other videos are found on the Learners guide to windsurfing

Postcript  Josh Sampiero has invited this blog to the WINDSURFING website. I'll still be posting here and at all the other regular spots.  

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