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Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
1 July '09 | 4:25pm
Gran Canaria 2009 here we go!

yep i know there's PWA action going on over in Lanzarote at the moment and i wish everyone good luck over there, however, the real action is on this spanish rock not too far away, and in particular a place called Pozo Izquerdo, Gran Canaria. The build up to the 2009 PWA Grand Slam has begun in ernest... well, i'm here! so it must be coming soon!

A place of many fond memories and i'll be honest a few absolute howlers, but, like all bad memories those fade and it's the cheery ones that remain, and, to tell the truth I'm genuinely glad to be back and ready for what's to come, for now at least, i'm sure a few days of 3.7 weather and a battered body later i'll be telling a different story!

So, what is to come, well it's an action packed most extreme windsurf event ever.... blah! blah! blah! yep, you can read all that Hype and Razzle Dazzle on the PWA site when they get here.... what i'm proposing is to give my account of what's really going on out here and say it as i see it through my own eyes, some of it might be interesting to you, some not... read the bit's you like, ignore the rest, for those of you that can't read i might even throw in a couple of pictures ... hopefully something for everyone.

I'll do my best to update daily and perhaps more frequently if there's time... but i'ts my idea, for fun, for free, and if i don't update it for 5 minutes, feel free to talk amongst yourselves...

If there's somethings you want to know in particular and think i need reminding of then ask away, again i'll do my best to find answers and enlighten but i'm not Wikipedia!

We might have special guests, special comments, and i'm guaranteed to have a few "special moments" myself and who knows what will happen? it's a bit of an experiment and i don't know which road it'll take but, it ends on the 20th July when i depart....

this pic Pwa/Carter - GC 08
Crowther/ukwa/boardseeker

Enjoy....



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/07/2009 | 4:47pm by Phil Horrocks.


Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
1 July '09 | 4:47pm
So,

Shall we start?

Bit of background as to where we're at now... I flew out the day before yesterday, thanks to the missus for the early airport shuttle, i really should pay more attention to flight times than price when booking flights in the future!
7.00am sounds a reasonable departure but when you factor in 2 hrs early to check in and the airports 2 hrs away it means leaving just after bed time!

Arrived here at 12 O'clock and the was met by John Skye, Somehow he'd managed to blag me to carry all his new sails and some graphic packs for his custom boards, fortunately i flew with the nice people at thomson airways and they served me a bill for a whopping 15 quid for the lot! a fair price for 120 kilo's of windsurfing gear i agreed. Even the woman behind the check in desk was like "ooohh... that's good isn't it? i thought it would have been much more?" i just nodded, paid as quick as i could and scarpered!

John actually only met me for the gear, i was picked up by Victor Fernandez, i'm sharing an apartment with him for the first week before the rest of the brits arrive, well, Proffitt and Alfie (camera) at least, i share with them from the 5th until the end of the event...

I've been sailing already this morning, the wind was pretty strong, 24 knots it was reading but whatever it was reading i was hanging onto my 4.2 and 74... Twinser. It's pretty flat right now as the trade winds have just started to fill in today, there really isn't much swell around at the minute. That is Pozo though, it's not often wavey, despite the howling relentless wind, it actually only blows for about a 5 mile stretch around the corner of the island and then it's gone.... Windless in MasPalomas to the south and Windless in LasPalmas to the North... weird!

It was good to get back into it, it's been a little while since i've sailed this sort of stuff and it takes a few days to really milk the most of the waves, especially on the wave riding side, that's one of the hardest things to be good at in Pozo, i felt i'm definitely in the right apartment for top tips though, i saw Victor belting a massive wave 360 of nothing, i was so impressed i showed my appreciation by almost catapulting over some chop!

Anyway, Victors gone to check the wind for a second session and i need to re-apply the suncream before i join the masses on the water... actually looks a little lighter than earlier? maybe i should rig the 4.5?

Killer Bocodillo (sandwich) for lunch....

Victor just back at the flat, he says 4.0 full power! better waves than earlier... take the 68 too..

sweet, i'm off.

Ciao For now!

Phil Horrocks is sponsored by.......

JP-Australia, PLASMA Boardriding, FP mailing, The Mailing Room, PureBlue, Funsport and Neil Pryde.
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
1 July '09 | 8:35pm
who'd have thought it? maxed out on a 4.0 in pozo......

The wind is back!

arms are falling off already......

Phil Horrocks is sponsored by.......

JP-Australia, PLASMA Boardriding, FP mailing, The Mailing Room, PureBlue, Funsport and Neil Pryde.
Hi Phil - Whats the main difference with the customs you guys use for Pozo. Interested to know what attributes of the shape work well for overpowered on the way out yet still onshore slashy on the way in - ta
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
2 July '09 | 11:50am
Another sunny morning in GC, blue sky's, white capped covered ocean and the windmills are spinning like they're about to blow off!

Thought i'd get up a bit earlier this morning to beat the crowds, which was pretty tough as the wind was howling around the apartment last night and i didn't get too much sleep, It is practically impossible to escape the wind in this town....

yesterday evenings session was fun but with so many people out it was borderline dangerous, apparently it was close to the worst june ever so everyone's super keen to get sailing and yesterday was the first real day for a while, hence it was packed.

The plan to get up and go this morning paid off, i hit the water about 10.30, Swifty and Ross we're already out, it was a good state of tide, some smallish waves and the wind was absolutely pumping, i took the 4.0 and 68 and just got violated! it was a real low point when i catapulted onto my sail and now have an egg size lump on the elbow! I quickly came in, did a bit of tuning, had a 2 minute watch and went back out, things were a lot better then, phew! i managed to catch a few waves as it's the riding i really want to work on when i can, traditionally here i find i've always been let down by my riding as my jumps are usually pretty good..
It's a super difficult place to string a decent ride together but something i'm determined to improve on!

Right now i'm just back at the apartment for a bite to eat and then i've a few things to organise for later in the trip, i'll probably hit the water later this afternoon when the tide starts to back off again, it's all gone a bit high and fat now.....

Hank - Boards people use here vary, i use the regular production boards, as i think they're pretty good for all round sailing and solid for what i need, my cheque book doesn't extend as far as custom boards either... sometimes i use the Twinser 74 from 5.0 down to 4.2 and then the Twinser 68 for 4.5 to 3.5, but if it's super gusty and holey i sometimes mix and match, usually i try to use as big a board as possible. it can get really choppy here and so i have a Wave 69 single fin here too, it's a board i know i can jump on and will do the job for me everytime...
As far as the shapes go of what other riders use i couldn't say exactly, some have boards especially for here, i imagine short, vee'd, pretty tucked rails and geared to straight line control and aggressive tight carving, early planing's not such an issue here!! Others just have there favourite's that aren't exactly designed for here, it's just what they're used to?

Someone give me a question for last years winner Victor Fernandez, i'm sharing an apartment with him for the next few days so now's a good time to pick some pearls of wisdom from him... just don't ask him about his swim on the bunker this morning!! ha ha ha....

later...

Phil
Question for Victor then.....can he pushloop forward yet and will he be riding quads or twins in Pozo?
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
2 July '09 | 4:03pm
I've been sailing with victor and every time he's on his twin fin....

not seen him do a Pushy Forward yet but i'll ask him later if it's hiding them in the bank....

Koester's done a few and Boujmaa looks like he wants them...

i'll get back to you..

Phil
How good is Koster sailing? Do u think he can win this year?
Hi Phil
Cant wait for pozo to kick off events seem to be thin on the ground this year.. Leads me into my question.. Do you and the fellow wavesailing pros get pissed off with the tour missing key events such as hawaii, south africa, west oz etc? And can you see the tour ever getting a full 10 event season asp style?
Keep up the good work.... Phil....
All the best for the event...
Dioch...
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
2 July '09 | 8:44pm
Alright Snapped,

Koster's good in the air, hot damn good, possibly the best? edged by victor's consistency or Ricardos potential to pull a whopper out the bag, i.e. a triple scoop...

On the wave side he's again got a couple who could be slightly ahead of him, Victor is super consistent with his wave tricks and Kauli's got the bull by the horns when it comes to riding in this place....

One other point is i'm not sure if nerves and inexperience would get in the way when it comes to sailing a "clever" heat.

On the other hand the kids a genius in the air and up there with the best at wave tricks, if he nails the riding and things go his way, his youth and ignorance to pressure will see him slip slide to the top....

Personally, and it's a risk to say it but, my money's elsewhere... give him a couple of years and he'll rule this event though....

Ciao

Phil
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
2 July '09 | 9:15pm
Welshside ----- word up......

Errmmm..... tricky one really...

Yes i get pissed off that i can't have the opportunity to prove what i can do over a decent length series of events, the way it is at the minute if you have one crap result it's good night irene.... and that's for the year... and that looks bad when you go back to the sponsors to negotiate at the end of it.
Basically what it's lead to is it's a 50% part timers tour and a 50% pro sailors tour... i put myself in the part timers category at the minute.... yes i windsurf whenever i can but you just can't justify spending an entire year working for 3 events, unless you're heavily sponsored, and there's not too many of them...
take a look at the world tour rankings over the previous years and i would say the top 20 are full time the rest is part time mainly...

If you're talking more about the conditions and the fact we don't get to go to dream locations then yes it would be nice to have a full tour, i was lucky to do the whole tour a few years ago when brazil, CV was added and we're both firing for us, that was cool as they were both new spots to visit, not just compete...

Always wanted to go to Fiji or somewhere like that, would be amazing i think smiling smiley

On the other side, i don't mind competing in Sylt and Gran Canaria, it's often onshore, mushy, not classic, but that's what i sail in at home... I'm not a windsurfing snob, so as long as there's a bit of wind and a reasonable bit of wave to try and work at then it's fun... plus, the likes of Sylt you gotta love the crowds.... if you want to go watch a windsurfing event go to sylt, that's how windsurfing events should be, anyone can enjoy that place...

(can you see the tour ever getting a full 10 event season asp style?) - No... not any time soon.... unless you can find 48 loaded contestants and crew to do it for free...
I think the PWA work really hard to try and get events going but without sacrificing all credibility there just isn't enough coin in the pot to stretch beyond what we've got.. where does the extra funding come from? i don't know?

At the end of it all, am i overall more or less pissed off with the situation? the answer would have to be it is what it is... i do my bit, i try and be my best, enjoy it, and take what comes but i'm not under any illusions, it's purely a great way to enjoy your youth (that goes up to 35 in my book winking smiley) see the world and find out what you really want to do in life?

Nos da.....

Phil



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/07/2009 | 9:17pm by Phil Horrocks.
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
2 July '09 | 10:16pm
What a difference an afternoon makes...

This morning i was all frustrated at my lack of progress out on the water.. and then bang, things just start to come together, windsurfing's a funny sport that way, nothing really changed but things just clicked a little. Don't get me wrong i wasn't a machine by any means but i made a few decent moves, a couple of wave 360's a few takas and a few decent jumps too...

I wasn't charging the hardest i'll be the first to admit, i've got the excuse of i'm just getting into it, although that's starting to wear thin! Swift was going full bore.. nice doubles and some vastly improve pushy tables from last year, good wave's too, clearly motivated to impress this year, outside bet for a podium finish perhaps.

Sailor of the day for me was Danny Bruch, not consistently the best but had moments where he looked like a champ in the making, nice frontside smacks off some big sections and some pretty clean controlled jumping, one particular moment i saw him get a big backside 360 off a solid section, looks way better than the shaka on the wave to me...good work lad.... plus i got a snap of him walking up the beach so it fits in with my post!

Phil Horrocks is sponsored by.......

JP-Australia, PLASMA Boardriding, FP mailing, The Mailing Room, PureBlue, Funsport and Neil Pryde.


Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
2 July '09 | 10:19pm
Wishbone ----

confirmed, no pushy forwards in Victors bag of tricks yet either and twin fins are what he's into right now...

phil
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
3 July '09 | 11:19am
Not much sleep last night... Possibly the windiest night ever in Pozo.. thought we were about to have the roof ripped off, i'm sure these permanent sky lite things in the roof aren't supposed to jump up and down all night!!

A windy night typically brings a windy day and i'd be willing to bet that every single day and night will be windy until well after the event... Thank god i'll be home on the 20th!

3 days in and things are beginning to get a bit sore, especially after sailing until dark last night, you know you've had a good one when it's the lack of light that stops your session.

So, to the point this morning, who's here and how they're doing so far in my eyes...

confirmed on water sightings:

Boujmaa - ripping and styling.
Bruch - really ripping. sic bailout from push table yesterday, maybe my ribs are sore from that?
Swift - ripping and charging. (guess what this was supposed to be? see pic at bottom)
Ross - seriously fast on slalom.. Waves, lets say going for it! but much better than last year i think.
Volwater - usual pete, solid. not looking as fast williams yet, still a week to go though...?
Victor - all the moves and consistent.
Kauli - shredding the waves, having his moments in the air, gradually looking more and more comfortable and controlled.
Koster - Totally ripping, moments of magic, exuberance of youth.....
Flo - working the backside 3 at the minute.
Graham "Helmet" Ezzy - not seen so much of him yet, been out of sync with his sailing times..
Skyeboy - well not really on water sighting, saw him at the airport, nothing since, stealthing it at vargas i suspect.
Mikey Clancey - some nice backies and riding too.
Jonas - walked down to the beach yesterday and saw this tiny blob in the sky, jonas is here then i thought!! massive height!!
Ele - Crazy table forward bailout yesterday, his kit did a double after he got thrown off! classic.
Dario - moments of magic, local knows it all but needs to pull it all together for 8 minute heat..
Camille - more a sic wave rider than port tack jumper i think, doesn't stop him going big though, he's game on.
Pearchy - Arrived yesterday, had genuine excuse for not sailing but tan coming on nicely....
Mussolini - some really sic wave moves and controlled jumps, needs the height of jonas to stand out more though...
Martin T-H - got the skills for a big fella, carrying bigger than most too, he was 4.7 yesterday!! i was 3.5/4.0!!!

There might be more but i can't think of any off the top of my head...

i'm sure over the week there'll be many more arrivals and everyone's going to be stepping it up to prove who's the best,

Super strong wind today, bit more north and a bit more gusty this morning, quite high tide too so most of the sailors are grabbing a bit of rest, waiting for the wind to swing perhaps, or the tide to drop or just resting, no doubt will be mayhem out there again by 4 o'clock though...

Phil

Phil Horrocks is sponsored by.......

JP-Australia, PLASMA Boardriding, FP mailing, The Mailing Room, PureBlue, Funsport and Neil Pryde.


Heard yesterday how much the guys (and girls) get for winning Wimbledon. How much prize money will first place get in Pozo this year?
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
3 July '09 | 2:23pm
Hi Sam,

Two incomparable sports..

for your interest though:

Total Prize Funds
Wimbledon = £12,500,000 (give or tak a couple of hundred grand!!)
PWA Pozo = £70,000 (give or take a bit on the euro 75,000eur actually)

Winner takes home
Wimbledon = £ 750,000
PWA Pozo = £ 5,500 (ish)

you want to know why andy murray's smiling so much right now... £187,500 for getting into the semis and that's if he loses...

incomparable sports in every way, they say there are over 25 million people playing tennis just in the USA, i would be surprised if 25 Million people in the USA know what a windsurfer is?

Would be nice if Rolex took a change of tack and decided to blow their 12.5 million quid on windsurfing sponsorship instead of tennis!!


Phil


Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
3 July '09 | 5:54pm
This is an idea of how windy it's been in Pozo (or shoddy spanish workmanship).

The bronze statue was of a chick windsurfing with the famous sail numbers of E11 and co on the sail.... now it looks more like a kite surfer!


Hi Phil I love the posts.

How do you approach learning a new move?

Do you follow a particular eating plan?

How do you improve your fitness besides windsurfing?

Good luck.
Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
3 July '09 | 9:39pm
Hi All,

Another cracking session on the water earlier, there was still some waves about coming in along the point. Skyeboy made an appearance which was nice to see, he was giving the hawaiian kids that were also out a schooling in port tack sailing, he nailed some sick moves actually, but don't tell him i said that...
Poor kai lenny's head must be hurting after the bump of landing to earth here after his 5th in CV at the last wave contest, i don't think port tack jumping is his forte! but, he's got a week to improve.. Must be especially traumatic when there's about half a dozen unsponsored unknown local kids nailing backies and forwards on their 3.2's!!
Talking of kids, Koster's looking good again, and i heard a rumor that another Youngster Jaeger Stone (best young all round wave sailor in my opinion) might not be coming at all? i heard they wouldn't pay his ticket? Starboard cutting back perhaps? seems a great shame to be cutting back on the future of the sport if that is the case, and i thought they trumpeted there kids program to the hilt? especially Jaeger who seems like a great kid and is talented and experienced way beyond his years.... Still, as i said it was just a rumor so it could be all be false and he'll rock up just before kick off...... hope he does for him....

Victor had his own private Heli shoot out here in Pozo today, even more filming for the four dimensions project. I spoke to Peter Svensson after and he said they've got about 140 tapes worth of action!!! fudge me i thought my 3 tapes from this winter in cape town was a lot!! he said it's ok though as they're not all completely full??!! there's a few halves in there... work that out, 140 tapes x 60 minutes....

Thomas Traversa poor chap, not more than 3 hrs off the plane, with his brand new quad fin i heard him championing about on the web somewhere and how much he was looking forward to putting it to work in pozo got sailed into! somehow he ended up with a hole big enough to have 5th fin in if he wanted! luckily he was OK but he wasn't smiling for a few minutes which is unlike thomas!

I went to the water after my session to just get a few snaps and check this one out for how busy it is!!
It's like a where's wally of windsurfing??

Pic 1
Victor - just landed backy
Musso - Mid goita
Aleix cat555 - burning out for a ramp
Traversa mid 360
some bloke who's robbed marcos perez's gear
and a whole bunch of locals/tourists trying for a slice of the action...

Pic 2
And just when you think it can't get any busier Roscoe and Volwater hit the water on their slalom gear too!

Hoping that a few hit the pop tonight and that'll leave the water free for me in the morning, i fancy an early one...


Re: Phil Horrocks - LIVE! from Gran Canaria..... 2009
3 July '09 | 9:57pm
Hello Hot Ice...

New moves hey? i usually approach them planing and with full commitment....
No, really it's more about understanding how the move should feel for me, i kind of visualize it in my head and make sure i fully understand it before doing it on the water... but not always, sometimes i just throw myself into, then when i have a crash i have a reference point of feeling, and then i can work out at what point it was going wrong?

My eating plan? I'm not the best with maintaining special diets, i try not to eat much fatty foods really, i force myself to eat salads and lighter meals rather than potatoes and tons of carbs, I'm learning to control quantity a bit now too, i realized before that i just keep eating until I'm stuffed, best to eat a bit and then wait before eating more... it's especially important when I'm at home and not sailing so much, when i go to SA i sail all day everyday and just eat for england too... but i guess i can then?

Fitness, i used to play a lot of squash, aboutt 3 times a week but now i have a bit of a sore knee and going crazy on the squash court's not good for it, i play football, go wakeboarding and am always doing something active when i'm home... i'm saving up for a bike, that's my next thing..

Phil


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