SWA Wet Dream III, Bristol - Event Report

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Will Jones, SWA Media Guru, reports on another successful SWA event

Bruwe Wet Dream III was Sicktacular!

A few hundred students descended on Bristol last weekend for the 3rd round of the SWA series. Bristol is a city that knows how to party and it seems the Windsurfers of Bristol University and The University of Western England know how to host a good event too.

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Following the usual format of an SWA event the Friday night registration turned into a night no one can remember. and, somewhat worse for wear, on  Saturday morning the students headed for Bowmoor Reservoir. The awesome wind meant any hangover was quickly forgotten about and replaced by an eager rush to rig (or select the shiniest looking piece of demo gear available courtesy of Mark Hamond from Boardwise, Doug Hampson from RRD, Ant Baker from Fanatic North and the lovely people from Exocett).

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As the conditions were so good the event organisers decided to kick off with the competitions straight away. First up the team racing! Uni’s selected their finest three contenders and tuned their 7.5 Tushy Expresses. Boardwise provided the RRD Firerace boards and the course was set following the usual style (out, gybe and back format) and the uni’s had to battle through a series of heats to earn their place in a final round. The five that made it through lined up for one final epic race, with the wind blowing spray in to their faces. The horn sounded and they shot off at top speed; Liverpool took an early lead with Cardiff hot on their tails and the rest of the pack close behind them. The first gybe went seamlessly and they headed back for the first change over. Liverpool hesitated and gave Cardiff the opportunity they needed to steal the lead. With the rest of the pack on top of them Cardiff led round the gybe mark and back in for the second change over. Super fast clean change overs from everyone kept the competition tight with Cardiff still just ahead into the final gybe. But disaster strikes! A crash from Cardiff right on the gybe mark. Some wild direction changes to dodge the once leading, now swimming, competitor from Cardiff resulted in carnage amongst the other unis. More crashes, lots of people in the water scrambling to get back to their boards to hang on to their position in the race. Liverpool had seen their opportunity and went wide, avoiding the bloodbath in the water to steel back first place and glide elegantly back to the finish line. They edge ever closer to the series prize of an RRD Firerace.

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With barely a moments rest the individual racing followed and, if anything, the wind had picked up from the team racing. All the competitors were fast, and many of the Gybes were faultless, but it is looking more and more likely that no one will be able to beat the mighty Louis from Bristol this season.

After a short moments rest it was onto the freestyle. The wind was perfect 5.5 weather and the flat water close to the beach provided the perfect stage for the competitors to perform their most spectacular moves. Jo Wright led for the girls with a fantastic display of high speed carving moves. Matt Yeates showed his usual awesomeness to the crowd with some sick sliding moves and forward loops, but Ollie Acton was the star of the day with his repertoire of double flakas, spock 540’s and power front loops.

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Broken, the students headed back to Bristol. where some warming pizza and a few warming beers soon fixed any aches and pains of the day. As ever with an SWA event the Saturday night party went off with fancy dress essential. The theme for this particular event was stereotypes. Think gangsters, chavs, aussies, etc. The Bristol style mix of heavy electro, dubstep and drum and base kept the party going through to the early hours of the morning.

Sunday saw more excellent wind and the weekends competitions continued with beginner and intermediate racing. The intermediate competitors showed impressive speed and use of the foot straps; likewise the beginners showed off what they had learned since the SWA season began as they, effortlessly and competitively navigating their way round the cross wind course.

The wind stayed strong all day and kept the students out on the water till the sun dipped behind the horizon. Another awesome SWA weekend was over!

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By Will Jones

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