“West is Best” Watergate Bay
Dates- April 21st and 22nd
Location- Watergate Bay, Nr Newquay, Cornwall
National Course Racing
Event Sponsor- Extreme Academy
Tour Sponsors- King of Watersports, Palmera Local, Ion, Best, Mutiny
The BKSA once again headed West for the “West is Best “ BKSA course racing and Wave jam sponsored by the Extreme Academy
The forecast all week had look pretty crazy with big winds and swell forecast however when we arrived on Friday the swell was not to large.
20 competitors signed in at 9 am and 11am start was called for Racing, competitors rigged there kit and started to practice on the water – mostly using 10- 12 metre kites.
However the swell had picked up and this resulted in a delay of some 45 minutes due to relaying the course and confusion on Race number 1 resulting quite a few competitors not making the start line – it was decided to abandon Race 1 we then started Race 2 with most of the competitors this time.
Race 2 was fast and furious with Olly Bridge doing the course in just over 10 minutes followed by Denzil Williams and Lee Harvey.
Race 3 there was a real upset as Olly Bridge stalled as the wind had dropped and he dived his kite straight into Steph Bridge taking them both out! However there was a real race for 1st which almost was a photo finish , Denzil Williams just snuck in front of Callum Edge with Lee Harvey again taking 3rd position.
We then had a half hour break and went into the Wave jam. 15 competitors had registered for the event so it was split into 3 heats with two from each heat going into the final.
The wave conditions had improved in size with some 2 m lumps coming in however it was predominantly onshore with a tiny Starboard bias so it did not really favour any particular stance. Riders went out both strapped and unstrapped and really mixed it up. Standouts in the first round was Alex Hapgood , editor of Kitesurf magazine who showed excellent Wave selection and long rides however in the final he did not show the same form and dropped his kite .
2011 Champ Sarah Sylvester also showed great style to make it into the final with Neil Harper, Denzil Williams’s freestyler Dan Sweeney and Lee Harvey KSP competitor.
Lee showed great all-round style to take the win ahead of Denzil Williams in 2nd and Dan Sweeney in 3rd.
With the tide pushing in riders were exhausted so it was off to the Pub for a refuel of beer and food for all.
A 10 am riders briefing with a few bleary looking riders – what else!
It was decided to run round 2 of the Wave jam in the slightly large waves, the wind this time was bang onshore.
Leah of the Jet ski set the buoys for racing for later – however they were never to be used as the wind and swell got to the point where all decided it was too dangerous for racing.
In round 2 there was definitely some better riding in all heats, particular standouts that did not make it through was Sam Robins who was unlucky with a 3rd. Shock result was winner of round 1 Lee Harvey failing to get into the final.
The final was 15 minutes long and riders took time to get out back a ride the largest waves
Alex Hapgood once again made the final however did not find the form showed in his early heat once again , Neil Harper got some great rides while Denzil Williams was shredding like a madman with kite loop thrown in for good measure at the end of one of his rides . The rider of the day however was new face Sean Facey who on the previous day had come last in round 1 – he was ripping it up top to bottom on the largest sections and really put in a great ride much to his surprise!
Prize giving was held at 2pm
The wave jam results were a combination of scores on both days to give overall result
1st Denzil Williams
2nd Lee Harvey
3rd Callum Edge
1st Denzil Williams
2nd Lee Harvey
3rd = Neil Harper / Alex Hapgood
4th Sean Facey