After 40 years of windsurfing shop in Turin, Jimmy Sport has announced that it will retire at the end of the year.
On the recommendation of a reader, RIWmag proposed to Eugenio (Jimmy) Lanzetti, his wife Giuliana and their daughter Viviana an interview to relive with them these 40 years of adventure, of passion and evolution of the sport of sailing board.
RIWmag: Good morning Jimmy, Juliana and Viviana. You have officially announced that at the end of the year, After 40 years of windsurfing shop in Turin Jimmy sport will close’ his activity.
How you started this adventure 40 years ago? Why in Turin like this’ away from the sea and why just with windsurfing?
Jimmy: In the summer of 1978 I was on holiday in Sardinia, in Cannigione in front of Cala Bitta. There was a gentleman renting the first Mistrals, I started like this out of curiosity. Back in Turin in September I went to Mr. De Florio (Velacenter) and I bought a used windsurf. From that day my passion, my skills and equipment evolved more and more and I began to practice windsurfing more assiduously. In the early 1980s I opened Jimmy Sport and started selling windsurfing.
Juliana: The idea was born in Sardinia in '78 where windsurfing had already been practiced for some years.
RIWmag: What was the atmosphere of those years with windsurfing booming economically and practitioners?
Jimmy: In the early 1980s there was really a strong interest in windsurfing and not only, there was the economic boom and I started attending all the windsurfing spots (Torbole, Porto Pollo, Hyeres, Tarifa) and many Piedmontese followed my example. A community of fierce enthusiasts was created!
Juliana: The atmosphere was exciting and creative.
Viviana: I remember when at 5 years I found me on the beach in Tarifa (it was the 86th), there was a very strong wind and the very very fine sand stinged me everywhere and I couldn't stay at the beach. I soon realized that my summers would always be very windy, like the years that followed around Corsica for example!
RIWmag: Based on your experience when and how windsurfing began to lose in terms of business volumes and in terms of public interest?
Jimmy: As for my experience the windsurfing market began to fall at the beginning of the 2000, windsurfers began to tire of being conditioned by a few commercials, and the organized ones were and are very far away and consequently expensive.
Viviana: Windsurfing, or at least what I could observe in Turin, didn't have a generational turnover. To adults who started practicing it in the 1980s, the younger generations of the years have not followed 2000-2010. In my opinion, the reasons were the not very low cost of the equipment, the need to move a lot in search of the wind and with machines large enough to carry boards, sails, boma, trees, wetsuits and much more. In a foothills city he has definitely won the novelty of snowboarding.
RIWmag: Despite these difficulties’ you've been able to go on until retirement. What were the elements that have allowed you to arrive to date?
Jimmy: Despite so many difficulties I was able to resist thanks also to the arrival of snowboarding that I started marketing in Turin at the end of the 80s.
Juliana: It gave us a lot of energy the passion for sport and for the young people who have always attended our shop.
Viviana: I grew up in the store, i had a corner in the back to do my homework and then, when I got older I started helping mom and dad. The shop was always full of people, windsurfing and snowboarding enthusiasts and in the 1990s we were among the very few in town. I started snowboarding myself very early when none of my peers knew what it was. It's been a great few years.
RIWmag: As you can see today the situation of the sailboard market?
Jimmy: Commercially I see the sailboard towards sunset, remains a sport for a few and very difficult to learn well and practice consistently all year round. The organized centers where you rent the equipment still work and you can take courses at different levels
Juliana: Unfortunately, I also see a decline in interest in the economic situation of recent years.
RIWmag: Viviana how you experienced these 40 years grown up as “The Daughter of Jimmy Sport”? You wouldn't have liked to continue the activity’ of mom and dad'?
Viviana: Having worked a lot in the store, on Saturday, in the Christmas holidays, i often thought i'd continue what started by mom and dad. But then the studios diverted me to other worlds and in the middle of the years 2000, when I graduated, the retail trade was already beginning to suffer from competition from the first large shopping malls and e-commerce and I devoted myself to something else. I make no secret of the fact that every now and then I have some regret.
RIWmag: Jimmy and Giuliana, you can definitely be happy and satisfied with this result. Close your business’ with a serene heart, you'll miss it’ or do you have any regrets?
Jimmy: Certainly "Jimmy" I will miss him very much, I've spent most of my life in this store and I'm going to miss human relationships with a lot of clients some of whom have become great friends with.
Juliana: We will certainly miss our shop especially from an emotional point of view, in recent years we have intertwined the lives of many people, some became companions of sports adventures. Regrets I have none, this activity has filled much of our lives and we will miss.
photo: Jimmy Sport
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