Peter is one of the best-known and most influential windsurfers on the planet. Former British speed and slalom champion he now devotes his time to passing on his considerable knowledge via various media. He’s written 4 books, made (to date) 20 instructional videos and DVDs and runs international coaching clinics at the world’s finest windsurfing hotspots. He has recently been elected onto THE WINDSURFING HALL of FAME
Peter had always shone as a sportsman. He was schools gymnastics champion at the age of 17 and played a season of first division rugby in France. And it was in France in the spring of 1978, while he was working as a teacher in France as part of his degree that he first stood on a board.
Back in his final year at Southampton University he started the windsurfing club, which is now one of the largest single sports clubs in the country.
For the next three years he worked as a ski instructor in Switzerland. In summer he ran a windsurfing school down in valley on the lake of Thun. The owner was a bit ahead of the game owning some of the earliest custom ‘jump’ boards. By 1980 he was already using footstraps and a harness.
Back in the UK he ran windsurfing clubs and schools in Oxford and London (Bray Lake) before he was offered a place on the Mistral Carlsberg team.
Peter competed for 17 years on the UK and international circuits. In the UK he was never out of the top 10 and was crowned slalom champion in 1988 and 91.
On the international PWA circuit he was the first Brit to gain a top ten placing in a Grand Slam event.
He was always recognized as one of the fastest sailors on the tour and made that official by having huge success on the PWA speed circuit. He was on the podium at the first Production Speed Worlds and was one of the first members of the 40 knot club.
Peter has been the technique editor for WINDSURF, the biggest English speaking magazine, since the earliest days. His technique features are devoured by improving windsurfers worldwide and his back page, ‘Affairs of the Hart’, a humorous sideways look at windsurfing life, is the reader’s favourite.
There is barely a windsurfer in the world who does not own a Peter Hart Masterclass video or DVD. He made his first program back in 1985 and since made a further 20 on every subject from basic skills to wave sailing to freestlyle. The clarity of the demos, the lucid script over and the humour, make them compulsive viewing.
There are some who have tried to claim the title but Harty, with no question of a doubt, is the original technique guru. He was the architect of the RYA’s original advanced teaching system, wrote the manuals and made the videos. He was also the first to start doing specialist clinics at home and abroad.
Today his worldwide clinic tour, which goes from Brazil to Tobago to Kerry to Vassiliki to Rhodes to Donegal to Tiree to Tarifa and finally in November to Mauritius – is a sell out.
Peter was with Tushingham Sails since 1983 which has to be something of a sponsorship record.When they stopped making sails in 2016, he moved to Severne. “When I rigged my last Tushy, it was like leaving a lover of many years,” said Peter, “but I have to say, the new one is absolutely gorgeous!”
When the Mistral board brand lost its way, he moved to Starboard in 2003 and has never looked back. “The energy and innovation that emanates from Starboard is endless – every year we have a new design concept to embrace and a new feeling on the water.”
His other principal sponsors are Da Kine and RRD wetsuits.