Legends of the Bay is a brand new competition at Watergate Bay bringing together stand-up paddle boarders (SUP) and kitesurfers, and will be taking place on the weekend of 27th April and 28th April. It’s the first collaboration between the British Stand Up Paddleboard Association (BSUPA) and the British Kitesports Association (BKSA) and judging by the list of those competing it’s shaping up to be a really exciting event .
Competitors can enter either individual competitions in their favoured sport – a wave jam kitesurf event, or a SUP surf competition – or they can challenge for the coveted title of ‘Legend of the Bay’, which will be awarded to the competitor with the highest combined score from both disciplines.
Josh Coombes, an Extreme Academy and Flexifoil sponsored rider, will be entering and competing for the Legend of the Bay title. We caught up with Josh to ask him a bit about his career in water sports and how he feels he will fare against his competitors.
How many years have you been kitesurfing/stand-up paddle boarding?
I have been kitesurfing for about 12 years, since I was eight, but I learnt to surf when I was five. SUP is very similar to surfing, so I guess the ability to SUP has been with me since a young age.
What do you enjoy most about kitesurfing/SUP at Watergate Bay?
Watergate Bay is a very special place, I grew up here, learnt to surf and kitesurf here, and taught at the Extreme Academy who also sponsor me.
Watergate Bay is probably the best spot in Cornwall to kitesurf and we get world class waves at times. It’s a very open beach which picks up a lot of swell and it works on most wind directions.
What do you enjoy most about competing?
This will actually be my first kitesurfing and paddle board competition. I’ve often steered away from competing as I enjoy the freedom of just being out on the sea with friends but I’m really excited for Legends of the Bay, I think it’s going to be a great contest and hopefully I’ll do well.
How long have you been training for the event?
I’ve been training all my life for these kind of competitions. If I’m not kitesurfing, I’m surfing. If I’m not surfing, I’m stand-up paddle boarding. It’s all water sports so any time spent in the water is training to me.
Where is your favourite place to kitesurf/SUP?
Of course Watergate Bay but I also love it in Brazil. I spent some time there last summer kitesurfing with some amazing athletes.
What kind of speeds can you reach when kitesurfing?
The World Record is 56 knots but I’m not sure how fast I’ve gone. That’s something I should look into measuring, I’d love to know what speeds I can reach.
How do you think you’ll fare against the competition?
I think I stand a good chance considering I know Watergate Bay well. Saying that though, the competition is going to be strong, there are a lot of great guys in the world of water sports.
Legends of the Bay is taking place at Watergate Bay on 27th and 28th April 2013.