On the 20th of October, the Imperial windsurfing Team adventured to the confined lands of Devon to participate in the biggest Student Windsurfing Festival of the year: the Student Windsurfing Association’s Aussie Kiss!
Everything looked perfect – 360 windsurfers from all over the UK were about and ready to go. But it wasn’t until we got there on Friday night that we realised just how muddy and windy it was – a classic British camping weekend. But the big party tent was ready and so were we! The night was starting to get energized and the team were enjoying themselves, but it was an early-ish bedtime as the forecast for the weekend was BIG.
Saturday morning, we rigged up the kit up and donned our wetsuits. The wind was howling and gusting at 40 knots, with the forecast only set to get worse. Everyone was hyped, and suitably scared for their lives, but the team went out and had some fun in a rather windy lake. We could see windsurf freestylers spinning and turning and landing moves, miraculously keeping their feet on the board. Unfortunately, the tents were not doing so great in Storm Brian and half the team were preparing to sleep in the minibus. This was not going to stop us – we came here to windsurf!
The day ended without casualties and with big smiles on very tired faces as we headed to the local pub to dry up a bit. We knew it was going to be a rough night on the campsite with many tents blown down. But after drying up we were ready to get on the fancy dress and head to the main party tent. This year the theme was Sweet 16: Spoiled Rotten. The team always likes to be noticed and certain (male) members looked dashing in some dresses! We celebrated and partied like there was no tomorrow, happily in denial that Sunday existed.
Come the last day, competition time. The wind was not as extreme as Saturday, although people were quite happily blasting along. The Imperial Advance Racing Team, consisting of Horacio Cox, Raph Zufferey, and Alix Fouche, took to the water and completed their heat in second place, but did not make the final. Finally, the freestyle racing took place, unfortunately without any big planing moves as the wind didn’t pick up.
All in all, it was a fantastic (and quite wet) weekend; a fantastic start to Imperial’s windsurfing season!!
If you want to get involved (no prior experience needed), on the 24th-26th of November the Team are heading to Liverpool to compete in beginner, intermediate, advance and team racing. Tuition is also available for all abilities. For more details email firstname.lastname@example.org.