Mercedes-Benz Sylt PWA Grand Slam

Day 4: Vrieswijk takes huge step towards maiden world title with victory in single elimination

The forecast delivered on Day 4 of the Mercedes-Benz Sylt PWA Grand Slam, which allowed a full day of explosive freestyle to be completed in 15-25 knots of wind. At the end of the day, Amado Vrieswijk (JP / Severne) is now on the verge of earning his first world title after he produced a stunning performance to win the single elimination in style. 



Single Elimination

With Sylt being the final stop of the freestyle world tour there was plenty at stake, particularly for Amado Vrieswijk, who came into the event leading the title race. The 20 year old is aiming to win his first world title, so he could’ve been forgiven for any nerves. However, rather than buckle under the pressure, Vrieswijk, seemed to revel in the spotlight and he saved his biggest performance for the final where he faced his main rival — Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / NorthSails / MFC). Vrieswijk came flying out of the starting blocks and unleashed an incredible double air culo, before planing out of an air kabikuchi to build an unassailable lead. 

The final was almost the title decider as whoever won the final, between Vrieswijk and Gollito, would sit at the top of the overall rankings, so after victory Vrieswijk is now on the verge of collecting his first world crown. 

Gollito will now have to hope for enough wind to allow the double elimination to be completed, and even then, he will need to defeat Vrieswijk twice in order to deny the Bonairean.

Fine Margins

The title race was just centimetres from swinging in Gollito’s favour today as Nicolas Akgazciyan (99NoveNove / Challenger Sails / Maui Ultra Fins) would have actually beaten Vrieswijk in Heat 22b if his pushloop hadn’t been adjudged to be performed outside of the competition area, As a result, Akgazciyan was eliminated rather than Vrieswijk and he remains on course for the world title.

Elsewhere, Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne), secured the final place on the podium after defeating Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / NorthSails / Maui Ultra Fins) in the battle for 3rd and 4th. 

Meanwhile, Sam Esteve (JP / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins), produced the biggest upset of the day as the young Frenchman claimed the scalp of Steven Van Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde / Shamal Sunglasses) in Heat 12a with a hugely impressive performance oozing style, power and height through all of his moves. 

Unfortunately, Rick Jendrusch (Severne) suffered a dislocated shoulder while competing today and everyone from the PWA wishes him a speedy and successful recovery. 

Double Elimination

The double elimination began almost immediately after the completion of the single and the first round has been completed. Thomas Traversa (Tabou / GA Sails) entering the freestyle always had potential for creating upsets and in Heat 30a TT ended the hopes of Max Matissek (Fanatic / NorthSails) and he will now face Steven Van Broeckhoven in the next round. 

Both Mattia Fabrizi (Fanatic / NorthSails) and Antoine Albert (Goya Windsurfing) have made the perfect starts to their comebacks by winning their opening couple of heats. Fabrizi first defeated Rasmus Oegelund (Patrik / Sailloft Hamburg) before beating Yegor Popretinskiy (Fanatic / NorthSails / Maui Ultra Fins / Flymount) with an efficient display, while Albert dispatched of Jamie Howard (JP / Severne) and Marco Lufen (JP / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins) with a textbook spock-culo being the pick of his moves. 

Shortly after 5pm the wind began to fade and the sailors were released at 5:30pm. The forecast for tomorrow shows moderate to fresh easterly winds, so the plan will be to begin the racing. The skippers’ meeting for the slalom has been called for 9am tomorrow morning with the action commencing from 10am. The freestyle and wave fleets will meet at 10am (GMT+1) for their skippers’ meeting. Make sure you tune into to follow all of the action as it happens via the PWA live stream.

To stay up to date with all the latest developments from Sylt — including the live stream, elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply click HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.

Result 2016 Mercedes-Benz Sylt PWA Grand Slam — Men’s Freestyle Single Elimination:

1st Amado Vrieswijk (JP / Severne)

2nd Jose ‘Gollito’ Estredo (Fanatic / NorthSails / MFC)

3rd Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne)

4th Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / NorthSails / Maui Ultra Fins)

5th Yentel Caers (JP / NeilPryde)

5th Philip Soltysiak (Starboard / Sailworks)

5th Balz Müller (Patrik / Severne)

5th Nicolas Akgazciyan (99NoveNove / Challenger Sails / Maui Ultra Fins)

9th Jacopo Testa (RRD / RRD Sails / AL360)

9th Youp Schmit (99NoveNove / Avanti)

9th Davy Scheffers (Tabou / GA Sails)

9th Antony Ruenes (Tabou / GA Sails)

9th Riccardo Marca (Fanatic / NorthSails

9th Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic)

9th Tonky Frans (Patrik / Sailloft Hamburg)