Blast From The Past
With Covid-19 continuing to dominate the headlines windsurfing and sport in general have been put on hold as each country attempts to to gain control of the ongoing pandemic. Over the coming weeks we’ll be catching up with several sailors and asking them to cast their mind back to some of their first windsurfing experiences and memories. First up is non other than 25-time world champion Antoine Albeau (JP / NeilPryde). If you fancy it why not let us know about some of your windsurfing memories in the comments!
Take us back to the memory of your very first windsurf experience…
Man... I was 4 or 5 years old, I don’t remember!!
Where were you?
Ile de Ré, the island where I live.
When was it?
I was 5 years old.
Who were you with?
With my dad.
What do you remember from that very first session?
I don’t remember, at this time windsurfing wasn’t like it is today. There was no gear for kids, even the adults had problems to lift up the sail out of the water. It was the beginning of the beginning! My dad made me a little sail that I still have. He cut the very top out of the triangle sail, which was the standard sail back in the days and made me a tiny sail.
Who was your local hero?
At this age only your dad is your hero!
What gear were you using?
A self-made sail by my dad, the top of a triangle sail.
Describe your feeling when you were planing for the first time?
I don’t remember my first planing because when I was starting windsurfing, planing didn’t exist!! It came slowly with the evolution of the gear, so it was no first planing.
How did you realise you were becoming a professional windsurfer?
I never realised, I started to follow the Olympic Class and on the side I was doing the funboard class. I started doing a few events on the tour in 1992, like Almanarre, Aruba, The Netherlands and Sylt.
Give a tip for the next generation!
Spend hours on the water, but don’t forget to study!