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Thread: US Windsurfing National Championship Comes To Berkeley Next Week!

  1. #1

    US Windsurfing National Championship Comes To Berkeley Next Week!

    The 2011 Windsurfing National Championships will be held in Berkeley California July 11th through the 16th. Hosted by the Berkeley Yacht Club and with racing going down at the infamous Olympic Circle it should be a spectacular event.

    With Berkeley providing reliable big winds and big waters and being significantly warmer than San Francisco the event looks to surpass the phenomenal success of the 2010 event.

    Top Pros and Ordinary Joe's. That's one thing that makes the US National Championships so exciting. Even the casual weekend racer can line up right alongside some of the top windsurfing pros in the world. See a short list of who is confirmed so far.

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  2. #2

    US Windsurfing Nationals Day 3 Report

    Day three saw the Brazilians dominate both the formula and slalom courses in classic San Francisco Bay conditions. Three formula races were run in 18-24k followed by three rounds if slalom in 20-25k.

    Paulo Des Reis collected another string of bullets and he's on par to sail a perfect regatta, something that I'm not sure has ever been done at the US Windsurfing National Championship. Not to be outdone, Wilhelm Schurman collected three bullets on the slalom course followed by a string of seconds on the formula course.

    The first race started off with the breeze filled in and most on the 9.5-10m rigs.

    There wasn't as big advantage to the right side today as previous so most continued to the corners to maximize their VMGs which Paulo seemed to have the best of. He simply sailed away from the rest of the fleet. Schurman played the second fiddle while McGain and Ferlet battled it out for third and fourth.

    Sylvester managed a consistent day closing the gap on me and we remain tied at the end the day for fifth. In all but one race he was clearly ahead and finally I tried to wear him down in race two when he left the door open on a wide leeward mark rounding. The next upwind I inched my way matching his speed and angle and even rounding in front of him at the top mark only to have him call the better lay line to the finish.

    The lesson to be learned is play your last move well. It doesn't matter if you’re ahead or behind just make sure you don't blow it before you get the finish.

    After three races we switched to slalom but at that point I had to listen to my body after having been in race mode for the past 16/17 days. I gladly made my slalom gear available to Paulo as he currently wasn't entered in the slalom competition and showed he's pretty solid around any race course. I'm not sure I've ever seen my gear go that fast! He gave Wilhelm and Phil a run in the two/four races but called it quits to save strength for tomorrow and Saturday’s long distance and course racing.

    Three races were run in 20-25k with the San Francisco city front and golden gate bridge in the background - an amazing backdrop for slalom racing.

    Schurman clearly dominated with better gybes around the course even if Phil was ahead. PRO Darren Rogers ran the fleet till 6:45 when the last race was run and racers returned to BYC for dinner and a screening of Wind and Water, a film by Bill Wier.

    On the line up tomorrow is more course racing and the possibility of a long distance race or more slalom. The freestyle competition will continue to be run from his lordships at the bottom of the basin.

    Steve Bodner

    Results ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~

  3. #3

    Wrap Up 2011 US Windsurfing Nationals

    The 2011 DoubleTree by Hilton US Windsurfing National Championships wrapped up this past weekend capitalizing on what has been one of the best weather regattas on San Francisco Bay this decade.

    While San Francisco Bay can be depended on for a solid sea breeze this year’s regatta, sailed out of the Berkeley Marina, experienced a near ideal combination of warm winds alongside sunny skies. While the fog bank could be seen lingering over the Golden Gate bridge just off in the distance a halo of sunshine shone down on the racers on most days and 20mph plus winds came in like clockwork.

    Under the flawless leadership of race committee head Darren Rodgers, and supported by the back bone of Berkeley Yacht Club’s robust volunteer network lead by Jane Morson and Falk Meissner racers were treated to not only spectacular racing but also incredible hospitality. Case in point was the catered registration day, daily racer lunches, dinners served nightly, and a pull out all the stops awards dinner featuring Salmon and Double Cut Prime Rib!

    The racing action was intense and competitive with 4 of the 5 days featuring double and sometimes triple dips of competition. Day one’s four Formula races was the only day where multiple disciplines were not run. Incredibly day two and three saw Formula Racing in the afternoon followed by rounds of double elimination Freestyle completion while a slalom course was being set up for the evening’s entertainment. Even more amazing was the fact that it blew solid 20-25, and sometimes higher, almost every day.

    Day one of the action saw the Brazilian contingent of Paulo dos Reis and Wilhelm Schurmann putting their stamp on the regatta. Both had just arrived off the airplane from Puerto Rico’s Formula Worlds and were clearly ready for business going 1-2 in all four races with dos Reis leading the way. Xavier Ferlet was sailing well but no one could touch the blazing Brazilians. Similarly dominant for the juniors was American Jack Lundquist. Lundquist was the lone sailor of the regatta to run out undefeated to claim his first National Title. An impressive effort was put in by Kiwi Tony Mackenzie who normally races RSX and Techno. For Mackenzie it was his first time ever on Formula gear and each day his speed and prowess only progressed as he started to reel in Lundquist. Lunquist’s brother Charlie held the second spot early in the regatta but was unable to hold off the charging Mackenzie and had to settle for solid third place finish.

    Day 2 was a cornucopia of windsurfing. The morning’s two Formula races saw team Brazil pick up where they left off; at the front of the pack. Phil McGain however had found his sea legs on this day and was now pressing towards the front and picking off Schurmann in the day’s first race. As a slalom course was getting set up it was freestyle time with Tyson Poor breaking out his full complement of moves. It was no walk in the park however as Jordan Reid was showing he to can Grubby with the best of them even taking Poor down in one of the single elimination rounds. Meredith Robert showed she has what it takes to hang with the boys matching them move for move in the day’s early heats. The slalom action saw most sailors lit up on 7.2’s to 7.8’s if not a little overpowered. Wilhelm Schurmann was simply on fire and sailing consistently well. Both Phil McGain and Tyson Poor were not making it easy for Schurmann as both sailors held leads in individual heats only to succumb to Wilhelm’s wily ways. Tyson was the lone sailor to beat Schurmann in a race but McGain had his chance unfortunately missing a mark along the way to let it slip out of his grasp.

    The third day of action was once again a trifecta with all three disciplines coming front and center. The wind back off a bit for the freestyle and pump, pump, pump, trick was the order of business. Wilhelm, Paulo, and Phil once again made up a tight pack at the top for the Formula racing with Xavier Ferlet, Steve Bodner, and Steve Sylvester finding some more speed to seemingly start to close the gap on the top 3. Slalom however was the Wilhelm Schurmann show with a perfect all bullet scoring line on the day. For the freestylers it was a bit a struggle as the wind backed down a bit but the action flowed as they closed out a full set of double eliminations and started to move in to a new round of single eliminations. Over on the ladies side of the

    Formula action it was Shelley Gimball the class of the field while in the Slalom heats Gimball had her hands full with Tammy Bockius as the two traded race wins back and forth. Jordan Reid showed he could do more than just flaka and shaka sailing to the top of the Juniors slalom results.

    Day four served up a heaping serving of long distance Formula racing and with the results counting as two scores on the scoring line it was a pressure packed race for most. Unfortunately for a lot of the sailors the race featured a rabbit start with a power boat running the starting line Le Defi style. This was the first rabbit start for many of the racers who simply froze and got off horrible starts. None worse however than Paulo dos Reis who found himself on the wrong side of the boat as it went flying on by marring his previously flawless scoring line with a double OCS. More Freestyle closed out the day and a special note has to be made for Freestyler Damis Vu who competed on a Quad Fin 80 liter waveboard and was still throwing it down.

    The fifth and final day of the regatta saw the sailors finally getting to use their 11.0’s after sailing 10’s and 9.5’s all week long and some relished the change. For most sailors this day represented what constitutes ‘normal’ Formula racing whereas many of the local sailors rarely sail anything but 10’s. Most improved was Maris Birzulis who instantly lopped off 4 places from his results in all the previous races. Also excelling the lighter winds was two of the junior girls Xanthe Bowater and Stephanie Corkery both of whom vaulted up the scoring board. Corkery and Bowater were also first timing it on Formula gear and clearly were getting the hang of it. Corkery put up a second place result in the final race of the regatta. Nice way to close it out!

    The regatta wrapped with a sumptuous awards banquet with heaps of praise flowing to primary event organizer Jane Morson. Darren Rodgers and all the Berkeley Yacht Club support team and volunteers were likewise showered with praise for rolling out the red carpet for all the racers. A SWAG-tastic raffle followed with some amazing prizes from Maui Sails, Goya Sails, Dakine, Starboard, Severne, Gul Wetsuits and more to conclude what was five days of flawless windsurfing and good times for all.
    Special thanks to all the event sponsors with a huge thanks to the DoubleTree By Hilton at Berkeley Marina. Also supporting the event was Starboard Windsurfing, Severne, Maui Sails, F4 Fins, Gul Wetsuits, Dakine, Windsport, Visit Berkeley, Longboard Vineyards, Skates by the Bay, GU, Abk Boardsports, UltraNectar, Goya, Bic Windsurfing, Green Layer,

    Report by David Wells ~It's not the size of the website, it's how you use it! ~

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