Louis Morris

Race

2014 Raceboard National Champion and Inland Champion, 3rd at the 2013 World Championships using the XR Race. Off the race course, Louis can often be found chasing wind and waves around S. Wales and the westcountry with his Rocks.

"I started sailing at the weekly kids club at Siblyback lake when I was 8, but I found windsurfing too hard! When I was 10 I rediscovered windsurfing, and went sailing and windsurfing alternate weeks until I got planing - then I was hooked. I went to the occasional Team 15, but it took me a while to get really keen on competing.

My first UKWA event was on 4.5 in 2006, but I started UKWA racing properly on Techno 7.8 two years later, and got into the National Squad. I switched to RSX at the end of 2009, and although I didn't go for any squads, I really enjoyed it, and got 6th at the RYA Youth Nationals in 2011. I figured that I didn't have the time for an Olympic program, I just wanted to have fun racing, so I switched to Raceboard, knowing that there is always plenty of friendly competition. In 2012, I had my best year ever, and won 3 of the 4 UKWA events I entered. I'm currently a Chemistry student at the University of Bristol, and I'm the Student SWA racing champion.

Besides racing, my recent discovery is wavesailing, and love to get out in the Cornish waves at home whenever possible. I've worked as an instructor for a few years at Siblyback, where I first started, and I'm really keen to promote Raceboard windsurfing to up and coming young ex-Team 15 and Techno windsurfers, and everyone else! Future plans: compete internationally, win some UKWA, push my wavesailing, maybe try slalom in a couple of years if I have time".

Louis Morris

18 Feb 2015

SWA 2014/2015 Wave Champion

I’m really happy to win the student wave series. It was a shame to not have conditions at the final event at Cardiff, but we had wind and waves at the first two events where I finished 1st and 4th, so can’t really complain too much.

The SWA has been a really good introduction not only to wave competition, but wavesailing in general. When I started attending these events as a fresher 3 years ago, I couldn’t bottom turn, but the friendly atmosphere of the events and high level of the top guys really motivated me to improve, and so my obsession with wavesailing happened!

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“Training” at Marazion. Photo by Mel Splashography​

I didn’t expect to win. In fact, I think it is the same in racing, sometimes my best results come from when I have no self expectation, then I’m more relaxed and can focus on just windsurfing!

The conditions at both events were pretty hard, for different reasons. At the first event at The Bluff, it was lighter than it looked on the inside, so I spent a lot of the competition underpowered, which wasn’t ideal, because it was almost bolt onshore with some big lumps of whitewater to get through. I felt lucky to get as far as the semis, but then found me feet, and landed some big jumps, table tops, and forwards with some back and frontside waverides. I knew I’d sailed quite well, but I had no idea if I’d won, it’s a bit different to what I’m used to for racing. In racing you can always see if you are winning or not, in a wave heat, usually I never see most of what my competitors do!

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In competition at Rhosneigr. Photo by Jim Brooks-Dowsett

At the second event at Rhosneigr, it was a little less onshore, but a similar wind strength, perfect for my 4.7 Rock. The thing I found hard at Rhossy was finding decent ramps and wave-rides from the relatively soft gentle waves there. I had a decent semi-final, but in the final I struggled to find a good second wave.

The level at the top of the fleet is really tight and pretty high, with all the top 4 at Rhossy getting consistent forward loops and fluid wave rides even in the tricky onshore conditions we had on the tour. Yet these events are also perfect for anyone new to wavesailing. As long as you can waterstart, you can give it a go, Tushingham and Starboard provided 4 sets of 2015 gear at the first event, so you might not even need your own wave kit.

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What could have been at the Cardiff SWA event if there had been wind and waves! Photo by Ben Bulson.​

I definitely want to compete more in the BWA amature fleet, I did Rhosneigr and Gwithian last year and they both a really good experience with great conditions. I’d definitely recommend any of the SWA wavesailors who are at a level where they can get out, do a jump and catch a wave to come along. Unfortunately, the Rhosneigr event this year clashes with the SWA/BUCS National championships, but I’ll definitely be at Gwithian, I’d love to get to Tiree as well, but I’ll have to see how that fits in with my uni work. A few things are for sure though! You will see me at all the SWA wave events next year, and at a few UKWA events and the Raceboard world championships this summer (yes I can still race, I think…).

At both events I used my trusty old 74 liter waveboard with 4.7 Tushingham Rock (except in one heat at The Bluff, where I used a 4.2), which is a combo that rocks in all conditions!

Thanks to the SWA and especially Jim Brooks-Dowsett from Puravida for running a great wave series, and also to Tushingham Sails for supporting my windsurfing. I can’t wait for my next session, it looks like the wind is returning soon, there must be time for windsurfing alongside writing my masters thesis surely!

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12 Jan 2015

My Autumn and Xmas 2014

It’s been a while, maybe I’ll summarize it with photos, rather than my usual rambling words!

I’m president of the University of Bristol windsurfing club this year, so spent a bit of time running that with the rest of the committee, we’ve got lots of keen members so that’s good.

Went to Stokes Bay for the last event of the UKWA National Championship series and got crowned Raceboard National Champion. Thanks to Tushingham Sails and Starboard boards for supporting me, and making the best allround raceboard kit. The only sail I used this season was the Tushingham XR Race 9.5, in winds of 4-20 knots.

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2014 UKWA National Raceboard Champion and Inland Champion! Photo by Ross Morris

Fun wednesday afternoon wave session at Lyme Regis, full power 4.7, practicing table tops. 

Went to Aussie Kiss XIII (Student Windsurfing festival), and had lots of fun! Bristol got 3rd in the Team racing, I got 2nd in the Freestyle with a bit of flat water looping. 

Competed in the BWA Cornwall Classic wave competition at Gwithian.

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Photo by Mel Splashography

Did pretty badly in the competition but had my best ever session downwind of the competition area, logo high down the line, perfect on my 4.7 Rock :)

Bristol and UWE hosted an SWA event: took a bit of organising, but worth it, amazing weekend and everyone had fun, it wasn’t that windy though. I got 3rd in Freestyle, 1st in Racing, and Bristol got 1st and 3rd in the team racing.

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Light wind freestyle on the 4.5 Bolt. Photo by Lizzie Walsh

Won the first event of the SWA wave series!! Really happy to win my first wave contest in really tricky onshore conditions. Landed a forward in the final, got a few nice backside and frontside waves, a few floaty jumps and almost killed myself with a one-footed tabletop. 

Then there were two windy lecture free wednesdays in a row, had some amazing starboard tack down the line conditions in South Wales.

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Photos by Ben Bulson

Then the week after, the forecasted wind didn’t turn up to Bigbury, but still had some fun.

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Had some really fun freestyle sessions at Weymouth and Torpoint, getting my vulcans more consistent on both sides, looping of flatter water, landed my first spock and grubby (I have yet to get another one). The Starboard Kode FSW 86 is a great board for learning these kind of moves: fast and compact but funner for blasting and easier in chop and better at carving than a real freestyle board.

Got back out on my Raceboard, I’m feeling pretty motivated for the 2015 racing season!

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Photos by Ross Morris

Had plenty of fun wave and freestyle conditions whilst at home for the Christmas holidays at Bigbury, Torpoint, Gwithian, Par, Whitsands.

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Photos by Ross Morris

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Jumping at Par, photo’s by Tom Bittle.

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10 Oct 2014

Stokes Bay – Raceboard report.

The UKWA National course racing championship is a series of 5 events, the final one was at Stokes Bay (Gosport, on the Solent) last weekend.

The forecast looked pretty windy for Saturday, and sure enough, it was very windy whilst we were rigging, but after a lot of rain and a 90° wind shift, we had about 12-14 knots. To avoid the shipping channel, the course was set quite close into the beach, which was great for spectators, but also meant that the inner loop of the course had very fluky wind, with a big hole by the windward mark. Add some strong tide, and you have some interesting racing!

During the morning, the tide was going opposite directions (or at least, much stronger inshore), which meant that left paid best. The wind was strong enough to plane all the way round, and I had good speed and was tactically strong enough to win by a comfy margin whilst Mark Kay, Rob Kent, and Lewis Barnes were in close combat. One of the leeward gate marks drifted leading to some confusion and disqualification those who went through the gate the wrong way (including Lewis).

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The wind dropped a bit for the second race, demanding a bit more downwind pumping. And this time the racing was very close with a few lead changes as people got the right gusts and shifts and played the tide correctly or not. I was leading, but after the last upwind, Rob was hot on my tail, and had a better downwind to win the race (I had a stinking cold and just ran out of energy, that’s my excuse anyway!).

Race 3 was no less exciting and very very gusty as the wind started to swing a little more offshore. The tide was very strong now, and even stronger on the left, so it was a case of trying to get the shifts right without heading out into the channel. Mark had a flying start and a perfect first beat, but then tacked on a header at the leeward mark, sending him out into the strongest tide and allowing 4 people to overtake! Myself and Rob got a good shift by the shore that allowed us to leebow the tide and get a crazy layline to the windward mark, so again I won with Rob 2nd and Lewis in 3rd.

The race officer tried to change the course to a windward/leeward further out in cleaner wind, but the wind dropped by the time we started and it had to be abandoned.

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There was no wind until about 1pm on Sunday, and even then it was about 2 knots, some people just went home, and lots of people started packing up, but then at 3, we had a great finishing race in 8-10 knots. The tide wash pushing upwind very quickly, but miraculously nobody was OCS on the start. I had a good start but gave myself some work to do by heading too much up the middle of the course; luckily I got the craziest long distance with tide layline ever and won the race ahead of Rob and Lewis again.

So I won the event, with Rob Kent 2nd, and Lewis Barnes finally converted his crazy speed into a super consistent set of 3rd places. Mark Kay was as fast as ever, but just didn’t manage to put together a good enough set of races to displace Lewis from the podium. Annette Kent had a really good event and finished 5th overall, first lady by a long way. Jenna Gibson was also very impressive, managing to finish ahead of Harriet Ellis, proving that a skilfully used old Mega cat is still as good as anything!

Full Event results

National Championship series results:
1st Louis Morris (Tushingham/Starboard 377)
2nd Robert Kent (Tushingham/Starboard 377)
3rd Mark Kay (Demon/Starboard 377)
1st Veteran (4th overall) Tom Naylor (Tushingham/Starboard 380)
1st Lady (6th overall) Annette Kent (Tushingham/Starboard 377)
1st Supervet (7th overall) John Pete (Demon/Starboard 377)
1st Youth (10th overall) Rebecca Kent (Bic OD/Mistral Equipe)

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Team Tweets

TushinghamSailsTushingham Sails
@TushinghamSails:
RT @JoWright592: Picked up all my new kit for the year on Saturday! Thankyou for the continued 8 years of support @TushinghamSails http://t…
13 months ago
TushinghamSailsTushingham Sails
@TushinghamSails:
RT @BOARDS_Magazine: Team15 is amazing, read about some awesome kids: http://t.co/KwUVXXd9vF @RYASW @polkerrisbeach @StarboardWind @Tushing
13 months ago
TushinghamSailsTushingham Sails
@TushinghamSails:
Jo Wright picking up her new kit at the weekend! http://t.co/9HTXLa5AX6
13 months ago
samrosswindsurfSam Ross
@samrosswindsurf:
Great second day with the Techno Class Association at Queen Mary Sailing Club, everything from 70 litre wave... http://t.co/L6ASfeg1z4
13 months ago
samrosswindsurfSam Ross
@samrosswindsurf:
RT @windsurfmag: Need a technique brush-up? Our Gurus’ comprehensive guides listed here might hold the magical key you’re looking for! http…
13 months ago
samrosswindsurfSam Ross
@samrosswindsurf:
All seasons in one day at Queen Mary Reservoir today. Big storms but still plenty of water time, round 2 tomorrow.
13 months ago
samrosswindsurfSam Ross
@samrosswindsurf:
The Neilson Holidays clinic are filling up fast, great to see so many returners but also some new faces.... http://t.co/QpY2MXhlr4
13 months ago

Tushingham Key Players

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NEW CLINICS, HOLIDAYS & ADVENTURES 2014!
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SIMON BORNHOFT MAURITIUS 2013
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Louis Morris
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Jo Wright
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