Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Pegasus Airlines Alacati PWA World Cup

Above: The prize giving ceremony

Below: Findog in full control at the gybe

Above: Andrea Rosati in action
Below: Tine full speed

The 2009 Pegasus Airlines Alaçati PWA World Cup
official press releas

The cream rises to the top after 8 perfect rounds of high-octane slalom at the Alaçati PWA World Cup. Ghibaudo and Albeau reign as champions supreme.

The beautiful bay of Alaçati turned host, as the PWA World Slalom Tour called by for a week of racing action. Situated in the Aegean Sea, on the Cesme Peninsula of Turkey, the spot offers a windsurf paradise to all levels from complete beginner to World Cup Racer.

From the outset the action was intense. Stronger than usual Meltemi winds savagely tested the abilities of the top 64, as they fought for supremacy around the 4 gybe down wind slalom course, concluding just meters off the beach in front of a huge Turkish crowd.

Ross Williams (Tabou/Gaastra) and Sarah Hebert (Starboard/Naish) were the overnight leaders after Race 1, but neither could sustain their lead beyond. By the end of day two it was the flying Frenchies, Antoine Albeau (JP/NeilPryde) and Valerie Ghibaudo (Tabou/The Loft) that rose to the top of the ranking, and from that point on, the fight was always for second.

Albeau, having already secured the Slalom World Title, looked cool, calm and collected. With the pressure off he put on a faultless display. Consistency was the key and as the points were tallied up at the close of the event he finished a league ahead.

Albeau “It was a really great event, with three days of good wind and really fair racing. I am super happy to be consistent; I was the only one to make all the finals.”

Meanwhile in the women’s contest Ghibaudo proved to the world she is in a class of her own. After a shaky start, she recorded an unprecedented string of first places, leaving her a perfect score of 4.2. The victory, coupled with her flawlessness accomplishments at all previous competitions, means she takes the Women’s PWA Slalom World Title for her first time ever, again counting only first places.

Behind these two Champions the race for the remaining podium spots was cut throat. Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard/Severne) looked to have things under control, but disaster on day 4 saw him unwittingly
hand over the spot to the ever-consistent Finian Maynard (RRD/NeilPryde). Maynard looked strong all week, and albeit one mistake in race 4, made every final. This result cements his second place in the overall tour and with just one event to go Maynard exuded an air of confidence.

Maynard: “I am really happy. I trained hard this year and everything has come together. I now realize I can really challenge Antoine and next year my goal is definitely World Champion.”

With no wind for the final two days, Dunkerbeck had no chance to come back, but never the less, stood proud on the event podium. With moments of magic throughout the week it is clear he is still the man to beat, and his positivity towards the sport shows he will be around for many more years.

For the women the results could not have been closer. With just three points separating second and fourth, it turned out to be the race eight win that saw Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard/NeilPryde) take second position. Her improving performance ended with an impressive win, the only sailor to beat Ghibaudo around the course all week. Surely we have witnessed the first light of a blossoming slalom career?

Offringa “I came here positive, aiming for top three, but still I am really surprised. Next year I think I will still spend more time on my freestyle board, but we will see about slalom.”

Poor Sarah Hebert, just one point behind, watched as the second place podium slipped from her grasp. The highly focused French girl, (sailing for Armenia), has moved from strength to strength this year and as 2009 draws to a close see looks to have a secure grip of an overall podium finish.

By her usual high standards, Karin Jaggi’s (F2/Severne) event was not her best. Fourth place is not a fair representation of her talent, but unfortunately for the Swiss champ the lack of wind denied her the opportunity to recoup her losses.

Highlights of the week were considerable. Two ROZI cups gave the huge audience something to really cheer about. The format was simple; three teams of three sailors battling out for a healthy prize purse, right off the beach, lifting the crowd to new highs. Aided by the free flowing FOSTERS and CORNETTO ice creams, the carnival atmosphere was at full swing. Despite the huge support for Team Turkey however, it was the World Team that came out victorious.

The PWA Slalom tour now moves to Sylt for the final of the Men’s Tour. Join us then for the exciting conclusion to 2009. Until then, check out for news, videos, photos and plenty more.

Men’s Results after 8 Races.
1 Antoine Albeau NeilPryde, JP
2 Finian Maynard RRD, NeilPryde
3 Björn Dunkerbeck Starboard, Severne Sails
4 Micah Buzianis NeilPryde, JP
5 Kevin Pritchard Starboard, Gaastra, Dakine
6 Josh Angulo Dakine, Angulo, MauiSails
7 Steve Allen
8 Cyril Moussilmani Starboard, North Sails
9 Peter Volwater F2, MauiSails
10 Ben Van Der Steen Simmer Style, Exocet

Women’s Results after 8 Races.
1 Valérie Ghibaudo Loft Sails, Tabou Boards
2 Sarah-Quita Offringa Starboard, NeilPryde
3 Sarah Hebert Starboard, Naish Sails
4 Karin Jaggi F2, Severne Sails
5 Alice Arutkin Starboard, North Sails

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