National Watersports Festival: 5th - 7th September

Would you believe it’s that time of year again? When you can rub shoulders with Olympians and watch multiple World Champions in action – even race alongside them - at UK’s home of windsurfing!

The National Watersports Festival, the NWF, the biggest multi-disciplinary watersports festival in the UK, is back at Hayling Island on the 5th, 6th and 7th September 2014. As ever, all the latest 2015 equipment from Starboard and Severne will be on view and available to demo alongside other suppliers, with team riders on hand to offer advice, support and free tuition clinics GUARANTEED to make you improve!

© John Carter

After 8 successful years, NWF in 2014 is bigger and better than ever, seamlessly blending the complementary sports of standup paddle boarding, kayaking, kitesurfing and, of course, windsurfing into one exciting annual beachfront festival. Free for spectators and with plenty of activities both on and off the water, the NWF offers something for everyone. NWF is all about ordinary people getting involved; taking part in fun races, trying a new sport or learning tips from the top. Better yet, NWF is based around the Inn on the Beach, a fantastic, beachfront pub with outstanding views across the Solent!

If you want to try any of the NWF sports for the first time, taster sessions can be booked in advance. Free land and water-based coaching and race tips are offered by the top, professional coaches, most of whom honed their skills as British and World Champions. The odd Olympian drops by like Bryony Shaw (Bronze in Beijing), Nick Dempsey (Silver in London 2012) and Tushingham’s own Dave Hackford, Britain’s first ever Olympic windsurfer (L.A. 1984).

If all the on and off-water activities haven’t tired you out, there are two, massive beach parties, on Friday and Saturday nights, with live music and on Friday, a charity auction for W4CR (Watersports for Cancer Research) where you can snap up a bargain for a good cause.

New for 2014 is an amateur windsurfing slalom competition on the Friday, with the winners going forward to fun races against the slalom professionals of today and yesteryear. The lucky winner will gain the bragging rights to racing alongside the likes of former Olympian Dave Hackford and our esteemed team rider and celebrated guru, Peter Hart, plus 2 x World Formula Champion Ross Williams and UK National Slalom Champion, Severne & Starboard rider James Dinsmore.

The NWF signature event is the completely unique Night Watersports event, where the professionals race or perform exciting freestyle stunts under the floodlights. Last year saw Starboard & Severne team rider Phil Richards, among others, pulling jaw-dropping moves just inches from an enthralled crowd on the shore. The night event is expanding in 2014 to both Friday and Saturday nights, and for the first time in 2014, will include a spectacular kite-park event, incorporating ramps and sliders. You really don’t want to miss this!

Enter online and pretty much EVERYTHING is included – entry into all races, with a chance to win fabulous prizes, free camping throughout the Festival, tickets to both beach parties and night events (on Friday and Saturday nights) and all other water-based and onshore activities. Tickets to the parties can be purchased separately.

For further information, head over to the National Watersports Festival website or follow NWF on Facebook.

And if you really can't make it this year, catch all the NWF action STREAMED LIVE on NWF Live!