Sunday July 20, 2003
With winds gusting over 40 knots and most competitors on sails under 4m,
todays freestyle in Fuerteventura was even more radical than yesterday. In
the mens fleet, the tougher conditions suited the Europeans who took nine
of the top sixteen places; a total roll reversal from yesterday, but still
only have one sailor in the top ten overall, which has no-one over twenty
years old in it!
French freestyle champion Julien Taboulet (JP / Neil Pryde) was on fire
and became only the third sailor here to pull off a shaka in competition.
His routine on the water blew Tonky Frans (AHD / Gaastra) and Remko De
Weerd (Fanatic / Gaastra) away before finally being taken out by Konan
Lang (Naish), the young Brazilian who had another amazing day, advancing
all the way into the semi finals to face yesterdays champion from Britain,
Robby Swift (JP / Neil Pryde).
Once again though, Swiftys power sailing blending all the tricky slides
with tweaked power aerial moves got him into the finals.
Venezuelas Diony Guadagnino (Neil Pryde) blew Colin Sifferlen (Starboard)
away in the quarter finals moving for the first time here into the semis.
Dionys sailing was the most radical of the day, with crazy petes in every
heat thats basically a back loop with a rig flip half way round! And the
latest move that Ricardo Campello (JP / Neil Pryde) invented only a few
weeks ago in Gran Canaria; the fruit loop, which is an air cha cha if
simple terms could be used to describe this, it would be jump real high
and spin around your rig in mid air, starting with a duck gybe, then a
tack, before landing with all limbs intact. Try that in 40 knots& Not
mention his wyaramoos flat water Gu-screws.
But even Dionys form, which he put down to just having fun on the
watercouldnt beat Swiftys dominance once again here in Sotavento. Robby
won the third round today and in doing so has already won the whole PWA
Fuerteventura Freestyle World Cup, without even having to compete
tomorrow! Celebrations have already begun&
The battle is now focused on the top five, where theres eight sailors who
could potentially get podium positions. After three rounds though, the top
five are Taty Frans (AHD / Gaastra) (who took down Campello in the
quarters), Colin, Diony and Konan, in second third fourth and fifth
respectfully. After tomorrows competition therell be a discard available
when Konan might leap frog into second place with his current form, and
Campello could make a comeback.
As for the old guard, theyve not even had a look into the top ten yet,
until today when Orjan Jensen (North) beat Kauli Seadi (AHD / Naish) by
landing a crazy pete and a massive one handed forward loop (amongst other
crazy moves) in the five minute heats, moving him into the top eight today.
The ladies fleet had another tough battle with a series of back to back
heats which would even leave the strongest men exhausted. The second half
of their double elimination was completed, so todays winner would meet
yesterdays champion, Karin Jaggi (F2 / Arrows).
Iballa Moreno (Mistral / North) met her sister Daida Moreno (Mistral /
North) in the semis after they beat country mate Nayra Alonso and Austrian
Tanja Emig, and won, avenging her twin and leaving them in equal second
Karin Jaggi retained her lead as her incredible form and routine included
full speed one handed spocks literally right onto the beach, a perfect and
very high forward loop, a grubby and more twists and turns in an event she
has been dominating and leads comfortably at the moment.
With stacks of wind still forecast for tomorrow, the final day of
freestyle, the twins are the only girls in a position to still challenge
On Tuesday the Super X Exhibition starts, combining freestyle sailing and
slalom racing. If the winds stay this strong, itll be a radical spectacle.
Watch this space!