ROBBY NAISH, US 1111: Known as "The King" of windsurfing, he is also The King of this Windsurfing Hall of Fame, the top vote getter for the Inaugural Class of 2021. Perhaps the most household name in the sport, Robby soared right to the top in his first major competition, and was Windsurfer World Champion at the age of 13.
Be it triangle racing, slalom, waves, or freestyle (inventor of the "railride") Robby went on to dominate every aspect of the sport. In time, it didn't matter whether he won one event, all, or none. He was simply the best and everyone knew it. Even after a few guys caught up to him and with physical stature or determination surpassed, he was still an enigma. It would take a lot more than beating him on a race course or one wave heat to take away his throne. There's a lot to be said about style on the water, as well as humility and charisma on land.
Still going strong in 2021, taking on whatever waves or conditions the world throws at him, his longevity adds to a legacy of his greatness. Long live The King!
Your first windsurfing experience?"I first learned to windsurf in Kailua Bay in 1974, introduced and slowly brought up to speed by Mike Horgan, Larry Stanley, Ken Kleid and the small group of windsurfers in Kailua at the time that took me under their wings and let me borrow their equipment until I saved up enough money to buy my own in 1975."
Favorite minute of windsurfing? "I have had too many good moments to pick just one… and they just keep coming. That is probably why I am still at it after all these years."
What would you like to be remembered for in this sport? "How much I loved and enjoyed it."
Robby at Diamond Head. Photo Darrell Wong
Robby on one of many covers. Photo Erik Aeder
A little slideshow of photos from Carol Naish. Gaastra Ad by Linny Morris.
Robby, back when he "needed" an uphaul, but not a harness. Photo Darrell Wong
Robby's first short board session at Ho'okipa. Photo Weston
Life of a road warrior. Photos Wong.
Robby still ripping at Jaws with his own company, Naish Hawaii. Photo Darrell Wong
Robby cleaning out his garage of the old and the new, 2021. Photo Julia Deutsch.