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Unregistered 31st August 2009 07:35 AM

Good windsurfer
 
What makes a good formula windsurfing racer?

Andreas T 31st August 2009 03:16 PM

1000 h of focused training on the water, preferably together with an equally focused training partner... It takes time to develop a good feeling for the trim of the equipment, to learn reading the wind and the water, and to gain tactical skills.

Ken 31st August 2009 11:49 PM

I agree with Andreas when racing in under 20-23 knots. I am an amateur, but have raced formula against several of the top racers in the world on a number of occasions. In 10 - 20 knots with identical equipment, they always manage to point a couple of degrees higher with more speed. Downwind, they run deeper with more speed. It takes time and practice to do what they do.

Learning to manage a formula board in 25-30+ knots is where the real challenge comes in. It takes boldness, and big ba##$ to push yourself to practice in windy, rough conditions. Running downwind in 30 knots of wind in 1 - 1.5 meter chop/waves can result in big time "slams" over the nose until you get comfortable. Be prepared to put some dings and dents in the front of your board until you get a lot of hours under your belt.

I am somewhat comfortable up 23-25 knots, but over 25, I now stay on the beach. I am an "old guy", but the younger sailors can push the limits and be a little more relaxed while doing it.

Del Carpenter 3rd September 2009 11:27 AM

Actually racing in competitive events is one of the keys for becoming better at any variety of racing. I'm sure Andreas and Ken would agree there are things about racing which can't be learned anywhere but on a race course during a race. And competing in races is one of the most fun things that can be done to become a better racer.

Leaving wind to find wind is generally not a good idea, but I've found leaving wind to find racers is almost always worthwhile.

Ken 3rd September 2009 08:55 PM

Del makes a good point. I have always been an advocate of racing, not only because I think it is fun and exciting, but you become a much better sailor if you race.

On a race course, you are frequently required to do things you would never do while free sailing. Your weak or non existing skills are quickly discovered, which in turn gives you the opportunity to become a better sailor and a better racer.


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