by Chris Yates
The opening day of the PWA Bonaire World Cup commenced with a relaxed Caribbean vibe as light winds prevailed. The sailors registered for the upcoming competition between 10am and 12pm before enjoying a leisurely afternoon watching the FIFA World Cup ahead of tomorrow, when Bonaire should burst into life as the wind arrives and the freestylers prepare to deliver a spectacular show.
World cup fever the French score - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
The excitement surrounding the event is continuing to grow and the sailors are pumped up to start competing again after a long winter break. It should make for a mouthwatering competition.
Throughout the day we caught up with a few sailors to find out their thoughts ahead of the contest.
Action from Steven Van Broeckhoven - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Steven Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde): 'I’ve just brought one board with me, my 100l JP Freestyle. The wind is normally quite light here and even if it’s a windier it stays relatively flat. My first couple of days here I’ve been on my 5.1m, but I probably should have been on my 5.4m.'
Teammate Andy ‘Bubble’ Chambers (JP / NeilPryde) has also elected for a one board setup here: 'I’ve also just brought the 100l JP Freestyle with me. I got here two days ago and have had a couple of sessions on 5.1m. The wind is so constant, with no gusts, that it seems quite difficult to keep speed when switch as, as soon as you duck you start to lose power.'
Max Rowe (Fanatic / North) opted to bring two boards to Bonaire: 'I brought both my 101 and 93l Fanatic Skate and after sailing I’m glad I did. I was originally sailing with my 5.3m on the 101, but as soon as I changed to the 93l everything felt so much better and faster. I’ve got my 5.3m, 4.8m (and 4.4m as well, I don’t think I’ll need it but it was easy to bring.)'
Freestyle close up - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Adrian Beholz (Fanatic / Sailloft Hamburg / Maui Ultra Fins): 'After eight or nine months break I’m super excited to start competing again. The level is going to be extremely high and the forecast looks great. It should hopefully be 4.8m weather for me or sometimes maybe good 5.2m weather.'
Rafael de Windt (Starboard / Hot Sails Maui): 'I broke my hand on the 2nd April, I’m back on the water now and starting to feel good again for the start of the competition.'
Local boy Taty Frans (Starboard / MauiSails / Mystic / MFC) gave his predictions for the top contenders here in Bonaire earlier in the day: 'I think the top contenders will be Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / North / MFC), Steven [Van Broeckhoven], Kiri [Thode (Starboard / GA Sails)] is sailing really sick, Tonky [Frans (Tabou / GA Sails)], Amado [Vrieswijk (Starboard / Severne)] and me.'
The forecast for tomorrow looks fantastic with strong winds being predicted, with this in mind the skippers’ meeting has been called for 10am tomorrow morning with the action commencing from 10:30am.
Estredo on form - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Anthony Ruenes - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Arrianne Aukes - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Bjorn Saragoza from the water - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Dieter action - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Adrien Bosson - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup
Andy Chambers - 2014 PWA Bonaire World Cup