Sunday, April 29, 2012

UKWA Inlands Round 1 & MWA Round 2, Pitsford Reservoir, UK April 21st & 22nd 2012

Last weekend was the first round of the UKWA Inlands and also the second round of the Midland Windsurfing Association Race Series. I finished work on Friday afternoon at my usual time time of 12.15 and went home, got a quick shower, packed the van and got on the road. As with most of the UKWA National and Regional events Pitsford is close to Birmingham where i am now based and is only 45 miles away so only took me around an hour to get there and i arrived at 4pm. As i was one of the first competitors to arrive i got a great spot to get parked and got my gear sorted out. As i didn't get a chance to put sail numbers on my new 8.5m KA Koncept that was my first task and once that was done i rigged up my 10.5m Raceboard Sail and 9.5m KA Koncept as the forecast was not showing winds above 15 knots all weekend and fitted a 50cm Vector Maui Fins Canefire fin to my Starboard Phantom 380 Race. Around 7pm i headed into Brixworth, the local village next to the reservoir to get some food and found a great pub called the George where i had some good food and after a couple of beers headed back to my van to get a decent nights sleep ahead of the weekends racing.

I awoke early on the Saturday morning to see there was a little bit of wind, around 5-6 knots so i went a registered and got some breakfast and at 10am we were called out on the water for the first race. The wind was pretty gusty and shifty as is usually the case here which made for some great racing in the 2 races we had before lunch and i was finding i was usually in the wrong place at the wrong time when the shifts were coming through which was annoying but it was the same for everyone else. After lunch we were called back onto the water for another race which was held in similar conditions but i was beginning to read the shifts a bit better and made up some places but i made the worst mistake you can when racing by missing the gate i had to sail through before the finish which meant all the hard work i put in during this race was undone and instead of moving up a couple of places in the overall rankings i had to count this as my first disguard of the events. Soon after the finish the wind dropped right off and the race officer made the call to postpone racing for the time being and once i made it back to the shore i saw my sail was ripped and when the call was made to go back on the water and this was the sail i needed i had to unfortunately miss the 4th race. I was disappointed with this but that's racing sometimes and you have to accept these things happen.

On Sunday morning we woke to see not much wind, around 5 knots like the previous day but with wind forecasted to pick up i waited until the last minute to see which sail i would need. My 10.5m was now available again as i had the chance to fix it once the sail had dried but at the last second before hitting the water for the 5th race at 10am i grabbed my 9.5m KA Koncept instead which turned out to be a good decision as not long after the wind started gusting up to 15 knots which now made the racing interesting and my weight was not now so much of a disadvantage when the wind was up but in the lulls i was finding that i was loosing ground but i still got some better results than the previous day in the 4 races that were held before the race officer called it a day.

I finished 17th Overall, 5th Master and 1st overall in the Raceboard Unlimited Fleet (UKWA Inland Ranking) and 8th Overall, 3rd Master and 1st Overall Raceboard Unlimited Fleet (Midlands Windsurfing Association Series Ranking) which i am a little disappointed with as i know i can do better but hopefully a future events i wont make stupid mistakes or have any damage to my gear. The next event now is the UKWA Inlands Round 2 at Bewl in May so i'll hope to see some of you there

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