The 12th National Watersports Festival (NWF) kicks off at Rutland Water, UK over the weekend of 8-10th June and with the ticket line closing THIS FRIDAY, you’ve not got long to bag your place for this summer’s hottest event!
The LARGEST man-made reservoir in Western Europe, Rutland Water is the perfect venue; safe for participants of any ability and the perfect amphitheatre for the 10,000 visitors expected to attend.
First NWF? Seasoned veteran? Here are a few insider hacks which will help you get the most out of YOUR NWF!
Hack 1 – Never tried watersports? Have a go! – You will LOVE it!
Perhaps you’re thinking of bringing family or friends. The RYA (Royal Yachting Association) is co-ordinating FREE taster sessions in windsurfing, SUP, kayaking, dinghy sailing and SCUBA. You can preregister your interest in your choice of taster sessions on the NWF Website. The RYA / Taster Session Team will then contact you to confirm timings and what to bring.
Hack 2 – Never tried racing? Give it a go. It’s addictive!
There is no friendlier place to experience the thrill of racing for the first time! Regardless of your age, ability and the type of equipment you ride, simply come to the registration desk when you arrive and you will be entered in the right category.
GB SUP National Series will be there running Race 3 of their series which includes a Challenge Tour, aimed specifically at those who are unsure about racing. This is a shorter course and allows you to participate even if you haven’t got that much paddling under your belt. In addition, there will be fun sprints run which are open to everyone, so plenty for every paddler and racer.
Hack 3 – Moral support
Need moral support? Come with your club, a friend or on your own…it doesn’t matter…you will find likeminded paddlers to talk to, swap notes with and join in with for the team events. And don’t forget the parties – you’ll know everyone by the end of the night!
We will also have some of the top names in the sport around for the weekend for you to talk to and learn from and a host of skills clinics for you to take part in. In fact there won’t be a minute to spare the whole three days!
Hack 4 – How do I enter the races?
By purchasing a ticket in advance this will automatically enter you into the NWF. You will be asked if you were interested in the GB SUP Distance race at the time. However, don’t worry if you were unsure or have changed your mind, you will be asked at registration to confirm.
For the sprints you will need to register by 09.30 on the Saturday and for the distance by 11.30.
Everyone taking part in the sprints or the distance race will be given a bib number – just remember to keep the bibs safe and return at the end of the race. The Bib Police will be patrolling!
Hack 5 – Help us to keep you safe
Wear a leash! It is important that all paddlers where leashes and those U18 will also need to wear BA’s (mandatory).
We’ll have plenty of support boats out who will always be able to assist, as the water will be filled with hundreds of windsurfers, paddle boarders and those taking part in taster sessions (in sailing diving or kayaking). We’ve got you covered.
Hack 6 – What is the race format?
GB SUP Sprints will be 100m straight line, with different heats for board classes leading up to a final. For the distance and challenge, race briefing will be at 1300 on the Saturday and then the race will start at 1330. The start will see a wave start going through the different categories and genders.
This year the main race is 10km distance across towards the other side of the reservoir and a bit further before heading back. As for the Challenge Tour, it will be 5k, with both finishing back at the SUP beach.
Hack 7 – Top Tactics
Keep calm and your head down….a strong steady paddle is what you need.
You can also attend one of the skills clinics before the race to pick up some last-minute tips from the Pros!!
Hack 8 – Increase your chances of winning prizes!
Enter the team events – the SUP Team will be running Dragon racing, XL Time trials and SUP Polo throughout the weekend. Whether you are a team of 4 from a club, a group of friends or paddlers who have just met, you are all welcome to join in the fun.
Hack 9 – How to improve your paddle skills
Not everyone wants to race however everyone wants to learn – there will be a number of different clinics run throughout the weekend including beginner skills, race tactics and the benefits of cross training. There will also be SUP exploring, SUP Yoga, SUP Polo and much more.
If you are new to the sport, there will be a ‘Boards 101’ session to take you through everything you need to know. There will also be a Q&A with the top brands – your opportunity to grill them and learn more about the sport.
Hack 10 – I want to enter in SUP as well As windsurf
You have the option to purchase ‘Full Festival Experience’ Tickets or ‘Day Tickets’, which allow you to take part in all the NWF disciplines!
Hack 11 – Pre-Order Your Beer!
NWF sponsor, award-winning Grainstore Brewery’s limited edition NWF beer, Daggerboard’ is available to pre-order from the web shop now. Use Discount Code WhatSUP? at the checkout. https://www.grainstorebrewery.com/shop-window/
Hack 12 – Get your fancy dress kit and dance shoes ready!
One of the big pulls of the NWF are the parties! With live music and DJ sets promising music for all, this is the place to pull out your dance moves and get your groove on! There’s live music on both nights, with a 90s theme takeover on Saturday!
Fancy dress? Check? Glo sticks at the ready! Check. Daggerboard in hand? Check. You are now ready to PARTY!
Get Hooked in for the best weekend on the watersports calendar! www.nationalwatersportsfestival.com