Windsurfer Keith's triple title success

SUFFOLK windsurfer Keith Atkinson has once more pulled off the UK Triple by taking the remaining two National Formula Windsurfing titles for the second year in succession.

SUFFOLK windsurfer Keith Atkinson has once more pulled off the UK Triple by taking the remaining two National Formula Windsurfing titles for the second year in succession.

With the completion of the UK 2007 Inland Windsurfing National Series at Rutland Water and the National Cup series held at Clacton, the nine-times British champion has become the 2007 British Formula Inland Champion and for the third consecutive year has also taken the overall 'Blue Ribbon' title of 2007 British Formula Windsurfing champion.

Atkinson, who moved to Felixstowe earlier this year, adds these to the 2007 British Open Champion title gained at Bridlington. This year's success makes him the most successful Formula sailor in the history of the British title for the Formula class.

His year started with Atkinson receiving the BBC's prestigious Sports Personality of the Year award for water sports. He then started his racing season with a decisive win at Marazion in the South West Cup at Easter.


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This was followed by a second place in round two at Christchurch, just missing the No. 1 slot by one point. It was then on to Bridlington for the 2007 British Open where he retained his title for a second year to become 2007 British Open Formula Champion.

Disaster struck at Tenby, in round four at the Welsh Cup, where he sustained a severe back injury forcing his retirement from the event.

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Three months of expert physio treatment ensued, although he failed to compete at the Inland event held at Derwent due to his injury and also failed to perform to his normal standard in the Eastbourne Cup event in July. The Whitwell event saw him back on top form, dominating the Formula fleet with six out of six first places.

After winning the British title again Atkinson said: “I was over the moon. I was really happy from an achievement aspect, and also I was hoping all season that I could win which would help me promote the sport to local communities and schools etc.

“I will have far more kick being a British champion than not being No. 1.”

Atkinson said that he plans to spend winter training on the water at home in Felixstowe. With a revised gym and nutrition schedule, he plans to bulk up and gain a lot of strength in preparation for next season.

He said he wants to start training for slalom this winter in preparation for the 2008 season, although his main goal will be to win another British title, making it 10 in total.

“On the promotional side, I want to encourage more and more people into the sport by creating recognition for Windsurfing by promoting at grass-root levels.”

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