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wWednesday, January 30, 2008

Snow on Maui, Piracy on Margarita

Check out snow on maui on the Maui Surf Report (see photo, courtesy of Maui Surf Report):

And some not-so-nice news from the Isla de Margarita:

posted by editors at 1/30/2008 04:33:00 PM | (0) comments

wMonday, January 21, 2008

Surf, Windsurf and Kitesurf Trihatlon

posted by editors at 1/21/2008 10:24:00 PM | (0) comments

wSaturday, January 19, 2008

Nikola did it - Beijing, here she comes!

Hello from Takapuna, New Zealand... venue of the RSX Worlds, and the Canadian Olympic Qualifier.
Today was 4th day of racing for the 2008 RSX World Championships. It was too hard to write an email update earlier... so here is my update up until the end of the qualifying period, the rest day...
My preparation for the Worlds was superb. I felt completely ready...

Before the first race on Day One I had lots of jitters and just wanted the racing to get underway. The breeze was about 8-9 knots. The start gun goes off, I got off the starting line with a great start on starboard (I have the right of way). It was about 10 -15 seconds after the start when a Japanese girl, on port crashed into me. Her board smashed into my fin, her mast into my boom, she kept sailing but unfortunately I went down. While I was down, a Chinese girl ran over me and by the time I was able to get up and going again, the fleet was far ahead of me. I was 3rd last to the top mark and was now only in the game of catching up. A very disappointing start to the regatta. (The someone fouls another sailor, they must do a 360 penalty turn. The Japanese girl did her turn to exonerate herself, but that actually doesn't help me, the fallen sailor). The second race was a bit better than the first, but finished right behind the other Canadians.

Day Two started off with very light winds. I was really excited about the change of conditions. I had a glamour start in the first race and was in the top bunch leading up to the windward mark. Then I made a tactical error which cost me some boards, making what could have been a really great race to a decent race. The wind picked up between races to 10-12 knots, conditions we were planing in. I was concentrating on my starts, and once again had a super start. My game plan was to go to the right side of the course, which I did, but somehow the left came out ahead. The race wasn't over yet though and I continued to battle it out. Then, on the last downwind I got some weed caught on my fin and had to get it off. Unfortunately that cost me at least 5 places.

Although I chose not to look at the results through out the qualifying series, I pretty much had a good understanding that I was not looking good to qualify myself into Gold Fleet, or the Olympics as I had both Canadian girls ahead of me. I had only finished ahead of the other Canadians once in 4 races and my chances of making gold fleet were quite slim. (The first 6 races are qualifying races that determine who makes it into Gold or Silver fleet. The top half make it into gold fleet and can never be caught up by someone who is in Silver. I was pretty sure that one of the other Canadians was sitting in Gold fleet and I was deep in Silver behind another Canadian. The worst situation that could happen for me was that the girl in Gold Fleet stayed in Gold and I was in Silver and that would mean that the trials are over...) So, I had a pretty rough night, my mind racing and playing so many tricks on me. I knew I had to pull miracles to even have a shot at making Gold Fleet...

Day Three started off with no wind whatsoever. Talk on the beach was that the two sea breezes were fighting each other and it could mean that we would possibly have no races that day if one wind direction didn't win and stabilize. Luckily the wind did come in, an offshore tricky and very gusty wind, and surprisingly, it got somewhat windy. I really had to pull myself together, I needed two good races. I had a great start in the first race, played the shifts and sailed myself to the front of the group. I finished 6th place!!! I was so stoked, my chances of extending the trials just got better. All I needed to do was have another good race to finish off the qualifying series. I had a super start again, I had a great first beat to the first top mark. I rounded well in the top 10, gybed around the mark, and all of a sudden there was not a breath of wind. I fell in (some others did too), I got up as quick as I could...but the others had caught up and were blanketing me on the way downwind. I lost a bunch of places. Just before the finish we have a slalom course. I was in a pack, a vulnerable position as you need to react to others actions. I had girls on either side of me and behind me, when the girl in front of me messed up her gybe. I had nowhere to go...but down. So, I was swimming again. Boards sailed passed me as I struggled to get up as quickly as I could. I finished a disappointing 25th. I was pretty distraught after that race, not knowing the points and just hoping that I still had a chance to be in Gold Fleet, if not, best scenario was that all of us Canadians were in Silver fleet - extending the trials to the end. I sailed ashore slowly, taking it all in and trying to deal with what just happened...I was trying to prepare myself for the worst case scenario.

I arrived at the beach, later than most, awaited by a few of my friends to help me with my gear. They said "I did it" ...In that moment and for a while there after, I did not and could not understand...

People came to congratulate me, yet I still wanted to see the results for myself. I was the last person to to make it into GOLD fleet by one point, AND the only Canadian in Gold Fleet!!! Which means that...I DID IT, I DID IT, I DID IT !!! The trials are over and I'm going to the Olympics!!!!!!!!!!! Those were 3 very long, very difficult and very emotional days...

Although the Worlds are not over yet, we still have 5 more races to go. Now it's all about improving my standings in the Gold Fleet.

Thank you for your continued support :-) :-) :-)
Nikola Girke (

posted by editors at 1/19/2008 05:58:00 PM | (0) comments

wTuesday, January 15, 2008

Claudia in Carrillo

Austrian windgirl Claudia Rankel rides a nice little wave at her home wavespot Leo Carrillo, Malibu!!

Photo by Glenn Dubock.

posted by editors at 1/15/2008 06:47:00 PM | (1) comments

wMonday, January 07, 2008

Laure Treboux on Fanatic and North Sails!
Laure announces new sponsors for 2008:
"From now I'll be sailing on Fanatic and North Sails, a big thank you to both of them! I love my new boards and sails and already had some sick sessions with them.

It's been going off here in Western Australia with good waves and strong wind and we started 2008 with a really good surf session!"

posted by editors at 1/07/2008 06:33:00 PM | (0) comments

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