It’s an event that is aptly described by its name.
In the past few years all the top pilots have made the pilgrimage to Westward Ho on the North Devon coast.
This year was no exception with twice winner and local boy Graham Wass and former British Champion and new Ozone pilot Simon Bosworth keen to impress along with Pete Swann PKD’s European champion and myself. Its generally a good measure of who is going to be fast in the following year.
The Saturday is a mini race series with three race’s, the day dawned windy and very cold with a extremely wet beach!
The first race went like this.
I steamed out of the gate with an unusually good start and held on to the lead till the final straight on the last lap. Just when I was feeling confidant of the win I could see what I thought was Simons Yak and he was catching fast! As it turned out it was Adrian Lavell on his super skinny disc’s and as I hit a patch of very deep water he passed me. We finished a wheel distance apart with Simon less than a second behind.
The next race again I made a good start in the lead but on the second lap with even more water down now Adrian passed me easily leaving Simon and me to fight but in the end Simon got away.
The final race saw Simon with a good lead while I duked it out with Adrian till a 58mph gust hit us all with hail stones causing carnage and the race was abandoned.
Final results Adrian 1st Simon 2nd and me 3rd
Sunday the day of the big race 4hrs!!
Well it was cold and wet and windy Pete was too hung over to do much as it was his birthday the night before but Simon and Adrian were looking determined!
Me, well I was not sure I was going the distance this year I’ve won it twice before in its history and didnt think I could do it today.
Well it went like this; great start for me and favourable conditions then as I slowed down for the turn on the first lap Mark the “hacker” Hoyland T boned me! Untangling the mess we lost a good 90% of a lap. After an hr I caught second place man Gray Wass and passed him. I stared to make inroads into Simon lead but as the wind dropped and the beach got better we seemed to be stationary passing each other for the next ¾ of and hr at the same place every lap.
Well I got bored with that so decided to go in and make a kite change and try my luck. However by this time my hands were numb my feed were numb and when I came to a stop I couldn’t get out of the buggy! When I did get out I couldn’t even walk properly! I was just spent I had tried to hard in the 2 hrs gone by.
I warmed up and got myself moving again after about 30mins in the pits, got a bigger kite out and was fast, able to lap everyone till Mark Hoyland came back out and we had a fun race for the next half hour between us. With both our chances of winning out of the window we had a game of cat and mouse and to try and stop him overtaking me on every lap at the end of the straight I tried to push him into the water or the mark making myself as wide as possible but in the end he did beat me to the line by a few meters. But it was a laugh cold and wet but a laugh.
The race was stopped after 3hs
Winner was Simon B followed by Gray Wass or Adrian, there seemed to be some dispute which I never got to the bottom of.
Me well I got 5th I think and did 75miles Simon did about 84 I think.
It was a cold but fun and another Ozone dominated event.