Top PWA wave sailor Phil Horrocks updates us on his winter plans.
Phil Horrocks (JP, NeilPryde) has been on the World Tour for a few years now, and with every winter, he seems to get better and better, so what’s his secret? A super thick wetsuit to brave the UK in January and February? Nope. Apparently he just skips the country as soon as possible!
“I’ve missed the winter I’m afraid. I leapfrogged straight from the British Autumn right through to the spring, and summer is only just around the corner.
South Africa’s a country in the throes of preparation for hosting the Soccer World Cup, the biggest sporting event in the world in a little over 6 months time, so it’s a very exciting time to be here! I think this is my 6th visit and it just gets better and better, and even more difficult to leave!
I arrived in Cape Town, South Africa a couple of weeks ago, I was lucky and landed straight into a batch of South Easters and good swells so I got some killer sailing in! In spring time fashion though it wasn’t the full on start to summer, it quickly changed and we’ve had a good few days of North west winds, very much like Hawaii. Well, not entirely true, a little bit colder, a little bit wetter, and maybe a bit choppy for the fussy ones, we’ve had everything in the last few weeks here.
Having said that, it’s been exactly what we needed. You might think I’m down here on holiday but that’s not the case really, there is work to be done…
Myself and the whole JP team have been pumping Werner full of info over the summer on what’s working well on the board designs, and how we’re going to implement the ideas and move forward from a seasons feedback into the production line boards for 2011. It’s for those reasons I said the changeable, varied, early summer conditions have been great and really helped us put the equipment through its paces in the whole spectrum of windsurfing weather. Anyway, it’s a tough job but someone’s got to do it!
For now the immediate thing is to work hard on testing with Werner, get working on some photos for the magazines, some action videos to keep the public pumped, and try to secure my position in the JP team for 2011. I also need to find a sail sponsor for the 2011 season, that’s my other major priority, otherwise it might be a winter cut short and time to go looking for a different kind of job!
If the winds not happening and there’s no surf then I also spend my time trying to keep pushing the PLASMA clothing aspect of what I do, I have a role where I act as the UK manager for PLASMA Board wear, UK distributor, sales rep, online shop manager, team manager and team rider all in one! It’s great as it’s mainly busy when I hit the UK shores and otherwise it can mostly be done from SA. I actually first met Robert Sand, the founder of Plasma board wear, here many years ago and our relationship has evolved over the years and now we have a working relationship too.
It’s only just begun this summer and in difficult economic times like these it’s hard work, but you know if you work at it you’re onto a winner. When you have an established international brand with team riders like Alex Mussolini (Tabou, Vandal) who goes out there and kills it like he did at the World Cup in Sylt, It makes it a very exciting time!
It’s a good lesson in business as much as anything at the moment and things are improving and I’m confident in the future we can build it into a successful brand in the UK as it already is across Europe. Check it out www.plasmaboardriding.co.uk
You can keep tracks on what I get up to by checking my website www.ripandlash.com I’ll post pix, videos, session blogs and general windsurf chatter throughout.
Right now though, the wind is picking up, the sun is out and there’s a job to be done out there on the water!
Take it easy Bru!”