The Poole windfest event is now in its 10th season and has included a Stand Up Paddle distance event for the first time this year.The event organized by FC watersports has always been a wind and kite event with wake and mountain bike and skate demos on the beach over three days. Event entry included Animal windfest tees tickets to the legendary party and other goodies.
This season Gary from fc watersports decided to run a round Brownsea Island race -timed so it wasn't just about winning but making your best time round the 5.2 nautical mile trip.The first race started at 10.30 am on the Saturday morning with around a dozen entrants we had perfect conditions for the island race - no wind, slack tide and sunshine. The start was from inside the harbor clockwise across the channel and then round Brownsea and back.
We all started from the Animal start line in the harbor, and it was clear form the start this wasn't going to be a cruise, but a sprint form start to finish. Nick Healey, recently back form winning the European surf boat championships in Biarritz, was in in good form and charged round the island on his Jimmy Lewis Distance board. He lead the race until the last 500 meters when John Hibbard reeled him in to win on starboards new 14 ft long distance stand up paddle board. Timo Mullen was in 3rd place on his home turf and followed by Jay Manning, who is steadily rising up the ranking in distance this season.
The fastest time round the island was under 57 minutes by John Hibbard, next season I am sure this time will come down as riders get fitter. I came in 1.20 mins, I need to review my training program for the next event in 2009! For the rest of the day there were no more distance events and everyone relaxed in the good weather and soaked up the atmosphere on the beach with Animal bike team display, skaters and the wakeboard grinch. The windsurfing and kitesurfing event was skunked with no wind.
Sunday it was decided to run a set of 2 shorter distance sprints - the water was choppy with 10 knots of on shore wind the race again was dominated by Nick Healy and John Hibbard, who both fought to the last stroke and again John won the events. Boyd Shaw was closer to leaders in both these sprints. Sarah Fryman came in as first lady and 10 year old Holly Bassett was first Junior.
The prize giving was held at the end of the day with all the other events. Timo Mullen was MC and was very supportive of the new Stand Up Paddle scene - and very generous cash and product prizes .
A big thank you must go to the organizers: Gary, Pete and Dot Fc watersports, Matt and Dave from the Academy, all the event crew - Animal for the great sponsorship of the event, Poole Tourism, Breeze VW and The FJB group of hotels
All photo are credited to Mark at Extreme Visuals.
John Hibbard 57.38 (Watch + £200)
Nick Healey 58.27 (Watch + £100)
Timo Mullen 1.02.30 (Animal Holdall + £50)
Jason Manning 1.02.51 (Animal Wetbag + £40)
John Hibbard (Animal Watch)
Nick Healey (Animal Holdall)
Boyd Swaw (Animal Wetbag)
Sarah Fryman (Animal Watch)
Holly Bassett (Animal Watch)
Report by Simon Bassett