by Chris Yates
Day one of the 2012 PWA Sylt World Cup got underway with the men’s freestyle single elimination eventually being completed after a number of failed attempts. Shortly after eleven o’clock, the first attempt was made to start the single elimination, however a squall with gusts of 40 knots soon came and went, meaning the first heat was abandoned.
Gollito in the groove - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
After playing the waiting game for a few hours, the sailors patience was rewarded and Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / North) defeating Kiri Thode (Starboard / Gaastra) in the single elimination winners’ final. The four time world champion now has one hand on the trophy as he edges ever closer to his fifth world title.
Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo opened the winners’ final with a monstrous shaka, which he later bettered, whilst his opponent Kiri Thode spent the opening couple of minutes of the heat off the plane as he failed to realize that the final had begun. However, having been off the plane for the entire time, he quickly jumped up onto the plane and within seconds Thode launched into an effortless shaka 360 and a forward loop to put himself firmly back in the game. The man from Bonaire though, was up against a formidable figure in the shape of Gollito, and the King of freestyle soon unleashed his full repertoire of tricks as he landed a superb backloop and an insane burner 900 to leave the judges in no doubt who had won.
Kiri close call - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
Words from the single elimination champion, Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo: 'I’m super happy to have won of course, now we will see what happens in the double elimination, maybe I will share a beer with Andre (Paskowski) tonight.'
The opening round of the first elimination saw both, Ricardo Campello (JP / NeilPryde / MFC) and Amado Vrieswijk (Starboard / Severne), miss the start of their heats. Despite a big shaka and a perfect backloop, Campello was missing a move and he was eliminated from the first round as Maarten Van Ochten (JP / NeilPryde / MFC) advanced. Vrieswijk on the on the other hand faired better as he progressed into the second round, before being knocked out by fellow Bonairean Tonky Frans (Tabou / Gaastra).
The third round saw a couple of extremely close heats. First off the reigning freestyle world champion, Steven Van Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde), endured a tough battle with Bryan Metcalf-Perez (JP / NeilPryde). The American sailed a fantastic heat and after much debate between the judges, it was eventually revealed that Van Broeckhoven had managed to edge to duel by way of a 2:1 decision in his favor. Heat twenty also saw a phenomenally close heat as Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne) took on Anthony Ruenes (Tabou / Gaastra). By the end of the heat there was just half a point in the tie and unfortunately for the Belgium maestro, Van der Eyken, the decision went in the favor of Ruenes, who landed a massive shaka and a shuvit it spock in the tricky conditions.
After the completion of the men’s freestyle single elimination, the wave fleet were unleashed onto the water at 6:30pm and the whole of the first round, bar one heat, was completed to conclude an excellent day of action on the water.
Sunset jump - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
The first heat of the single elimination saw the 2009 PWA Wave World Champion, Josh Angulo (Angulo / Point-7), safely book his place in the next round after he managed to successfully beat Mikey Clancy (Fanatic / North). Whilst the other side of the heat saw the British freestyler, Andy ‘Bubble’ Chambers (JP / NeilPryde), make his first appearance on the wave scene and he booked his place in the second round by defeating Nicola Spadea (Starboard / Gun Sails).
Heat three witnessed some controversy as Gunnar Asmussen (Patrik / North) and Fabian Weber (Fanatic / North / MFC) failed to have both their sail numbers and streamers visible, meaning that it was impossible for the judges to differentiate between the two riders. This meant that Michael Kleingarn (Starboard / Severne) and Tuomo Naalisvaara (Starboard / Severne) both advanced into round two.
Heat four saw some regular names on the PWA tour appear in a category that they are not usually associated with, as Taty Frans (Starboard / MauiSails / Mystic / Maui Ultra Fins) defeated fellow freestyler Dieter Van der Eyken, and former PWA regular Kevin Mevissen (Quatro / Goya Windsurfing) was able to advance passed the slalom young gun Maciek Rutkowski (Patrik / Loft).
Taty back loop - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
The final heat of the day saw another slalom giant, Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde), taking part in the competition, and after the Frenchman landed a perfect backloop and linked together a couple of good waves, he was able to knockout Jan Hansen. Fifteen year old, Justin Denel (RRD / Simmer), showed that he is a name to look out for in the future as he put together an accomplished display to defeat Bryan Metcalf-Perez.
Tomorrow’s forecast promises much the same in terms of wind strength, but the direction is predicted to be more cross-shore than today, which should provide improved conditions for the wave contest. The skippers meeting for the freestyle and wave shall take place at 9am tomorrow morning, with the first possible start at 09:30. Meanwhile, the slalom fleet will have their skippers meeting at 10am with the view to starting from 10:30 onwards.
Kauli over the falls - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
Thode on form - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
Mikey Clancy - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
Van Broeckhoven in action - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
Tonky action - 2012 PWA Sylt World CUp
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