Fly! ANA Yokosuka, Miura Windsurf World Cup
Day 3 of the 2022 Fly! ANA Yokosuka, Miura Windsurf World Cup eventually produced the most racing of the event thus far, but we had to wait a little longer than expected for the wind to kick in, whilst racing conditions remained tricky throughout with gusty winds - anywhere from 8-25 knots - making equipment choice extremely difficult. In the end, there was plenty of exciting racing whilst there were some massive crashes along the way, which ultimately allowed 3 eliminations to be completed in the Men’s and 2 eliminations in the Women’s.
Marion Mortefon (Fanatic / Duotone) led the overnight rankings having won the opening elimination of the week yesterday, and the 30-year-old enjoyed another solid day of racing as she recorded a second and a third place to extend her lead to 5.3 points.
Justine Lemeteyer (FMX Racing / S2Maui / LOKEFOIL), who is making her debut on the World Tour, enjoyed an excellent day with a 3rd and a 4th, which sees her currently occupy second place ahead of Delphine Cousin Questel (FMX Racing / S2Maui), who bounced back from an 8th in the opening elimination of the day, by signing off with her first bullet of the event.
Ma Kwan Ching and Helle Oppedal (Starboard / Severne Sails) currently sit in 4th and 5th place, but that could all change once the discard comes into play after the completion of Elimination 4. Blanca Alabau (Starboard / Severne Sails), who claimed her maiden bullet on the World Tour after producing a brilliant last gybe to pip Mortefon to victory in Elimination 2, potentially stands to gain the most from the discard as it would give her the opportunity to discard a quarterfinal exit from the first elimination, which could see her fly up the rankings as she backed up her bullet with a solid second place. Alabau is currently 6th, but could quickly become Mortefon’s main threat.
Things remain incredibly tight at the top in the Men’s fleet after the opening 3 eliminations with just 1 point separating Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Severne Sails), who leads the overnight rankings, and Enrico Marotti (JP / NeilPryde) at the close of play.
Iachino scored his first bullet on the World Tour since November 2019 (*5-star event) in the second elimination, which he backed up with two, thirds to head up the rankings. The Italian has looked extremely quick and quietly confident in all 3 eliminations and he is currently in pole position for the world title as he looks to earn his second world crown. As things stand, Iachino holds a 100 point advantage over Maciek Rutkowski (FMX Racing / Challenger Sails) and 200 points over Amado Vrieswijk (Future Fly / Severne Sails), whilst in the event rankings he has more breathing room as Rutkowski currently trails Iachino by 7.3 points, whilst Vrieswijk finds himself even further back - 13.3 points.
World title hopefuls - Vrieswijk & Rutkowski - both suffered some unlucky moments today, which could yet prove pivotal in deciding who ultimately wins the world title. After missing out on the opening Winners’ Final, Vrieswijk bounced back with an excellent third place to bring himself back into contention, but then suffered a broken boom in the Winners’ Final of Elimination 3 meaning the Bonairean had to settle for eighth place, which sees him currently ranked 5th. In the scenario that Iachino was to win the event and Vrieswijk could climb two places to third, the two sailors would then be tied, so the title would be decided on countback. Vrieswijk is currently 6 points behind 3rd place title rival Rutkowski.
Meanwhile, Rutkowski was left fuming after finishing 8th in the second elimination after getting a boom wrapped around his head. However, the Pole, who finished fourth in the first elimination, kept his title hopes alive after flying down the final reach to snatch second place in the last elimination of the day, which could yet prove to be a massive moment depending on how the rest of the event plays out. So for now it is advantage Iachino, but it is far from over with two days to go.
Enrico Marotti enjoyed a fine day as the Croat recorded a first, second and a fifth to put himself in serious contention for the event title, whilst Johan Soe (FMX Racing / Point-7) continues to sail superbly and the young Dane is currently ranked 4th after the opening 3 eliminations.
Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / Duotone / Chopper Fins / Phantom Foils) finds himself in 6th place after a 5th and a 9th today. The Frenchman was involved in an accident on the start line in the Winners’ Final of Elimination 2 together with Mateus Isaac (Severne / Severne Sails) and Basile Jacquin (FMX Racing / Point-7), who was later disqualified from the final for dangerous sailing. Mortefon and Isaac both suffered damaged foils, whilst the Brazilian also sustained a cut to his upper leg.
Nicolas Goyard (Phantom / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils) made the perfect start to the event as he reeled off a bullet in the opener, but then suffered a semifinal exit in Elimination 2. The 2021 world champion then bounced back with a 4th in the last race, so he is someone who stands to potentially gain a lot upon the completion of Elimination 4.
The top 10 is currently completed by the French trio - Basile Jacquin, William Huppert (Fanatic / Duotone / Phantom Foils) and Alexandre Cousin (Patrik / Patrik Sails / Chopper Fins / Phantom Foils), who won the second elimination b-final.
Another notable performance today goes to 16-year-old Will McMillan (Starboard / Severne Sails), who qualified for the top 16 twice as he really took it to his peers - eventually recording outstanding 12th and a 14th places.
Elsewhere, Antoine Albeau (JP / NeilPryde), who announced he is retiring from competing on the PWA prior to the event, qualified for his opening Winners’ Final of the week - where he finished 6th, whilst Jordy Vonk (Fanatic / Duotone) also booked his place in a first Winners’ Final of the event.
The forecast for tomorrow looks as though there could be the potential for more racing, although the best chance will probably be in the morning as the wind is expected to drop throughout the day. The sailors will meet again at 8am tomorrow morning with the action commencing from 9am (GMT+9).
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Current Ranking Fly! ANA Yokosuka, Miura Windsurf World Cup - Women’s Slalom
*After 3 Eliminations
1st Marion Mortefon | FRA (Fanatic / Duotone)
2nd Justine Lemeteyer | FRA (FMX Racing / S2Maui / LOKEFOIL)
3rd Delphine Cousin Questel | FRA (FMX Racing / S2Maui)
4th Ma Kwan Shing | HK
5th Helle Oppedal | NOR (Starboard / Severne Sails)
6th Blanca Alabau | ESP (Starboard / Severne Sails)
7th Veerle ten Have | NZL
8th Shacar Tibi | ISR (Future Fly)
Current Ranking Fly! ANA Yokosuka, Miura Windsurf World Cup - Men’s Slalom
*After 3 Eliminations
1st Matteo Iachino | ITA (Starboard / Severne Sails)
2nd Enrico Marotti | CRO (JP / NeilPryde)
3rd Maciek Rutkowski | POL (FMX Racing / Challenger Sails)
4th Johan Soe | DEN (FMX Racing / Point-7)
5th Amado Vrieswijk | NB (Future Fly / Severne Sails)
6th Pierre Mortefon | FRA (Fanatic / Duotone / Chopper Fins / Phantom Foils)
7th Nicolas Goyard | FRA (Phantom / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils)
8th Basile Jacquin | NC (FMX Racing / Point-7 / Phantom Foils)
9th William Huppert | FRA (Fanatic / Duotone / Phantom Foils)
10th Alexandre Cousin | FRA Patrik / Patrik Sails / Choppers Fins / Phantom Foils)