I'm gonna talk priorities on a wave, because it seems that there's still a bunch of sailors that have no clue about them.
Often you hear:"the guy most upwind has priority". WRONG!
The guy who catches the wave first has priority! And by that I mean the guy who is planing on the wave and with the wave first.
That's the main priority rule. Let's examine a bunch of situations now.
If two sailors tack/jibe on a wave roughly at the same moment, then it's the one upwind who has priority.
If everybody is slogging and a wave picks up two sailors roughly at the same time, it's the one upwind who has priority.
If everybody is slogging and a wave picks up a downwind sailor first, makes him plane and immediately after that it picks up another sailor upwind, it's the downwind sailor who has priority (because he caught the wave first).
Jibing or picking up a wave off slogging upwind of a sailor that is already planing on a wave can still ok, as long as the upwind sailor won't claim priority for that wave, but he will wait until the downwind sailor chooses to go for his line and then he can have the close out scrap of that wave (or ride the wave backside going upwind).
Instead, if you jibe or pick up a wave off slogging on top of a downwind sailor that is already planing on a wave and you push him downwind or you start your bottom turn like if it was your wave, that's a priority violation and if there was a referee like in football, you would get a yellow card and if you do it again, you would get kicked out of the water and would have to skip next session.
At Hookipa there's mostly two waves or wave sections to ride: (very rarely you can ride both): middles and the point.
If a sailor has caught the wave first and is upwind at middles, in theory, he has the right to choose to scream down the line and go hit the bowl at the point.
I personally think that, in order to maximize the share, when a sailor is at middles with priority, unless that wave is really small or weak and the one at the point looks a lot better, he should just stay and ride the wave at middles.
A perfect example of this kind of behavior is Mark Angulo.
He does most of his crazy moves at Middles, even though the point is steeper and I've never seen him screaming down the line unnecessarily towards the point just to claim his priority. I've seen many other sailors do that instead.
One other example of sailor that rarely I see involved in priority disputes is Levi.
Levi's upwind reaches are often extremely long. He goes and picks up his wave way out there. How can he consistently pick the best wave of the set so far out it's a mystery, but once he's on a plane on a wave from such a far distance, it's absolutely clear that it's his wave. Probably his easy recognizable sail (big sponsor sticker) helps: "oh, that's Levi... don't want to drop on him" most sailors must think.
Sailors going out have priority of choosing their line over sailors on the wave. Said this, WHENEVER POSSIBLE (i.e. unless he's going to face a clear rejection), it would be nice if the sailor going out would aim to the already closed part of the wave and leave the clean one to the sailor on the wave. That's totally personal and depends highly on the sailor skill. The most important thing is to take a line and follow it, instead of hesitating and changing it.
One more etiquette recommendation. If you're riding a medium wave at the point, please check the wave behind you. If it's bigger than yours, it's very likely that if you kick out off your wave when it's done, you'll be in the way of the sailor on the next wave.
So, whenever it's possible, unless you risk to get too close to the rocks of course, don't kick out off your wave as soon as it's done, but keep bearing off the wind and jibe in the channel so that you won't be in the way of the next sailors.
Last and probably most important reminder. We're all out there to have fun. Please leave your shitty energy at home if you are full of it. Hearing people yelling at each other in the water bugs me as much as smelling the stink of a jet-sky.
Of course, yelling a little "UI" just to make sure that the sailor downwind without priority understands that he has to get out of the way it's ok. It's like calling a wave in surfing when it's crowded. It's like a safety measure.
But any kind of fighting or cursing in the water should result in an immediate red card and ejection.
That's pretty much it. It's not that difficult. Please leave comments if that's not clear, or if you think I got something wrong or if you have something to add.
Okey, I don't like posts without photos or videos, so here's two videos.
I care very little for the fashion photoshoot Robby Naish is involved in this first one (no offense, just my opinion), but I like what Robby says in the interview bits.
More Windsurfing Videos
This other one has nothing to do with water sports, but shows some unreal balance skills. Watch it, it's really amazing.
Like many other Mauians, yesterday I went to the MACC to watch these two movies:
Who is J.O.B.
One was full of soul, the other soul-less. I'll let you guess which...
Windsurfer International has a new look.
PS. The more I think about the football referee analogy, the more I'm tempted to start giving virtual yellow cards on this blog. Anyone who drops in on me will be yellow carded on this blog, how is that?
Hey, I may not fix the problem of all priority violations at Hookipa, but I might well end up fixing the ones I get! :)
Where's my whistle?