2011 by the numbers- a windsurfing junkies recap of useless data

By Steve Bodner, USA-4

I’ve had better years with close to 200 days on the water but this year was good in all respects.
84 formula and 47 slalom session this season at 4 locations using 7 sails & 4 boards at 14 regattas.

I recorded all my windsurfing sessions this season via twitter @usa4 and then at the end of the season organized all the data via daytum
In some respects, it’s a lot of useless data, but depending on how you look at it, interesting patterns seem to emerge.

Out of 131 total sessions, I sailed formula 84 times and slalom 47 times despite spending even more money on slalom equipment than formula gear.

The best value seems to be with Formula with 64% of my total sessions. Granted, I try to sail year round but looking at the numbers a bit closer you can see Spring and Summer being the months with the most number of sessions recorded.

April & May had the most sessions with 38 for 2 months- averaging a session every 1.5 days.
In contrast, when looking at the 1st 2 months and last 2 months of the year- I only got 19 days out of a possible 120- averaging 1 session every 6.3 days. Bummer man!

When I break down the sail usage, I see I use my 9.5 in almost 38% off all sessions and giving the best value per $ spent.

Throughout the season, I used a total of 7 sails and 4 boards.
While I didn’t track what slalom board I was riding each slalom session, I  rode 5 boards in total this season:
ML10 Formula- 82 out of a possible 84 formula sessions or 97% of all formula sessions;
JP 101 slalom; ML slalom; & ML freeride

Racing took up only 18% of the total time I spend sailing this season with 24 total days spend on the water with 3 or more races per day.

All in all, I competed in 14 regattas this year in 3 different locations- keeping traveling to minimum and racing 64% of all my races at the St. Francis Yacht Club. My performance peaked early in the season, party due keeping fit in the off seaon but almost came to abrupt stall after a period of racing 2 intense back to back regattas mid season. Note to self- pace yourself next season!

Despite seeming like its been an awfully windless fall,  there were 4 periods of time where there were 10 or more days between sessions with the longest being between 8/31 to 9/18 with 17 consecutive days off the water.

It’s It’s not how much data you have, but what you do with the data!

Until next season….
Steve Bodner

Windsurfers Gain Water Access in Jacksonville

Jacksonville windsurfing enthusiast and US Windsurfing member Tom Ingram has been working with the Jacksonville Waterways Commission to improve water access for windsurfers, stand-up-paddlers and kayakers at riverfront parks.  Just last week Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown announced his innitative to open up more access to kayaks and other non-motorized craft (including windsurfers)!  You can read the full article from the Jacksonville paper at http://jacksonville.com/news/metro/2011-12-20/story/jacksonville-opens-access-water-riverfront-parks.

US Olympic Windsurfing Team Announced!

Congratulations to Farrah Hall and Bob Willis!

The recent ISAF  World Sailing Championships in Perth, Australia was the final event of the US Olympic trials for windsurfing.  After many days of racing in a variety of conditions, Farrah Hall and Bob Willis were named to the 2012 US Olympic Team for windsurfing.  Bob had a fantastic event and in addition to being the top US finisher, he also finished well enough to qualify the United States for a spot to compete in the Olympics for men’s RS:X.  Farrah was the top US finsher among the women, and just missed qualifying the US for a spot in the women’s RS:X event at the Olympics.  She will have another chance to qualify the country at the 2012 RS:X World Championships in Cadiz, Spain in March. 

You can read more about their adventures on their Olympic quests at www.farrahhall.com and www.bobsails.com.

How I almost got ran over by a trian while windsurfing

I made the trek to the north bay against my better judgement, leaving a good wind at crissy field for an unknown wind 45 min away and breaking cardinal rule of windsurfing- never leave wind for wind!

The wind was dying. 20k+ on the outside but a shlog to get there.
I hedged my bets and made the trek in with 4 kiters to Zaijeck beach.
The sign at the trail head should have been the first warning but went right on by.

Honestly, I had more on my mind- with the excitement of a brand new lightweight slalom board!

A 10 min hike in down an access trail, down a dirt trail, through a locked gate, across the railroad tracks, back up the hill & finally down the bluff to the beach.
At least I had my flip flops!
My gear fit nicely in a board bag that I carried over my shoulder.
Its all about the journey I thought to myself.

The  shlog out to the wind line was like a graph of diminishing returns.
The further I got from shore, the further the wind line receded.

The kiters on their race boards and 11m kites were wizzing past me and I could hardy break onto a plane in 8-10k.
If there was any way to covert me to kiting, this was probably it.

I decided to pack it up and head back before loosing any further ground as the wind was switch more east. I knew I would be downwind of the launch but there was no real good exit from water.
The low tide exposed some nasty rip rap with exposed rebar, razor sharp shells and oh, I forgot the 10 min minute walk up to the beach in the calf deep mud- sinking with every step
All I could think of was climbing out of a power deep day at Tahoe but this was no powder- just mud and I had no epic runs, Just a shlog.

It looked to be about a 1/4 mike walk back along the train tracks.
Did I mention my feet were already cut up from the climb up and down the rocks?
I looked around- a path of thorny bushes and poison oak to the right or the train tracks.
I opted for the latter and was actually enjoying the trek getting a nice soft massage on my feet with every step on the wooden planks of the rail track.
That was until I head the train whistle from behind  and looked back to see an Amtrak train coming around the bend at full speed.
My first reaction was to drop the gear and jump out of the way.

A split second went by and I imagined my new board, carbon mast and boom all getting run over my the train.
I hobbled down the bank with about 10 seconds to spare- rig and board balancing between my arms.
The rush of wind in front of the train nearly knocked me over.
I could see the conductors face looking down at my nearly 2 stories above on the double decker train wondering who in the world is walking on the train tacks in a wetsuit carrying what looks like a surf board and a rolled up sail.
The again, This was Pinole. Stranger things have happened.
As I waited for the rest of our group to derig and drink an few beers on the deserted beach, I thought – it probably could have gone a whole lot worse.
Cut up and bruised feet sure beat a pile of carbon and styrofoam splinters along the edge of the train tracks.

Steve Bodner

Full story at http://stevebodner.blogspot.com

College Windsurfing Nationals

For the first time in years college kids had the chance to race against each other and represent their schools at an inter-collegiate windsurfing race!  The event took place in St Petersburg, Florida and was hosted by the University of South Florida, St Pete and was raced on Kona’s.  The event was small, with only four schools represented, but the hope is that this will become an annual event and participation will grow.  Chris Gardiner from University of Florida took first place, with Solvig Sayre from Eckerd College in second place and Justin Ahearn from University of South Florida, St Pete in third.  The windsurfing team from St Mary’s College also made a strong showing. 

If you are interested in competing next year, or would like more information on how to start a windsurfing program at your school, contact us at info@brokenonpurpose.org.

Wave Sailing!

Junko Nagoshi

Maui Makani Classic women’s winner, Junko Nagoshi

The Maui Makani Classic, held at Ho’okipa Beach Park was the last event of the 2011 American Windsurfing Tour.  You can see the final results and daily reports at http://americanwindsurfingtour.com .  This was the last of the four event tour (five were planned, but hurricane Irene kept the stop in Hatteras from taking place) and planning for the 2012 Tour is well under way.  So work on your moves this winter – you can be part of the tour next year!

The Florida Wave Challenge is planned to take place on one of the next few weekends in November in Cocoa Beach, Florida.  Conditions are looking promising for November 5 & 6 – so get all the details at www.floridawavechallenge.com and head on down to participate in this grass roots wave contest!

World Ice & Snow Sailing Championships come to the US!

wissa 2012With winter on its way in many parts of the United States…..it’s time to start thinking about ice sailing!  And in February of 2012 (just 4 months from now) the World Ice & Snow Sailing Championships will be held in the Upper Penninsula of Michigan in the town of  St Ignace.  There will be classes for windsurfing rig powered, kite powered and hand held wing powered ice craft.  For more information check out http://www.wissa2012.com/  Get your friends together and make your plans – let’s have a big turn out from folks from the US!

Intercollegiate Windsurfing Regatta!

College windsurfing is back in the United States!  The University of South Florida, St Petersburg is hosting the 2011 ICSA Windsurfing Fall Invitiations on November 5 & 6.  College students attending a school that is a member of the ICSA are invited to attend and racing will take place on the Kona One-Design board and rig.  Put your college on the windsurfing map!





This is an open event with a limited number of entries therefore registering early is utmost important. The regatta will be governed by the ICSA Rules, the ISAF rules and the Kona Class Rules.

DATE:  November 5-6, 2011

RSVP:  Please RSVP as soon as possible, but no later than 5:00pm Friday, October 21, 2011 to Gonzalo Crivello at gonzalo@mail.usf.edu

HOST:  University of South Florida, St. Petersburg, FL

REPORT TIME:  9:00 am


BOATS:  Kona Windsurfer

ROTATION:  Rotations will be distributed at the skippers’ meeting.

FORMAT:  Will be distributed at the skipper’s meeting.

LUNCH:  All teams should come prepared with ample food for the day.

Teams should be prepared to be on the water all day and away from shore for the duration of the day.

NOTES:  All competitors must be registered with the ICSA individual Directory.

                ICSA Eligibility Requirements are in affect

                Bring a Nalgene bottle. We will have water coolers on the water for you to refill.

                Do not bring plastic water bottles from the supermarket.

                If you bring Gatorade, bring 1-gallon jugs that you can use to refill a Nalgene.

DIRECTIONS AND PARKING: Directions can be found on the college website.

                There is ample parking available at the College of Marine Science, east of the Waterfront.

CONTACT: Gonzalo Crivello 727-415-0038 cell, gonzalo@mail.usf.edu

Slalom Wraps up in Maui, Waves kick off in Baja!

The 2011 Maui Slalom Series had great racing and great wind!  You can see the full results from the 2011 Maui Slalom Series at http://www.mauiraceseries.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Results20110730.pdf and read the full report from Maui Sails team riders at http://www.mauisails.com/news.php?id=291 .

The American Windsurfing Tour Cactus Cup kicked off a couple days ago in Baja.  It looks like the competitors are getting great conditions and having a blast!  You can see pictures and results at http://americanwindsurfingtour.com and check out competitor Tanya Saleh’s blog for a first hand look at the event at http://tanyak297.blogspot.com/2011/08/awt-cactus-cup-punta-san-carlos-baja.html