The official website of International RS:X Class Association
The RS:X was elected for the 2022 Asian Games!
The 19th Asian Games will be held in Hangzhou, China between 10-25 September 2022.
The Organizing Committee of the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games, in collaboration with the Chinese Yachting Association, the Olympic Council of Asia, the ASAF Executive Committee and the ASAF Events Committee had agreed the following 14 Events, including the RS:X:
The medal ceremony at Enoshima marks the end of an era as the RS:X Class departs from the Olympic Games after 21 years and 4 very successful Olympic cycles.
I am very proud of the contribution that the Neil Pryde company made to the development of Olympic windsurfing and the influence the class has had on the presentation of Yachting within the Games itself.
In 2005 the Neil Pryde RS:X was selected by the then ISAF, the fore runner of World Sailing as the purpose built equipment for the discipline of windsurfing within the Olympics . The equipment was designed to provide identical equipment to sailors that was state of the art, affordable and robust to the extent that the equipment would remain competitive thru a complete 4 year Olympic cycle and capable of performing in windspeeds of 3 to 30 knots .
The RS:X Class performed spectacularly in the the Games of Beijing, London, Rio de Janeiro and finally in Tokyo offering what was clearly the most colourful and spectacular presentation of Sailing.
I retired from the Pryde Group in June 2015 but have remained involved in the Class at a non-executive level and was fortunate enough to attend the Games in Rio de Janeiro. I was hugely impressed by the quality of both the Brazilian event and Tokyo both in the presentation of the sport and the incredible performance of the sailors in very demanding conditions. The styling and graphic presentation of the RS:X equipment added a whole new dimension to One Design Sailing.
When we selected the materials to be used in the manufacture of the boards and rigs, we selected modern, light weight materials that offered designers almost unlimited scope with which to work on the presentation of the equipment and from Beijing to Tokyo the RSX Class has provided an unprecedented display of graphic design that moved Olympic Sailing way up in the television ratings and audiences. No longer is Sailing simply white sails on blue waters! We live and work in a dynamic world and Windsurfing needed to move onwith the introduction of foiling equipment at the Paris Olympics in 2024.
The RSX Class wishes our successor, the iQFOiL Class every success in moving the performance needle and making Olympic Windsurfing even more exciting both for the sailors and the spectators. As the RS:X Class departs the Olympics, I would like to pay tribute to all of the people who worked tirelessly to make the RS:X Class the success it has been. The RS:X Class organisation has done a tremendous job in keeping the Class relevant and on topic as the One Design Olympic Windsurfing Class with great leadership from the Commitee and Executive.
We faced many challenges but in the end we came through for the Sailors. I would like to extend my personal thanks to our Class President, Carlo Dalla Vedova and Secretary Andrus Poksi for the work they did in delivering a perfect event in Tokyo with the knowledge that this would be our last Olympic appearance. Well done!
Finally, and most importantly I congratulate all the athletes who embraced the Olympic dream thru the RS:X Class and made their indelible mark on this sport we love. This class has produced unforgettable Olympic Champions who will forever grace the history of our sport. Their names will live on in the annals of Sailing. I look forward to seeing Windsurfing on foils in the 2024 Games.
With Best Wishes
Neil Pryde Olympic Athlete 1968 Mexico Flying Dutchman Class
The Tokyo Olympic Games served up a thrilling finale for the RS:X medal races in Enoshima, as Enoshima Bay served up a light wind shoot out for the medals. With racing taking place on the most inshore course, it would provide a shifty race track which would all play into the drama for the final days racing. As the final two top level RS:X races ever, it was a fitting and exciting finale for the RS:X class and all of its supporters.
First up at 1430 were the women’s medal race – the medalists had already been decided but the colours the three sailors would be taking home was far from clear. China’s Yunxiu Lu, Great Britain’s Emma Wilson and reigning Olympics Champion, Charline Picon from France had guaranteed themselves a medal. All could win gold and all could win bronze – it would come down to the final race and potentially the final leg.
The qualification series has seen a wide range of conditions over the 12 races, and the top three deserved to be in their medal winning positions. 8 of the opening 12 races had been won by one of these three sailors and they had showed their dominance over the rest of the fleet.
In the light 5-6 knot breeze, the racing was always going to be close but what transpired during the race was truly nail biting to the very end. With all sailors getting a clean start, it was Great Britain’s Emma Wilson that had the worst and was mid line and set back. All sailors worked hard up the first windward leg with Polands Zofia Klepacka rounding in first place. The medalist sailors rounded with Picon in third place, Lu in fifth place and Wilson in seventh place. At the top mark is gold to China, silver to France and Bronze to Great Britain.
On the downwind leg there were no changes to the standings or the medals and it was all down to the final lap. On the next upwind mark it was Picon and Wilson who worked the left hand side of the course the best and Picon managed to take the lead of the race with Wilson rounding just behind the French champion in second place. China’s Lu rounded in fourth position leaving all three sailors tied on points at this stage with Picon taking gold, Wilson silver and Lu bronze.
On the final downwind leg before the short reach to the finish, Picon and Wilson maintained their positions and for both sailors it was out of their hands, instead it was Lu who had the most opportunity to change the colours, needing to get into third place. Lu had Polands Klepacka between her and the gold medal as an extra incentive to pump that little bit harder.
Lu managed to sneak past Klepacka on the final run and the finishing order was Picon, Wilson and Lu. Lu had done just enough to win the gold medal by two points. Picon and Wilson both finished on equal points with the countback going to Picon based on the medal race results. Picon had done enough to secure the silver medal and Wilson settled for the bronze medal. The race could not have been closer and it was a fitting way for the RS:X women to bow out from their final Olympic race.
Next up were the RS:X men where again there were a number of different medal contenders, however Netherlands Kiran Badloe already had secured the gold. With a 19 point gap to France’s Thomas Goyard, Badloe simply needed to sail the course without disqualification to win the gold. This was to be the third Olympic in a row that a Dutch sailor had taken the gold medal following Dorian Van Rissjleberghe’s wins at London 2012 and Rio 2016.
Behind Goyard the points were close with Italy’s Mattia Camboni and Poland’s Piotr Myzska in contention sitting in third and fourth respectively. Great Britain’s Tom Squires was an outside chance for bronze but needed the luck to turn in his favour in order to be taking home a medal.
With the pressure on Goyard, Camboni and Myzska to fight for silver and bronze, there was always the potential for these three sailors to push each other. And so it transpired at the start that all three sailors had pushed too hard – with Goyard, Camboni and Myzska all being judged to be on the wrong side of the start line and out of the race. This left the door wide open for a number of different competitors to get onto the podium including Squires and China’s Kun Bi.
It was Israel’s Yoav Cohen who would lead the race from start to finish, Cohen enjoying the lighter conditions and building up a 30 second lead by the finish of the race. Badloe had a slow start but over the course of the two lap race had moved up to second and secure the gold medal with an impressive 37 point lead – a dominating performance over the course of the week.
With Frances Goyard out of the race, there was little the Frenchman could do but watch the race unfold and see what medal he would be going home with. The biggest threat would come from China’s Kun Bi who by the end of the first lap had moved up into fourth place and within one point of Goyard’s score. Bi needed to finish third to take the silver medal but with Switzerlands Mateo Sanz Lanz in front of him it was going to be a tall order to overtake Sanz Lanz who had showed good light wind speed at the beginning of the week.
The positions stayed the same through to the finished with Bi finished fourth and collecting the bronze medal with Goyard retaining the silver medal. There were only two points overall separating second place overall and fifth place showing just how close the medal races were for both the men and women.
The two races today were the last showing of the RS:X at an Olympic Games, having been used for Beijing in 2008, London in 2012, Rio in 2016 and finally Tokyo in 2020. The class has seen a variety of Olympic Champions, World Champions and Continental Champions and leaves behind a legacy of excellent memories for all of the sailors, coaches and supporters of the RS:X Class.
The RS:X Class Association would like to give a huge congratulations to all of the sailors from these Olympic Games as every one had to fight through adversity simply to get to the start line. Well done. The RS:X Class would also like wish the iQFoil Class Association all the very best for the future of Olympic Windsurfing.
RS:X Olympic Windsurfing Class out!
Yunxiu Lu (CHN) has won gold in the Women’s Windsurfer – RS:X after a tense three-way battle in the Medal Race.
With the Medal Race counting for double points, the gap between these three athletes was negligible. Lu went into the Medal Race wearing the gold bib, holding a four point edge over Emma Wilson (GBR), who was just two points in front of Charline Picon (FRA).
Off the start line, it was very even between the three contenders but China was showing a small speed advantage in the light-wind, heavy-pumping conditions. Around the first mark however it was advantage France, just five seconds ahead of China with Great Britain some way behind.
At the bottom turning gate, with France and China opting for the right-hand side of the course, Britain in seventh broke left. By the top mark, Wilson had climbed up to second, and around final windward mark it was the top three contenders holding the top three places in the Medal Race. The balance of power swung back and forth on the final run to the finish, although gradually Picon worked out a lead to win the Medal Race.
There was no celebration from France however. Great Britain crossed in second, China third. That was enough to give the gold medal to Yunxiu Lu, silver to Picon and bronze to Wilson.
Words by Andy Rice – World Sailing Photography by Sailing Energy / World Sailing
Kiran Badloe (NED) has won gold in the Men’s Windsurfer – RS:X with France taking silver and China bronze.
Starting in silver medal position, Mattia Camboni (ITA) made a great start and launched into an early lead. But the Italian was unaware that he had broken the start too early and was disqualified, forced to leave the course. Next to be disqualified for the same reason was Piotr Myszka (POL) who was lying in bronze medal position as he was pulled off the course.
This cleared the way for Thomas Goyard (FRA) to cruise around the two lap course, the silver medal more or less secured for France. However, towards the end of the first lap, Goyard was also pulled out of the race for having broken the start line early. Now the distraught Frenchman had to sit out and watch from the sidelines, hoping that his points advantage going into the Medal Race would be sufficient to stay in the medals.
Meanwhile at the front of the fleet, Yoav Cohen (ISR) was sailing a clean race, probably unaware that he was in the bronze medal position. A very precarious bronze, however, with Kun Bi (CHN) within striking distance due to starting on fewer points than Cohen before the Medal Race. Israel won the Medal Race, Badloe in second, Switzerland third. Some distance back but now up to fourth was China, enough for Bi to steal bronze from Cohen by a point.
As for Goyard, despite his disqualification the Frenchman held on to silver by a single point from China.
Kiran Badloe’s gold medal makes it three Olympic RS:X Men’s titles in a row for the Netherlands, Badloe following in the footsteps of his good friend and training partner Dorian van Rijsselberghe who took gold in London 2012 and Rio 2016.
By Andy Rice – World Sailing
There were tears of joy and anguish on the boat park on the fifth day of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition as Kiran Badloe (NED) put one hand on the Men’s Windsurfer – RS:X gold medal.
Ahead of the Men’s RS:X Medal Race on Saturday, Badloe has a significant advantage in the men’s fleet and in the women’s, the Chinese, British and French sailors are certain of a medal each.
It was another day of good breeze in Enoshima, not quite as strong as Big Wednesday but sufficient for the trapeze sailors to be fully stretched and planing downwind. Some sailors scored double wins in their races, while for others today was the moment when their hopes of a medal in Tokyo flickered away.
Men’s Windsurfer – RS:X
Kiran Badloe (NED) has a lead of 19 points ahead of the Medal Race and just has to finish Saturday’s Medal Race, avoiding disqualification, to secure gold.
With a fifth in the first race of the day, the Dutchman bulleted the next races, and as he crossed the line he started to celebrate with his coach Aaron McIntosh, winner of a windsurfing bronze medal for New Zealand back in Sydney 2000.
“This is this the highlight of my career so far,” said the man with the blue arrow shaved into his hair. “I’ve won the last three world championships, but there is always something special about that Olympics. We had a tough selection criteria, battling with Dorian [van Rijsselberghe, the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Champion]. This is the cherry on the cake, it’s very special.”
Saturday’s Medal Race for bronze and silver is going to be intense. A race win and a good all-round day for Thomas Goyard puts the Frenchman in second overall, but only two points ahead of Mattia Camboni of Italy, with Poland’s Piotr Myszka also in close contention.
Women’s Windsurfer – RS:X
The top three athletes in the RS:X Women have broken away from the rest of the pack sufficiently to know that they’ve won a medal. Now it’s a question of which colour. China’s Yunxiu Lu started the regatta stutteringly but has got better and better. Today’s scores of 2,3,2 have put China in the lead with a four-point margin over Great Britain’s Emma Wilson. Just two points behind her is Charline Picon from France.
With China holding a minor points advantage, Picon might have been tempted to focus on the battle with Britain for silver. Not a chance of it. “Six points to the lead? No, I’m going for the gold,” said the reigning Olympic Champion.
Words by Andy Rice – World Sailing Photography by Sailing Energy / World Sailing
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ABOUT WORLD SAILING World Sailing is the world governing body for the sport of sailing, officially recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC).
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Enoshima is famous, notorious even, for its big wave action, and that’s what the sailors got on day four of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition.
Alongside the big waves across Sagami Bay, the sailors thrived in 14-17 knots of consistent south westerly breeze that gave them a stern test.
Men’s Windsurfer – RS:X
Kiran Badloe shot back into the lead, looking very comfortable in the stronger breeze. Scores of 2,4,1 put the Dutchman eight points ahead of second placed Mattia Camboni, the Italian who had held the lead before today’s racing. France’s Thomas Goyard is in third place, five points adrift of Camboni.
The biggest mover of the day was Kun Bi, the tall Chinese sailor revelling in the big wind, big wave conditions with results of 1,3,2. Another windy day like that and China could be challenging for the podium.
Badloe is keeping in touch online with his friend Dorian van Rijsselberghe, the double Olympic Champion whom he beat to Dutch selection. “We have a little chat every now and again, so that’s good. He’s given me a couple of pointers. Stay calm. Do your thing. And he just reassures me that if I just do what I do, the end will be alright.”
Women’s Windsurfer – RS:X
Emma Wilson (GBR) won the first two races of the day to move into the lead of the RS:X Women’s fleet. Although a U-flag disqualification for breaking the line too soon in the final race was not the ideal end to the outing, the British windsurfer was very upbeat about her performance.
Winning the last race of the session put Yunxiu Lu just one point off the lead, the Chinese sailor looking very strong in the wind and the waves.
Although the defending Olympic Champion Charline Picon didn’t win any races, the Frenchwoman remains very consistent and only three points off the lead. The top three have formed a breakaway on the rest of the fleet, and it’s 14 points further back to Italy’s Marta Maggetti. The chasing sailors need a really good day on Thursday to threaten Great Britain, China and France for the medals.
“It was a very hard battle with Emma [Wilson] and Yunxiu [Lu], they both had very good races,” commented Picon, “but they also had one bad one, so the situation between us is very interesting. They had a better day than me but I still had a good one so we are in a good battle.”
Text & Photos: World Sailing
Emma Wilson from Great Britain has been a rising star of the RS:X fleet having won the RS:X event at the Youth World Championships in 2016 and 2017. Breaking into the senior fleet scene has been almost seamless for Emma where at the 2018 RS:X World Championships she qualified Great Britain for the Tokyo Olympics and came fourth overall.
Emma has since come third overall at the 2018 and 2019 European Championships as well as earning another fourth place at the 2020 World Championships. Is this the year where she reaches higher up the podium??
You have had some excellent regattas leading up to Tokyo 2020ne, with some podium finishes against the top in the world – what have you been working on to get to the top of the podium over the past year?
Yeah over the winter we had quite a few regattas so I was trying learn as much as I could from each race and then in may and June I have spent it at home in weymouth training hard, putting the little things together. It’s been really good hard enjoyable training and now I’m looking forward to getting to Japan!
How have you been preparing for the conditions in Tokyo?
I spent most of my winter away in Vilamoura and Cadiz in big waves which we are likely to see in Japan and obviously it was much nicer temperature there than in England in the winter.
How has COVID affected your training plans and preparation for Tokyo? Do you think the UK lockdown compared to other countries has been a disadvantage?
At the start it was pretty hard because we didn’t even know if the Olympics would happen but then as things started to become clearer, my coach (Barrie) and I put a plan together. I spent all last summer in Weymouth where it is a great place to get time on the water and enjoy all different water sports.
Who do you consider to be your biggest rivals in the fleet and who would you say could be the surprise sailor in the fleet?
I think the top 10 / top 15 are all really really good sailors, you can see in the results, every event we are all so close. So I think it will be a tight battle, for sure it will be exciting. The Chinese could be the surprise sailor because I’m still not sure who has been selected to represent them and we haven’t seen them compete for over 18 months…..
What would be a happy outcome for you from Tokyo 2020ne?
To really enjoy the experience and have given it everything.
As an Olympic first timer – what support have you got within the team to help you prepare for the Olympics
In the British team it is full of experience, my coach has competed and coached at seven Olympics I think, and then obviously there are people like Hannah mills and Giles in the team that you can pick up little nuggets of information, that’s really cool and can really help me.
Thanks Emma, we wish you all the very best for the Olympics!
Interview and text by RS:X Class Photos by Joao Costa Ferreira – Osga Photo
We talked to Kiran Badloe from the Netherlands about his thoughts about the upcoming Olympic Games. With less than a month to go to the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, RS:X athletes are starting to arrive and prepare for the years biggest regatta. Kiran has had one of the toughest selection processes ever, having to beat friend and competitor (and double Olympic gold medallist) Dorian van Rijsselberghe over three different world championships, the overall selection coming down to the last leg of the final medal race in Sorrento, AUS in February 2020.
How have your preparations been affected by the COVID delay and how do you think this will influence the Games results for you and for all athletes?
I think all athletes have been affected by Covid and the delay of the Olympic Games. We planned our build up to the Games years in advance and if I’m speaking for myself I was in the middle of that build up when we got the news that the Games were not happening. Also the uncertainty of the Olympics happening a year later is difficult to deal with in other to plan your training sessions and intensities. But I think for us the most difficult thing is that we have new equipment for the games of 2024 and the guys that are going to Tokyo have a year less to prepare for that one. With new equipment this is going to be our biggest challenge.
Do you feel any pressure from home country in following a double Olympic champions footsteps?
I do notice that people have high expectations of me. Although it’s mostly people that don’t know the sailing sport that well. Everyone who is familiar with our sport, knows that anything can happen and that results of the past are no guarantee for the Games. All I can do is prepare as well as I can and deal with all the conditions and situations that we get given during the event. If I deal with it better than the others, I have a chance. But it’s also very possible that they deal with it better than I do.
What training have you done to prepare for Tokyo conditions?
We are not sure yet what conditions to expect in Tokyo during the Games. So I’ve tried to prepare in all the conditions as well as I can. I know that my high wind abilities are quite good, so I have tried to maintain them and also focus on some of the weaker areas of my sailing.
How has the Dutch Sailing Federation reacted to the changes in sport and training and how have they supported you?
My Federation have been a fan of the change in the equipment for 2024. Although we have been dominant in the RS:X in the past, it’s a healthy change for the sport. It attracts more kids to windsurfing and has the possibility to grow the sport into a well known sport world wide.
With regards to COVID our federation has been very supportive to facilitate us to the best of their abilities where some of the logistics became challenging. In Holland it’s impossible to do proper training in the winter and with all the borders being shut we had to improvise and be flexible in order to get the hours in.
Do you think the heat and humidity will be a medal winning influence?
I definitely think humidity will play a big role. Nowadays a big part of our repertoire is physical ability. There are going to be races that the guy that wins is the guy that can pump the most. The heat and humidity play a big factor in your physical state. If you are prepared for it and able to deal with it better than your competitors, you have a physical advantage assuming that we’re all equally as fit.
Who do you think your closest rivals are and in what sailing conditions?
I honestly think everybody is a rival at this point. The level has gone up so much in the last year. All the guys that are consistently in the top 10 have the ability to win races in certain conditions. I think my strongest point is that I’m all round enough to be able to sail in the front group across the whole range.
What is a happy outcome for you from Tokyo?
In order for me to look back at the Games and be happy I must sail “the week of my life”. I want to finish the event knowing I did not make any mistakes along the way. If I still made some mistakes and I managed to win, I’m also a very happy man. But knowing I’ve made mistakes and collected points and because of that not reach a potential place, I would not be too happy with myself. Also, if I’ve done everything right, made no mistakes and I would finish 2nd, I have to accept that somebody is better. It would sting, but over time I would be able to be happy about that result.
Thanks Kiran, the RS:X Class wishes you all the best of luck for Tokyo 2020 and a safe regatta!
Interview and text by RS:X Class Photos by Osga Photo – Joao Costa Ferreira
2021 ‘Gotas de Oro’ RS:X Windsurfing World Championships were held in Puerto Sherry, Cadiz, Spain between 21-27 April 2021.
Lilian de Geus (NED) and Kiran Badloe (NED) successfully defended their titles and became again, second time in row, the RS:X World Champions. In the Women fleet Katy Spychakov (ISR) finished the Worlds on second and Charline Picon (FRA) on thrid place.
Mattia Camboni (ITA) and Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) took the second and third places in the Men’s fleet. Congratulations to all winners!
However, this time the event was a bit different and historical because it was a very last World Championships for RS:X Class. On 2024 the Olympic windsurfing will be represented by iQFOiL equipment.
Still there are Tokyo Olympic Games to be sailed on this summer with the RS:X, so we are wishing a very best luck to all RS:X Olympic sailors!