Please select your home edition
Edition
Festival of Sails 2020 GIF - LEADERBOARD

2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic - Preview

by International Windsurfing Tour 27 Oct 06:28 PDT 27 October - 9 November 2019
Morgan Noireaux - Aloha Classic © IWT

From the 27th October the windsurfing world will return to the spiritual home of wave sailing for the 2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic.

The Aloha Classic has long been considered the most prestigious event in windsurfing and this year's edition will fittingly see a titanic battle to decide not only the Aloha Classic champions, but it will also determine the overall titles for both the PWA and the IWT at Ho'okipa Beach Park.

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic starts on 27th October and has a two week holding period until the 9th November. However, the official call has been made to start the contest tomorrow, Sunday the 27th, which means the event will then run for five consecutive days until the end of Thursday.

This year's Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic promises to be one of the most spectacular yet, with a star-studded international lineup and massive swells forecast, this will absolutely guarantee an incredible show. To win this event it's going to take a supreme level of skill, a small slice of luck and the most powerful wave riding ever seen in the history of windsurfing. This is the pinnacle of the sport.

Ho'okipa (meaning 'hospitality') Beach Park, Maui, Hawaii is quintessentially the home of windsurfing. A place any windsurfer has hopes, dreams and aspirations of visiting at some point during their lifetime. What makes Maui so special is its clockwork like trade winds, which combine with some of the best, and biggest, waves on the planet to create the most spectacular windsurfing conditions. All of this is then set against a stunning, luscious, tropical backdrop.

Pro Women

The Pro women's field is powerful, with 3 x Aloha Champion Iballa Ruano Moreno form Spain (and 9 x World Champion) flying in to compete this year. Moreno is current World Windsurfing Wave Champion and current world SUP Wave champion which makes her one very impressive athlete. She's the most decorated of all the riders but by no means the only title contender.

Local 2 x Aloha Champion Sarah Hauser from New Caledonia is the reigning Aloha Champ and is very impressive when the swell gets giant, as is forecast. One time Aloha champion and current world cup leader Sarah-Quita Offringa from Aruba is a force of nature with many world titles under her belt from Freestyle and slalom disciplines, she is a danger if the waves don't get too massive.

Another one time Aloha Champion Motoko Sato, from Japan has huge experience and skill in the big surf so will be a danger in these large swells. Then there is the legendary 4 x Aloha Champion from the 1980's, 90's, and 2000's who was one of the greatest competitors of all time, local legend Angela Cochran. The womens fleet is stacked.

Pro Men

Riders from all corners of the world have come to Maui to compete against what many believe is the strongest local Pro Men's field in history. Legendary local waterman Kai Lenny is returning to the windsurfing world and he's making a big impression. For two years Kai has been focused on big wave surfing and his growing fame for extraordinary innovation in this field, but this year he is back on the hunt for one of the most elusive titles that he craves: to be crowned an Aloha Classic Champion. His first heat will be tomorrow at Hookipa sometime after 11am. He is definitely one to watch.

The strength and depth of this Aloha Classic Pro Men's field is quite incredible. It includes previous Aloha Classic Champions such as 3 x time winner - Morgan Noireaux, 2 x winners Bernd Roediger and Camille Juban, and powerful single event winners Levi Siver, Boujmaa Guilloul and Kevin Pritchard, all of whom could easily win again.

And that list doesn't even include local rippers who have yet to win this prestigious event but seem to be forever knocking on the door - Graham Ezzy and Robby Swift both live on Maui and both are always dangerous, especially given the fact that the first big swell of the season is hitting Maui, just in time for the first heats.

Antoine Martin is currently enjoying his best season to date on the world tour - ranked 7th coming into Maui - and the 26-year-old will also be hoping to secure the Overall IWT Championship, which he currently leads and it looks like the IWT title race will be a straight fight between he and multiple Aloha Classic winner - Morgan Noireaux.

The powerful local contingent will be under siege from the invading riders who are all ultra dangerous. Among them Marcillio Brown from Brazil is considered by many to be a hot favorite for the win here and a chance at a World Title. Previous World Champion Victor Fernandez from Spain is a hard hitting radical rider who is another of the worlds great all rounder wave riders.

Ricardo Campello from Venezuela is the most popular rider across Instagram after Kai Lenny thanks to his lunatic approach to personal safety and high octane video clips he posts across his social media (seriously, check him out, he's unbelievable). The mighty Philip Köster from Germany has won many world titles and is currently leading the PWA title race.

Thomas Traversa from France is hot off the back of a glorious win in the frozen North Sea waters of Sylt Germany where he was then struck down with serious illness and has been in hospital recovering. We saw him this evening at registration and he said he was feeling weak after hospital and lack of training but he is keen to charge tomorrow nonetheless. He is another with a disturbing lack of regard for his personal safety and a gutsy rider who commands tremendous respect across the windsurfing world. Also a past world champion. And these are just a handful of the riders who have come to Maui for this epic event.

As well as the Pro contests, some of the finest youth will also be battling it out at Ho'okipa Beach Park - where local boy Jake Schettewi is likely to start as the favorite, but will face stern competition from the likes of Takara Ishii & Takuma Sugi.

The stakes are high. The waves will be massive. It's game on.

Related Articles

2019 Sail Brisbane - Day 2 action-shots
A gallery of images from day 2 of 2019 Sail Brisbane A gallery of images from day 2 of 2019 Sail Brisbane held at Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron. Posted on 8 Dec
2019 Sail Brisbane overall
Sail Brisbane regatta concluded today on the waters of Waterloo Bay The Sail Brisbane regatta concluded today on the waters of Waterloo Bay, hosted by the Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron. The event was the Queensland Championships for the VXOne class, as well as the International 29ers Posted on 8 Dec
2019 Sail Brisbane - Day 1 action-shots
Sail Brisbane day one images Mitch Pearson, Surf Sail Kite, has sent in this gallery of images from Day One of Sail Brisbane Posted on 7 Dec
Documentary on the RS:X Youth Worlds
Champions were Russian Yena Reznikova and Israeli Eval Zhor Two world champions were decided the last day of the race on Neva Bay, St Petersburg in what turned out to be a dramatic conclusion to the RS:X Youth World Championship. Champions were Russian Yena Reznikova and Israeli Eval Zhor. Posted on 26 Nov
Documentary on the RS:X Worlds in Torbole
Event ends with a perfect finale The end of the 2019 RS:X World Championships being held in Torbole, Italy, looked to be heading out with a damp fizzle, but ended with a perfect finale for the medal races as the Ora finally decided to show up just before the time limit for the day. Posted on 26 Nov
New speed record set - Luderitz Speed Challenge
The Luderitz Speed Challenge is currently underway in Luderitz, Namibia in winds of up to 65kts The Luderitz Speed Challenge is currently underway in Luderitz, Namibia in winds topping 65kts. Overnight the previous mark of 53.27kts has been topped with an unofficial speed measuring gives 53.33 knots average on the 500m course. Posted on 18 Nov
2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic day 4
Takuma Sugi claims victory in the Youth Aloha Classic single elimination On paper, the forecast for the fourth day of the 2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic was relatively poor with only light onshore winds on offer. Posted on 1 Nov
2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic day 3
Light cross-on winds and a macking swell makes for extremely slow progress With the macking swell continuing into day three of the 2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic, and the trades showing early signs of kicking, the decision was made to begin the Men's Double Elimination at 11am. Posted on 31 Oct
2019 Mercedes-Benz Aloha Classic day 2
Antoine Martin wins single elimination Antoine Martin on the verge of being crowed IWT Champion after winning an all-time Ho'okipa Classic, While Men's PWA World Title Race sees the pendulum swing back and forth. Posted on 30 Oct
Paris 2024: Has Windfoiling's time arrived?
Sometime next Thursday in Bermuda, World Sailing's Events Committee will decide on its Recommendatio Sometime next Thursday in Bermuda, World Sailing's Events Committee will decide on its Recommendation for the Windsurfing Equipment for the 2024 Olympic Regatta in Marseille. Posted on 29 Oct
SOUTHERN-SPARS-OFFICIAL-SUPPLIER-52-SS728-X-90 BottomGul 2019 GAMMA FooterVaikobi 2019AUG - Footer 1