Friday, May 29, 2009

New Sponsor

I am very pleased to announce i have been offered a deal with Pro Motion Wetsuits. You can check out the range of wetsuits here:-

Pro Motion are based in in Hood River, Oregon, USA. Besides being a top windsurfing and kiteboarding destination, the "Gorge" has proven to be an unbeatable location to design and test wetsuits. Temperatures range from below freezing in the winter, to above 100 degrees in the summer, giving ProMotion the opportunity to test and refine every product in their line. From cold water steamers all the way down to sun protecting rash-guards, it all has to pass the "Gorge" test before it ends up on the sales floor. One of the main features of the windsurfing wetsuits they make is the No Fatigue Forearm - Forearms are cut oversized, then taper down to a snug fit at the wrists to prevent wetsuit fatigue while keeping water out. Keeps you on the water longer.

I am stoked to have the oportunity to use and promote these wetuits and once i have recieved my new wetsuits my old wetsuits will be for sale so keep checking back to see if they are available

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Speedsailing Spots In Kerry

Well i got the news this week that i am being made redundant at work so i am moving back down to my Dads house near Tralee in County kerry next month. It's been on the cards for a while now so really wasn't a suprise. On the plus side though as i will probably be out of work for a while i will get loads of time to go windsurfing so hopefully there will be decent wind over the next few months. Whenever i am down there all my sailing has been done in and around Brandon bay so i have been checking Google Maps and i reckon i have found a couple of potential speedsailing spots not too far from where i will be living. The first is just South of Ballybunion at an entrance to a river here

And the other one is by a village called Barrow just North of Fenit here

Both i think look promising but i will have to check them out and see what they are like at low tide and check how deep the water is as i don't want to run aground at speed. I will still travel over to Dungarven on a decent forcast but hopefully i have got a couple of spots on my doorstep as this area of Kerry in winter gets very windy in the winter.

I have just got some KA Kaos wave sails (5.3m, 4.7m and 4.2m) aswell to go with the 5.7m KA Kaos i already have so i am going to finally learn how to wavesail as this is one of the best locations in the world for wavesailing

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Irish Speed Sailing Championships - Current Ranking

The current Irish Rankings have just been released and i am currently lying in 5th spot with 175.24 points. Just got to try and improve on that now and see if i can move up some spots before the end of the year. You can check out the full rankings below

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

New Speed Fins

I just got my new 20cm and 23cm KA Assymetric Fins from the European Importer

Cant wait to get enough wind to try them out on my speedboard and hopefully crack 40 knots

Burrow Beach Tuesday 12th May 2009

Myself and Steve went back to Burrow Beach after our epic session yesterday hoping for more of the same and Barry Whitelaw came along to check out the location. It had forcasted 20 knots today but when we got there it was only blowing 12-16knots.

I decided to use my Lorch Thunderbird 110 with 36cm Vector Maui Rockit Fin and 7.5m KA Koncept and after yesterday rigging took a bit longer as i was aching all over but i was the first on the water. I managed to get a decent gust at the start of the course, bore off and clocked 29.52 knots on my first run. Unfortunatly the wind dropped after that so i didn't get any more decent runs. The course was very broad today, about 130 to 140 degrees and i could get going but once i bore off to go down the course i was well underpowered and couldn't keep the board going.

I stuck around for the next 3 hours hoping the wind would pick back up but it never happened and as Steve had clocked just over 28 knots i finished the day with the fastest speed, just wish it had been windier cause most of the time i was slogging along off the plane.

Looking at the forcast for the week Friday might have enough wind for a dawn session here so if theres is wind i'll head there straight from night shift and try to improve my Irish GPS Ranking

Monday, May 11, 2009

Burrow Beach Monday 11th May 2009

I'm just back in the house an hour after an epic session at Burrow Beach in Dublin. Last year a couple of local lads posted 40 knots here and we have been waiting for the chance to try the spot out. It only works in a North to North Easterly which is a wind direction that is pretty rare but today we got the chance to finally get on the water here.

Myself, John Kenny (JK), Steve Flannagan and Lewis and Ryan all arrived late afternoon to coincide with low tide that exposes a sand bank and in this wind direction provides a broad course. It was blowing 16-22 knots East to North East, sunny and warm which was a suprise considering the easterly winds. I decided on my Lorch Thunderbird 110 with Vector Maui Fins 30cm EX Speed and my KA Koncept 6.6m because it was not quite windy enough for my speedboard and hit the water. Straight away we were posting 30 knot runs and the water was getting flatter with the dropping tide. Just as the tide got to it's lowest point it was less than knee depth and getting dangerous so we came in for an hour to let the tide come in a bit so the water was deeper. We then all went back on the water for another couple of hours and started to get faster speeds, some of which were posted when it was dark. We finally came of the water after 10pm in the dark, with everyone with big smiles on their faces in what was an awsome session on the water. I managed a 32.42 Knot Max Speed and increased my Personal Best speeds for the year so am very stoked with my session today. Check out my session on Gps-Speedsurfing here

Forcast looks good for tommorow afternoon again so we will be heading back, hopefully getting the speedboards out of the bags and getting bigger speeds. Big Thanks to JK for spending some time taking some photo's today, cheers mate. Speedsailing rocks :-)))))))

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Malahide Saturday 9th May 2009

I had been working night shift for the past 3 days and it was torture going to work at 4pm when it was sunny and windy out so as Saturday Night was my last shift of the week i arranged to go in at 7pm so it freed up a couple of hours in the afternoon so i could get on the water. I'm so glad i did because it was another great day, sunny and windy 12-18 knots but very gusty. Typical Malahide wind really.

Steve had just got his new North Warp 9.0m so wanted to use that but i decided to use my Lorch Thunderbird 75 with 42cm Vector Maui Fins Canefire fin and 7.5m Koncept hoping it would be enough for the lulls. Once i got on the water the 7.5 was perfect in the gusts but not enough in the lulls but was having great fun anyway. Managed to get a 27.4 knot max on this combo. After a couple of hours i was knackered so packed up as i had to go to work but i reckon i will be do this alot more when i am on nights to take advantage of a good forcast.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Irish Speed Nationals 2008

Just found this video from the Irish Speed Nationals, October 2008 in Dungarven. Enjoy

Dungarvan Speed Clips from Surfdock Watersports on Vimeo.

A montage of speed runs shot at the Irish National Speed Champs, at the Dungarvan Speed Strip, November 2008.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Malahide Tuesday 5th May 2009

I had a few things i needed to get done today so it was late afternoon before i could get to Malahide to go windsurfing. The wind was from the West but the Malahide side didn't look to great so i headed across to Kilcrea and on arriving it was looking windy. I was about to rig my 5.8m Koncept but Andy Radley told me he was overpowered on his 4.5 so i decided to rig my 5.0m Koncept with Lorch 64 with 30cm Vector Maui Fins EX Speed as i wanted to have the extra volume because there was big holes in the wind and it was very gusty. On my first run out i was glad i rigged the 5.0m Koncept as a big squall came through and i was overpowered. I spent the day going deep of the wind trying to get a 30 knot max for the first time here at Malahide and on a couple of runs heard the overspeed alarm i had set at 30 knots go off that i had set on my GPS so i am stoked to have achieved 30 knots here at Malahide. Now got to try and improve that at get a bigger max speed and an average of over 30 knots so thats my goal from now on.

On one of the runs though i had a big crash where thankfully i didn't hurt myself but cant say the same for my boom. As i am upgrading my booms after getting my sponsorship deal with Chinook i only have a small alloy boom for my 5.0m Koncpet so was using this today but managed to bend it out of shape in the crash. Guess i will be using carbon booms in this size from now on. Another great day on the water and hoping for more the same in the coming weeks.

Fleadh Sheoil 2nd to 4th May 2009

We all spent the last bank holiday weekend at the annual Fleadh Sheoil windsurfing festival at Malahide in Dublin and everyone had a great time. As KA Sails are my sail sponsor i organised for Peter Weitenberg, the new European importer to come over to demo the new 2009 sail range. On the first day there was glorious sunshine which ensured alot of people got sunburnt,(including myself) and light winds so big sails and Sups were the order of the day. The big sails Peter brought over to demo were very popular and the big range of Sups John Kenny brought made sure evryone had a chance to get wet and have a great time.
On Sunday it was an early start as i was involved in the Sunrise Sunset charity event so i was at the beach at sunrise to take pictures of Steve Flannagan hitting the water. The photos are here:-
If you want to take a look. I was only going to sail part of the day so it was great that Steve hit the water at dawn and then proceded to sail almost non stop for the next 16 hours until sunset in what was an amazing achievement. Congratulations steve.
I myself got out my old F2 World Cup Lightning and got on the water at 10 for a couple of hours and rediscovered my love for sailing longboards after not setting foot on one for 15 years. It took me a while to get used to it again but loved every minute. I came in at 12 for a break at to make the footstraps bigger as i couldn't get into them. I went back out but as i was beachstarting the UJ broke (it was 15 years old aswell) and didn't have a spare so couldn't sail the long board any more and was a bit dissapointed as i was enjoying it.
In the afternoon i got out on my Lorch 75 with 42cm Vector Maui Fins Canefire and 7.5m koncept and had a great time blasting around for a couple of hours in the sunshine. All throughout the day there was so many people on the water and it was great to see all the happy faces after a great days windsurfing. Once the day was over i and a few of the lads waited for Steve to come of the water to congratulate him with a cold bottle of beer and to help him off the water.
On monday the wind picked up more so i got on the water with my Lorch 64 with 38cm ZX Vector Maui Fins and 6.6m Koncept and had a crack at getting over 30 knots on the GPS. At times i was massivly overpowered and my crash last month was on my mind but i went for it and managed a 29.52 max in the steep messy chop. So close to 30 but still happy and came of the water with aching muscles after a great few days on the water.
Big thanks got to Alison Beirne and all the students who organised a great event and i cannot wait for the next one next year. Thanks also to Peter Weitenberg for coming over from Holland with the 2009 KA Sails, Oisin and Alan from Surfdock for the JP, Loft and Neil Pryde demo gear and Mikey and JK for the Starboard and Servernne demo gear and also the Sups for people to try. All these guys made the weekend a great success