It was in the early seventies when Marina del Rey in Los Angeles was ground zero for the Windsurfer One Design class. I clearly remember the boards descending on the summer Thursday night series, racing amid the Lasers and Sabots. The explosion was loud.
Among that early group of racers was Windsurfer inventor Hoyle Schweitzer and his sons Matt and Teddy. At the time the boys were involved in the junior sailing program out of California Yacht Club, but once the windsurfer race circuit grew, they left the traditional sailing scene behind and rode the Windsurfer wave.
Somewhere along the way, however, progress changed the landscape. Options emerged, better gear became more expensive, sailing techniques became more technical, growth splintered, and the Windsurfer One Design lost traction. Longing for the old days, Teddy now publishes a blog titled 'Original Windsurfer', sharing stories in how you can live in the present and still experience the past. Here is a recent post:
"This event - Dino Windsurfer National Champs in Houston TX - is organized by the "Dinos" and it's better than a time warp to the 80's. Why? Because it's a fun venue to sharpen your windsurfing skills in a relaxed event. And you can go as retro as you like; for instance I saw a chest harness (circa late 70s) and many vintage shirts. I was sporting a neon Windsurfer shirt, way retro.
"Here's the deal: Bring a Stock Windsurfer One Design. If you don't have a One Design or you're not able to bring it to Houston, you can sail one or theirs. The Dino's have a fleet of Original Windsurfers! As the Notice of Race states: We rig'em and you sail'em.
"The 2010 event saw nine races for the 28 entrants. The wind was light to moderate and sailors of every skill level participated. But it's not all racing racing racing . . . there's also a "party barge" near the windward mark for hecklers, shade, lounging and refreshments! It's a great place to hang out between races..... read on: http://tinyurl.com/OW-031611
By Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt editor