The Student Windsurfing Association
12-14th Dec 2003 - Did you go North or South? Cornwall or Wirral? Cider or Bitter? Badger or Monkey?!


Exeter's second EVER event was another messy messy event following beautifully from last years success. The event was based at the colourful Whitesands hostel in Sennon (near the end of the world) with the party venue and the 12-person bunk beds only ten foot from each other...

The competition was run on the saturday with everyone launching off the beach at Marazion by the lodey sail loft.

The wave freestyle event was not blessed with string winds but still saw some neat wave riding from the Plymouth boys and evan some 1-handed back loop attempts by Dave 'Lukie' Evans.

The party theme was phalic farmers and west country wenchs so aided by the bale of straw provided by bristol we filled the bar with fur, straw and a lot of sexually charged windsurfers... (The hostel is still reporting pieces of stray straw!)


THE RITES OF SPRING - vodka, punting and a bit of windsurfing!

Even by student windsurfing standards the Cambridge event was carnage; extreme drunkenness, nudity and general debauchery lead to several drinking injuries, widespread hangovers and a few severe spankings from college deans.  However, surprisingly, considering the severity of hangovers, the standard of the racing and freestyle was again very high.


Friday evening:

            Knowing that a weekend is a small amount of time even for an experienced student windsurfer to make much of a fool out of themselves, the Cambridge committee got the carnage off to an early start by hosting the event registration at Churchill College, where a huge party was going off.  Churchill parties are rarely the ‘coolest’ of parties, and almost invariably play shockingly cheesy music, but when you have just driven for several hours and consumed large quantities of “light distilled spirit drink” (possibly gin?) it is exactly what you need…



             Saturday morning saw a lot of hangovers and some shocking weather to boot.  I’ve always been led to believe that if a large enough sacrifice is made to the wind gods (in the form of virgin brain cells sacrificed by large quantities of alcohol), that we would be rewarded with wind.  Unfortunately, in this case we seem to have been let down.  The wind was almost nowhere to be seen and apart from a ten minute squall (complete with hailstones) during the middle of the afternoon, it never ventured much above a force 2.  This meant good conditions for the intermediates and beginners, and a return to IMCO racing for the advanced fleet.  Although despised by a large number of windsurfers, the race boards do allow some exciting racing to be carried out in very marginal winds and gave us all a very good excuse to wear our fake beards.  It was decided that team racing would be the most fun so everyone got into teams of three and prepared to do battle on the high seas (Grafham water).  After many rounds of battle/racing, Cambridge squeezed in first, with Southampton in 2nd (1st loser).  The intermediates were dominated by Southampton though, with the top three teams all hailing from the concrete haven.



           As expected, Saturday night was a typical student drunken hedonistic night of trouble.  The theme for the party was ‘religion’ and so everyone from nuns to wise men turned up, including the grim reaper and a religious cult.  A great night was had by all, but we paid the price the following morning…



            One of the things which makes the Cambridge event stand out from all of the other events is the Sunday morning mincing.  At every event there is almost no chance that anyone will manage to hit the water before lunch time on the Sunday, but at Cambridge this is actually planned.  After a hearty breakfast at one of the posh old colleges, 150 students hit the punts.  The river cam in early march is probably not the most sensible place to put this many students, especially when half of them are still drunk, but who suggested we were sensible.  After a good session of naked bridge jumping and a quick serenade of some of the girls lucky enough to live by the river, we were back to Grafham water to do some freestyle.  By this time hangovers were just starting to kick in properly, so the sensible among us ran on-land freestyle clinics for the intermediates, while the more foolhardy braved the icy waters.  Again the wind failed to produce, but this led to some close quarter lightwind freestyle which proved to be a great spectator sport. 


            Overall the event was awesome, made so thanks to all the hard work of the Cambridge committee, especially Chris Addison who organised most of the weekend.


Aussie Kiss 2 pops all records! The second bite of the cherry 'goes down' in history as the largest windsurfing event ever held!!


As if windsurfing was a new sport, suddenly droves of students attended the biggest windsurfing event in the UK.

The cherry popping fun didn't cease all weekend, with RYA tuition for over 200 beginners, slalom clinics for intermediates; freestyle sessions with pro windsurfer Jon Hibbard and slalom sessions with Helen Cartwright for the Advanced.

In total 450 students had the weekend of weekends and eagerly await the next student windsurfing event in Cardiff.

  • Location - Weymouth and Portland Sailing Academy
  • Weather - Easterly Force 3-4 all weekend
  • Party - Rolf Harris/Aussie
  • Attendance - 450 Windsurfers, 475 at the Social!!

Supported by:


Event RYA tuition organised on the day by Jon Metcalfe and Charlie Connelly - Metcalfe Connelly Watersports Consultants LTD - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Sponsored by:







and a free windsurfing holiday in Sardinia for a series prize, thanks to...


BUSA Nationals 2004 PHOTOS NOW ONLINE!! What an event! With winds reaching up force 7 an intense slalom battle ensued at one of the South coasts most popular locations, Calshot near Southampton.

With reports of winds reaching gale force most people were happy to leave their longboards at home and opted for the smallest kit available. Well I say most people this doesn't obviously include Adam Pepalasis of Cambridge University who decided to take out his IMCO with accompanying 7.5m2 rig while everyone else was on 4.0m2 sails. After a superhuman effort in the first two races finishing in the top three the sail just couldn't take it and split from the luff to the leach and he was forced to sail normal kit like everyone else.

Division 1 racing on Saturday
  • Division 1

The top fleet started with about 40 sailors which was quickly reduced to about 20 after the first couple of races due to the ballastic winds. Race director Dave Thomson set some particularly challenging upwind (very easy) and downwind (s**t yourself scary) courses in the morning which sorted the men from the boys before moving on to some spectacular slalom races which drew large crowds on the beach in the afternoon. The stand out performances came from Ollie Woodcock from Bournemouth Uni taking first place, Adam Pepalasis from Cambridge Uni, who as mentioned held down a 7.5m2 sail on an IMCO in a force 8. Adam Cropper from Southampton, usually a stranger to racing revelled in the conditions and picked up 3rd place despite giving up the lead in one race to do a forward loop just meters from the finish line. The unique finishing system of running up the beach favoured those with little or no regard for their kit as was seen when Southampton's liability No.1 Keith actually sailed his kit up the beach.

Adam (Cambridge) on slightly more sensible kit
  • Division 2

In the Division two fleet the best sailor in the morning managed to get halfway to the first buoy before a rescue operation was conducted by Laurie Barber and his boat crews, who incidently had a busy time and much credit must be given for all of their efforts throughout the weekend.

In the afternoon Dave Thomson decided that some racing in the lagoon would be better for the Div 2 sailors and the standout sailors from that fleet were Mike Wood of Southampton Uni. Bethan Owen (AKA Super Bethan) also put in a memorable performance.

  • Division 3

The Div 3 sailors did well to even get on the water and credit has to be given to all of them for their game attempts.

  • Saturday night party

As usual the party was held on the boat and the fancy dress this year was exceptional as usual. We had spacemen budists teenage mutant ninja turtles. As for what happened that night I can't really remember but hopefully the photos can give you an idea as to what happened.

Cardiff- Green people??
  • Sunday

With the usuall game of who's sleeping in who's bed and trying to work out who the person sleeping next you is Sunday started off in a similar fashion to most event Sundays.

  • Team racing

The early morning briefing seemed a bit too early to be honest but Dave Thomson set about informing us about the team racing which was due to take place. This is where you use the Bic Techno 283 and Lodey 7.5m2 rigs and a team of 4 completes one lap each of a slalom course before handing over to the next team member. This all proved very exiting and the overall winners of the two races were Southampton University's 2nd team!!

  • Freestyle

This was probably the most anticipated event of the day as by this point most people had woken up and finally got over their hangovers. The question was could Adam Cropper hold on to his undefeated crown or was his comment the previous day " Do you know what guys? I really like slalom racing!" going to jilt his performance. The competiton was fierce and it seemed like Vulcans were the move of the day.

Sunday Freestyle

Adam, Martin Latham also from soton Sam Ross from Exeter and Nick Moffatt from Nottingham all made it to the final. The final was a tense affair but Cropper nailed it when seconds from the final hooter he pulled off a clean Vulcan right in front of the Judges, James from Solent Sailboards and Phil Cutter, to seal the victory. In second place was Sam and Martin claimed third.

It was a great weekend and many thanks need to go to Pete Boustred; Southampton President, Laurie barber and John Rabbetts from Southampton Uni and the staff at Calshot for once again putting up with us.

Many thanks also to the sponsors for donating many excellent prizes.


Cambridge wins BUSA Student Nationals 2003!

10 years after their last win at the BUSA Student Nationals, Cambridge Uni Windsurf club have finally won again! Not only that, but they have also won the Student Windsurfing Association Series prize for 2003. But the nationals isn't only just about those winning the prizes...

Yet again, the BUSA Student Nationals hosted by Southampton University were a tremendous success. The event was held down at the Calshot Activities centre, with people camping right on the beach, or getting some slightly better zeds in the accomodation there.

Cavalcades of vans and cars quickly filled the site on the Friday night, and the bar filled just as quickly. Perhaps on no other event is the tight-knit group of student windsurfing so obvious as at the Student Nationals - everyone know everyone, and if they don't, they soon will!

  • Beginners at the Nationals

If you haven't been to the BUSA Student Nationals before, then you'll probably think it's all about racing with serious teams, and that everyone's there for the racing. Well, it's true - everyone takes part in the racing, but there's several different levels, and in fact, total beginners come along and race. Calshot has an extremely sheltered lagoon, and Spleena and Mr. Ben encouraged all the beginners in their learning and racing during the weekend. Most notable was the determination from one of the beginners, who decided that her most efficient way of getting round the course was to paddle! Of course, we should of course quote SWA rule 231b here:

Race rule 231b
Racers are said to have completed their race when both themselves and their kit have completed the course. The means of propulsion is up to the competitor. Bonus points will be given for unusual interpretations.
  • Competitive Racing



That being said, the racing in the top divisions was taken extremely seriously. The BUSA Nationals are well worth winning, as there's not only prestige for the uni, but better recognition and therefore funding for the club.

As in previous years, Dave Thomson very kindly helped out as the race officer. By lunchtime on Saturday, he'd already pushed through 3 sets of races for 2 divisions - no mean feat when it's around 100 of hungover windsurfers your trying to get moving. Massive line starts were the order of the day, and the sights across the water were impressive indeed.

  • The Caravan of love (aka the Race Office)



Jerry Springer made the bold move to tow his caravan down to the nationals, and use it as the race office. As such, it may have been the first race office ever to have been towed to Tarifa and back. (I'd like to see the car that did that - it must be knackered. ed.)

As well as being the centre of some fairly loud partying on Friday night, and the home of some hungover results helpers on Saturday, it was also the music centre for the weekend. There's nothing so satisfying as watching people fall in at the gybe mark while listening to Benny Hill...

  • Tortoises, Scousers, Pirates and OAPs...



No windsurfing event would be complete without the obligatory fancy dress party, and this was no exception. Only this time the party came to us - Southampton had arranged a booze cruise around the Solent with each uni coming as a different theme.

But it's no good arriving at a party like that without a bit of a rocket boost. And Bacardi Breezer supplied just that (with the help of a quick boat race and a massive barrel of punch).

  • What happened?

Good question. Slowly but surely, the tents and rooms woke up to find a bright sunny day, and the nagging feeling that everything might not be as it seemed. Which was true - there were students waking up from eveyr corner of Calshot wearing either what they had the night before, or in some more worrying cases, nothing at all.

  • It's like La Tranche in England!



If we were lucky with the weather on Saturday, we were even luckier on Sunday - a beautiful sunny day, and wind at the top of force 4. The racing format changed from the individual racing in to the dynamic relay racing becoming popular on the student circuit.

Teams of 4 had to run into the water, grab their board and complete a lap before swapping to the next memeber of their team. Cambridge dominated the racing, often winning a lap ahead, but behind them, the competition was fierce.

The new format was a real success, and allowed the spectators much better opportunity to get involved and chear their sailors along. Fast change-overs and tidy gybing won races here. It looks like this format (first discovered in La Trance at the ISITEM Atlantic Funcup) is set to become a mainstay for next year's SWA series.

  • I can't get it all in!

Everyone packed in to hear the news of who'd won the event - and it quickly became apparent how well supported the event was. But not only was it well attended, some big name sponsors had come forward and given prizes and offers for the event.

Greg Jones, the CE of BUSA came to give the prizes and medals away, and gave a quick speech to everyone there. He was particularly pleased with the community spirit amongst the windsurfers, and the way the people from all abilities came to the BUSA windsurfing nationals, not just the team racers. In fact, after discussions with Greg, it looks like the SWA may develop stronger links with BUSA, and therefore raise the profile of Student Windsurfing.

Special Thanks

The Nationals is the last official race event on the student circuit, and as always, there's so many people to thank - not only for work at the nationals, but also from the whole year. But special thanks goes to:

Phil Cutter (President of Soton), Erica Clarke and all the Southampton Uni committee for organising yet another great BUSA.

Dave Thomson, Laurie Barber, John Rabbetts and their teams helping out as race officers, safety boat driving and first aid, and for generally keeping everyone in line...

Calshot Acitvities centre for having us again.



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