Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Hobb Making Waves with a Classic Display at Tiree; PLACE ON THE PODIUM ENDS FINE YEAR FOR SURF STARLET WINDSURFING SPECIAL

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Hobb Making Waves with a Classic Display at Tiree; PLACE ON THE PODIUM ENDS FINE YEAR FOR SURF STARLET WINDSURFING SPECIAL

Article excerpt

WHITLEY Bay windsurfer Aaron Hobb is ending 2016 on the crest of a wav.

The 17-year-old recently finished third youth in the Tiree 30-Year Wave Classic.

His achievement was all the more impressive as it was the first time Hobb had tried wave sailing.

He was up against stiff competition, having to compete head to head in elimination rounds against other more experienced wave sailors.

However, the youngster held his nerve throughout, in challenging conditions, to impress with awesome jumps and radical wave riding. At Tiree, a small island off the west coast of Scotland, Hobb competed in one of the most well-known wave sailing competitions in the world.

The Classic is the longest-running professional windsurfing event in the world, founded in 1986.

This year's event, commemorating 30 years, showcased the best of the UK's windsurfing talent across a number of fleets - ranging from juniors to World Cup professional windsurfers.

It involved sailing very different equipment (low-volume short boards and small sails of 3.5 to six metres) to that which Hobb normally sails (RS:X which is a onedesign board and an 8.5-metre rig which is designed to plane) and which required a different set of windsurfing techniques.

Hobb said: "I was nervous about being in the waves but at the same time very excited by this new experience."

The first two days involved training with RYA Scotland and Hobb soon got the hang of things as he was able to combine his windsurfing and surfing skills.

On competition day the winds were slightly lighter than those he had trained in.

After a number of head-to-head elimination rounds and heats, Hobb pushed hard and enjoyed many wins, eventually finishing the third youth overall.

He added: "I was over the moon with the result as it was my first experience of wave sailing and my first wave competition."

The TWC closed out a year of competitions which saw Hobb end up fourth overall in the UK Windsurfing Association (UKWA) National Cup Series for 2016.

He sailed an RS:X - an Olympic Class One design windsurf board and rig which the double silver medallist Nick Dempsey competed on in London 2012 and Rio 2016. …

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