Sunday, March 2, 2008

midwinters recap

With just 4 races completed in the 2008 Formula North American Championships, it's still a bit early to draw conclusions about the new equipment, but one thing is for sure- Gonzalo cleaned up, taking 4 bullets over the reigning world champion Antoin Albeau and the rest of the 52 board formula fleet.

The visiting fleet - from South America and Europe -sailed at the top of their game taking 9 out of the top 10 spots but the overall North American Championship was won by Jimmi Diaz from the US Virgin Islands, followed by Steve Bodner from San Francisco and Fernando Martinez- from Miami.

The 3 day championship was sailed as part of the Calema midwinters windsurfing festival on the Banana river in Cocoa Beach Florida. Other classes included the kona longboard class, hybrid class, formula sport and traditional longboard class.

All 4 races were sailed in a light to marginal breeze. As usual starts were at the utmost importance. Most of the fleet choose 11.8 or 12m2 rigs, 70 cm xs or cut down fins and either the new F2 or starboard formula boards. There were a few gaastra boards making their initial US appearance as well as 2 ML8's form the Bay area. Whatever sailors choose to race with it was important to have their gear tuned up for light air performance.

So far the F2 board looks like the front runner of the 2008 new boards. The kashy fins continue to dominate but the new finworks fins looks like they have plenty of potential with Fernando showing some good results with the hybrid carbon fin. The Melo brothers from Brazil also showed the gaastra sails also have plenty of speed with their great performance. I also learned a few more things about the north formula warp. I sailed the 11.8 in all 4 races with good results and finally finding the golden touch with the right downhaul setting.

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