Monday, August 30, 2010

Malahide, County Dublin, Ireland Saturday 28th August 2010

On Saturday i headed up to Malahide just outside Dublin as my sponsor Wind & Wave was holding a fun day. I left Kerry early and got up to dublin around mid day and saw as i arrived that it was windy but first i had to have a chat with some of the speed sailors to sort out a few issues that have arisen with the Irish Speedsailing Series.

After that was all sorted out i checked out the conditions again and as it was around 12-14 knots gusting up to 18 knots i decided to use my Starboard I Sonic with 42cm Vector Maui Fins Canefire fin with my 7.3m KA Koncept and got changed and hit the water. As soon as i got out i realised the wind was very up and down and with the usual confused chop that Malahide gets it was hard to get any decent speed. It was also very hard to get going and i spent alot of time slogging around. It was my first time on the 7.3m and it feels alot lighter in the hands that the 08 Koncept's but doesn't feel as powerful which is due to the shorter boom i think. They also easier to lock in, in the gusts and when a gust hits you can feel the acceleration you gain from the gust.

I stayed out for a while until i started to get cramp in one of my calf's as i went to put my foot in the rear footstrap as i got pulled out of shape in a gust so headed in. When i got into the shore one of the lads noticed i had water in my aqua pack holding my GPS's and when i got them out of the pack i noticed one of them had water inside around the screen. I quickly put it over the heater to dry it out but it is still not switching on a few days later so it looks like it's fucked and i'll have to get a new one.

After this happened i have been given some advice from one of the guys on the seabreeze forums in Australia that they put the GPS's in zip lock bags and then put the bag inside a aqua pack and this saves the GPS's getting wet if the aqua pack fails. Wish i'd known that before but i'll definitely do that from now on. The thing that annoys me the most is that the instructions that come with the GT-31 state that the units are waterproof/water resistant to 1m if immersed in water when obviously they are not. If anyone uses the GT-31 with a aqua pack then use a zip lock bag as well to save the same thing from happening to you as for me that's £114 down the drain and i now have to buy a new GPS

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

2011 Starboard I Sonic Speed Boards

The details of the new Starboard I Sonic Speed Specials have just been released and they look amazing. Loving the minimal look with no paint. Hopefully i can get some money together to get a W58 to go with the W44 & W49 I Sonic Speeds i already own :-)

The new iSonic Speed Specials: designed and developed by Björn Dunkerbeck, Carlos Sosa, Remi Vila, Tiesda You. The R&D team took the opportunity of having a clean sheet to focus on new shapes and a new dedicated speed-specific construction.

Shapes: the shapes of the new W44, W49 and W53 are Björn's exact custom replicas shaped by Carlos Sosa. These have evolved the last season to include deep deck concaves, benefitting with added control and improved aerodynamics. The W58 maintains its 2010 shape as it remains the top choice for all-round medium and light wind speed runs.

Technology: an all-new Speed Technology was also developed: a pure carbon construction with carbon overlapping rail wraps for total stiffness and an ultra-light paintless finish.

"The W53 is a great contest board when it is flat. You can use 7.8 down to 6.2. It's easy, it has great control and it is very, very fast. The W49 is good from 7.0 to 5.6. Faster and just as easy with the same levels of control. The W44 is the most fun to ride but it needs the most wind. Use it with sails 6.2 and down to 5.1. These boards have been developed over years and they are the fastest boards I got to date. Carlos Sosa and I have been working on speed boards together since 1986 and with great results. Try them out and windsurf faster than ever. Enjoy your speed sailing." Björn

iSonic Speed Special W44

Sails: 5.1 to 6.2
Ultra Flat water: 20cm fin
Flat water: 22cm fin
All-round conditions: 24cm fin
Choppy / light wind: 26cm fin

iSonic Speed Special W49

Sails: 5.6 to 7.0
Ultra Flat water: 22cm fin
Flat water: 24cm fin
All-round conditions: 26cm fin
Choppy / light wind: 28cm fin

iSonic Speed Special W53

Sails: 6.2 to 7.8
Ultra Flat water: 26cm fin
Flat water: 28cm fin
All-round conditions: 30cm fin
Choppy / light wind: 32cm fin

iSonic Speed Special W58

Sails: 5.8 to 8.0+
Ultra Flat water: 28cm fin
Flat water: 30cm fin
All-round conditions: 32cm fin
Choppy / light wind: 34cm fin


  1. 1) No-paint finish on the deck and rails - for minimum weight

  2. 2) Very deep deck concave - increases control, closes the gap between sail and deck

  3. 3) Fish scale pad grooving - unidirectional traction. Grips when you need them to, helps to release when you don't.

  4. 4) Minimal pads = minimal weight

  5. 5) New Slick Straps by Drake - includes the convenient strap-size indicators.

Fenit, County Kerry, Ireland 23rd August 2010

Finally the wind came back :-))

I only had time for a quick session so i decided to head over to Fenit to coincide with the High Tide so i could sail in the estuary. On arriving it was looking windy, about 20 knots gusting up to 26 so i decided i would use my Starboard I Sonic 86 but as i was putting a fin in i managed to break the head of my screwdriver in the process damaging the head of the fin bolt. All the screw drivers i had left were smaller so i damaged the head even more trying to get the bolt out so as i couldn't get the fin attached to the board properly i decided to use my Starboard I Sonic 111 with 38cm Vector Maui Fins ZX fin and 6.4m KA Koncept.

As soon as i got on the water it became apparent that the windy was very gusty while massive holes and i was absolutely stacked in the gusts but at least it was windy. I spent the next hour having a great time realising how much i missed full power slalom sailing but the main drawback of the lack of wind is my sailing fitness has suffered so will have to work on the now as my forearm muscles were cramping up. The lightwind sailing helps with the fitness but nothing can simulate the work out your forearms get when sailing overpowered.

One thing i have realized about this location as i haven't sailed here much is the windier it gets the chopper it gets and wish i could have used my Starboard I Sonic 86 as the I Sonic 111 was a bit too big in the chop and gusts

All in all though it was great to see the wind back and to be sunny at the same time was awsome and i hope there is more sessions like this in the coming weeks

Monday, August 23, 2010

Sandy Bay, Castlegregory, County Kerry, Ireland 21st August 2010

The forcast was for light winds in the morning with the wind increasing in the afternoon so i decided to head over to Castlegregory to meet some friends and get back out on the Phantom to continue getting used to the board.

When i arrived at Sandy Bay it was raining and hardly any wind so i went up to Jamie Knox's shop to chill out for a while and wait and see what the wind would do. Not to soon afterwards the rain stopped and the sun came out with wind starting to pick up to about 8 knots so i headed back to Sandy Bay and rigged up my KA Race 9.0m and got the Starboard Phantom 380 ready, got changed and hit the water.

The wind was very gusty with massive holes in the wind but i still managed to get in to the back straps a few times and for about 10-20 minutes the wind picked up to about 12 knots and i managed a peak speed of 22.23 Knots which has incresed my personal best max speed on the board a little

I stayed out a bit longer until the wind started to drop so headed in but happy to get a session in a bit more wind to work on getting used to the board for my next UKWA event. The rest of the week is looking good for wind so fingers crossed the wind drought has ended and i can now get out on the smaller kit again.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

2011 Starboard I Sonics

The new 2011 Starboard I Sonics have just been released. The new boards look awsome, definitely gonna have to save some money to get a new I Sonic 137 to replace my I Sonic 144 and possibly a I Sonic 87 to replace my I Sonic 86

Since its introduction in 2006, each successive iSonic range brought with it two or three new upgrades, four at most. From 2010 to 2011 however, the latest iSonics boast no less than six upgrades over their predecessors.

This big jump was made possible by a new internal R&D methodology that allowed the team to start their research at an earlier stage than before. Remi Vila, new head of racing development at Starboard, partnered with Cyril Moussilmani, Bjorn Dunkerbeck, Kevin Pritchard and Jimmy Diaz to kick-start the 2011 cycle with a strong influx of fresh energy and new ideas very early in the season. Add to this extended R&D time the experience of Tiesda You, Svein Rasmussen and Jim Drake, and the 2011 iSonics are born.

UPGRADE ONE: Harder rail edges in the tail
With harder rails, the board releases from the water cleaner and quicker: this increases top speed, enables quicker acceleration in gusts, improves earlier planing and improves the board's ability to maintain top speed in lulls. On sizes 80, 87, 90, 97, 107, 117, 117 Wide, 127 and 137, the planning surface is also wider and shorter than previously (higher aspect ratio planing surface): this improves bottom-end efficiency. With a harder release edge, the iSonics also gain more jibing power: the rails have the ability to store more energy as the racer enters a jibe that, a fraction of a second later, releases into more exit-speed.

UPGRADE TWO: Very Deep Deck Concaves
The 2011 iSonics have VERY deep deck concaves. By going so deep, the level of control is maximized. The pivot point between sail and board is kept as low as possible. The centre of gravity of the board is also lowered further to minimize undesired swing weight. These very deep deck concaves also break the aerodynamic suction effect that often lifts the nose out of control in high winds. Last but not least, the gap between the sail and deck is eliminated and the mast track can be moved back to improve top end speed without compromising control (mast tracks have been moved back 1.5cm in the 90, 97, 107, 117, 117 Wide, 127, 137 models). Note the very deep deck concaves require the boom to be set about 2 to 4cm higher than your normal setting.

UPGRADE THREE: Individual cutaway trimming
The planing surface tabs directly behind the back heel were individually tuned to carefully adjust the ride and trim of select iSonic models (97, 107, 117, 117 Wide, 127, 137). This individual tuning minimizes skin friction between board and water for more top end potential, increases the liveliness of the board and boosts acceleration, without breaching the limits of control if conditions get rougher.

UPGRADE FOUR: Paintless finish
Paint is eliminated from the deck and rails of the board to minimize weight of the iSonic WoodCarbon and Carbon models. A grey pigment is used instead, that provides UV protection and adds a textured finishing effect. Pad sizes were also minimized in a chase to eliminate every unnecessary gram of weight.

UPGRADE FIVE: Snug Strap Positioning
All the front footstrap plugs were narrowed down to have an aperture of 14.5cm, which is narrower than usual. The angle of the front strap was also turned to sit more square to the length-axis of the board. These two tweaks combine to give a very snug fit to the front foot, allowing the rider to adjust pitch and roll more effectively as the board reaches top speed.

UPGRADE SIX: new 80 concept and new 117 Wide concept
Two all new concepts are added to the iSonic collection. The iSonic 117 Wide is 80.5cm wide, filling a much needed niche between the 75cm and 85cm models. Based closely on the 85cm model, the 117 Wide has the lowest thickness-to-volume ratio, giving it a massive wind range. This ultra-slim shape is a clear new favourite and the board we most recommend as an upgrade to any slalom quiver. The iSonic 80 is a slimmer version of the iSonic 87, but this year the rail shapes were also thinned down. This improves high-wind control and further reduces bounce when jibing in choppy conditions. The new high-wind reference for light and medium weight racers.


All iSonics are available in Wood Technology. Wood offers the best ratio between light weight, comfort, control and stiffness. Ideal for all-round performance in all conditions, especially high wind.

The iSonic 90, 97 and 107 are available also in WoodCarbon that are lighter and stiffer for racers who want more bottom-end acceleration and sharper sensations. Ideal for medium wind conditions.

The iSonic 117, 117 Wide, 127 and 137 are available also in Carbon. Carbon Technology is Starboard's lightest and stiffest option, with the highest levels of bottom-end acceleration and the sharpest sensations: ideal for the medium to lightwind conditions. For more details on the constructions, see the Technology page.

  1. No-paint finish on the deck and rails of all WoodCarbon and Carbon models - for minimum weight

  2. Harder rail edges in the tail - more speed, acceleration and jibing power

  3. Individually trimmed planing surface tabs (97, 107, 117, 117 Wide, 127, 137)

  4. Snug Strap positioning - more effective pitch and roll control

  5. Reduced amount of strap inserts - saves weight

  6. Very deep deck concave - increases control, closes the gap between sail and deck

  7. Fish scale pad grooving - unidirectional traction. Grips when you need them to, helps to release when you don't.

  8. Minimal pads = minimal weight

  9. New Slick Straps by Drake - includes the convenient strap-size indicators.

  10. Upgrading from an older model?

    Here's our recommended comparison between older versions of the iSonics and the newest edition:

    • iSonic 86 Slim - iSonic 80
    • iSonic 86 - iSonic 87
    • iSonic 94 - iSonic 90
    • iSonic 101 - iSonic 97
    • iSonic 111 - iSonic 107
    • iSonic 121 - iSonic 117 or iSonic 117 Wide
    • iSonic 131 - iSonic 117 Wide or iSonic 127
    • iSonic 144 - iSonic 137
    • iSonic 150 - Ultrasonic 147 (coming soon)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Wind & Wave Fun Day, Malahide,Co Dublin, Ireland

Next weekend on Saturday 28th August my sponsor Wind and Wave based in Malahide, County Dublin, Ireland is going to be holding a End Of Summer Fun Day & BBQ at Malahide Estuary.

In addition to the sailing and windsurfing sessions detailed below there will be full use of the Kayak's, Windsurfing Gear, Sup's and Sailing Boats throughout the day to whoever wants to give it a go.

The Center, Facilities & Gear at Wind & Wave will be available for anyone to use throughout the day all for a cover charge of just 5 Euro per person for the full day.

Now isn't that a cheap fun way to end your summer!!!

The plan for the day is as follows:-

Kick off on Saturday 28th at 10am

3 Sailing & 3 Windsurfing Sessions will be run throughout the day with fully qualified instructors providing tuition and coaching for every session.

Session Times:-

10.30am to 12.00pm
12.30pm to 2.00pm
2.30pm to 4.00pm

For windsurfing there will be a max of 7 people per class & Sailing has a max of 10 people so put your name down early to ensure your place is secure. Simply email or call 01 8451979 to book your spot.

All Kayak's and Sup's will be available throughout the day so it's a great opportunity to come down with the family and give it a go.

Then at 4.30pm the day will be finished with a fun race for all so all Windsurfers, Sailors, Kayakers and Sup's will race against each other in the Grand Finale!!!

The BBQ & Tuck Shop will be open all day on the deck to keep everyone fed & warmed up after your session on the water.

Everything will finish up at 5pm.

It will be a great day on the water so i hope to see you all there

The address for Wind & Wave is:-

Wind & Wave,
Fingal Sailing School,
Bissetts Strand,
Co Dublin.

Tel (00353)1 8451979

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Bantry, County Cork, Ireland Saturday 14th August 2010

On Saturday i went over to Bantry, County Cork where the latest round of the Irish Slalom Series was being held. I got there a 9am to see there wasn't alot of wind. I decided to rig up my 9.0m KA Race and get my Starboard Phantom ready as the forcast for the day was for light winds from the North West. I had a few things that needed to sort out with my kit so when the fun races started i lent my Starboard Phantom to Steve Flannagan and my Lorch Formula Board to my KA Sails team mate Daniel Macaulay and Steve dominated all the races with Daniel not to far behind in 3rd place.

Just after lunch i decided to head out into Bantry Bay and have a cruise around. It was hard going in the strong current as i was heading upwind past Widdy Island and as i was getting near to rounding it the wind started to die off and as i would be out of the line of sight of the rescue crews and the possibility of getting stuck the other side if the wind dropped altogether i decided to head back to the event site.

I had a great time on the water and the more i sail the Phantom the more i like it. Also the scenery around the bay is stunning and if you ever get the chance to visit this part of Ireland do so as you will not regret that you came here.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Blithfield Reservoir, England Saturday 7th August 2010

I was across in the UK on the 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th of August to collect some motorbikes for my sponsor MCPM and i had also arranged to coillect my new longboard, a Starboard Phantom 380 Race. As i had Saturday daytime free i met up with Jon White, a top UKWA raceboard sailor to test out my new Phantom at Blithfield Reservoir, Staffordshire, England. When i arrived there wasn't alot of wind so i checked out Jon's new custom SD Race Sail that he was rigging up and soon the wind started picking up to about 6-7 knots so i got changed, rigged my 9.0m KA Race and headed out on the water.

My first impressions of the board was everything was so much easier to do and my 9.0m KA Race suited the board alot more than than my old raceboards which i was happy with. After a while the wind picked up for about 5 minutes to about 12-14 knots where i was able to get in the back straps and managed a peak speed of 21.24 knots which considering i was underpowered on my 9.0m wasn't too bad so i reckon i can get the board close to 30 knots in some decent wind.

After the wind dropped i stayed out for a bit longer but the wind was dropping right off so i headed in and hung around for a while to see what the wind was doing. The wind didn't pick up again so i packed up as i had a 150 mile drive to where i was collecting the next motorbike.

I am very happy i now have the Starboard Phantom 380 and now in the UKWA events i have a board i compete successfully on and i cant wait for the event in Farmoor, Oxford on September 4th and 5th

Thursday, August 12, 2010

2011 KA Koncept and KA Koyote

Just seen a sneek peek of the new 2011 KA Koncept and KA Koyote on the KA Sails website. They look awsome, loving the black and white colour scheme on the Koncept and can't wait to get my hands on them to try them out. Checkout the pictures below. As always if you are located in Ireland contact me if you want to try any of the sail ranges out. I have the KA Kaos, Kult, Race and Koncept available for demo

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

2011 KA Kult and Kaos

Just seen a sneek peek of the new 2011 KA Kult and KA Kaos on the KA Sails website. They look awsome, can't wait to get my hands on them to try them out. Checkout the pictures below and hopefully it wont be long until we see what the other sail ranges look like. As always if you are located in Ireland contact me if you want to try any of the sail ranges out. I have the KA Kaos, Kult, Race and Koncept available for demo

August Issue Of Windsurfer International

Checkout the latest issue of Windsurfer International

2011 Starboard Quad IQ Fin Set Up

Just found this quick video that explains the different fin settings on the Starboard Quad

Philip Koster G-44 Double Forward Loop PWA Ferteventura 2010

Just found this on You Tube. Awsome

Monday, August 2, 2010

New Starboard Phantom and Now I Have Got My New Raceboard My 2 Old Longboards Are Now For Sale

I've managed to get myself a new Starboard Phantom Race 380 for a great price and i collect it this weekend.

As i now have the new raceboard my other 2 longboards are now for sale. They are:-

F2 lightning World Cup Edition (Comes with Boardbag, Carbon Daggerboard and Fin)
F2 380 Race (Comes with Wooden Daggerboard and Fin)

Let me know if you are interested in either of these boards. You can find further details and pictures of the boards here:-