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RS:X - the Olympic class

The RS:X came about as a result of a successful bid by NeilPryde WIndsurfing to supply one design windsurfing equipment for the 2008 Olympic Games in China. The RS:X was designed in 2004 and went into production in 2005.

The RS:X design features a high technology rig, with carbon mast and boom, a ‘wide-style’ board that merges modern windsurf board design with a centreboard, thus enabling competitions to he held in virtually any condition from 3 to 30 knots. This means that the RS:X is always a dynamic, versatile class to observe, and racing is always close, exciting and visually appealing.

Two sizes of sail are available for competitors. Men use a 9.5m sail while women and youth use an 8.5m sail. The sail, rig and board have been designed in conjunction with each other in order to to ensure a high level of design synergy.

The RS:X Class Association was established in November 2006, and is critical to the establishment and ongoing development of the RS:X as an international Olympic Class.

The RS:X is the most affordable yachting class that is eligible for competition in the Olympic Games. It is also very easy to transport, as it can be carried on commercial aircraft as excess baggage, thus allowing sailors to compete internationally at minimal expense. This allows the scheduling of many regattas which can be attended by a large number of sailors from all over the world.

The inaugural RS:X World Championships were held at Lake Garda, Italy, and featured some 244 competitors. Subsequent World Championship Regattas in 2007 Cascais, Portugal and in 2008 Auckland, New Zealand attracted 186 and 193 sailors respectively.

More than 3000 sets of equipment have been sold since production started in 2005 to competitors in more than 50 nations in 6 continents.

The RS:X Class is actively involved in developing racing fleets in the U21, U19 and U17 Age Divisions who compete in separate World and Continental Championships. It should be noted that only the U19 Division is awarded World Championship titles for Youth Men and Youth Women recognised by ISAF due to the strict limitations that they impose on their number.

The RS:X Class has recently launched the RS:X Reach-4-The-Top Training Programmes to assist National Sailing Federations, Athletes, Coaches and National Technical officials gain more knowledge and experience. The class is actively organising clinics and training camps worldwide.

Watch some videos on the RS:X class.

RSX Windsurfer Class Association (details may be out of date) as registered at
Boat Type Boardsailing
Mailing Address
PO Box 803

Next National Championship16 Feb 2012

Robyn Headifen
Publicity Officer
Janine Williams
(09) 551 3213
Paul Mackenzie
027 492 3865
Dave MacKay
021 470 611
Admin Secretary
Jo Mackenzie
027 480 2618
Andrea Bowater - Christchurch Region
Stuart Pedersen - Tauranga Region

RS:X News


Results will be posted here as they become available - more at


2008 New Zealand Olympic representatives, Tom Ashley and Barbara Kendall have scored convincing wins in the 2007 RSX NZ National Championships sailed off Takapuna Beach.


After 2 days Barbara has moved into second behind Sensini of Italy, while Tom is holding a close third behind Bouman and Bontemps in the mens class.


Army major and windsurfer Ashutosh Tripathi would get the opportunity to fly the Indian flag on his sail at next year's world championship, a qualification round for the 2008 Olympics to be held in New Zealand. India has been chosen as the leader nation at the world championship. Besides India, England, Germany and Israel can also fly their respective flags. Tripathi bagged seventh place in Bali International Windsurfing Contest held recently and stood 24th in the Asian Championships 2007.


The New Zealand RS:X National Championships will boast an impressive starting line-up when racing starts this Friday off Takapuna Beach, North Shore City. Plenty of top international windsurfers are already in the country for the RS:X World Championships in January and will compete in this weekend’s Nationals as preparation. Over 60 windsurfers are already entered and with international competitors arriving into New Zealand daily, organisers of the National Championships are anticipating that around 80 windsurfers will take part. Just 20 to 30 of the expected total are New Zealanders with the majority being internationals here early for the World Championships.

Early in the New Year windsurfers from around the world will converge on North Shore City to battle it out for the world titles.

The Award of Merit recognises outstanding examples of sailing ability, of seamanship or sportsmanship. The achievements and services of those people who receive the Merit Award has promoted, advanced or bettered our sport in New Zealand.

Twelve Merit Awards were presented in 2007 and included

Tom Ashley


Finalist nominees for Sailor of the Year 2007 and Young Sailor of the Year 2007 have been announced by Yachting New Zealand.

After an exceptional twelve months for New Zealand yachting on many levels, narrowing down a list of finalists was a tough decision for the judging panel. The winners will be announced at the Yachting Excellence Awards Presentation and Dinner to be held at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron on Friday 16th November.


A stand-out year with multiple regatta wins has earned board sailor Tom Ashley a nomination to NZOC for inclusion in the New Zealand Olympic Team for 2008.

Yachting New Zealand will submit the nomination for Ashley’s inclusion to the New Zealand Olympic Committee this week, bringing the total nominated sailors to five with more likely over coming months. Early nomination is seen as important giving sailors’ maximum time to focus on preparation for competition at the Olympic Games.

Following ratification from NZOC it will be Ashley who represents the country in Qingdao next year.


Gold and Silver for New Zealand at Pre-Olympics

New Zealand has won two medals at the Pre-Olympics Regatta in Qingdao, China. Tom Ashley won board sailing gold while Hamish Pepper and Carl Williams took the silver medal in the Star.

With two medals in the bag for New Zealand already another looks likely for Jo Aleh, currently lying 2nd, who will sail the Laser Radial medal race later today in China.

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