Animal Windfest 2009 – Brownsea Island 5 mile race

Animal Windfest 2009 start - posing for the group photo
Animal Windfest 2009 start - posing for the group photo

 

September 2009.  Windfest was really my first race (although I entered Gwithian before that didn’t really count!)

I didn’t own a board or paddle at this point so I managed to borrow as Starboard Mr Easy 11’2 from John Hibbard, and a Werner Spanker from Boyd Shaw.  I had a good start keeping with the main lead pack until we rounded the back of the island & into a strong headwind.  With no experience of paddling into a headwind I lost time quickly.

 

Back of Brownsea Island, loosing time in the headwind
Back of Brownsea Island, loosing time in the headwind

 

By the time I hit the channel to return I was seriously shattered… I felt something big looming up behind me, bearing in mind this is a VERY busy shipping channel, I put my head down only to hear the really loud blast of a horn… looking up I saw my brother-in-law (pilot of the local tourist passenger ferry) pulling up along side to cheer me on ha ha.

It helped me dig deep and drive to the finish where I collapsed into the water a very tired boy.

 

Brownsea Island finish line

 

My time: (roughly) 1hr 15

Distance: 5 miles

Position: 11th