Swedish Champion 2012

Thanks everyone! You who read this blog, all competitors.
And Monty, Michel, James, Otmar, Daniel, LBJ, Guy, my family Joanna, Vendela & Edvard.
And also my early sponsors like Tommy Åkefors (Cobra/Quiksilver), Henrik Fahlén &  Michi (Naish).
I am totally stoked. 1990 I was 3:rd. 2007 15:th, 2008 8:th, 2009 6:th, 2010 4:th, last year at the hospital.
I really never believed that I could become champion, but this year when I relaxed and only sailed for fun, everything went well.

About the race. We did 6 heats over two days, the first 3 in lighter winds and the last 3 in more demanding conditions.
+36 knots over 250m is good in choppy water
I sailed my big speedboard in all races, 9,5m2 in the first 3 heats and 8,6m2 in the last. One lightwind heat was not valid, too few in the fleet passed the speed limit over 28 knots. Shared the lead after day one. The second day we had gusty winds 20-35 knots. In the first and second heat, which was sailed back-to-back, my board was all over the place expect on the surface. Markus Emanuelsson excelled and was a lot faster than the rest of us. In the third the water was a bit calmer and it was easier to push higher speeds with my big kit, my time to excel with more than a knot faster over 2x250m, 35,5 knots in average. Two first and two second-places and one discard put me one point ahead..!

Loft Racing Blade 8,6 m2 in 36 knots wind and speed, it worked!
(I must thank myself too, the Carbon Art SP63 is my baby and what a board! 15 or 35 knots wind doesnt matter!)

At the Top of the Podium

Last time I was at the top of the podium at a major event in Sweden was in the eighties. (I have won in the raceboard class also but that doesnt count!) Arto Kantojärvi and Patrick Troell where beside me that day. I was 21 years old and my life was like an unwritten book. The victory was so sweet, I felt like all Gods in the universe where supporting me.

And today, over 25 years later I got a major victory again. And I must admit that this win was even sweeter. I started to race speed in 2007 and I have almost spent 350 days on the speed/slalomboards since then. A lot of hours and big efforts, tuning sails, developing boards, testing hundreds of fins...

The Swedish Speedwindsurfingtour is very competititive, maybe the second hardest in the world. On the podium this time where two good friends, Markus Emanuelsson and Daniel Borgelind, I have fought since 2007 with them. Occasionally I have won a some heats, but at the best I have been overall is 4:th a few times. Some other competitors today, Tobias Hed was also competing with me in the eighties and Erik Larsson in the nineties.

But it seemed like it was mission impossible to beat all Swedes. In fact after last year with all my injuries, I have almost given up. This year I decided to only sail for fun. No unnecessary risks. Just doing my best...

The first day in Klagshamn we raced in open water 20-30 knots of wind. I tried my Carbon Art SP63 and 8,6m2 sail. The big kit was not an ultimate combo on open water... I was everywhere but on the surface. The following heats I used a small slalomboard, CA SL55, and 7,8m2. So much easier to push 34,98 knots over 10 seconds. After 3 heats I was 5:th. The second day we sailed in flatter water but less wind and the big kit was working like a Swiss clock. We sailed 2 heats and when I came from the locker room I was surprised when Jesper was congratulating me. Maybe for a third place I thought, great, finally a podium position... But the results were really close, only a few points between us at top 4 to my favor.
2:nd, 5:th, 1:st, and 2:nd were enough for a victory. So sweet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. 
Thanks everyone, and special thanks to James Dinnis for the boards, Monty Spindler for the sails, Otmar for the fins, Daniel Borgelind for the sparring and my family for all support!

PS Here is a story of mine from one of the first funboard-events the eighties.

Some reflections about the German Speed Championship 2012

Low wind sailing in Orth

The arrangement of the event in Germany is top level. For the moment there are no other speed contests in the world that can measure them with Germany. It was good last year but better this year. Small details like the GPRS-controlled signal system, the always full fruit baskets in major tent, the Faheren Lager-parking-camping, the way of putting out the optimal course etc.

On other hand I dislike that they do not do proper race in lighter winds around 15-20 knots of wind. I sail 31 knots in the course 10 times during an hour but no race are stared because the wind was too gusty... But it is also gusty when we race in hard wind. Both Michael Naumann, Daniel Borgelind and myself have trained to excel in light, gusty winds and it feels unfairly that we don’t get opportunity to race. I guess it is more about that most participants don’t have big enough sails. Big boards seemed not to be any problem.

1:st and 3:rd place in Germany
The sailor’s speed should be the denominator, not the ground wind. When the wind finally came with full power the second but last day, we had 3 good races. A 4:th would have been even better to get a discard, but I guess most racers where too tired after 3 x 90 minutes race in 25-35 knots wind.

But with some distance to the event, it still was a very good event and the final result was VERY fair. Michael and Daniel was far the best overall this year at Fehmarn. It did my best and I beat many good riders. I did have any new damages nor on my equipment or myself. I am already looking forward for Germany next year...
 Thanks Germany,VDS, Manfred and the Orga-Team!