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  1. #64
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Quote Originally Posted by C249 View Post
    Yes, there are more activities - but we know that the arrival of the new activities doesn't necessarily harm existing sports because cycling, for example, has grown enormously in many areas when windsurfing has declined. Kayaking and surfing in some areas has also grown enormously over the same period. So we've got proof that the arrival of new sports does not necessarily prevent growth in old ones.

    We also know that the arrival of some new activities (such as kiting) has not prevented other new activities (such as SUPping) from booming, so obviously the leisure market is not saturated.

    As to how many people can spare 4-5 hours for a hobby; well, that's what this sort of board can address. You don't have to pack a few sails and a couple of boards and then drive all the way to "the best beaches" to get a sail. You can chuck one board on the roof, take one easily-rigged sail and one mast, and then drive down to the local beach and have a good time even if the conditions aren't as good as on "the best beaches". You can get a quick but satisfying sail within 90 minutes or so.

    Is it as good as "the best beach" locally? Perhaps not, but "the best beach" locally probably isn't as good as Hookipa or Namibia either. Everything's relative.

    As you say, to the noob windsurfing as it is currently marketed does look like a lot of time and effort. That's what this board (and from pics it appears that Starboard has joined the party) is trying to address, by showing the more accessible side.
    Other options are inflatable boards with 5 piece masts you can simple sling in the boot, and use as a board or a SUP. RRD have just such an option which here in the UK seems pppular having seen a few in the wild now.

  2. #65
    Interesting stuff.

    I happen to live opposite one of the few remaining windsurf hire places and teaching lakes in the UK. Hove Lagoon has the benefit of an old boating pond plus it borders onto one of Hove's windsurfing beaches for sea and wave sailing. But the hire facilities range from windsurfing gear to sailing dinghies, and SUPs also play a big part in their activities nowadays. A few years back they also diversified into wake boarding and have three cable-tow runs in the less-windy part of the lake.

    So what happens is they get in school groups and some individuals join the club with their families, and you see a lot of youngsters trying all the different activities. You could argue that there's so much choice nowadays that the newcomer tries everything but then probably doesn't stick with any of them.
    Those newbies that get hooked on windsurfing usually quickly graduate to freestyle boards and then wave sailing nowadays – but our eventual preferences are also a function of the wind and wave conditions where we live.

    But we did have a moderate wind the other day and I drove past Hove Lagoon to see one guy practising sail handling, with a North wavesail plugged into an SUP. He was charging around on the lake in a relatively short space, just enjoying the turns more than straight line sailing or speed. And I guess this SUP use now fulfils a lot of what the original Windsurfer provided – that light wind, messing about on the water, fun.

    Where the traditional Windsurfer still comes into its own is in having a daggerboard or centreboard, allowing it to cruise upwind more efficiently. This revived package also comes with its own rig, and so works as a single unit. With our SUPs we still have to add a rig to make them windSUPs.
    Last edited by basher; 29th April 2018 at 01:28 PM.
    Now back in the UK.

  3. #66
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    In the current Y&Y they have a similar discussion re dingy sailing. The guy from QM made the point that nowdays newer generations like to have lots od different experiences, MB one weekend, Tough Mudder the next etc (looks good on FB...) - sailing has to fit in. They don't have the space or capital to invest in specialist gear. Hence the monthly 'all in model' at QM. I guess the WS LT might fit in there too. Perception is a big thing. CX was around for ever, but it took the 'Gravel' label to popularise what is in many ways a 'back to basics' MB.

    For me C249 hit an issue, raceboards do feel a bit 'locked in' (like a cat) for smaller venues. I did wonder how the S'board 299 feels, but I do see the potential benefit of OD.

  4. #67
    Senior Member tezwoz11's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Hayling, Portsmouth, United Kingdom, United Kingdom
    Q&A with Windsurf LT project head Bruce Wylie -

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