FUERTEVENTURA GRAND PRIX FREESTYLE DAY 4

The windless heat wave KALIMA the windsurfer's nightmare hit us down here at

Sotavento beach on the last competition day and no more races were possible.

We saw amazing action on the first days of the race though; it was like an

explosion of astonishing moves like all kind of Grubby variations, one footed

back loops, clew first switch stance spock 540's, one handed Swayzes, clew first

front loops, clew first Diablos and other moves which were simply unthinkable

just a few months ago.

Masses of new moves and combinations were created since last year's competition

which is indicative of the highly dynamic nature of freestyle. Web Pedrick (AHD/North

Sails) pulled out the Swayze earlier this year and it was Kevin Pritchard (BIC/Gaastra)

who landed a one footed, one handed back loop at the PWA Grand Slam in Pozo

Izquierdo two weeks ago which brought him the win.

Here in Fuerteventura, it was Ricardo Campello (JP/Neil Pryde) who surprised

all of us by performing in a very spectacular way and he maintained a high standard

of sailing in all of his heats right through the contest. He managed to win

one round and then claimed second in the second, this time only beaten by his

buddy Kauli Seadi (Naish/Naish), which brought him the win in this PWA Freestyle

Grand Prix. In the opinion of the remainder of the fleet, he was pretty much

in a league of his own.

Ricardo Campello (JP/Neil Pryde) after his win: " I am really happy that

I won my first event. I trained all year for that and I had so much fun sailing

out there. We had very good conditions and I felt comfortable and very motivated.

It was good to sail in a final with my close friend Kauli. I will now get ready

now for the next Freestyle event in Canada."

The experienced sailor Vidar Jensen (Drops/North Sails) managed a brilliant

second place in this event by his consistent sailing and his trade mark moves

like a fully planning one handed forward loop combined with a wide variety of

stylishly performed moves.

Robbie Swift (JP/Neil Pryde), the young English, power sailor was firing and

showed with his second place (joint with Vidar Jensen) that winning a round

last year was not a lucky punch. He just finished school and will from now on

concentrate fully on his professional windsurfing career. Watch out for him!

It was reigning Freestyle World Champion Antoine Albeau (AHD/Neil Pryde) who

improved considerably and climbed up the ladder in the second round with a fourth

place and finished 4th.

A big surprise though was the 4th place (joint with Albeau) of the young English

rider John Skye (F2/Arrows). " I am absolutely shocked and didn't expect

it at all. My dream was to get a top ten result here but now I am 4th here and

2nd in the Freestyle ranking of the year so far…I can't believe it! I will

celebrate this with all my friends tonight.

The following spots (joint 6th) were also occupied by young riders, Diony Guadagnino

(JP/Neil Pryde), Mathieu Bonno (JP/Neil Pryde) and a slightly more experienced

sailor, the two times World Champion Josh Stone (JP/Neil Pryde).

The final result underlines the words of Josh Stone yesterday "It is the

beginning of a new era and it is very important for the sport" and shows

perfectly the transition of the sport: the upcoming competitors share the top

spots with the experienced riders.

1. Ricardo Campello (JP/Neil Pryde)

2. ex aequo Vidar Jensen (Drops/North Sails), Robbie Swift (JP/Neil Pryde)

4. ex aequo Antoine Albeau (AHD/Neil Pryde), John Skye (F2/Arrows)

6 ex aequo Diony Guadagnino (JP/Neil Pryde), Josh Stone (JP/Neil Pryde),

Mathieu Bonno (JP/Neil Pryde)

9 Tonki Frans (AHD/Gaastra)

10 Kauli Seadi (Naish/Naish)

The provisional overall Freestyle ranking of the year shows now two youngsters

in the lead:

The provisional overall Freestyle ranking of the year

1. Ricardo Campello (JP/Neil Pryde)

2. John Skye (F2/Arrows)

3. Antoine Albeau (AHD/Neil Pryde)

4. Nik Baker (Mistral/North Sails)

5. Matt Pritchard (AHD/Gaastra)

The ladies fleet saw the domination of reigning Wave World Champion Daida Ruano

Moreno (Mistral/North Sails) by winning both rounds. The sailing level of the

women in general was very high and it is promising, that new young faces came

to Fuerteventura to make their mark on the ranking

.

Daida Ruano Moreno (Mistral/North Sails) after her win:

" I am really happy to win here as I never won in Sotavento. It was amazing

to sail with the other girls on such a good level and I enjoyed it very much.

It is a pity that my sister Iballa was not able to come but she will be recovered

very soon from her foot injury and will get back stronger than ever…."

1. Daida Ruano Moreno (Mistral/North Sails)

2. (joint) Colette Guadagnino (JP/Neil Pryde), Karin Jaggi (F2/Arrows)

4 Tanja Emig (RRD)

5 Ann Kathrin Stevens (Mistral/North Sails)

The provisional Overall Freestyle ranking of the year is now the following:

1. Daida Ruano Moreno (Mistral/North Sails)

2. Karin Jaggi (F2/Arrows)

3. Colette Guadagnino (JP/Neil Pryde)

4. Angela Peral Martinez (Naish/Neil Pryde)

5. Claudia Rankel (Starboard)

The closing ceremony tonight at the big party tent is a must and all the riders

were longing for it during the whole event as it is said to be one of the best

on tour….

We will definitely all be down there to celebrate the closure of another amazing

event at Sotavento beach.