PWA ALACATI WORLD CUP
After a stiflingly hot and almost windless start to day two of the PWA Pegasus Airlines World Cup the wind eventually filled in shortly after two O’clock enabling the resumption of the second eliminations, in winds ranging from 7-15 knots. After two and a half hours of competition a further nine men’s heats were completed, which brings us to the semifinal stage of the second race, whilst the opening heat of the women’s was also finished, before the wind became to fickle to continue, bringing the conclusion of day two at 17:30.
The first heat of the day - heat four - saw Alberto Menegatti (Starboard / Point-7) comfortably qualify for the quarterfinals as he cruised to victory ahead of Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / North), Enrico Marotti (Starboard / Point-7) and Enes Yilmazer (Starboard / Severne), but there was no room for Steve Allen (Starboard / Severne) as he narrowly missed out in fifth place. The only other shocks in the first round were that Cedric Bordes (Tabou / Gaastra) failed to qualify from heat eight - also narrowly missing out in fifth - whilst Bora Kozanoglu’s (Starboard / Point-7) crash in heat seven cost him dearly as he went from first place at the opening mark, to missing out on a place in the next round as Jordy Vonk (Patrik / Loft Sails), Josh Angulo (Angulo / Gun Sails), Matteo Iachino (F2 / Challenger Sails / AL360) and Ludovic Jossin (Patrik / Loft Sails) all booked their places in the next round.
Into the quarterfinals and heat nine was eventually completed after numerous attempts, but it wasn’t without its drama as Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne / Chris Benz / DunkerbeckEyewear) was involved in a collision with Ben van der Steen (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Different) at the first mark. The flying Dutchman escaped unscathed as he went on to qualify for the semifinals, but for the terminator that would be the end of the line after the nose of his board was badly damaged, forcing his retirement from the race. An appeal was made but it turned out to be in vain as the result was upheld. Finian Maynard (RRD / Avanti) claimed victory in heat nine, whilst Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (Starboard / Loft Sails) and Fred Morin (Starboard / NeilPryde) finished in third and fourth place respectively also advanced.
Heat ten saw Alberto Menegatti storm down the opening reach to move into the lead by the opening buoy and he was able to hold onto the number one spot come the end of the heat as he finished with a substantial lead over Pierre Mortefon and Enrico Marotti. The final qualifying place saw an intense battle between Enes Yilmazer and Julien Quentel (RRD / NeilPryde). In the end the Frenchman just edged the duel - completing a fine comeback having been outside the top four at the first buoy - to advance into the semifinals.
In the penultimate quarterfinal Ross Williams (Tabou / Gaastra) was disqualified after being a little too eager with his start. Upon the restart Arnon Dagan (RRD / NeilPryde) successfully booked his place in the next round after a confident display. Also joining him in the semifinals will be Andrea Cucchi (Starboard / Point-7), Antoine Questel (Starboard / Loft Sails) and Cyril Moussilmani (Starboard / Severne) after the Frenchman was able to out maneuver Peter Volwater (Fanatic / Avanti).
Heat twelve was also full of drama - first of all the current event and world tour leader, Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) jumped the gun resulting in his disqualification - before carnage followed at the first mark following the restart. Jimmy Diaz (Starboard / North) tried diving down the inside at the first mark but with inadequate room a pileup ensued allowing Pascal Toselli (Tabou / Point-7) and Ludovic Jossin to open a sizable lead over the remaining pack. In the end Matteo Iachino claimed third place, whilst Micah Buzianis (JP / MauiSails) came agonizingly close to a stunning comeback - after being in seventh place, after the carnage at mark one - as he pushed Josh Angulo all the way to the finish line for the final qualifying place. However, Angulo, used all of his experience to put an end to the American’s revival.
The opening heat of the women’s second elimination was completed, however after this the wind became very patchy and started to change direction meaning no further heats were finished. However, Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne), looked in much better form today as she was able to beat Ayako Suzuki (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic) to claim victory in the opening heat. Also qualifying from heat one are Fulya Unlu (Starboard / Severne) and Dilara Uralp (JP / NeilPryde), who finished in third and fourth place respectively.
Tomorrow’s forecast promises much the same as today meaning, hopefully, we should see the conclusion of the second race. The skippers’ meeting will be held at 10:30am tomorrow morning, with the first possible start at 11am, if conditions allow. Make sure you don’t miss a thing by following all of the epic racing via the PWA live stream at www.pwaworldtour.com.
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