Classic celebrates 30 years
WINDSURFERS, kitesurfers and waterskiers will line the shores this week for the 30th Lancelin Ocean Classic.
The event has grown since 1986 when a handful of enthusiastic windsurfers met for a 25km downwind race from Ledge Point to Lancelin.
One of the race’s founders, Simon Rackleft said the idea started after he and Greg Rodda sailed from Ledge Point to Lancelin one day, jibing to and from the shore for about 25km.
For the first event, they recruited local cray fishing boats to mark the course and about 100 windsurfers set off from Ledge Point.
“These days, the event brings 5000 people into a village of 300 and is the largest and longest running windsurfing race in Australia,” he said. “The leaders are finishing the course in under 30 minutes and the average time is around an hour.
“Kite surfing, no more than a dream in the eighties, is now a permanent part of the race.”
Racing will start on Thursday with the windsurfing wave competition, then there will be a kitesurfing wave competition the following day.
Lancelin Chamber of Commerce secretary Norm Skogland said this year’s event would include a stand-up paddleboard demonstration for the first time on Saturday, before the windsurfing marathon race starts at Ledge Point.
“There will also be an ‘event village’ and an ’80s themed party celebrating the 30th anniversary, and a recovery breakfast on the Sunday,” he said.
With more than 110 competitors already registered, most are Australian, with a handful from the UK, two from Canada and one from Poland.
Last year’s windsurfing waves winner Philip Koster (Germany) will return for the 2015 event.
Online registrations will close at midnight tomorrow, January 14.
See www.lancelinocean classic.com.au for more information.
The 30th Lancelin Ocean Classic takes place this week.