Our New Generation series focuses on up and coming windsurfing talent from around the World, and it simply wouldnt be complete without this lady. Fiona Wylde is making a name for herself as one of the most naturally talented young windsurfers around, and we are sure she is destined for big things.
Name: Fiona Wylde
Date of birth:2/18/1997
Born in: Port Townsend Washington
Currently living in: Hood River Oregon and Los Barriles Baja, Mexico
Years windsurfing: Roughly 11
Years competing: Six. I did my first Gorge Cup Race when I was 11.
Favourite discipline: Slalom and Waves for sure!
Latest move you learnt: Hitting the lip of a wave and landing a solid aerial! So much fun!
What you are learning now: Forward and back loops, and of course always improving my slalom sailing.
Sponsors: Sailworks, Big Winds, O'Neill, DaKine, Gorge Dental, Nolimitz, Quatro, and Vector Fins Maui.
How Did You Get Into Windsurfing
I began windsurfing on the nose of my Dad's board. There was a line that I could hang onto, so I wouldn't fly off, but all I wanted to do was go fast, jump high and have fun!
From there my Dad and Mom started teaching me how to sail on my own rig, but I still enjoyed sailing with my Dad until I was about six. After a couple years of just cruising around on light wind days, I started sailing more often and trying new things. By the age of nine I was hooked, and I made a huge decision at that time in my life to stop competing in gymnastics, which I had been doing since I was three, so I could have more time on the water. From that point on, I have been sailing as much as possible and having a blast with it!
Have You Made It To Any Competitions
I love competitions and I always have. I used to play soccer, run cross country, and participate in gymnastics, so starting to compete in windsurfing was something I was interested in. My Dad, MacRae Wylde, had been competing in the Gorge Cup Race Series based out of Hood River for a couple years when I decided I wanted to try a race.
My first year racing they ran an event called Gorge Slalom, where you had to finish a three buoy downwind slalom course, then sail back upwind to a buoy, then complete a second lap. I remember it being so windy that I was overpowered on my Sailworks Ripper 2.5 and my Starboard Starsurfer. The race was a eye-opener for sure, as I got lapped. But I was eager to keep sailing and finish the race, which I did. That was my only race that summer.
The following winter there was a race in La Ventanan Baja called the La Ventana Classic, that included a twelve mile bay crossing from the island of Ceralvo back to the mainland. The race was really exciting, and after some rigging error to begin with I managed to get to the start line on time. It was a really neat experience for me to be sailing out in the bay with nobody else around. By the time I got to the beach, I found out I was the first woman windsurfer to finish! I was so stoked, and from that race on I have continued to compete and have fun at every competition!
What Are Your Long Term Aims In Windsurfing
As of right now, I want to have the most fun possible with the sport. Fun is the number one priority! I really would like to improve my Slalom and Wave sailing skills, so I could possibly look at more competitions and events down the line.
Where Is Your Favourite Place To Windsurf
Ooh, that's a tough one! I love to windsurf anywhere it's windy! Slalom sailing in the Gorge and in Los Barriles can't get much better, but wave sailing at Ho'okipa is incredible!
What Is Your Local Spot And Why Do You Like It
In the spring and summer months I sail all over the Gorge. Slalom sailing at the event site, bump 'n' jump at the Hatchery or at Dougs, or wherever it looks windiest!
In the winter months, I sail in Los Barriles Baja. I love sailing in Baja because you get to sail in big smooth rolling swell with steady winds.
In the Gorge it's epically windy and you can boost some huge air which is always fun. I think one thing that is really neat about the Gorge is that there are so many different places and types of windsurfing that can be done.
If You Could Go Windsurfing Anywhere, Where Would It Be?
After watching the videos from the AWT event in Pacasmayo, Peru, and reading the reviews, I think I would love to go there to learn how to sail lefts. I have never wave sailed on Starboard tack and I would love to learn!
Check out the rest of the New Generation series: