Airtime Hero Lucan Gets a Thumbs Up

Monday, 25 July 2011 21:27:49 Europe/London

Our local kite spot at Hill Head has got a pretty good reputation as one of the best places on the South Coast to learn and practice your kitesurfing. Lucan from Airtime is down at the beach virtually every time the wind blows, which was pretty lucky for Paul's thumb and his Slingshot kite..

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Comments | Posted in News By Tom Sutton

From Kitesurfing Lessons to Riding Solo in Egypt - Mikes Blog

Thursday, 16 June 2011 14:47:04 Europe/London

How to kitesurf - A kitesurfing beginner recounts kiteboarding lessons, the early days and their progression with the sport.

Bad workmen blame their tools, but I did feel a bit underpowered on the 7.5m Best Kahoona today (initially) and eventually hopped out after well over an hour of unproductive power spiking, to switch to the 9.5m Best Kahoona - I had good control, never ditched the kite, but just couldn't get the lift!

I then could not find my car key (!!!!!) and spent the next 2-3 hours (ages) farting around looking endlessly on the grass, around the car and then eventually giving up, borrowing a phone and asking AA and Annie (wife!) to come and rescue me, as I had nothing except the gear I was standing in. Met loads of people including another beginner which was one positive!

Then (before the rescue party arrived), and on my 4th check of backpack, the key appeared magically, stuck in the bottom corner of the inside lining - heaven only knows how it got there and hid so well.

As the wind had picked up by then, I stayed with the 7.5 (despite having the key at last), but was a bit knocked about by the time I saw you on the water.

A disappointing day, especially compared to my really positive last lesson with good 'on water' as opposed to 'in water' time, but c'est la vie and I'm not going to improve without more graft.

Hope to get in the water over weekend and next Tuesday at latest.

I've had very little water time in view of wind (mainly) but obviously work as well. Still only managed 2 solo visits and drysuit still unused! The (high) tide has only prevented me from going out once. I'm checking wind many times per day, so I'm certainly keen and haven't lost any enthusiasm yet!

It is totally extravagant and Annie (wife) will kill me, but I've even thought about a 5-7 day trip somewhere sunny and windy e.g. Tarifa, get some solid water time in and hopefully come back to UK confidently sailing upwind, turning etc.

Somewhere with a school for a few tips/lessons would be good, but most importantly the right consistent conditions to get me in the water for many hours every day.

Any thoughts about the best locations for consistent wind and not too chilly ideally? I'm still determined to get 'sorted' and crack this thing and guess a lot of people may have thrown in the towel by now. I know I've been unlucky with time/wind and that any wind based sport is dependent on Mother Nature.

If I have the dosh to fly somewhere, then where are the best places??

Kitesurfing in the Solent and Isle of Wight

YES, at last. Time off work, the wind (and tide) were all good and so I was out yesterday from about 1.30-3.30pm.

First time for ages (despite trying) and believe it or not, still only my third time solo!!!

Annie helped me launch up at the beginners area, which was a good idea and really helped re water depth and pratting around.

First 15-20 minutes was crap, then it all clicked and I had quite a lot of really good, long, proper runs were I really felt 'in the zone' i.e. nearly going across wind (as opposed to hell for leather downwind) with kite set in one position. Really chuffed and good progress.

Last 20 minutes I was totally shagged out though and had to give up, despite wanting to keep going - things started going tits up again due to arms/legs no longer working.

So, the Ion man suit finally got it's maiden dunk in the Solent. Lovely and warm, although I did get one (single) gush of water down the neck seal when wiping out spectacularly at high speed at the end of an otherwise well controlled run! Had spare clothes thankfully.

Good news and certainly spurred me on, despite the massive break, to try and sort out a week in Egypt in Feb/March.

That Friday was 'ok' (first time in water since Egypt 6 weeks earlier) but nowhere near what I had expected I should be achieving after being led into a false sense of security with the butter flat waters in Egypt - I even thought it was really beginning to click.

I know there has been loads of good wind since then but work means getting to HH before 8pm is impossible in the week (apart from days off). This weekend just gone would have seen me blown to Portsmouth or in casualty - the water and wind on Sunday (when I did go and chat to some of the guys setting up on the grass) was pretty full on.

So today was ok too. Definite progress but still not holding position at all well to the left and only just to the right - bring back the calm waters of The Red Sea...

More sitting down and more edging needed. I'll get there eventually..... hopefully.

Blog 15 as Day 15 (all counted) in the water today. Bloody windy and (steadily more) choppy is all I can say.

No guts no glory and I would have been an utter wimp not to have had a bash today - had the family car too, so needed to return home with some new tale of woe, intrigue or injury.

Happy, albeit it blown downwind a lot for first hour, but Superman wiped out a few times which really wasted time body dragging back upwind to board. Had a break and chat to Ross at this stage who adjusted my power/depower - clearly an attempt at sabotage... as after that I farted around like a total twat.

By the time I saw Lucan in teaching area about 20 minutes later I was waving a white flag and flapping around like a total, utter idiot - I could see Lucan thinking, 'Who's this knob end coming my way..?' (It was a really strong 6/7 by then, in my meager defense).

Anyway, the battle continues!

Cheers guys and hope I'll get more that '3 sails in 10 weeks' over the next 10 weeks........I need to stop work and family life and camp at the beach.

kitesurfer at sunset in southampton and portsmouth
Comments | Posted in News By Mike

Ready for take-off - the thrill of kitesurfing

Saturday, 5 February 2011 14:06:47 Europe/London

Kitesurfing in the solent at Hillhead

Great article in the Portsmouth Evening news about kitesurfing in the solent.

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Comments | Posted in News By Ricky Cole

Caption Competition - Dec 2010

Tuesday, 14 December 2010 13:28:25 Europe/London

december kitesurfing caption competition

Silly photo, cool prize... Best one-liner wins!

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Comments | Posted in Competitions By Tom Sutton

PKRA Announce New Discipline - Kite Cross

Tuesday, 14 December 2010 12:55:25 Europe/London

The 2011 kiteboarding championship rules see an addition in the line-up of major events. The new major discipline is called “Kite Cross” and incorporates the former side-disciplines as BoarderX, Slalom, Long Distance, Crossings etc. into one competition format with official world ranking and championship title.

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Comments | Posted in News By Tom Sutton

Best Kiteboarding 2011 Calendar Shoot

Friday, 10 December 2010 11:34:15 Europe/London

Full-length "behind the scenes" of the 1st annual Best Fest, held in Cumbuco, Brazil. In addition to possibly the coolest party held on the North-East coast of Brazil, friends flew in from all over the world to demo new gear, meet team riders, and spend a week together in one of the most epic kiteboarding locations on the planet.

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Comments | Posted in News By Tom Sutton

Just fly on the Lunghin - Snowkiting Awesomeness

Thursday, 25 November 2010 13:39:47 Europe/London

Just fly on the Lunghin

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Comments | Posted in News By Tom Sutton

Rob Douglas, World's Fast Sailor

Thursday, 25 November 2010 13:10:03 Europe/London

An in depth look at what it took to break the outright world speed sailing record! Rob Douglas is currently the fastest sailor in the world. The training, his world record run and more.

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Comments | Posted in News By Tom Sutton

Kitesurfer smashes speed sailing record

Wednesday, 25 August 2010 23:15:08 Europe/London

Kitesurfers have got the speed sailing record back again and great run by Alex Caizergues with a speed of 54.1 knots at Luderitz speed challenge in Numibia

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Comments | Posted in News By Rick