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7th Australian FW Title!

By Australia, Windsurf No Comments™™™™™™™

We’ve just finished up at the 2014 Downunder Pro, Australian & Oceanic formula windsurfing championships. For the first time in over 4 years the event moved back to Sydney to race at Georges River Sailing Club on Botany Bay. 11 races over 3 hardcore days and I have clinched my 7th Australian FW title! Jesper Vesterstrøm from Denmark was down here again to race and despite leading against him after the first 6 races he managed to claw his way back and beat me by 2 points with the event title coming down to the final race! My teammate Luke Baillie was also racing and finished 3rd overall and 2nd Aussie and won the final race of the event.

It was our first hit out on all the new equipment; Starboard 167 boards and Severne Reflex 5 sails featuring the new 11.5m sizing which is new for 2014 and the sail that got the most airtime during the event. Pretty impressed with all the equipment on it’s first run out on the water; easy, fast and amazing angle.

New Year’s in Japan 日本

By Asia, Lifestyle, Travel No Comments™™™™™™™™™™™

After a long season it was time to hang up the wetsuits and take a little time off. Not that I ever like to leave a warm place during summer like home, but a trip like this wasn’t one to miss. Some good friends of mine decided we’d celebrate the 2014 New Year in style (and my birthday on 6th January) in Tokyo, Japan – hands down one of the coolest cities on planet earth.

For those who’ve never been to Tokyo, let me describe it to you. Population +20 million living in a city that’s literally living roughly 100 years in to the future compared to everyone else. Amazing food, the most polite, reserved and well dressed people on the planet, radically futuristic infrastructure and architecture, 350km/h trains, vending machines every which way you look, mixed with some of the craziest pop and cartoon culture/advertising I’ve ever seen. Rolling through Shibuya (where we stayed) during the day is basically like being blasted in the face with a shotgun shell of neon-lights and cheesy 80’s synth pop; in a good way! We managed to see all the cool things you do in Tokyo, like the Robot Museum, the ultra-mega 20m high Mobile Suit Gundam statue, the home of Astro-Boy and spent my birthday at no less than the amazing place that is TOKYO DISNEYLAND, which is basically the greatest theme park ever made. Here’s a few of the pics (culled them down from about 7,500); there’s a million more out on the internet if you’re following me on instagram.

Kennedy Space Centre!

By North America, Travel One Comment™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™

For the third year running I’ve escaped the cold of Europe after the PWA Sylt World Cup to head south to Miami, USA, to do some slalom and see all things AMERRRCA! Arriving early before the contest, Kurosh Kiani and I decided to do a little roadtrip up the eastcoast of Florida, visiting Fort Lauderdale, Jupiter, Palm Beach, Cocoa Beach (home of Kelly Slater) then finally Orlando and Cape Canaveral, which is home to the Kennedy Space Centre! Launch site of nearly all the coolest space missions American humans have made.

As a little bit of a space buff myself, the day spent at the Kennedy Space Centre was pretty radical. We only had 6 hours to explore the Centre (which seemed like a lot, but actually wasn’t at all and we even missed a few things) but did manage to visit all the various Space Shuttle simulators, NASA ‘early flight’ museum, IMAX movie about space travel, Space Shuttle Atlantis centre and of course met with real-life astronaut Bob Springer! I just found the whole experience super, super, SUPER interesting as there was just so much to see, so I highly recommend anyone on the ‘Space Coast’ to visit the Space Centre if you have a spare day – well worth it!!

PWA World Cup – Germany

By World Tour No Comments™™™™™

The final and biggest tour spot on the calendar is Sylt, Germany and it doubles as the coldest event on the tour! Upwards of 100,000 spectators come to check out the festivities and windsurfing over the 10 day contest featuring all disciplines; wave, freestyle and slalom – the only event of it’s kind. It’s traditionally not my favourite event for sailing as I’ve never really adapted to the cold, offshore winds we race in here but none the less the event was a blast and the last time to catch up with most of the guys before everyone splits home for the winter and disappears. As always, enjoy some pics from the legendary John Carter.

PWA World Cup – Turkey

By Europe, Slalom, World Tour No Comments™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™

Another week in Alacati, Turkey for this year’s Pegasus Airlines PWA World Cup! This is always a pretty full on event with super flat water, short courses and plenty of carnage. This year we totally got skunked on wind and did the entire week of racing on our biggest sails. I opted for a bit smaller lightwind board this season and really paid the price! That being said it was an awesome week and we even managed to hang out with a bunch of girls from the Miss Exclusive of the World competition which is going on in the nearby town of Cesme. Enjoy some pics from the legendary John Carter.

Mauritius Paradise!

By Africa, Events, Windsurf No Comments™™™™™™™™

Oh man what an amazing trip to Mauritius! Myself and Luke Baillie got an offer to fly over to compete in the epic PRO-AM teams competition that is the ‘Mauritius Freeride Paradise Challenge’ against teams from Europe, Africa and around the Indian Ocean. We finished 3rd team behind the local legends from Mauritius and Team France (who included the current PWA World Champion – Delphine Cousins). The event took place over a week with 4 distinct events with everything from downwind slalom, figure-8 slalom, speed racing and giant 40km marathon all taking place at different beaches around the southern end of Mauritius. I can’t really get enough of tropical reef sailing, so enjoy some pics and stay tuned next month in the magazines as some never-before-seen pics will be hitting the shelves!

Photos are by Luke and me and the last three by Natasha Smith.

Australian Slalom Championships!

By Australia, Windsurf No Comments™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™™

We just finished the 2013 Australian Slalom Championships up here on Green Island, Cairns. Myself and Luke Baillie drove 23 hours up to Cairns for a month of sun and training out on the Barrier Reef before the event started. We had 42 competitors from around Australia and some hotshots from France and New Caledonia. I managed to win after 2 brutal rounds of slalom winning both finals and also a re-run of the first final! Luke managed a 2nd in the last final which was great too. Legendary photography John Carter came for the trip and shot most of the above pics along with Billy Craig who looks after the WORLD’S LARGEST CAPTIVE CROCODILE right on Green Island. We also took Carter for an incredible photoshoot for Qantas Airlines out on one of the super remote parts of Arlington Reef, 35km offshore on the Barrier Reef. I can’t show anyone the pics or footage for a few months while it hits the magazines, but trust me it’s AMAZEBALLS.

WeAreNeverLeaving – Project

By Special No Comments™™™

Now seems like as good a time as ever to let everyone know what I’ve been working on for the last couple of weeks and why there hasn’t been as many posts on this site! With my partner in crime on the Pro Tour this year, Luke Baillie, I’m proud to announce the launch of a video/picture blog known as Forget everything you’ve seen or heard in the windsurfing media; forget that same video style that everyone is using in their product videos and is so saturated on the web these days; forget hearing who came 1st, 2nd, last at the contest. WEARENEVERLEAVING is a completely new insight in to the stories of the Windsurfing Pro Tour.

We’ll publish weekly videos and monthly flipbooks of amazing adventures, along with stories and images that would never make it in to a windsurfing magazine; but that you won’t be able to put down once you start reading. Inspired by the famous cultures of Australian and international surfing, follow us on the blog or twitter.