For the first time in fifteen years, the return of the PWA to the Netherlands proved to be a huge success as Brouwersdam produced a superb blend of conditions for the elite of the freestyle world. Anything from storm force winds combined with heavy rain, to glorious evening light with 20 knots and perfect flat water greeted the competitors over the course of the week.
All the winners
Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Chris Benz / Maui Ultra Fins) proved once again that she is in a world of her own as she emphatically claimed her sixth PWA Freestyle world championship in a row.
In the meantime Kiri Thode (Starboard / Gaastra) ended the reigning world champions - Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / North) - unbeaten record, as the Venezuelan tasted defeat for the first time since 2012 - but more importantly Thode claimed the event victory - his first since 2011 - to blow the title race wide open.
Women;s overall freestyle top three
Kiri Thode excelled on day three, in storm force winds, to take the single elimination title against Tonky Frans (Tabou / Gaastra). On his way to the opening victory of the week Thode exploded into perfectly executed skopus, a spock into culo and trademark air bobs. Into the double elimination and Thode would be faced by a different opponent this time in the form of the 2011 PWA Freestyle World Champion - and local boy - Steven van Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde / Different), after he managed to defeat Gollito, followed Tonky Frans. The winners’ final was sailed in relatively light winds with Thode on a 4.8m and van Broeckhoven a 5.4m respectively.
However, despite the light winds, the two sailors still put on a fantastic display in a fiercely, and tightly, fought battle. Van Broeckhoven demonstrated his technical prowess in the final with an audacious shuvit spock diablo as well as landing a brilliant air flaka into shaka. Thode, though, fought back with a stylish bob together with an air funnel into funnel and a culo with almost no power to leave the contest agonizingly poised with no clear winner. After much deliberation it was eventually announced that Thode had won by way of a 3:2 decision in his favor, such was the closeness of the two sailors.
Kiri Speaks after clinching victory:
'For sure the wind was pretty light for both of us. I was struggling at times in the middle of the heat but I just tried my best to pop as high as I can. I just tried to stay focused and do whatever I could do to win. I think Steven [van Broeckhoven] sailed a great heat too. I don’t know what it is but every time it’s the first time an event is held I seem to win, just like in Vietnam in 2011. For sure I’m really, really happy!'
The five-time world champion Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo had to settle for fourth place as, firstly Tonky Frans and then Steven van Broeckhoven stomped him in his tracks. In the storm force winds Gollito didn’t look quite his irresistible self, but in the double he performed a magnificent heat against Youp Schmit (JP / NeilPryde) whereby he really showed his, almost, unrivaled style!
Youp Schmit showed why he is considered one of the most highly rated talents on the tour as he took home fifth place overall. The eighteen year old impressed with his usual, unique, Bonaire style as he flew into huge air bobs and explosive culos to keep his competitors at bay.
Fight back of the Week
Davy Scheffers (Tabou / Gaastra) produced a stunning comeback in the double elimination as he won six heats overall in the double - five today. Scheffers suffered an unlikely early exit at the hands of Max Matissek (Fanatic / North) in the single and he was clearly on a mission to put the record straight today as he produced a simply magnificent display, as well as showing his full potential. The twenty-one year olds first victim of the day was Julien Mas (Patrik / Sailloft) shortly followed by Andy ‘Bubble Chambers (JP / NeilPryde).
Against Chambers, Scheffers was simply unstoppable as he stomped amazing burner 360s, stunning skopus and a huge air bob to continue his comeback. After a close call against Bjorn Saragoza (Starboard / Hot Sails Maui), fellow countryman Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne) was his next opponent and Scheffers delivered the goods again.
This time around - the quite literally flying Dutchman - spun into a technically outrageous culo into spock, a big air bob and the pick of the bunch an astonishing no-handed burner 360. The current European Freestyle champion then dispatched of France’s Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / North / Maui Ultra Fins) as he delivered more stunning moves, such as a superb e-slider into puneta and a huge Kabikuchi.
Completing the top ten is the young talent of Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / North / Maui Ultra Fins), along with his fellow countrymen Anthony Ruenes (Tabou / Gaastra)
Kiri wins here at Dam 7
Three Eliminations, Three Victories
Sarah-Quita Offringa showed exactly why she is considered the Queen of freestyle once again as she stormed to a sixth PWA Freestyle world championship in a row. Offringa showed that she has the skills to worry many of her male counterparts, as she rotated through textbook funnels, explosive konos and superb konos. Arrianne Aukes (RRD / Simmer / Maui Ultra Fins) produced an excellent performance in the double elimination as she landed stylish one-handed funnels, perfect flakas and clew-first punetas, however it wasn’t enough to defeat the true Queen of freestyle Sarah-Quita Offringa.
Yoli de Brendt (Fanatic / North) eventually had to settle for an excellent third place. In the double elimination de Brendt produced a brilliant display to qualify into the winners’ final but she couldn’t quite hold off Aukes, so in 2013 she has to accept third place in the world. Next year should bring an intriguing battle, especially when you factor in the explosive talent of Olya Raskina (JP / NeilPryde) - who performed brilliantly over the week - Oda Johanne Brodholt (Maui Ultra Fins) and the extremely young talent of Maaike Huvermann (Maui Ultra Fins).
EFPT Tow-In Final
At 7:30pm the final of the EFPT tow-in was held with the top ten sailors who had made it through the three qualifying rounds earlier in the week. Youp Schmit (JP / NeilPryde) qualified as the lucky fourth place loser. Max Matissek (Fanatic / North) led the final after the first round of attempts after landing a brilliant double air funnel. However, the Austrian couldn’t hold onto his lead as Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / North) stomped a brilliant air funnel into burner cana brava to claim the victory, whilst Kiri Thode (Starboard / Gaastra) stole second place with a funnel into air funnel, leaving Matissek to settle for third place.
Results EFPT Tow-in Final
1st Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / North)
2nd Kiri Thode (Starboard / Gaastra)
3rd Max Matissek (Fanatic / North)
Gollito takes the tow in victory
Overall Men's Results at DAM7 PWA Netherlands World Cup:
1st Kiri Thode (Starboard / Gaastra)
2nd Steven van Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde)
3rd Tonky Frans (Tabou / Gaastra)
4th Jose 'Gollito' Estredo (Fanatic / North)
5th Youp Schmit (JP / NeilPryde)
6th Davy Scheffers (Tabou / Gaastra)
7th Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / North / Maui Ultra Fins)
7th Anthony Ruenes (Tabou / Gaastra)
9th Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne)
9th Philip Soltysiak (Starboard / Sailworks)
9th Max Rowe (Fanatic / North)
9th Taty Frans (Starboard / MauiSails / Mystic / Maui Ultra Fins)
Overall Women's Results at DAM7 PWA Netherlands World Cup:
1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Chris Benz / Maui Ultra Fins)
2nd Arrianne Aukes (RRD / Simmer / Maui Ultra Fins)
3rd Yoli de Brendt (Fanatic / North)
4th Olya Raskina (JP / NeilPryde)
5th Oda Johanne Brodholt (Maui Ultra Fins)
After this explosive freestyle stop it’s straight into the Cold Hawaii madness from Klitmoller. The event starts on the 16th September so be sure to tune in as there is epic action guaranteed. You’ll be able to follow the whole event live at PWA Website via the superb live stream.