Die Bedingungen sahen zu Beginn des 9. Wettkampftags alles andere als vielversprechend aus – doch nach ein paar Stunden kam der vorhergesagte Wind durch und der vorletzte Tag des DAVIDOFF Cool Water PWA Super Grand Slams wurde zu einer actiongeladenen Veranstaltung. Los ging es mit Freestyle wo eine komplette Single Elimination durchgezogen werden konnte – wenn auch aufgrund der Windrichtung „nur“ sehr weit draußen. Jose „Gollito“ Estredo war in überragender Form und holte sich die Krone als er gegen einen überraschend im Finale auftauchenden Anthony Ruenes die Oberhand behielt. Im kleinen Finale setzte sich Steven van Broeckhoven gegen Tonky Frans durch. Kiri Thode verliert mit Rang 5 in der Single im Titelrennen an Boden.
Pech für Adrian Beholz, der zwar nach wie vor in den Top 10 liegt, aber trotz 45,5 Punkten von Tonky Frans aus dem Rennen geworfen wurde. Alle 3 weiteren Deutschen Fahrer (Marco Lufen, Tilo Eber und Valentin Böckler) verloren leider ihre ersten Heats und hofften auf die Double Elimination – welche leider nach wenigen Heats aufgrund des nachlasenden Windes abgebrochen werden musste. Ein Disziplinenwechsel stand an.
Schnell wurden die Slalombojen gesetzt und Elimination 2 gestartet. Hier konnten „nur“ 6 Runden gefahren werden und somit ist hier noch keine Wertung erreicht. Arnon Dagan, der Eventführende, kegelte sich mit einem Frühstart selbst aus dem Rennen und wird hoffen, dass der Wind am letzten Wettkampftag keine weiteren Wettfahren mehr zulässt – denn so könnte er trotz seines Fehlers seinen ersten PWA Sieg einfahren. Seid live dabei – wir sind gespannt was der letzte Tag auf Sylt zu bieten hat. Alle weiteren Infos gibts in der offiziellen „press release“ von Chris Yates unten.
click for fullsize – all pics by John Carter / PWA
Conditions didn’t look too promising first thing this morning, but thankfully after a few hours of waiting the forecasted wind filtered through allowing the completion of the men’s freestyle single elimination on the penultimate day of the DAVIDOFF Cool Water Sylt PWA Super Grand Slam. Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / North / MFC) was in outstanding form as he claimed victory to move to the top of the PWA Freestyle World Tour rankings, and the Venezuelan is now on the verge of being crowned freestyle champion for an incredible sixth time, after reigning world champion – Kiri Thode (Starboard / GA Sails) – finished outside of the top four.
Freestyle – Single Elimination
History repeated itself today as Anthony Ruenes (Tabou / GA Sails) proved to be the thorn in Kiri Thode’s back, just as in 2007 when he also derailed the Bonairean’s title challenge. Ruenes was in fantastic form, but unfortunately for Thode, many of his best moves were completed after he had already filled his scoresheet. This opened the door for either Steven Van Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde) or Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo to assume control at the top as they met each other in a blockbuster semifinal – which could decide the 2014 PWA Freestyle World Champion.
Ultimately, it was Gollito who managed to take advantage of the opportunity presented before him as he defeated Van Broeckhoven in the semifinals with a stunning performance, to set up a battle with Anthony Ruenes in the winners’ final.
Steven van Broeckhoven
Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo continued his inspired form in the final as he took a giant step towards his sixth world title. The Venezuelan was particularly outstanding on port tack as he dominated with big, powerful air moves – starting with a monster shaka before adding a trademark pasko and a double culo. His opponent – Anthony Ruenes – made a strong start to the final as he stomped an air funnel into funnel, before going slightly off the boil in the middle of the heat. However, the Frenchman, soon re-found his form to fight back by landing a stylish shuvit spock and an amazing no-handed air flaka. Unfortunately, for Ruenes, Gollito was just too good on this occasion as he claimed the single elimination victory. Ruenes still enjoyed a fantastic day though, as today was the first time he has been able to break back into the top three and beyond in almost ten years – since his return to the world tour after completing his studies.
Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo on the verge of world title number six: “I wasn’t thinking about the title race when I was sailing – to be honest I was just focusing on sailing my best and hoping that that would be enough! Today and yesterday have been amazing. I was happy to win the tow-in and I’m even happier to win the single elimination. The conditions were good and I was fully powered to overpowered on my 5.2m.”
Earlier in the single elimination – Anthony Ruenes – was involved in an almost inseparable heat versus Thomas Traversa (Tabou / GA Sails). The two countryman finished the heat tied on both technical skill and diversity, so the decision came down to the best non-counting move, which saw Ruenes advance with a burner as his backup trick.
Elsewhere, Björn Saragoza (Starboard / Hot Sails Maui) defeated fellow Bonairean Taty Frans (Starboard / MauiSails / Mystic / MFC) in heat eighteen. Frans sailed a good heat, but unfortunately for him two of his best moves were judged as being outside the competition area, and therefore didn’t count, whilst his backloop was landed moments after the buzzer.
Adrian Beholz (Fanatic / Sailloft Hamburg / Maui Ultra Fins) was also unlucky in heat nineteen as he crashed out against an on form Tonky Frans (Tabou / GA Sails) – who finished fourth. The German accumulated one of the highest scores of the day, up to that point so far with 45.5 points, which would have been enough to defeat either Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / North) or Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne) on the opposite side of the heat.
The opening two rounds of the double elimination were completed before the conditions became too inconsistent, which led to the competition being abandoned shortly after 4pm. Up until this point the top seeds had successfully navigated their way through to the next rounds.
Slalom – Elimination Two
Shortly after the freestyle double elimination was abandoned, the second elimination resumed. However, the conditions soon deteriorated further and only another six heats were completed before the racing was also abandoned, which could prove to be a blessing in disguise for event leader – Arnon Dagan (RRD / NeilPryde) – who was disqualified from the second semifinal after a premature start. This means that no result will stand until the winners’ final has been completed, so he could still escape as the champion, after his untimely error.
The forecast for tomorrow doesn’t look particularly promising with light winds expected throughout the day. However, just in case the forecast proves to be wrong the slalom fleet will meet at 9:30am with the first possible start at 10am. Meanwhile, the freestyle and wave heats will meet at 10am and 11am with the action beginning at 10:30am and 11:30am, respectively. If the wind proves too light for official contest then there will be more action on the water with another freestyle tow-in session from 11:30am until 1pm, followed by a wind SUP race at 2pm until 3:15pm. Don’t miss any of the action by tuning into www.pwaworldtour.com, here you’ll be able to follow everything that happens via the PWA live stream and live ticker.
Text: Chris Yates / PWA – windsurfnews, all pics by John Carter / PWA