The 2008 Catalunya Costa Brava PWA Slalom World Cup – Day Five
The arrival of the weekend draws hordes of windsurf enthusiasts to Sant Pere Pescador, to rub shoulders with the legends of the Professional Windsurfers Association.
Swarming Spanish crowds engulfed the competition site on Catalunya’s Bay of Roses for the penultimate day of slalom action. The event has always been popular with the Catalan locals, as well as diehard windsurf fans that flock from all over Spain, France, and often further afield, to soak up the vibrant competition atmosphere.
The morning kicked off at a leisurely pace, while the race committee waited for the cloud cover to burn off, and the local thermal to build sufficiently to start heats. In the meantime, the mass of spectators had the opportunity to meet their idols in person at the numerous industry stands littered over the competition site on La Ballena Alegre 2 campsite.
As the afternoon rolled around, the clouds broke, engulfing the beach in bright sunshine. With temperatures on the up, it wasn’t long before the palm trees that flank the beach were swaying in building breeze.
By 4 o’clock the thermal had levelled off at a consistent 6 knots, which, although not suitable for official competition, was ideal to run a fun race.
The ensuing race grouped the men’s and women’s fleets together for a mammoth 80 man slalom race in front of the ecstatic throng lining the shore line.
From the outset, the race was dominated by Antoine Albeau (Starboard, NeilPryde), who opened up a considerable lead that only grew bigger as the race progressed. Ultimately, he was rewarded for his efforts, winning by over 200 meters, followed by Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (F2, NeilPryde) in second, and Cedric Bordes (Tabou, Gaastra) in third.
The end of the fun race also signalled the end of the day’s competition. Tomorrow gets underway at 10 o’clock with the skippers meeting, and racing will commence shortly after this. Be sure to stay tuned to pwaworldtour.com