After the Tiree event and again once Cornwall was finished, I had the pleasure of burning around the South and Mid Wales Coast with Timo, John Skye and Jamie Hancock to show them a few of the spots we'd talked about on the tour, and have the pleasure of seeing them rip up some of my favourite breaks!
It's fair to say that Timo is probably the most experienced and longest standing competitor on the BWA tour, and by the looks of his sailing and never ending supply of enthusiasm, he's still got years ahead of him! On the way to Cornwall as the entries came in, I mentioned that Timo was entering to head judge, Duncan Coombes. He hit the nail on the head, saying “If the conditions are good, especially if it gets big, Timo is definitely a contender for the top spot”
Just as in 2010, it seemed Cornwall delivered exactly what Timo was looking for on the water and he responded with an awesome display of powerful sailing that propelled him into a very respectable third place!
Jim: Saturday delivered some solid conditions and it looked to suit you with a bit of size and power, how did you enjoy the sailing and how did you get on?
Timo - I love the Gwithian contest, mainly because Gwithian is where I do most of my wavesailing in the UK. If you sail Gwithian a lot you really have a massive advantage over the other guys as it is a pretty predictable wave once you know it!
The conditions were easily an 8/10 for Gwithian. If anything it was too windy! Gwithian likes as little wind as possible really! My best heat was probably against Jamie Hancock, Phil and Dave Horrocks. That was a pretty stacked heat! In fact, probably the last heat I would have wanted!
Jamie and I sailed further downwind where the bigger sections were, that seemed to pay off as there were some massive sections coming through for big aerials. Phil and Dave suffered a bit from lack of local knowledge as they stayed too far upwind - one place you never want to be at low tide as it is half the size!
I was really stoked win this heat with Jamie in second! I'd say Phil is probably the best port tack wave-rider (actually starboard tack on the wave – Ed) on the tour so to beat him and Jamie felt good!
“It kills me more to have missed a good day’s sailing than to have missed out on a trophy”
The final was a different story altogether. I had a shocker. The wind had picked up a hell of a lot, so much so that I was on a 4.7m and my Starboard 80L Quad - a setup I never really get to use at Gwithian. My first wave should have been my best, a solid logo high wave – I hit a massive aerial but as I took off, I spotted Jamie swimming right where I was going to land! No way was I going to risk hitting Jamie so I had to bail my landing! Annoying... as that would have been a pretty high scoring wave, but I’d still rather have Jamie as a mate! The rest of the final was hit or miss - my timing was way off and I was trying to nail a goita as I knew that would win it. Unfortunately, nothing really seemed to link up for me but I was still really happy with my third place against three full-time PWA sailors! I came same position as last so at least I'm not getting worse!
Jim - 2 years in a row on the podium at Cornwall! You've been competing for longer than anyone else in the pro fleet and it looks like you have stacks more to offer! What are your plans for next year and will we see you on the whole tour?
Timo - Yeah, I am the old dog of the pro tour, but to be honest, I feel fitter and healthier than I did 10 years ago. I don't really drink that much (only in Tiree!) and I am pretty focussed when it comes to windsurfing. I have managed to make it into the final of every event I have competed in since winning Tiree in 2009 - pretty happy with those stats as the level on the tour is through the roof at the moment! Â
I love competing on the BWA Tour it is without doubt the best Tour outside of the PWA. We have some really dedicated guys behind the scenes like Nigel Treacy, Louise Emery, Bucky from Funsport, Jamie Knox and Jim from Pura Vida who really do make the whole show happen! I don't do every event on the tour - this year I missed Wales and Ireland as the forecast was way better for me elsewhere! My sponsors don't pressure me to compete they just ask me to go sailing and enjoy myself and hopefully get some cool pics in the mags.Â I think going wavesailing to the best spot on its day will always be my priority over competition, it kills me more to have missed a good day’s sailing than to have missed out on a trophy, hopefully that will never change!
Jim - What kit have you been riding mostly that has delivered the goods for you this year in the waves?
Timo - That is an easy one! For the last 3 years my most used board on the tour has always been my 90L board. In 2010 and 2011 my Starboard 92 Quad has been my saviour. I am pretty heavy compared to the other guys (87kgs) so to be competitive, I need a good light wind board that still turns well, the Quad 92 feels more like a 75L board on the wave and it is the board I use the most so even though I am the heaviest guy on the tour, I love it if the wind is light!
In Tiree, I sailed for 5hrs in perfect cross off logo high waves when there was not enough wind to compete! I really urge any would-be competitors to grab themselves a good big board, that will be the one you will use most! I got some new fins from Black Project this year for my quads and singles and they work insanely well, especially their new single fins. I have Evos for onshore waves and the Black Project single fins combined with my Evos make onshore feel like side shore! Sounds like the usual sponsored rider bull, but trust me their single fins are something else!
Jim - Other than the tour spots, I've been lucky enough hit some of Wales’ finest with you already this winter. What UK breaks have given you the most memorable sessions in 2011?
Timo - Every session I have is memorable in some way or another. Bottom line, I love windsurfing in all conditions - even flat water blasting outside my house is good fun! I just had an epic session in Wales with you guys that should be out in the mags soon! All the trips that I do with JC and the boys are always fun just because of the disasters that normally take place, but all in all we always score epic conditions! My top 5 for the year sessions would be
1.) Isle of Lewis
2.) Magheraughty, Ireland
5.) North Yorkshire
Look out for More action from Timo in the winter months, and on the BWA tour in 2012 that kicks of with Ireland and Wales at the end of April.
Timo Mullin is sponsored by Starboard, Severne, Animal, Black Project Fins and Concept 2.