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I really should update this more often!

A few windsurfing highlights from the year so far:

1) Learning to Vulcan at Brog [May] – although I only do them on port tack at the moment.
2) Learning to Spin-Loop in Prasonisi [Sept] – again, port tack only.
3) Learning to Gekko Flaka in Dahab [Nov] – another port tack move but I almost had them on starboard too.
4) Breaking 30 knots on Brogborough lake [Dec] using my JP Slalom (69L) and NP Expression (freestyle sail)!

I have loads of cool video clips to put online but need to find time to turn them into VP6 format (Flash 8+) so that they are small, good quality and can be streamed.

Weekend in May

Phill recorded a few minutes of me sailing at Brog in May. Amongst a couple of upwind and downwind 360s are a few vulcan attempts. The one that worked was a bit scrappy but was one of the first successes. I actually did a really nice one once the camera was put away but who would believe that? ;)

Learning to loop doesn’t hurt… much!

When I heard people say that they bruised their backs learning to loop a windsurfer, I didn’t think they really meant it. I know better now! 


The need for speed…

Yesterday was the first proper day sailing since I had the metalwork removed from my ankle. To avoid being tempted to try any ankle tweaking manouvres such as vulcans, I opted to take out my slalom kit for a bit of a  blast.

After a couple of hours blasting around on my JP Slalom 114 with a 7.0m Lightning, I hopped onto Phill’s iSonic 87 and spent the next couple of hours blasting back and forth across Brog as fast as I could get it to go.

During the session I got some nice gybes in and also did a couple of duck gybes (not a bad achievement on a 7.0m cammed sail). I now feel ready to resume racing on Thursday nights!

Sailing again… of sorts!

I decided to get back on my windsurfer this afternoon and spent about 30 minutes blasting up and down on my JP Slalom 114 (with an 8.5m Tushingham Lightning).

Unfortunately by the time of the race, the wind had dropped so we drifted on our slalom kit for about 30 minutes before the race was deemed over!

Frankenstein’s Ankle

I have had the dressings removed from my ankle and the stitches taken out. The scars are looking pretty good!

Ankle #1

Ankle #2

Ankle #3

Metal-less Mickey

I had the metalwork removed from my ankle yesterday. The operation took about 90 minutes and I am now back at home recovering. Hopefully I’ll be dancing and windsurfing again soon but right now my ankle is sore and aching (not surprising really)!

Beam my up Scotty!

Woohooo! I have finally pulled off my first vulcan on a windsurfer (jump, rotate 180 degrees, land sliding backwards and sail away in the new direction). Some tricks only take a few dozen attempts to crack but this one has taken a few hundred attempts (and some heavy crashes amongst them)! Now I just have to learn to do it every time…

So long and farewell to 2006…

Well, it’s almost the end of another year so what has been going on for me? Well, I’ve done some cool stuff at work and can now call Python one of my favorite programming languages (along with C/C++). Outside of work I basically spent the first few months of 2006 getting over my broken ankle but since then I have got back into my salsa (although not doing Tee’s class as much as I would have liked) and been back windsurfing again. Windsurfing wise, I have made some marked progress; carving 360s in the straps on both tacks (almost every time in good conditions), decent backwind gybes on starboard tack, one-handed upwind 360s on port tack (in the straps) and generally improved all of my other moves such as Donkey gybes, etc. The best progress has been with learning the Vulcan (sailing on flat water, pop the board, pivot around the nose and land sliding backwards) during my second week in Dahab. With luck I will crack it next year along with the flat water forward loop which I also got close to pulling off in Rhodes this year. The only other windsurfing points are clocking 60kph on a JP Super-X 86 (using a Navman GPS which does not read very highly!) and winning the Thursday racing at Brog. Lastly, I started working on my family tree… a very addictive pastime indeed but I have been making good progress!

Back from Dahab

Two weeks of the most amazing wind that I have ever had anywhere! Week one was force 5 to 7 every day and week two was force 3 to 5 every day… truly amazing! Due to the wind strength and resultant board speed I didn’t really try many vulcans in the first week but during the second week I made real progress with the move. Rather than jumping, rotating and landing tail first (a violant crash), I am now getting the nose down early in the move and landings are now soft falls rather than arm wrenching crashes! Slides are pretty common for me now and good ones are at least 4m long according to friends who saw them.