Thank you Window Cleaning Company Sponsor

First I’d like to start off by thanking our very generous sponsors, a Window Cleaning Company out of Minneapolis MN for their donation every year.

Robb and Brandon have been the closest bunch of friends since high school. Throughout their years of friendship, they bonded over one thing in common: they all share the same interest and passion in water sports ever since then. Robby was always fond of surfing Surfingbecause of his great balance and good reflexes, while Bran is more skillful in high endurance water sports like Dragon Boat, Parasailing and Wave Sailing. Both of these lads love to surf the waves of glassy hues. They are also driven by pure stoke on the water. Nothing can make them feel more alive than being in real action on the water. To them, there is nothing more exhilarating than feeling the cold rush of adrenaline in your system, while in the water. It’s just pure bliss.

Surf
It’s no big wonder how these boys would always bag the big prizes from Major Sponsors at the Smack Fest Challenge every year. These dynamic surf board duo is not just popular here at Marrawah Beach. They’ve gained a reputation all over the northeast coast of Tanzania.
Today, these surf dudes are up for another big challenge at the Smack Fest. Many spectators travelled to the north just to witness this action packed day at the beach. Luckily, I was able to spot Bran during a photo op session with fans, and had a little chit chat with him about the best techniques and safety tips that a novice wind surfer like me can do to keep me from getting knocked off by heavy waves. To my surprise, Bran was very enthusiastic in sharing his thoughts about wind surfing. He was unpredictably humorous too.
According to him, the most important thing that you need to look out for is the wave. Look at it as much as you can, whether it’s in front or at the back part. If you won’t see a big wave coming, you will definitely land in big trouble. He also added that Windsurfing takes time, more practice and most of all patience. You will need to learn how to maneuver the sail to have the best position on the wave. As much as possible, you will need to spend at least 20 minutes on the beach observing the best guys and watch what they are doing before heading out in the open. Once you’ve determined your position on the wave, now’s your best chance to catch it. You must be able to take control of the waves and your position in order to achieve power and speed. This is just like using the wave as a ramp. You also need to learn how to keep your position leaning forward while you keep your weight low. Whatever you do, do not slow down, unless you want to be swallowed by the wave. As soon as he finished his short tips, one of the crew member called his attention to gather around with the other wind surfers. I am highly confident that they will once again, bag the honor and the title of being the #1 Windsurfer in Tazmania.

Story

When we first heard about Tasmania in school most of us did not have a clue were it actually was – this Island at the south tip of the 5th continent exposed directly to the forces of the Great Southern Ocean. About a year ago we moved to Sydney to escape the surf-less European winter and to enjoy the waves at the east coast of Australia.
Pretty soon after we arrived we met Quentin – a wavesailor from Newcastle – and he told us about his idea to set up a special kind of wavesailing event at the northwestern part of Tasmania. Barbara and I loved the idea at once and we decided to help him with the media work for the competition.
On the 23rd of january we left Sydney to go down south in direction to Melbourne where we would go on board on the Spirit of Tasmania – the big ferry – to cross the Bass Strait. We decided to go down along the coast instead of driving shorter but boring Hume Highway which is leading directly.
from Sydney to Melbourne. One reason was that there might be some surf on the way down and the other reason was the big bushfire that was moving around Canberra and also in the Melbourne area.
Well we did not have that much swell but I guess the Trip was much better than it would have been on the Hume.

Princess Highway

The next day we turned off from the main road and chose a dirt road through the forest to test the offroad qualities of our Landcruiser (year 1981!) again. Passing by lots of beautiful and impressive bays and beaches we nearly forgot about the fires. Just when we realized that the sky was getting darker and the sun was hiding behind a brown cloud we thought to change the route and better go back on the main tracks.

Green, like in Europe, Sun behind smoke haze

Clockwise: general store, dirt road, scorched forest, river mouth

About an hour from Sydney the Highway passes some spectacular cliffs and some spots with promising names like Aussi Pipe, Bombo and Breakwall. The area is green and reminds me very much of some areas of southern Germany.
Mostly farmland but still quite a lot of eucalypt forest through which the road winds up and down the hills. The more south we got the hotter the air.
And more and more we could smell and see the smoke haze from the bushfires. The first night we had a stop at a campground at Narooma close to the beach.

Challenges

The second Smackfest Challange is over now. Saturday night the big presentation party took place at the Marrawah Pub. A best of video with footage from the week has been screend and trophies and prizes have been handed over. Three bands (‘The Voyeurs’ & ‘Stand Defiant’, ‘The Scandal’) provided some good action for the moshing pit and one more time the liver sacrifice has been a serious thing.

A tough week for all the competitors is over now: lot’s of sailing, surfing and parties. 26 Contestants from Australia, News Zealand and Europe put their names down to find out who is the ‘Smacker’ of this years event. Huey pleased us with some outstanding conditions and everybody tried to score as high as possible. Fully stoked we all hope that Smackfest #3 will happen in 2005. Most of the competitors and their accompaning friends have left the island and the area of Marrawah is back into serenety.

We want to thank the people of Marrawah for having us here and we want to thank the sponsors OES Australia, Events Tasmania and RedBull for supporting the event.

Competetiors

Freaks and Fair People,

I cordially invite you all to partake in the progression of wavesailing
at Smackfest 2004!
After the success of the inaugural event last year, I am excited to
announce that Events Tasmania have signed on as an Official Partner, providing substantial backing for the growth of this great event.

$2,500AUD prize money confirmed so far!

Details:
Dates: 13th – 20th November 2004
Location: Marrawah, on the northwest coast of Tasmania- Australia.
Format: Smackfest Wavesailing Criteria

Entry Details:
$65AUD Pre-Register
$80AUD After October 31st or on the day.

How it all works…
The first day of competition will be an Expression session where the
judges will nominate 32 men and 8 women based on radical performance for the day. These nominated sailors will then compete head to head within their respective divisions via the Smackfest Wavesailing criteria.
Every heat you win, you receive a $50 skin, with a $50 dollar loading for the champ in each division. PLUS a $500 wad for the biggest manoeuvre of the competition. Instead of lumping our judges with the responsibility of this decision, we are letting the world decide. The contenders caught on video will be loaded onto the Tideguide.org server for a Webcompetition! (Go to www.tideguide.org to see one of these).

1st, 2nd and 3rd in each division will also receive a beautiful trophy,
crafted by local glass artist, Graeme Mace. There will also be many spot prizes.

Soulsmack in partnership with Tideguide.org and Pixelworks will be
producing a 25 minute programme to be aired on the Foxtel network. We will also be producing a sick DVD for the windsurfing viewers. Justin
Maxwell, a specialist extreme sports photographer from Sydney will be
shooting stills to ensure a comprehensive print media coverage.

If this all sounds a bit serious to you, don’t worry because Smackfest is
as much about fun off the water as it is about the SMACK! On the opening and closing nights we will have bands and big parties, (especially the closing night, there was a sort of precedent set last year). Mid week there will be a fiercely contested ping pong tournament (A local tradition). The surfing and diving can be really good if there is no wind, not to mention the four-wheel drive and trail bike opportunities in the area. Just imagine a cold beer, the smell of a barbecue cooking as
you watch the sun setting in the great southern ocean after one of the
best sails of your life. This is your destination – at Smackfest!!

MORE DETAILS TO BE ANNOUNCED VERY SOON!!!

Locations

Integral to Smackfest is the location – Tasmania in Australia. Tasmania is a large island situated just over 200 kilometres south of mainland Australia.

This spectacular isle is home to numerous plant and animal species found nowhere else in the world. Over a quarter of a million tourists travel to Tasmania each year to experience it’s unique wilderness, food and wine, relaxed lifestyle and history.

What many people don’t know is that the west coast has world class wavesailing. The incredible consistency of surf and wind is provided by the ‘Roaring Forties’ and an uninterrupted fetch from the great southern ocean.