Catalunya Costa Brava PWA World Cup
The promising forecast for the penultimate day of the Catalunya Costa Brava PWA World Cup materialised to provide four solid hours of racing on another beautiful, sunny afternoon in 8-14 knots of wind.
The opening race of the day saw Thomas Goyard dominate another full fleet elimination, but with the second discard in the bag, the decision was made to experiment a little with the options for Foiling.
That led to the first Foil Slalom course on the world tour being completed, which saw 16 men lining up in the semifinals with the top 8 guys advancing. The switch to the Slalom course proved to be popular with many sailors, but there were also a few displeased faces, however from a spectators points of view the switch provided more excitement with more intense and close-quarters racing.
Moving forwards it looks like it would be interesting to have Foil Slalom held in lighter airs - around 14 knots and under, while switching to the upwind and downwind courses in anything above that would produce a great platform for finding the best overall Foiler. However, that is probably unlikely with regular Slalom obviously coming into play at that point - unless Foil only events were to arise.
Thomas Goyard (FMX Racing / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils) will head into the final day of the event with a healthy lead - 16.7 points to be exact - after claiming his third bullet of the week in Elimination 7 and then finishing 9th in the first Foil Slalom Elimination, which he currently discards. However, if the Frenchman finishes worse than 9th in the conclusion of Elimination 9 he will have to count that result, which would see his points total rise to 21.1 points. After 8 Eliminations Goyard has counting results of 1st, 1st, 1st, 2nd, 4th and 4th.
Julien Bontemps (JP / NeilPryde) remains in second place on 28.7 points - and the Frenchman could find himself right back in contention for the event title if he can maintain his incredibly consistent form. After the opening 8 eliminations, Bontemps has not finished outside the top 10 once!
The top 3 remains unchanged from overnight with Nicolas Goyard (Tabou / GA Sails / Phantom Foils) still in third place. However, the 23-year-old lost ground on the top 2 today. Goyard was level with Bontemps on 22.7 points, but he now trails Bontemps by 5 points after two 12th place finishes today. The Frenchman was in contention to win Elimination 8, but while challenging Antoine Questel (I-99 / S2Maui / Starboard Foil) for the lead at the last he dropped his last gybe!
Away from the top 3, reigning world champion - Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (Starboard / Severne / Starboard Foil) - climbs one place to 4th - after two top 10 finishes today and is now just 2 points behind Goyard. N, while Mateus Isaac (JP / NeilPryde) is just one point further back in 5th.
Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Severne / Starboard Foil) climbs three places into 6th from 9th after an 11th and a 3rd today, while the Italian is also successfully winners’ final of Elimination 9.
After the latest round of racing, there are just 5.3 points separating 3rd to 7th place with Amado Vrieswijk (JP / Severne / Starboard Foil) currently just one point behind Iachino on 39 points. The Bonairean has been one of the most consistent sailors this week, behind Bontemps, with 7 top 10 finishes out of 8 thus far. With such a consistent set of results, Vrieswijk, stands to gain plenty from the completion of the next race - assuming he can keep up his current level of performance.
The top 10 is currently completed by Alexandre Cousin (Patrik / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils), Sebastian Kornum (JP / NeilPryde) and Kiran Badloe (Starboard / Severne / Starboard Foil), who after the completion of the first race today rose to 4th from 10th. At that stage, the Olympic hopeful had recorded 4 top 4 finishes - 3 seconds and a 4th - from the last 4 races to surge back into contention, but saw his comeback derailed by the switch to Slalom Foil. Badloe finished 22nd in Elimination 8 and also failed to qualify for the winners’ final of Elimination 9 with the Dutchman saying that he had too much lift to be in control in the windiest period of the day.
Sebastian Koerdel (Starboard / GA Sails / Starboard Foil) and Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / Duotone / LOKEFOIL) are currently 9 points outside the 10 with both sailors tied on 55 points, while the top 16 is completed by Antoine Questel, who won Elimination 8, Maciek Rutkowski, who finished second in the same race, Enrico Marotti (JP / NeilPryde) and Antoine Albeau (JP / NeilPryde). AA started the day brightly with a 5th, but then made an uncharacteristic error, dropping his gybe at the last buoy, when comfortably qualifying in second place.
The last day of the event should see an action packed finale with an excellent forecast on offer - 13-24 knot south-southwest winds - and clear skies on offer which should see the seabreeze kick in again. The sailors will meet again at 10am tomorrow morning with the action commencing from 11am (GMT+2) onwards.
You can stay up to date with all the latest developments from Costa Brava — including elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply click HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.
Current Ranking 2019 Catalunya PWA World Cup - Men’s Foil
*After 8 Eliminations
1st Thomas Goyard (FRA - FMX Racing / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils)
2nd Julien Bontemps (FRA - JP / NeilPryde)
3rd Nicolas Goyard (FRA - Tabou / GA Sails / Phantom Foils)
4th Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (ARG - Starboard / Severne / Starboard Foil)
5th Mateus Isaac (BRA - JP / NeilPryde)
6th Matteo Iachino (ITA - Starboard / Severne / Starboard Foil)
7th Amado Vrieswijk (NB - JP / Severne / Starboard Foil)
8th Alexandre Cousin (FRA - Patrik / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils)
9th Sebastian Kornum (DEN - JP / NeilPryde)
10th Kiran Badloe (NED - Starboard / Severne / Starboard Foil)