The Student Windsurfing Association

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Another round of the SWA series and the students headed north to land of orange girls, dangerously cheap shots and incomprehensible accents.

On Friday night students from all over the country (although let’s be honest mostly the South West) descended on Liverpool. In true SWA style no time was wasted getting the party started. The students stormed the city centre to find out what this European capital of culture had to offer. The free champagne brought a touch of class to the evening, at least until the £1 shots persuaded everyone to the dance floor where all dignity went out the window and the dance moves went down. The students danced from bar to bar until the early hours and they could party no more.

Saturday morning was a tough start. After a life giving bacon sandwich it was a quick drive through the historic Liverpool docklands to Crosby reservoir. The moderate wind made good conditions to kick off the weekends competitions. The racing was first up following the usual out and back dash format. The final result came as no great surprise, Louis Morris from Bristol continued to prove his dominance as king of the race series comfortably taking first place.
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The team racing immediately followed. The short course kept the racing tight and the gusty conditions kept the racers on their toes as they battled for positions. In the end Bristol clinched the top spot.

With barely a moment’s rest, conscious to make the most of the mornings wind, it was on to the freestyle. The conditions split the competitors between those opting for the big board small sail light wind freestyle set up and those going for the freestyle board and slightly bigger sail hoping to impress the judges with some more spectacular moves in the gusts. The competitors pulled off a slick display of sail flicking body spinning moves. The star sailor in the end was Ollie Acton whose display of geckos and super controlled spinning moves impressed the judges the most and earned Ollie the number one spot.

The wind continued throughout the day. It was great to see how the once beginners had progressed so far throughout the year, comfortably up and sailing all over Crosby reservoir. All sailors were able to enjoy the range of gear kindly brought along by Doug ‘RRD Ezzy’ Hampson on behalf of Boardwise.

doug liv

That evening the students returned to their hosts houses. Exhausted from the days events pizza was welcomed and with the help of some RedBull enthusiasm for the evening ahead was regained. The students donned their best medieval themed costumes and once more headed out into Liverpool. The drinks flowed and the dance moves soon followed. A night to remember!

Sunday morning arrived alarmingly quickly and it was a reluctant start for many to whom bed seemed the only sensible option. After a much needed injection of bacon sandwich it was back to Crosby. The lighter winds made a perfect training ground for the beginners to further their skills. Star racer Louis ran some carve and duck gybe clinics to help boost those essential intermediate skills and freestyle champ Ollie provided tips on popping and sliding for those wanting to get into freestyle.
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The weekend drew to a close; students said their goodbyes and headed back down the M6 to their everyday lives.

Next stop for the SWA: NATIONALS!!!

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By Will Jones



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