At WSA we have seen some good initiatives, of which Robbie expanded on in the previous newsletters and will update you on in this month’s newsletter. The recent events have been focused mostly on Slalom and racing. If you read through the minutes of the meeting that was included, you would noticed that I was assigned the responsibility to get the wave sailors together. I therefore ask very nicely for anyone that is willing to get involved to please put up your hands and get in contact with me.
The 2014/2015 season kicked off with a good 2week Cape Dr stint in November. Unfortunately the Atlantic side was pretty flat but the odd ramp provided the opportunity to hurl yourself into a forward. Some of the silly locals (Yes you Mitch and Greg) has been pushing each other on the waves and I noticed a definite improvement in the level of sailing. On the list for moves to crack this summer are forwards, backies and pushloops. I’ve been focusing on forwards and for some reason I’m pretty old school and seem to try end-over-end loops all the time which means wipe outs that hurt, quite a bit. I’m working on getting the front arm straight and across the wind to get the rotation more horizontal, which I have been told is softer on the landings. Adrian Tregoning sent me a blog entry that I thought we all can learn from. There’s always something we want to try and never do.
“This is my admittance. I've been sailing basically 16 years now. Started in Johannesburg and in those days refused to sail anything bigger than a 7.2, which later became a 5.8 as my maximum, so in other words I didn't sail a lot and did many stupid stints in thunderstorms to get my fix. From 2008 I sailed in Cape Town although was out of sailing that year, and for the 4 years before that mainly because whitewater kayaking took over. I consider myself a half decent sailor. These days I sail 98% waves and the other 2% "old school freestyle", ie. non-aerial moves. I'm still trying to vulcan! But I can wave ride over mast high no problem, do carve 360's, upwind 360, push tacks, duck gybes, body drags but no loops.
Throughout that time I've been too pathetic to try the forward loop. I know how to forward. I've read the articles, I've watched the videos, but I never tried. That deep instinct of avoiding the catapult is within me, as with most sailors. Yesterday I decided let me try this now and see what happens. I'd had enough, and the SE winds will soon abate so I decided to harden up.
I rigged an 85 litre thruster and a 5.0 yesterday after work. Wind was lightish and waves tiny. I went across the wind and hit a piece of chop but my enthusiasm was not aligned with reality and before the board probably left the water I sheeted in and promptly catapulted myself off the front of the board. I felt a bit of fear before trying, no doubt. I went out, gybed, sailed back and waited for a gust in the shallows. I got up and a sweet little 80cm ramp presented itself. I jumped properly and sheeted in but unfortunately I didn't do the sideways rotation I hoped for and went directly over the bars. It felt great! The mast tip hit the water and I landed in the water upside down but minimal impact and no pain. The barrier of trying the first ones had been broken, which everyone says is the most important thing to get past! Sure, I don't anticipate to master them in a few tries, but the wheel are started to turn.
The wind turned a bit more easterly and caused wind shadow in the spot where I was sailing and no more chances to try again, but I felt satisfied. And possibly even ashamed that I never tried it a few years earlier The next few days are looking epic for wind...”
Let’s all get out there and try that one move we have been aching to try!
We would like to organize a sail together some time soon. If interested please send me your details.