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Micah claims <br>the honors

Bjorn back on top

Antoine always in the running

06/13/2007 - created by Brian McDowell

The 2007 Catalunya Costa Brava PWA World Cup Slalom - Day 2

It’s all up for grabs after 2 Races in tricky conditions. Micah Buzianis (JP / NeilPryde) etches a slim event lead over World Champion Antoine Albeau (Starboard / NeilPryde). Consistency from Steve Allen (Tabou / Gaastra) keep him in the frame in third overall so far. Tour leader Kevin Pritchard (Starboard / MauiSails blows out with gear failure, and Bjorn Dunkerbeck (T1 / North) grafts a race win to stay in the running.


Top of the agenda this afternoon was the completion of Race 1, which was left just short of the semi final stage.


Race 1:

Race 1 was a scrappy, disjointed affair. The first surprise of the day came in a heavily loaded 3rd qualification heat when tour leader Kevin Pritchard snapped a mast and failed to advance.

By now the wind had gusted up a lot, and started to cause problems. Even Bjorn Dunkerbeck fell and finished 11th, as did Arnon Dagan (Fanatic / NeilPryde) who was also a victim of the stronger wind. ‘I didn’t really have a great start, and I was set for the lighter winds on my 7.8 but got really back-handed and started spinning out everywhere. It was pretty hectic out there’

But, the final was clean race won clearly by Buzianis who clearly outpaced Albeau, and Jimmy Diaz (F2 / North), who bagged a crucial 3rd.

Buzianis, still struggling for breath after the intense encounter said ‘I had a good start – I think everyone was a bit late but I think I held it together pretty well. I had good board speed and I reckon I pulled away from everyone in the first leg and put it on as hard as I could, and then rounded the marks well all the way round to make it count’.

Race Director Juan Antonio Aragon then opted for a half-fleet format to try and make the most of the strong wind and crack through some races.

Race 2

This was the best action of the day, making a spectacular sight for the crowds on the beach as 24 sailors in two qualification heats blazed downwind.

Half Fleet Heat 1:

1. Antoine Albeau
2. Bjorn Dunkerbeck
3. Patrik Diethelm (F2 / North)

Half Fleet Heat 2:

1. Bernd Flessner (F2 / NeilPryde)
2. Pieter Bijl
3. Julien Quentel (Starboard / NeilPryde)

In the final Dunkerbeck hammered home a key result after his Race 1 disaster.

Antoine Albeau the current world champ pushed him hard but just couldn’t catch the legend, now racing with a Swiss sail number SUI-11.

The Frenchman seemed fairly satisfied with second place. ‘I had a good start, upwind by the boat while Bjorn and Micah were down at the Pin-end. At first I was faster than Micah, but Bjorn was flying even though I tried to catch him at the third mark. In fact I was pushing so hard and going so fast I couldn’t unhook in time to go for it!’

Bjorn was pretty happy with his result. ‘Well, unlike the first race where I was spinning out crossing the start line, this time I had a good start, and great speed and kept everyone on my tail. One mistake though and it would’ve been game over. Once I was in the lead I was going at about 90% capacity, and kept a bit in the reserve tank in case I needed it. Slalom racing is about getting a good start, and a good first leg, but of course, from then you’ve got to drive it home’

Buzianis claimed third, this time on a 7.8 after using an 8.4 in the first race final that he won. Steve Allen’s fourth place meant he keeps third overall overnight.

Results after 2 races:

1. Micah Buzianis
2. Antoine Albeau
3. Steve Allen

It’ll be fascinating tomorrow to see if anyone’s got what it takes to seize the bull by the horns and establish up a significant lead.

Skipper’s meeting is at 10.00, and the forecast is once again positive for an afternoon thermal wind.

Keep up to date

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Plus, tomorrow you’ll be able to watch video footage of all the action.

Or, for more information please contact the PWA office via info@no-spam-pleasepwaworldtour.com 


© PWA / Brian McDowell

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