Starboard Airplane 2016 (A new revolution in windsurfing)

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Side note (My windsurfing background)

As a teenager growing up addicted to windsurfing I know the challenge of getting to the beach with your board and rig. Begging my parents every weekend to take me to the nearest beach. Then making them wait hours while I rigged up and went sailing. It’s a sport which is equally a logistical challenge as a technical challenge but I still love it!!!!

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Drone shot of the Airplane 225

I am lucky now to work along side the largest windsurfing brand in the world. Starboard. I concentrate more on the SUP side but I am still as keen as ever to rig up some windsurfing gear. Starboards reputation for Innovation and Quality in windsurfing is something they do very well. 2016 is probably the biggest year for innovation because of one product which has pushed the limits of inflatable technology to the limit.

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Going into a lay down gybe

The product is the Airplane. The first fully planning inflatable windsurfer. A board which you can put into a backpack, pumped up and blast around like a free ride board. After using the Airplane 225 in Costa Brava in September 2015 at the Starboard world dealer conference I wasn’t completely sold on the idea. I had only used the board for 15mins but the board behaved extremely sluggish and slow responsive but it did get me thinking. It got me windsurfing!!!

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Fully powered up on the Airplane 225

Fast forward to January 2016 and I am in Auckland, New Zealand working with NZ Boardstore and a Airplane 225 shows up on a container fresh from Thailand. Lucky enough it was a demo board. So, once the first windy day hit. I decided to pump the Airplane up and rig a 7.8 overdrive. Firstly I knew I would be fully powered or even overpowered. I wanted to try it fully powered up something I didn’t get in Costa Brava. The board felt completely different then before more responsive and remarkably stiff. After my 2 hr session I kept having to remind myself of the board I was using was an inflatable. The same technology that only years previous was so under – developed most people overlooked.

Key points on how the board performed.

  1. The board sails like a large free ride board. It’s a unique feeling when you are fully blasting along. Pushing into a inflatable rail.
  2. Gybing the board actually lets you really feel the rail edge technology come into effect. (It’s a hard bit of mellable plastic which goes around the bottom tail of the board. Creating a hard edge.)
  3. The board has good constant speed. It sails through gust and lulls with good control and keeps on the plane. The board does need to be sailed slightly overpowered. I found between 1 – 1.5 m sail size bigger then normal made the board fully blast along.

It’s only the beginening of this technology and innovation cycle. It’s version 1.0. As with any technology it will develop and get a lot better. It is still a remarkably good board. Unlike it’s inflatable wind sup cousins this board is a legitimate modern windsurfing board.

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Thanks to Georgia Schofield and Dominic Stuart.

Georgia Schofield Photography

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgiasphoto/?pnref=lhc

Instagram : https://www.instagram.com/georgiasphoto/

Thanks to NZ Boardstore for the use of the board.

https://nzboardstore.co.nz

Demo the Airplane at any good Starboard Windsurfing retailer or distributor.

More info @ Starboard windsurfing.com

 

Starboard AIRPLANE 255 from Georgia Schofield on Vimeo.

 

168 hrs in California

My whole blogging dream never occurred I ended up making the same excuses as normal to myself. (It takes to long, who is actually going to read it, I have just paddled a million kilometres “I need FOOD” and I normally fall asleep before I build up any motivation)

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Ok , so after coming home and every single person I have spoke to asked “how was California?”. Here is a brief recap of the epic adventure and event that was.

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-24 hrs of flying, airports and general traveling-
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– I reached my destination Salt Creek-

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-I spent a few tense hours training-
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-I competed at the 2014 Battle of the Paddle-

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-I had a bad first day racing and didn’t make the final but watched the best race I have ever seen-
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-I had a slightly better day two-
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-Finished the event and explored California-

-Went on a bike ride to the Wedge-
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-Found a decent coffee in America-
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-Spent another 24 hrs going home-

Photos edited on VSCO cam.

 

Preparing For The Battle Q&A

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Battle??????

Battle of the Paddle the biggest race of the season.

-Battle Ground?

Salt Creek, California

-Weapon?

2015 Starboard Allstar

Prepared Yes or No?

Maybe, I have been focusing on the B.O.P for the past two months but this race has a lot of luck involved.

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-Ambitions?

Make the final of the men’s elite race. There is two heats in the morning and the top 50 percent from both races go into a final heat in the afternoon. Plus get some surf done in Californian sunshine.

-Why?

Battle of the paddle has always been on my bucket list of races and every top sup racer shows up to this race from every side of the world.

-Updates?

Stay tuned to my blog for daily updates and photos.

-What is the B.O.P?(To all the non paddling folk)

The Battle of the paddle is probably the biggest race of the year. A unofficial World Championships were the best Sup racers battle it out for a faint hope to become B.O.P champion. The list of past champions is pretty epic. Chuck Paterson, Jamie Mitchell, Danny Ching, Connor Baxter and Kai Lenny. It involves racing in and out of the surf with a run in between every lap. To be any way competitive you need to know how to surf a race board(it’s like driving a f-one car down a mountain pass plus you have a few hair pin bends to take care of). These ‘hair pin bends’ are buoy turns in the surf zone. I forgot to mention there is 30+ people going around the buoy at the same time.’Carnage Guaranteed’

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