Rhosneigr BWA Windsurfing Wave Classic 2023

After two unsuccessful roll over weekends in May- with no wind to run a windsurfing wave classic event, the chances of running this years Rhosneigr wave classic was starting to look a little unlikely. However after a long anticipated few months, and a well predicted long range forecast, things started to shape up for the September BWA Rhosniegr wave classic and oh how it provided!

Saturday 23rd September

With competitors arriving mid day Saturday to sign in and wait for a possible late evening start- there was a great buzz in Funsport and around the beach. The sun was out, The Mailing Room flags were flying, BWA tent was primed and we had a great turn out of sailors- with 36 competitors entered.

Upon Sign in at 1pm, Nigel Tracey and Conor Fagan took to the mic to run through the proceedings of the weekend. Once the boxes were ticked and everyone was clued up of the weekends schedule- competitors were focused on the water and eagerly waiting for the wind and waves to come in- with the next announcement set for 4.30pm. However 4.30 came and it was decided the competition would start promptly Sunday morning- first light to allow some more wind and swell to build!

This gave everyone a fun evening of sailing to practice last minute moves and tricks, ready for the mornings antics! After riding till last light- competitors/family/friends were graced with a lovely burger evening at Cafe Notos, who more than satisfied some hungry sailors with there delicious burgers!

Photographer: Nadine Moore

Sunday 24th September– 6:00am

There was already a hustle around the town as competitors were waking, coffees were flowing, sails were getting rigged and nerves were building as we waited for first light. With four fleets to get through ( Pros, Masters, Ladies and Ams) it was going to be a big day on the water!

The ladies were due to kick things off with a 7am announcement and 7.30am possible start. After waiting an extra 40 minutes for the wind, the ladies hit the water first in some pretty tricky float and ride conditions. With big sails and boards they put up a good show in a very challenging first heat- with only a couple of waves scored in the last few minutes.

Photographer: Toby Cope 

This meant a short postponement was given due to a lack of wind.

45 minutes later the wind had picked up ( as forecast) and we were a go! The Ams were to hit the water, with the ladies heats getting ran inter-changeably throughout. The Ams gave us a cracking first heat with 8 strong competitors fighting it out- with many local riders heading to the water.

From the first 2, 4 man heats, Charlie Loch, Nick Welsh, Bryn Downing and Lewis Buckland made it through to the finals. A last heat in a single elimination gave us some brilliant action and results came close, however the podium placed 1st Charlie Loch, 2nd Nick Welsh and 3rd Bryn Downing.

The women’s division ran 2 more heats with all the ladies, Janine Guest, Liath Campbell, Nadine Moore and Cori Mcfarlane putting up a great show in the strong winds, waves and rain! They showed some brilliant moves as they worked through a whole quiver of kit throughout their rounds- starting big and ending in some pretty windy conditions! The scores were close as the heats ran, however Cori McFarlane grasped 1st place, with Janine Guest placing 2nd and Liath Campbell 3rd.

Photographer: Nadine Moore

As the wind started to build the pros came out to play! We had a great turn out with 11 competitors coming far and wide to compete.

From the word go we knew it was on as big moves were being pulled with high level riders ripping up the water! The Pros started with a Single Elimination, where Andy Chambers places 4th, Dave Horrocks 3rd, Lucas Meldrum 2nd and Phil Horrocks 1st.

Photographer: Nadine Moore

The masters were the next heat to go. We had a great turn up with 12 competitors signed up, and boy did they show how the masters roll as they hit the water running. They started their heat in the middle of the day as the weather was in full force. However the heavy wind, waves and rain didn’t slow them in there tracks as they ripped around the water.
Running only a single elimination for the masters, the podium ended up with 1st Steve Laddiman, 2nd Davie Edmonton and 3rd Tim Lawes!

Photographer: Nadine Moore

With the wind still in, the Pros re-hit the water as a double elimination was ran. By now the wind was coming in fast and furious with gusts of 50 knots + . It was quite the spectacle to watch as Dave Horrocks was boosting to Mars, Tim Watson was showing us some big moves (and one spectacular crash off the beach!), Lucas Meldrum ripped around on a 3.0m and was throwing some huge aerials, then off course Phil Horrocks was sailing as if it was any other day, still holding down his 3.7 and sailing in complete control.

After a brilliant afternoon and strong competition all round, the podium remained the same with the Horrocks brothers and Lucas Meldrum holding onto their positions. Phil Horrocks 1st, Lucas Meldrum 2nd and Dave Horrocks 3rd.

As the wind stayed in and all fleets had displayed some brilliant riding- double elimination’s were then ran for the Ams.  This caused a real turn in results and Joe Vernon (now known as the Vermonator!) sailed all the way up the double elimination ladder in 50 knots of wind to take Charlie loch (1st place) to a super final!

As the day was coming to a close with only 20 minutes of light left, Joe and Charlie battled it out- however, Charlie held onto the top spot and claimed his title as Ams 1st place in his first ever competion .  This changed the leader board and the Ams final podium was 1st Charlie Loch , 2nd Joe Vernon and 3rd Nicholas Welsh.

Photographer: Nadine Moore

We had an absolutely brilliant day on the water and want to give a huge shout and thank you to some very special people- who without, the event would not have been possible.

Firstly thank you so much to our sponsors O’Neill, Pit Viper, Cafe Notos and K4 fins for prizes and event evening! A big thanks to Nigel Tracey and the BWA for all your time, effort and help, before and on the day! Of course a huge thank you to the main sponsor for the event – The Mailing Room, who really helps keep the spirit and level of windsurfing alive!

Also a big shout out to the judges – who did a phenomenal job judging all day long in some pretty harsh condition! Then of course a big thankyou for all the competitors for traveling and getting involved in the competition and been such good sports all weekend long!

Photographer: Nadine Moore

Here’s what our winners had to say about the day!

A few words from Charlie Loch our Amateur winner ‘

The day started early because there was only one day of competition to be had to get through all fleets . It was light in the morning but filled in enough by the time the ams were ready. I started my heat on my favorite gear the 4.0 duotone superhero sls and grip 4 sls 69 litres. The single was fun with good conditions. I finished 1st in the single and was happy with my result. We were one of the first fleets they got through which meant we had to wait all day to see if we’d have a double. Just as we thought it was over head judge Adrien Jones gave us the news that there would be a double. The winds were wild with Conditions of 35 to 50 knots. I went out in the final on my 3.0 superhero fully down hauled. Once I was on the water I was stacked. I sailed against Joe Vernon who sailed all the way from the bottom to the final. He beat my the first round and it went to a super final but I managed to grab the win in the last round .

A few words from our ladies 1st place “ Cori Mcfarlane “

With four fleets to get through and only one day of proper conditions forecast, the ladies had an early start on Sunday: rigged and waiting for wind around 7am. For our first heat we wobbled around on our biggest kit and Liath and local rider Janine managed to fill their score sheets with two rides each to take first and second. After a brief postponement, the wind and waves picked up to run two fun heats on my 4.2m and 69l grip. This wrapped up the ladies fleet for the day before the crazy winds set in, giving some good shows from the other fleets.

Big shoutout to all the girls who made it so fun and I’m excited for the next round in Tiree!”