An ISAF "International" windsurfing class & founder member of the International Windsurfing Association
Lancelin Ocean Classic: The 'Fashion Week' for windsurfers
Posted On: 26/01/2012 11:43:07
Minutes before the Lancelin Ocean Classic kicked off, its competitors resembled models scurrying backstage at a fashion show.
More than 150 of the world's best wind surfers descended on the quiet coastal town over the weekend to take part in the 26 kilometre marathon on the water which saw them tweaking, repairing and preparing for the race just seconds before the starter’s gun sounded.
Dutchman Peter Volwater, who holidays in Margaret River for two months of the year and has competed in the Lancelin event for 14 years, crossed the finish line first and told WAtoday.com.au that the people, the party and the cold beers keep bringing him back.
Volwater's good fortune contrasted with the luck of world champion Bjorn Dunkerbeck, who almost missed the event after breaking a sail less than five minutes before the start of the race but still gained enough board speed to finish fifth.
"I just wanted to get off the beach smoothly and I had more board speed than most as I was leading at the final marker. My strategy was just to get back here as soon as I could for a cold beer," Volwater said about the race which positions its finish line at the local tavern.
Although he confessed to being an avid surfer as well, Volwater added that he took up windsurfing, a popular sport in northern Europe, as he could never make friends with his alarm clock.
"You have to wake up earlier to be a surfer and you can be a lazy arse when you're a wind surfer so even though the waves drew me to surfing it's good to be able to do both."
Volwater held court at the annual Ocean Classic wrap party in the park on Saturday night, an event which has sold out months in advance since the first event in 1986 and now attracts more than 3000 visitors to the town.