At the EFPT Aqualeto Cup, it had to take five days here in Russia until the riders found out why they brought all their kit, and by all we really mean every sail and board that they have in their quiver. We had some surprisingly strong wind but the conditions can certainly be described as 'teasing' for the large part of the day.
Steven - 2013 EFPT Aqualeto Cup
Talking to race director Tom Hartmann yesterday evening he mentioned the skippers meeting would be at 10.00 am but pointed out that he will only believe the wind is there when he actually sees it. After days of unreliable forecasts and hours of waiting and postponing we were not disappointed today. At 10.30 the riders started rushing to the
beach as several guys began to get planing on the water. Whilst everything and everybody got prepared for the race, the wind suddenly decided to drop and left us standing in front of what looked like a big pond. When the majority of the sailors were giving up already and were getting changed we saw a massive weather front coming in, bringing super strong wind and rain.
Max - 2013 EFPT Aqualeto Cup
Heat number one, in which we saw the only female competitor lady Luda Fomicheva and the three more Russian sailors Roman Gysev, Alexey Karachevtsev and Dmitry Tertishiy, was already underway, with the riders using biggest gear. While Fomicheva told us that she didn't mind being powered up she clearly struggled with her 5.3 whilst all the guys of the same heat were holding onto their booms when 35 knots hit them. In the end Karachevtsev and Tertishiy advanced into the next round by showing more controlled moves in this super strong conditions.
We saw some great moves from the likes of Dieter Van der Eyken (Severne/Starboard) from Belgium, who seems to get more consistent and more impressive year by year. He showed big moves on each tack including a switch shaka. Advancing over their opponents have also been Adam Gavriel, newest Sailloft team member from Israel, who defeated his fellow countryman Yarden Meir (Fanatic). Gavriel convinced the judges with a great style and a high variation and diversity of moves, like shakas both sides. Adam Sims (Sailloft) from the UK and Phil Soltysiak (Starboard) from Canada took victory over their first opponents Mattia Fabrizi (North/Fanatic) and Rick Jendrusch (F2/Severne) respectively. The two of them were then stopped in heat number 13 which saw two resails due to marginal conditions.
Beach - 2013 EFPT Aqualeto Cup
In the end Sims was taken out by Van der Eyken and Soltysiak by Adrian Beholz (Fanatic/Sailloft) from Germany. Beholz struggled the most in the earlier heats, yet he convinced in the third attempt of heat number 13. It was a super close call between the Canadian and the German, but after race director Hartmann changed the overall impression format to a best trick format (best three moves each side count) due to the lack of wind, Beholz managed an impressive heat to just pull ahead. The last heat that got underway today saw Adam Gavriel against Max Rowe (North/Fanatic) and Steven Van Broeckhoven (JP/Neilpryde) against Julien Mas. After a few minutes it became obvious that it wouldn't be possible to finish this heat as the wind began to drop.
The forecast for tomorrow morning looks strong from a different direction so we will have to move the contest area to the other side of the hotel again where we'll have the first possible start at 07.00am. This means the riders of the last rounds from the single will have an early start with breakfast at 06.00 am and the skippers meeting at 06.30.