Saturday, May 15 will remain in the annals of the Défi Wind. The incredible North Wind flow which has blown for several days already decided to increase in intensity… with gusts of 50 knots on the course today. Withdrawals, falls and breakdowns of equipment have been witnessed! After two legs ran, Pierre Mortefon is slightly ahead Anders Bringdal at the general ranking. The neck and neck between the two windusrfers carries on….
People in Gruissan are pleased! Today’s legs took place under a shiny sun and with a Tramontane making the best riders fall down. After a morning round marked by another victory of Anders Bringdal, the afternoon one has been shortened a bit; but windsurfers still have navigated 30 km. Many people have decided to stay on the beach: caution has prevailed for those windusfers who became spectators for one day.
The two winners of today’s legs have something in common: they both fell down at the jibe and have still managed to stay in the lead. Special mention to Pascal Toselli, who won the fifth round with a historical lead of one minute and twenty five seconds off his follower Pierre Mortefon.
Reaction of some competitors at the end of this thrilling day:
Pascal Toselli : "We were in the lease with Anders when jibing and I fell down. There I told myself it was over. I managed to carry on with Pierre right behind me and I succeeded in passing Anders. I think he felt down and I took the lead over. The way back was easier to negotiate but with no doubt this leg has been the most tiring one!"
Amateur windsurfers of all ages and from all around the world share the same passion as these professionals. With over 60 years difference between the youngest and oldest one, the Défi Wind is an event opened to all. Young and old discuss, compete and get together to have fun around their passion. One of the competitors said: "I do not want to perform on top of my 66 years, I just want to go over myself! We are fortunate to be riding in unmatched safety conditions and I find that very reassuring."
Ricardy Maricel, plumber in St Martin in the Caribbean and amateur windsurfer, explained: " It is my eighth participation. I took fifteen days off, shipped my equipment ... and here I am! This event is truly unique in the world and no matter how many kilometers I have to travel; such feelings are really worth it! My goal is to know, as an amateur, where I positioned myself among the pros and among the other windsurfers. The organization is at the top and you are sure to have fun on the water or on land. "
The official party of the Défi Wind tonight will gather all these people around a giant barbecue and some live concerts. A good night of rest will follow before the final day of the Défi Wind 2010.
Podium of the fourth leg :
1° Anders Bringdal
2° Bieuzy Mauffret
3° Gérald Pelleau
7° Tine Slabe (RRD)
1° woman : Lise Vidal
Fifth leg :
1° Pascal Toselli
2° Pierre Mortefon
3° Nicolas Reynes
4° Julien Quentel (RRD)
6° Tine Slabe (RRD)
1° woman : Valérie Ghibaudo