Youth World Champion
It's easy to forget that the two-time PWA Wave World Champion - Philip Köster (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins) - is still only nineteen years old. Although the wonder kid missed out on the world title this year, he still had a brilliant year, achieving an incredible feat in claiming the PWA Youth Wave World Championship for the third consecutive year. At the end of the season Köster finished in a very credible sixth place. The nineteen year old made the perfect start to 2013 with a comprehensive victory in Tenerife, spinning through perfect, ankle dry, stalled double forwards to see of Victor Fernandez (Fanatic / North / MFC). After the KIA Cold Hawaii PWA World Cup, where he finished in second place, narrowly behind Marcilio 'Brawzinho' Browne (Goya Windsurfing / MFC), Köster was still in control of the title race, leading the tour. However, a staph infection during the final event of the year - The JP Aloha Classic - scuppered his title defense, but just being on the water against doctors orders was a true testament to his grit, determination and competitiveness to succeed, and that is exactly why Köster will win many more world titles over the duration of his career.
This year also sees a big change for Köster, who has left NeilPryde after a wonderful and successful five years together. Read our interview with Köster below to see who will be sailing for next year and how 2013 was for him overall.
PWA: Although it must have been disappointing for you to lose your world title, you still achieved an incredible feat of winning the PWA Youth Wave World Championship for the third consecutive year. How did you feel about completing the hat-trick?
PK: "Feeling good about that! I really love to compete and it makes me happy to achieve that."
PWA: How was 2013 overall for you? Highlight? Hardest part?
PK: "I had a very good year with a lot of windy training days, awesome competitions and full of media working, TV spots and more. I was travelling for the first time to Fiji in my life and made a trip to Florida and met nice people there. I learned a lot in this year. The hardest part was definitely not losing the title but not to compete in physically good conditions was the worse thing for me."
PWA: In Maui you were suffering from a staph infection, are you fully recovered now?
PK: "Yes, it took a long time, but I am ok now." (Glad to hear it)
PWA: What have you been up to since Maui?
PK: "I was in Maui 2 weeks, in bed recovering from the infection, then surfing, windsurfing and a trip to Cocoa Beach Florida and now I am in Oz to test sails and boards."
PWA: You're out in Western Australia at the moment, how long are you there for? Have you scored any epic conditions yet?
PK: "Yes I had very good conditions in Gnaraloo, and now Margaret River as well. I have to fly back in a few days because I have to be in Germany participating in the biggest sportsmen gala, meeting big names from all sports."
PWA: Any new moves or ideas for new moves?
PK: "I always have something in my mind, but not always the conditions to try, have to wait for the right moment to do them."
PWA: It was recently announced that you will be leaving NeilPryde? How long had you been on NeilPryde and how do you feel about moving to another brand?
PK: "Yes I am leaving NeilPryde. We had a very good time together for about 5 years I guess, but I am still only 19 years old, i'd like to make other experiences as well, trying more stuff out and start developing sails. The new sails are powerful and super light so it will be interesting where they are going to take me, it's just great to sail with something different."
PWA: There's been a lot of speculation about who who you might be joining, can you end the speculation and reveal which sails you will be sailing on next year?
PK: "I will be sailing with Severne Sails, matching great with my boards."
PWA: Plans for the rest of the off season?
PK: "I have to do some TV spots for a new sponsor, photo-shoots and maybe I will go snowboard somewhere in Austria or Switzerland."
PWA: And finally, are you confident about being able to win back your world title next year?
PK: "What a question..."
PWA: Thanks for your time Philip, have a great winter and we look forward to seeing you competing again next year.