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Zhik 2024 March - LEADERBOARD

First ever Windsurfing Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony to be held at Defi Wind

by WSHOF 27 Mar 09:31 PDT 9 May 2024
Defi Wind © WSHOF

The Windsurfing Hall of Fame is to stage its first ever induction ceremony at the famous Defi Wind event in Gruissan, south of France on May 9th, an event that will see many of the sport's legends honoured for their achievements over the years.

There will be videos, music, and stars on stage, and those already confirmed include the 42-times world champion, Bjorn Dunkerbeck, so too Antoine Albeau who won 25 world titles in a stunning career, and Mr 'Irie Man' Brian Talma from Barbados. From former years coming from the USA, US-9 Nevin Sayre, a top world tour regular through the early years, also freestyle specialist Andrea Livingstone who created unique moves on the original Windsurfer boards and won many titles, and four time women's world champion Nancy Johnson. Others include one of the sport's early pioneers, a multiple national and world champion, US-1 Ken Winner, while former speed sailing world record holder Fred Haywood from Maui is also aiming to attend, as is former world champion and world tour star, S-10, Sweden's Anders Bringdal, who are among more looking to join in.

Founded in 2021 by film-maker Jonathan Weston, The Windsurfing Hall of Fame (WSHOF) has recognised three 'Classes' of riders so far, in 2021,'22 and '23 and the list of those included to date is a 'Who's Who' of Windsurfing's history. There are also categories for 'Shapers & Craftsmen' in the sport, 'Pioneers', and 'Media'.

The organisers of Defi Wind have created what is said to be the world's largest water sports event, and have welcomed the staging of this first WSHOF ceremony, as a major attraction for everyone involved. An estimated 1400 windsurfers race together in a sensational spectacle, over one of the longest race courses of 40km, in strong 'Tramontana' winds, and the 2024 event will be the 22nd edition staged. Unusually, it is open to both amateur and pro-riders, all competing together on the same race track. Enthusiasts from all corners of the globe come together to share their passion at the event, and there are exhibition stands packed with equipment, and concerts in the evenings

Phillipe Bru created the event which now sees both wing foiling and kiting events take place before the windsurfing, and was pleased to include this special attraction to the event, ''We are really excited to have the honour of hosting the first ever Windsurfing Hall of fame ceremony at Defi Wind. Every windsurfer knows about the legends of the sport and the evolution that has taken place over the past 50-years', so to have these stars come to our event to receive this recognition in front of the public and fans, will be just a wonderful moment''.

Having recently taken on the role of Executive Director for the Hall of Fame, TV producer and director Cliff Webb commented, ''Phillipe and his team at Defi Wind have been incredibly helpful and enthusiastic about having the ceremony as part of their event, so we are very grateful to them. Getting in touch with all of these people again to see if they can come to France for the ceremony, after so many years, is just amazing, and the response we've had from the Hall of Famer's involved is just humbling, all are welcome. We have a lot of work to do with our vision for the Hall of Fame, but we are looking to create a legacy for the sport to remember it's greatest stars''.

The Windsurfing Hall of fame induction ceremony will take place on May 9th, at around 19.30 hours, subject to completion of racing. It is planned to be on the main stage outside, so that the maximum amount of people can join in and enjoy what is sure to be like 'The Oscars of windsurfing', and a 'magnifique' moment of history in the sport.

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