Monday, 2 December 2013

Autumn's come to an end. What next?

Where's the Autumn gone? it's rapidly disappearing towards winter..


There's been a couple of days on the Windsurfing front since the British Wave Sailing series was wrapped up at the end of October.
There was this pretty fun day up in Rhosneigr, it might not look like much but it was a pretty fun day.


There was a couple of pretty windy West days too, thats when things started to feel a bit nippier in the air, the westerly starboard tack days can be really good fun, we just don't get enough of them!  its generally good ramps and more side shore from the right, so the wave riding is better on the more powerful punchy section of the wave too, you can get aerials and stuff, pretty fun.


It took me 3 tanks of diesel to get this thing back from Cornwall!! my BWA Wave Champion Trophy :)


My Nephew Howie thought this trophy was an amazing toy, until he snapped the plywood UJ! Wipeout!!


There was a couple more days of windsurfing with a few nice rainbows around, the rain starting to turn to hail though was less than fun!


Beautiful day for a spot of windsurfing, fresh...

video

Not everyday has been windy.  The Rally of Wales was based up in North Wales this year, so we thought we'd go and have a watch of that one afternoon, these boys give it some fair play..


I have a couple of new 2014 Boards arriving and i have one of my current boards left to sell, this beauty, i'm a bit reluctant to sell her, it's been my favourite board this year and the one i won the Cornwall event on, but its got to go..  Pocket wave 80, it really is the one board for all conditions!


Lastly, no update would be complete without a couple of pix of the new arrival, and it's all going way too quick!


Someone's been practising her Jumps already :)

Next up for me is a winter trip to Cape Town, we decided that its been a pretty epic year and there's no better age with the little one to go and spend a couple of months in the Sunshine, avoiding the cold weather along the cold and flu!

So stay tuned... plenty of updates from warm, sunny, windy beaches to come soon..

Bring it on!


Thursday, 31 October 2013

2013 British Wave Sailing Champion!!!!

 British Wave Sailing Champion 2013!!


After a pretty epic year, 2013 has finished off with some delicious icing on the cake! 
Winning the Cornwall Wave Classic during what was billed as the biggest storm to hit Britain in 26 years with some truly wild windsurfing conditions.
Winning the Cornwall Wave Classic, the final stop on the British Wavesailing Association tour, confirms my spot as British Wave Sailing Champion 2013!!  Yeeeeaaahhh!!!!!!




Going into the Cornwall Wave Classic everything was up for grabs, anyone of a number of sailors had a chance to claim the title, i knew that nothing less than a win was what i needed to realise my ambitions of winning my first UK title.

The conditions lived up to expectations as the headlines confirmed the warnings of the worst storm to hit the UK in 26 years!  Cornwall certainly delivered on this occasion! Waves of up to 6m and 30 knot winds provided some epic action over the 3 day event.

In the end it came to a show down with local man and former PWA world cup ripper Andy King for the title.  The waves were pretty hectic, there were 4 and 5 metre waves rolling through in the final that were crashing on the sandbar, it was one of the heaviest waves i’ve ever sailed on!  I carefully picked my waves and rode them as hard as i could! there was no time to hold back, i came to try and win and didn’t want to give it up easily!



Last year i came so close to winning the overall title, finishing second, that it left a bitter taste as i fell agonisingly short and it was something i wanted to put right!  fortunately everything went well for me this time around, scoring some awesome waves right through the event, i’m super happy to have won the UK Wave Championship in 2013!!






It was a great achievement for me personally, but i couldn’t have done it without the help and support of so many people.  To have my partner Maike and daughter Keira there, along with my parents, my brother and his wife and son watching made it all that more special.



None of this would have been possible without the support of George Bevan and the team at Themailingroom.com, who've sponsored me since the very beginning and stuck with me ever since, so a huge thanks to them!
Big thanks to My board and sail sponsors too, Tabou & Gaastra, they provide me with the best equipment out there and it’s helped me so much this year knowing i’m on the best equipment available, the Gaastra Manic and the Tabou Pocket wave have been used at every event this year!  
Thanks too to Chinook and Ed at K-Bay for giving me the booms and bits that pull it all together, the confidence from the quality of product is invaluable.



To read more about the event check out the following event report links:

http://www.boardseekermag.com/features/horrocks-victorious-in-treacherous-storm-and-crowned-uk-champion/

http://britishwavesailingassociation.com

http://boards.mpora.com/news/champions-of-cornwall.html

https://www.facebook.com/groups/136945116384548/?fref=ts

Monday, 7 October 2013

Windless Westerland

Brits on tour
What a couple of weeks!  Thank god its over! You would think someone up there might just deliver you a couple of days windsurfing after camping out in Northern Germany for a few weeks in the autumn.. but no...  not this time..


Plenty of people turned up to watch as normal, there was at least some wind for the freestylers and slalom sailors, just sadly it was all offshore and there wasn't a wave insight, frustrating, but you can't change the weather!

At least the fine weather was good for some things! Keira enjoyed her first trip to Sylt, nice few days around the beach, if a little chilly at times..


Too much fresh air really knocks the little one out though!

Small waves of klitmoeller seemed big after Sylt!
Gaastra Team mates Kiri & Sarah, Freestyle World champions 2013!!
Nice work guys!
A little more of the Onshore Klitmoeller mush...
So a few more action shots surfaced from Tenerife after my last update, which is always nice to see.   JC got these little beauties..

Nice 1 Hand 1 Foot Back loop shot. getting more consistent now.
Getting some air time in free sailing.  It's always good when the comps over!!
Fortunately you can't see the great clumps of weed that get stuck to your fin on the inside! almost un-sailable!

So, That's pretty much that, after 3 weeks of touring Germany and Denmark, i've managed 1 day sailing! now it's time to head home and fingers crossed the Tiree Wave Classic delivers some action next week!




Wednesday, 18 September 2013

it's all tooooo fast!


So, the last 6 weeks has been a bit of a blurrr!
Let's start with where we've ended up and i'll tell you a little of how we got here later.

Klitmoeller, Denmark
Right now we're in the middle of the PWA wave round 3 in Klitmoeller, Denmark.  So far we've had a morning of wind before registration opened, which was good fun practise, some head high waves with cross onshore 5.3, planing around from time to time, unfortunately the wind didn't hold.


The wind has so far threatened to come back on a couple of occasions, Last years winner Thomas Traversa, Gaastra & Tabou team mate was straight out at the sign of anything and he made it look pretty good, this was super light, side offshore and some fun little waves around.


It was enough to get the judging crew excited and they pushed on with the trials and into the first round of the mens single elimination.  They only made it as far as the first 3 heats i think before the wind completely disappeared again, there was enough time for a couple of shocks though, with big names falling in what had to be said were pretty marginal conditions at times..



Fortunately for me i'm down in heat 8 so i didn't get pulled out in those conditions, the lighter guys definitely have an advantage when it's a wobbly 10 knots in the line up!  And yes, guess who i drew? Fellow Brit Ben Proffitt, ah well, at least one of us gets to go against Koester in the next round!


For now it's the old waiting game, i'm pretty much prepped and ready to go, all the gears on the beach, just need some action to go and get!

He's the bloke in the suit!
Working back in time now to the beginning of the week, The Crown Prince of Denmark popped down for a windsurfing lesson on the lake and a spin on the jetski as we all went out windsurfing in the waves, it's pretty cool to have someone like that show such a keen interest in the sport and the event in particular.  He came into the tent for a chat with a few of the sailors which was good, dishing out a few tips on our rigging and fin setups etc.. ;)


Now we're waiting for conditions JC has been out shooting the local area and the results are pretty spectacular!!  He can take some good shots that boy..


Boaty's....


Talking of boats, we caught our overnight North Sea boat to Denmark, beautiful weather and a super calm crossing, even Keira behaved herself, sleeping almost the whole journey.. awesome to be in Cold Hawaii with the family, just need some wind now to go shred!!

Now this is the point where most of you windsurfers can tune out and go look at wind guru or something, this is where the last month has gone!

I've pretty much spent the last 5 weeks solid ploughing my way through working on a house refurb in Bangor, it started life as a bit of a drug den, with used needles, foil and other nastiness everywhere it was a bit of a ruin.. full refurb, re-wire, new kitchen, bathrooms the works..  As a man with a plan to turn it round into a student house i threw myself into that with a deadline of before Cold Hawaii! 5 weeks was tight and it meant super long days on site, with not too much sleep at night because of the little one and absolutely no windsurfing!..


Fortunately everything came together and with a team effort at the end we got it done!

You should check out more of what we do at varcityliving.co.uk


The one regret i have is that i only got to see my daughter Keira for about 30 minutes in the morning each day, and then i would be home in time for the 10pm feed at night and i could bottle feed her expressed milk, i really missed out on the first bit which was tough..


It's now a massive relief to be here in Cold Hawaii and i can really kick back and enjoy things now, it's been pretty special to hang out with Maike and Keira most of the time and then go windsurfing and paddle boarding when then conditions have switched on..

Keira @ week 1
Keira @ week 6

She's growing so fast!!!

Now it's time for the wind to come back please!! let's get this show on the road and get some windsurfing done!

There's a chance for the end of the week!  fingers crossed..

Sunday, 4 August 2013

The Circle Of Life...


So what's happened since the last update? A lot!  First up, I'm writing this from a tent on the beach in el medano, Tenerife, but more on how I got here later.


Most importantly, we had ourselves a beautiful baby girl, Keira Sylta Horrocks. Born on Tuesday the 30th July At around 11am. she came out weighing 9 pounds 8 ounces and everything went well, it was a long labour but Maike was absolutely incredible and I have to say I have a new found respect for that ladies tolerance levels to pain! No way I could have done that!!






We've had a few quiet days at home and trying to get used to the fact there's another person in our house! You don't really realise until its there in your arms what's actually happened and how fragile and vulnerable new life is, I have to say I'm a super proud dad, not only of our daughter but of Maike too.



It's with great sadness and a reminder of the circle of life as the news reaches us of the passing of Andre Paskowski, for those who may not of had the pleasure of knowing him as I did, he was super friendly, talented windsurfer, kind, enthusiastic and all round good guy, taken from us after a long battle with cancer at the age of 31, I can only wish his family and friends my condolences at this time.



Here in Tenerife the PWA sailors and crew held a memorial on the beach, it was a sad moment but at the same time brought back memories of Andre, and they were always all good..


With the arrival of new life and the passing of another in mind it makes me appreciate more than ever just how lucky we all are to be on this planet at the same time, and how short and precious life is, it also hits home a heavy reminder of what's important in life, it's the experiences and the people that make it, both departments I feel truly blessed with now.



Now I find myself in Tenerife at the PWA World Cup, the conditions so far have been on the whole good and the forecast for the week ahead is excellent.  We're already well into the single elimination and I'm happy to still be in it after a close first round tie with Leon jamaer, things go up another level now as I have a former world champ Victor Fernandez in my next heat, I'll have to sail out of my skin to win that one! But who knows, maybe it's my time? (edit - no it's definitely not my time!! he kicked me out good and proper!)





So here's a couple more shots of the action so far..




 Tough conditions out on the water as thick weed in the water played havoc on getting planing off the beach, sometimes it was ridiculous! i was overpowered on the 5.0 and still going no where as i was towing a ton of weed!





Now that i'm out of the single elimination in 9th spot i have to wait for the double elimination to come around, i have to win a few heats to keep my spot but so far it's not been too bad a start to the season..

the forecast looks pretty epic.

fingers crossed!