NoveNove Maui Aloha Classic

Event Preview: World's best ready to end 2016 with a bang at Maui's iconic Ho'okipa Beach Park

After the completion of the penultimate event of the year in La Torche, France, where unfortunately it wasn’t possible to gain a result, the world’s finest wave sailors have raced halfway across the globe for the ultimate showdown — The NoveNove Maui Aloha Classic — in association with the American Windsurfing Tour (AWT), which runs between the 31st October until 13th November. 

Over the two week holding period the 2016 Men’s PWA Wave World Champion will be decided with Alex Mussolini (RRD / RRD Sails) the only man now capable of stopping Victor Fernandez’s (Fanatic / North Sails / MFC / Shamal Sunglasses) march to the title, Meanwhile, in the women’s division a new Aloha Classic champion will be crowned with reining champion — Iballa Moreno (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins) absent from proceedings. 

Ho’okipa (meaning ‘hospitality’) Beach Park, Maui, Hawaii is quintessentially the home of windsurfing. A place any windsurfer has hopes, dreams and aspirations of visiting at some point during their lifetime. What makes Maui so special is its clockwork like trade winds, which combine with some of the best, and biggest, waves on the planet to create the most spectacular windsurfing conditions — and all of this is then set against a stunning, luscious, tropical backdrop. It truly is a destination that every windsurfer must experience at some point in their lifetime.


With reigning Aloha Classic and world champion — Iballa Moreno (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins) not competing due to attending the SUP World Championship in Fiji, Fiona Wylde (Starboard / Sailworks) will enter the event as the favourite. The 19-year-old is one of the most exciting, emerging talents in down-the-line waves and has finished second in Maui for the past two seasons. 

Now with Iballa out of the running, the door is seemingly open for Wylde to stake her claim for a place in windsurfing history by winning what is still widely regarded as the most prestigious event in the sport. 

However, Wylde, will still face stern competition from the likes of Ingrid Larouche (Fanatic / Ezzy), who was third here last year, Sarah Hauser (Tabou / Simmer / MFC), Junko Nagoshi (Goya Windsurfing), and Vickey Abbot (Quatro / Goya Windsurfing), all of whom are familiar with Ho’okipa and will be dangerous.

Meanwhile, Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins) will be hoping to end the season on a high with her place on the overall podium already guaranteed — as will fellow PWA regulars Alice Arutkin (Fanatic / NorthSails), María Andrés (Fanatic / NorthSails) and Lena Erdil (Starboard / Point-7 / AL360), who will be making her debut in the waves.


Title Race

Victor Fernandez (Fanatic / NorthSails  / MFC) already has one-hand on the world title heading into the final event of the year after no result was gained in La Torche, France. The Spaniard is guaranteed a minimum total of 6,201 points with the discard — meaning the only way Alex Mussolini (RRD / RRD Sails) can deny Fernandez a second world crown is by winning the NoveNove Aloha Classic and hoping that Fernandez finishes fourth or worse. 

In the event of a Mussolini victory and Fernandez finishing fourth, the two sailors would finish tied on 6,201 points, so if there are suitable conditions, the title race would then be decided with a nail-biting sail off. If Mussolini is knocked out at any stage during the double elimination, then Fernandez is officially the 2016 Men’s PWA Wave World Champion.

If Mussolini is to deny Fernandez, then he will have to be at the very top of his game with a whole host of PWA regulars and ripping Maui locals ready to throw a spanner in the works and end Mussolini’s title hopes for another year. 

The first of those will be Morgan Noireaux (JP / Hot Sails Maui), who will be the hot favourite for the event title with the 22-year-old looking to complete an unprecedented hat-trick of Aloha Classics having won on his home patch in 2014 and 2015 with a combination of gouging rail turns and perfectly timed aerials. 

Former 3-time world champion — Kauli Seadi (99NoveNove / Hot Sails Maui / MFC) will also be among the favourites with the Brazilian forcing last year’s event into a super final against Noireaux. Seadi has finished on the podium here in 2013 and 2015 (injured in 2014) and you couldn’t bet against him going one better than last year with his instantly recognisable style setting him apart. 

Other sailors to keep an eye on include the 2013 Aloha Classic Champion — Levi Siver (Quatro / Goya Windsurfing / MFC), Camille Juban (Quatro / Simmer / MFC), Ricardo Campello (Patrik / Point-7 / MFC), Graham Ezzy (Tabou / Ezzy), Kevin Pritchard (Starboard / Ezzy / MFC), Kai Lenny (Naish / Naish Sails / MFC), and of course the legendary figures of Jason Polakow (JP / NeilPryde) Josh Stone (Goya Windsurfing) and Robby Naish (Naish / Naish Sails).

Battle for the Podium

Thomas Traversa (Tabou / GA Sails) currently holds the final place on the overall podium, but after sustaining a fractured eye socket / cheek bone the 2014 world champion has been forced to withdraw from Maui on medical grounds. 

This leaves Jaeger Stone (Starboard / Severne / SWOX / Shamal Sunglasses) and Marcilio Browne (Goya Windsurfing / MFC) still in contention. In order for Stone to overtake Traversa he would need to finish at least seventh in the double elimination.

However, if Browne is able to break into the top four and beat the Australian by at least three places, then the 2013 world champion can still claim the final spot in the overall top three, which is a real possibility given the fact he finished third here in 2014 and a widely regarded as one of the most talented sailors at Ho’okipa.

Robby Swift (JP / NeilPryde / Mystic / SWOX) harbours an outside shot at the podium but would need to win the event and then have Stone finish eighth or worse and Browne finishes fifth or worse.

This year also marks the 30th anniversary since NoveNove’s founder and brand manager — Cesare Cantagalli — landed the first ever cheeseroll in competition during the 1986 Aloha Classic and if conditions allow we'll be holding a Super Session to celebrate how the cheeseroll helped define and shape the sport that we know and love today.

Make sure you stay tuned into over the next two weeks to follow all the action as it happens via the PWA live stream.

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

Current Ranking 2016 Women's PWA Wave World Tour:

1st Iballa Moreno (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins)

2nd Daida Moreno (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins)

3rd Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins)

4th Amanda Beenen (99NoveNove / Point-7)

5th Steffi Wahl (Patrik / Sailloft Hamburg)

*Top 3 places cannot change with one event to go

Current Ranking 2016 Men’s PWA Wave World Tour:

1st Victor Fernandez (Fanatic / NorthSails / MFC / Shamal Sunglasses)

2nd Alex Mussolini (RRD / RRD Sails)

3rd Thomas Traversa (Tabou / GA Sails)

4th Jaeger Stone (Starboard / Severne / SWOX / Shamal Sunglasses)

5th Robby Swift (JP / NeilPryde / Mystic / SWOX)

6th Dany Bruch (Starboard / Flight Sails / AL360 / Shamal Sunglasses)

7th Marcilio Browne (Goya Windsurfing / MFC)

8th Leon Jamaer (JP / NeilPryde)

9th Alessio Stillrich (Fanatic / NorthSails)

9th Antoine Martin (JP / NeilPryde / MFC)

go to related event