Canary Islands 2014

Spending time on the Canaries means always fun. It’s always warm there, you always meet a lot of friends and great windsurfing action is guaranteed. We travelled to Gran Canaria first, where we spent a great week at the Gran Canaria Wind and Waves festival 2014. The wind was fine, the waves ok. We saw an exciting wave event at Pozo and spent a great time at Meloneras, where we stayed at the  H10 Playa Meloneras Palace hotel this time. It was a real palace in the low wind zone, next to the beach.

We travelled from Gran Canaria to Fuerteventura, where we spent  awesome 18 days at Sotavento. I participated in the PWA Slalom. Was happy to get a place on the entry list. I had no result from Turkmenistan as I did not travel there.

At the event I had good starts and probably my best speed ever on the first reach. But somehow I was not able to take advantage of the good positions at the first mark. I only brought three sails (5.6 /6.2/7.0) and two boards  (iSonic 87 and 107) to Sotavento, but covered all conditions perfectly. Never used the 5.6m in competition. The wind never got stronger than 35 knots, but had a perfect set with iSonic 87 and 6,2 for the stronger days and iSonic 107 with 7,0 has such a wide range in medium wind conditions.

Finished the event in 52nd only. Was absolutely not happy with my result at my favourite windsurfing spot on tour, but felt that I missed some training definitely.

We saw a great freestyle competition with an impressive comeback of 5times freestyle world champion Gollito Estredo and a Sarah-Quita Offringa, who was on fire landing Konos, Toads or Culos.

 

The wind conditions got better and better , when the competitions were over.We decided not to leave Fuerteventura. Instead of travelling to Tenerife, that was our plan, we had a lot of great windsurfing days on the water. We really didn’t want to leave the island, but on August 9th it was time to say good by. See you soon, Fuerteventura..

Next highlight is the IFCA European Slalom Championship at Bol, Brac, Croatia August 26th – 31st

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Costa Brava Trip 2014

This year we decided to drive all the way down to Costa Brava, where the first PWA Worldcup of the season took place. The first two events on the calendar, the event in El Yaque and South Korea, got cancelled. Costa Brava was event number one in 2014. The wind was quite nice this year. I had a few good warm up days as we arrived 3 days prior to the event. It was great to windsurf with the top guys.

The spot itself i s a fun place. We had our camper parked next to the beach on the Camping Ballena Allegre. You don’t miss any wind there as you can have all the gear prepared in the shade.

The event started  in light conditions, but too much for my 9.0m I was on. The onshore breeze just picked up before my heat and  I lost ground during the race. In the following days the Tramontane made it over the Pyranees and I was on my smallest iSonic 87 with Reflex 5 7,0. Once I made it to the quarter finals and once I almost made it, but Josh Angulo kept me off. In the last elimination of the event I made an over early, together with Antoine A. and Taty. That has cost me a few places in the end. But was not unhappy with my performance in the end. I finished the event in 49th, but felt good speed in some races.

We stayed a few more on the wonderful camp and then drove back, all the way through France, spent a night at the French Italian border. We left the highway in the middle of the night at Menton and then spotted a camp at Latte. On the following day we drove all the way from Ventimiglia to Geneva next to the Mediterranean Sea. We drove through many beautiful villages and towns like Imperia, Alassio, Albenga, Finale Ligure, Savona or Varazze. It was a definitely experience to see this beautiful coastline, where the water colors are deep blue to turquise and the green hills of the back country make it quite close to the sea.

At the village of Noli the wind picked up and we thought to make it on the water for a short moment. But it was just a short gust and the wind died after a few minutes again.

On the following day, we already spent a night on a camping near Venice in Mira, we drove to Venice town and had a great day there. We should have done that trip to Venice much earlier…

 

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Life is good on the Azores

Just arrived on Terceira, Azores a few day ago and felt well from the beginning on. We stay a really relaxed hotel with a beautiful on the sunrise and the spot. It’s a spot located in a big harbour, which got built a few years ago and destroyed the natural beaches, but gives the village of Praia da Vitoria and the whole island, to grow economically. Praia de Vitoria is a little village with an historic part and a few modern houses. It’ s the home of Nuno Bettencourt, who published the famous song “More than words” back in 1990.

At the moment I am here at Praia da Vitoria to compete in the IFCA Slalom Worlds. It’s the fourth time for me competing at IFCA Worlds. And it’s great to be on the Azores for the first time.

The spot is special. A big harbour with unsteady winds, but so far not too bad for testing my biggest gear set 9,0 and 117 liters. And if you catch a gust it’ s cool to have a glide through the bay. Many great Slalom racers are here on the island to prepare for the season and fight for the world title. Last year’s winner Gunnar Asmussen, Ben van der Steen, Gonzalo Costa Hoevel, Arnon Dagan, Steve Allen, Ludo Jossin, Cyril Moussilmani, Antoine Questel, Pierre Mortefon, Maciek Rutkowski and many more. 52 men and 5 ladies are competing. So far the wind was not suitable to run any races. Two more days are to go. Let’s hope for abit more wind.

The wind limit to run a race is at 11 knots. During the last two days we had wind in between 7 and 14 knots, but quite unsteady. The life here on Terceira is very relaxed despite the not ideal wind conditions. It’s not an extremely touristic place, what gives the village and the spot a special charm. It’s definitely worth to visit this island located in the middle of the Atlantic ocean. And there a few more island just around, which are all worth to visit.

 

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