After featuring Oscar Carmichael as the ‘new kid on the block’ recently, we thought we would see how far we could go with it. So we literally crossed some of the largest landmasses and ocean-expanses in the world to bring you our next shining talent, Felix Spencer from West Coast Australia! The 17 year old is another dedicated and talented windsurfer, who we may well see on the PWA Tour in the not to distant future.
The likes of Philip Koster have raised the bar high for the next generation but will this mean a fresh breed of ‘new-school’ wave sailors. Felix is certainly stepping up to the challenge, and thanks to the powers of the World Wide Web we managed to catch up with him for a little Boardseeker-Felix Skype date.
Photos John Spencer & James McCarthy-Price (ka88.tumblr.com)
Boardseeker - Hi Felix, good to catch up, can you tell us where exactly you are from and how long you've been windsurfing for?
Felix - Hi Boardseeker. Well I am from Esperance WA and I began windsurfing when I was about 10, but it wasn't until I was about 13 that I really became hooked on wave-sailing.
Boardseeker - Cool, so can you tell us a little more about the season down there?
Felix - Basically the season runs from November through to March with the south coast receiving afternoon sea breezes on a regular basis. Anywhere along the south coast has potential to serve up awesome windsurfing with so many different bays. The local spot I usually sail at is fourth beach, which is one of the closest to town. The better spots I am keeping a secret ;)
Boardseeker - Haha, ok but do we see any of the 'secret spots' in the video?
Felix - Yes. All the good down the line wave-riding is mostly at my favourite 'secret spot'.
Boardseeker - Well wherever it is, we at Boardseeker are pretty envious. Talking of the video then, you have a high level for someone so young, have you ever considered competing and if so what would be the logical route for you?
Felix - Well last year I went to the Lancelin Ocean Classic, which was my first event. I really enjoyed the whole experience and placed third in the juniors division for both the waves and the marathon. This year I had planned to go again but the forecast was terrible and there was a sick pattern at home. So in the end we decided to stay and go to my secret spot. In the future though I definitely want to compete on the PWA and hope that I can reach the level required to do so.
Boardseeker - Well it's certainly starting to look that way, do you get the chance to train with or sail alongside some of the Australia's big names?
Felix - Yes over the summer the Severne team including Scotty, Jeager, Ben Severne and Si Hurrey usually come down and it's great to sail alongside these guys.
Boardseeker - Cool, so it must be pretty inspiring and motivational when they are about, do you think it helps with your own level?
Felix - It's very inspiring to sail when those guys are around and it certainly does help when you get a first hand experience of how to do a wave360 when Scotty pulls one just in front of you!
Boardseeker - Awesome! You live at one of the best wave locations in the world, you get to sail with the likes of the above and you witness all the greatest moves first hand. Have you ever left Aus to windsurf elsewhere?
Felix - No. I have been to France once on a family holiday but wanted to leave so I could come home and sail because the forecast was sick.
Boardseeker - Haha that sounds about right. Have you ever seen any videos of European spots and thought you might like to visit there?
Felix - Some of the spots from Ireland look pretty darn good but I am not sure about the cold! I would definitely like to go to Ho'okipa and Cape Verde though.
Boardseeker - Autumn can be a good time of the year in the UK, still fairly warm. The UK has one of the best national wave tours in the world, maybe we will see you there one day... Tell us quickly the biggest conditions you ever got to sail?
Felix - I am not much of a big wave guy and prefer the small stuff but the biggest I’d say I’ve sailed in would have been mast and a half.
Boardseeker - That's cool, we think there are many like that. Actually that leads us on nicely to freestyle in the waves, which is generally done in the smaller stuff, what's your thought on this and do you think it's right in competition?
Felix - To be honest I don't like it when you get freestylers who go out in the waves and throw flakas down the face of the wave. Having said that those guys like Brawzinho who actually hit the lip then throw down a goita or taka, that's sick and I want to be able to do those maneuvers.
Boardseeker - That makes sense, so your not a freestyle man, do you ever take the chance to practice it or just purely waves?
Felix - I do try to do a bit of freestyle when there are zero waves but can't really do much apart from specky crashes.
A few quick fire questions then:
Boardseeker - What's your favourite kit setup?
Felix - 4.7 KA Killer and 75l RRD cult quad
*Connection lost for a few minutes*
Boardseeker - Are these your sponsors or do you have some more to add to the list?
Felix - Yes. The guys from 2ndWind Sailboards help me out with RRD and Esperance Surf and Sail help with all the hardware.
Boardseeker - Favourite worldwide windsurfer?
Felix - Kauli Seadi
Boardseeker - Dream session?
Felix - Head to half-mast. Cross-offshore 4.2 or 4.7
Boardseeker - How often do you get to sail?
Felix - It really depends on the weather pattern at the time. Sometimes I sail for a week straight then other times I don't sail for a week.
Boardseeker - Favourite move to watch/do?
Felix - I love watching goitas but my favourite move to do would have to be a nice big aerial.
Boardseeker - Last one, what song get's you really pumped to send it as hard as you can?
Felix - 1996 by the Wombats... It's a killer tune
Boardseeker - Awesome, thinks for the interview any last words?
Felix - Have fun on the water and hit it hard!!