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I needed some serious, and reliable wind. And I had a 2022 JP Magic Wave 89 to try..... And so I left for a short trip to France, which rewarded me with two beautiful days of windsurfing, and a beautiful warm sun.


Windsurfing, report: Coudouliere, France, 2-4 july 2024 


I left on Tuesday 2nd July, in the afternoon, for France. Around 6pm I arrived near Hyeres. Not wanting to deal with the traffic in Toulon, I headed for La Madrague, in Hyeres. Wind dropping when I arrived, and an inconsistent session. But the panorama and the sunset of Hyeres always open the heart.

The next morning, July 3, I showed up early at the Coudouliere, to take advantage of a good forecast for the start of the day. I easily found a place in the car park near the beach. I and 4-5 other windsurfers enjoyed a nice hour with a North West wind, side on, around 18 knots. Often, early in the morning, at the Coudouliere, the wind has this direction which makes the session less risky (easier to stay away from the cliff of the port), and much easier and more fun to ride the waves. Small waves, but a fun session for me with big equipment (Goya Banzai X Goya Banzai Pro 5.3, and Tabou 3S Plus 96, which, even in small waves, surfs really well).

The beauty of these days of mistral wind, which lasts all day long, is that you can do several sessions throughout the day, with a bit of healthy rest in the middle... In the afternoon, the forecast showed progressively increasing winds, but with rotation from the West.




I returned to the water from around 12.00 to 14.00, to try the JP Magic Wave Pro, in thruster setup with standard fins (JP RTM in carbon, 11 cm  as for the side ones, and 20 the central), and with the Goya Guru 4.7. Unfortunately, in the early afternoon, the wind was very unstable (especially near the shore) and poorly oriented. The test of the new board was not satisfying.

The wind, after 2.00 pm, increased significantly in intensity, although it remained oriented from the West. Many local riders arrived at the spot, and in the water the usual beautiful show of colored sails that can be seen at the Coudou on good windy days took place. I'm slowly learning a little French, and I gave some advice on the conditions, some in French, some in English, to those who entered the water after me. I also met a nice and tough girl of New Zealand origins, who lives in Genoa, who asked me for information on the solar panel with which I operate the fridge in the car, to keep keep beers and various food....

Towards mid-afternoon, as usual, I went up to the Cap Negre cliff to take photos.

I got back into the water around 5pm. The wind seemed about to drop, but instead it gave me, and some others who were still in the water, a nice end to the day, which I took advantage of, again with the Banzai 5.3 and the Tabou 96. But how difficult is it to surf the waves with the onshore wind! Especially when it is not very strong, considering that when exiting the bottom the loss of power and speed is even greater, as Ezio Papalia later pointed out to me.




Io Coudou 3 small



For the 4th of July, the forecast did not give wind in the morning, but only in the afternoon, still of good intensity, and still oriented from the West.

I took advantage of the early morning to take a magnificent walk at Cap Siciè, reaching the Chapelle de Notre Dame de Mai, from which you can admire an stunning panorama of the Gulf of Bandol, of Toulon one, and the entire Giens Peninsula, of the Almanarre bay, and the Porquerolles. I will talk about this beautiful excursion in a special article here on Waterwind.




Then, the wait for the wind to enter the Coudouliere began. I planned to leave for home at 3.30pm, so as not to arrive too late. And I wanted to try the JP Magic Wave again.... At 2.00 pm, tired of waiting, I entered the water, as first, with the 5.3 (boom end to the low clew) and the 96, aware of the risk of soon being overpowered. I enjoyed half an hour with the 5.3 full, and I was amazed at how manageable the Banzai 22/23 was even in strong wind conditions (the models from previous years were much more powerful and nervous, almost like freestyle sails). After 30 minutes, however, the sail got really big.

After a brief hesitation, I gave up on my return plans, I decided to take it easy, and I rigged the Guru 4.7, and the Jp Magic Wave 89 which I set up with the two standard side fins, and two K4 Leon fins 16, recommended to me and purchased from . And it was a blast! The wind remained oriented from the West (almost WSW), and a little gusty, although strong; the water surface was truly chaotic (with this direction of the wind, in the middle of the bay, it seems that there is almost a rebound wave coming from Cap Negre, and therefore from the North West, which overlaps with the one from the West, blown by the wind). But the JP Magic wave was a bomb in these conditions, perfect for onshore. The two central K4 fins, as described by the manufacturer, give fantastic acceleration to the board. When the gust arrives, just bear away slightly, and pump the sail a little, and the response is immediate. The board starts planing instantly, immediately acquiring excellent speed, and, very importantly, it lets you ride close-hauled very well, then, to recover water. The board was also very easy to jibe, very good even to tack in chop (it's exactly what I was looking for), and also performed well in the waves in onshore conditions, even if I remain a somewhat poor rider in surfing in these wind conditions . I hope to try it soon in the ocean or in Sardinia with side/side off wind.

I left the water at 5pm and left around 5.40pm. I got caught in Toulon traffic.... and arrived home at midnight. And I also had to pick up a daughter at 1 am after she got drunk at a party....

What an intense life.... But the beautiful images that remain in my head compensate for the hard job.

HI. Fabio




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