The PWA Pegasus Airlines World Cup's elite slalom fleet was treated to a day of extreme winds for the fourth day of competition. Gusts reaching up to thirty knots tested the sailors to the edge of their ability as they struggled to hold onto their equipment as they battled down the race course. Edge of your seat racing, full throttle crashes and aggressive action, the fourth day of racing had it all.
The race crew were on the water straight away for a 10am start to the racing, picking up the action from men’s elimination five at heat number eight.
The man on top Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard /Severne / Mystic / Dunkerbeck Eyewear), had a mixed day on the water scoring a fifth place in elimination five due to a crash at an early mark. He claimed his fourth bullet in elimination six by sailing an incredible race, but unfortunately he was taken out in the semi-finals of elimination seven and he was unable to recover a qualifying position.
Bjorn Dunkerbeck: 'Everything went well today apart from being taken out in the semi-finals. I was entering my gybe in second place with loads of speed, but then I was wiped-out so I couldn’t make the final. I am still in the lead with two days to go so there's plenty more races to come.'
Finian Maynard (RRD) kicked off the day's proceedings on top form and he claimed first places in his first two races, showing the crowds what he was really made of in the stronger winds. Maynard continued all the way to the winners’ final. However he was caught out by his own determination to succeed and he went over early. Maynard continued with his stellar performance throughout the day scoring fifth and sixth places in the following winners’ finals, allowing him to keep his hands on second place.
Another sailor obviously enjoying the high winds was Micah Buzianis (JP /NeilPryde). Buzianis was pushing the start-line hard all day and it paid off as he scored second place finishes in two winners’ finals and a second place in the losers’ final knocking his score up a notch, into third place past Ben Van Der Steen (Starboard / Loft / Mystic).
Elimination five witnessed the many times world champion Antoine Albeau (JP / NeilPryde), claim his first race win in Alacati. Albeau went on to score fourth in elimination six but an enormous catapult in the elimination seven semi-finals forced him into the losers’ final, he went onto dominate leading the fleet the whole way around the course. After a successful day Albeau made his way from ninth into fifth place.
Antoine Albeau: 'Today was good fun it was really windy, I was sailing on my 7.0m and my small board. The course was flat and the first reach was really fast. I won a race, finished in fourth and I catapulted in the next race because I was pushing it a little too hard, but its part of the game. I hope tomorrow is the same so that I can keep going and make the podium.'
Josh Angulo (Angulo / Gun / Dakine), Jimmy Diaz(Starboard / North) and Peter Volwater (Fanatic / MauiSails) all took the stronger winds in their stride and they each made it into the finals in all the eliminations with Volwater claiming a second place and Angulo stealing third.
The third race win of the day came from Cyril Moussilmani (Starboard / North). Without Albeau and Dunkerbeck present Cyril was free to take control of the race. Right from the first mark Cyril was in the lead and he made sure that he didn’t make any mistakes around the course to secure his first win in Turkey bumping him up into thirteenth place.
Having had a great start to the competition in the lighter winds, Steve Allen (Starboard / Severne), Alberto Menegatti(Starboard / Gaastra) and Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (Fanatic / North) struggled to make it through their heats in the stronger winds, and each sailor dropped a few critical places as a result.
An outstanding day on the racecourse for Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne) saw her claim her third and fourth bullets and a second place finish in elimination six, putting her well ahead of the rest of the fleet. The elimination five winners’ final saw Jaggi take advantage of Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic) and Delphine Cousin (JP /NeilPryde) at the third mark to gain a significant advantage. She lost control in elimination six but managed to recover quickly and make her way into second place, and in elimination seven she had a tough battle with Fanny Aubet (JP /NeilPryde) but she managed to steal the win at the finish-line.
Karin Jaggi: 'I had a great day, I won two of the races and I also came second so it couldn't get much better. It has been a really windy day, especially for Alacati. I don’t think many people expected that. I didn’t have my smallest sail, I was on my 5.5m but that felt great, it’s hard to sail but everyone was falling so it was ok.'
Alice Arutkin (Starboard / North) dominated women's elimination six; she nailed her gybe at the second mark and sailed past Offringa and Jaggi who had gone down. Arutkin managed to build up a big lead allowing her to happily cruise over the finish line and win her first race in Alacati. Arutkin finished in tenth place in the winners’ final of elimination five and seven but it was enough to take her into seventh place on the overall scores.
The current tour leader Offringa, sailed some amazing heats to earn her a position in the winners’ finals. Offringa was the standout starter of the day and always led the charge to the first mark, but she went down on a few critical gybes allowing the rest of the fleet to overtake. She looked to be seriously over-powered sailing on her 6.2m sail when the rest of the fleet were on around 5.2m; however she still scored ninth, third and fifth position.
Consistent sailing from Lena Erdil (Patrik /Loft / AL360) in all conditions allowed her to keep her third place on the overall scores. Erdil charged for the top positions throughout the day and displayed superb gybes and blistering speed on the straights.
Aubet claimed exceptional positions in every elimination to see her rocket into fifth place. With a fourth, a fifth a second place finish to her name Aubet really shone through in the stronger winds, if she can maintain the same scores she will certainly be able to make her was onto the podium.
After an exhilarating three races the sailors were released for the day. The wind is forecast to be blowing for the fifth day so fingers crossed. The skippers’ meeting will kick off at 10:30am with the first possible start to racing at 11am. Men’s results (after seven eliminations)
1st Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne/ Mystic / Dunkerbeck Eyewear)
2nd Finian Maynard (RRD)
3rd Micah Buzianis (JP / NeilPryde)
4th Ben Van Der Steen (Starboard / Loft / Mystic)
5th Antoine Albeau (JP / NeilPryde)
6th Jimmy Diaz (Starboard / North)
7th Julien Quentel (RRD / NeilPryde)
8th Josh Angulo (Angulo / Gun / Dakine)
9th Antoine Questel (Loft)
10th Steve Allen (Starboard / Severne) Women’s results (after seven eliminations)
1st Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne)
2nd Valerie Arrighetti (Tabou / Gaastra / Mystic)
3rd Lena Erdil (Patrik / Loft / AL360)
4th Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic)
5th Fanny Aubet (JP / NeilPryde)
6th Lise Vidal (Exocet / North)
7th Alice Arutkin (Starboard / North)
8th Delphine Cousin (JP / NeilPryde)
9th Marion Mortefon (AL360)
10th Marianne Kaplas (Starboard / Severne)
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