Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam
With the overnight forecast improving for Day 8 of the 2023 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam, Sotavento once again delivered the goods as it continues to live up to its name of ‘Home of the Wind’, which saw the Men’s Single Elimination completed and the top four put on a superb display of the latest power moves as they took full advantage of the favourable water state. Ultimately, there was no stopping reigning world champion - Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / Duotone / Maui Ultra Fins) - from claiming the top place on the podium as the Frenchman delivered a clinical display of world class Freestyle.
Reigning world champion - Adrien Bosson (Fanatic / Duotone / Maui Ultra Fins) - advanced into the winners’ final after edging an incredibly close semifinal against Yentel Caers (JP / NeilPryde). The Frenchman trailed Caers for much of the heat, but with the top 4 being given 9 minutes to show their best moves, Bosson made full use of his time as he struck in the dying stages to flip the tie on its head - eventually claiming the win with 46.5 points to 44.9. In the final, the 32-year-old was in clinical form again as his combination of power moves proved too much for Antony Ruenes (Tabou / GA Sails). Bosson posted his highest scoring heat of the contest 47.8 points to deservedly win the single elimination, which sees him lead the event heading into the last two days.
Like Bosson, Ruenes (Tabou / GA Sails) would post his highest scoring heat of the contest in the final - 41 points - after landing a trademark no-handed burner and a no-handed ponch, but it wasn’t enough to take down his friend and fellow countryman. Earlier, Ruenes had claimed an excellent victory over Amado Vrieswijk (Future Fly / Severne Sails), which guarantees the 34-year-old his first podium since Sylt 2014, as the worst position he can now finish is third. Ruenes also finished third here in the single elimination in 2015, but then injured his foot, which saw him drop to sixth as two double eliminations were completed that year!
Yentel Caers (JP / NeilPryde) secured the final place on the podium in the single elimination after earning the highest heat score of the competition - 51.1 points - which left the Belgian slightly frustrated as he missed out on a place in the winners’ final by such a small margin. In the semifinal against Bosson, Caers was missing a shifty, but against Vrieswijk in Heat 16 the 2019 world champion produced an impeccable heat, which saw him land not only a shifty but also a shifty-shaka. Caers looked incredibly dangerous and will be hoping for his shot in the double!
Vrieswijk was left slightly frustrated that the semifinals were run when the wind was still building as he was left underpowered sometimes on 4.8m. The Bonairean lost out to Ruenes by just over 4 points, but critically he failed to complete his starboard tack scoresheet with only 3 out of 4 moves landed. The 27-year-old sailed a solid heat in the battle for third and fourth - posting a score of 46.2 points - but just came up short against an on fire Caers.
The margins at the top of the Freestyle are so fine that you wouldn’t bet against either Ruenes, Caers or Vrieswijk coming back through the double to challenge Bosson for the top honours, whilst a sailor from further back in the double, which began this afternoon, could just as easily mount a challenge.
Several sailors began their comebacks, but the most impressive competitor thus far in the double was Lennart Neubauer (Starboard / Severne Sails / Maui Ultra Fins), who put the disappointment of a first round exit in the single firmly out of his mind. The former youth world champion posted the highest scoring heat of the entire contest (when 3 moves from 7 on each tack count) - 41.3 points - to dispatch of Dudu Levi (Future Fly / GUNSAILS), who was slightly unlucky with his draw as his total of 30.1 points would’ve been enough to progress through most other heats. Neubauer then proceeded to knock out Bodhi Kempen (Severne / Severne Sails) with another astute display and there won’t be many sailors wanting to take on the 19-year-old, who currently leads the European Tour.
Elsewhere, Jacopo Testa (AV Boards / Point-7 / AL360) also made a successful start to his comeback as he dispatched of fellow Italian - Nicolo Di Marco - before he progressed against a below par Dieter Van der Eyken (Severne / Severne Sails), who only landed one move on port tack, which is almost unheard of as he is normally so solid and reliable. Testa looked a little shaky in the first round, but started to find his form in the second round and if the Italian can start to gather a bit of momentum he could be a real danger man.
Meanwhile, Takuma Sugi (Tabou / GA Sails / Black Project Fins) will face Steven Van Broeckhoven (Starboard / GUNSAILS) in round three after Sugi ended the hopes of Michael Chovan, whilst Van Broeckhoven saw off Marino Gil (Goya Windsurfing). The Pozo local sailed well on port tack with his jumping repertoire, but the Belgian had too much firepower in store.!
In Heat 23a - George Grisley (AV Boards) - negotiated his way past good friend Maarten Molenaar (Starboard / GUNSAILS) and is rewarded with a tricky tie against Neubauer, whilst Nicolas Akgazciyan (JP / NeilPryde) will take on Testa after defeating Corto Dumond (RRD / RRD Sails) in Heat 23b.
Youp Schmit had to be on his toes to stop 16-year-old - Takumi Moriya (Severne / Severne Sails) - who sailed excellently to push the Bonairean all the way with just 2.3 points separating them by the end of the heat. Moriya looks like one to watch carefully in the coming years. Schmit will now face Nils Bacon (Patrik / Patrik Sails) after winning the last heat of the day against Robin van Linden (Severne / Severne Sails).
With a firing forecast for the last two days of the Freestyle there should be more explosive action to come, so make sure you tune into www.pwaworldtour.com on Friday and Saturday to see if Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins) and Adrien Bosson can successfully defend their single elimination crowns. The sailors will meet again at 11am tomorrow morning with the action commencing from 11:30am (GMT+1) onwards.
You can stay up to date with all the latest developments from Fuerteventura — including live stream, elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply by clicking HERE and scrolling to the bottom of the page.
Also if you don’t already, be sure to follow us on our Social Media Channels:
Current Event Ranking 2023 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Women’s Freestyle
1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (ARU | Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins)
2nd Oda Brødholt (NOR | Starboard / Severne Sails)
3rd Maaike Huvermann (NED | Severne / Severne Sails / Maui Ultra Fins)
4th Lina Erpenstein (GER | Severne / Severne Sails)
5th Olya Raskina (JP / NeilPryde)
5th Lisa Kloster (GER | MB-Boards / Sailloft Hamburg)
5th Arrianne Aukes (NED | Fanatic / Duotone / Maui Ultra Fins)
5th Bijou Shahmirian (AUT | Starboard / Severne Sails)
Result 2023 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Women’s Slalom
1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (ARU | Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins)
2nd Marion Mortefon (FRA | Fanatic / Duotone)
3rd Blanca Alabau (ESP | Starboard / Severne Sails)
4th Justine Lemeteyer (FRA | FMX Racing / S2Maui / LOKEFOIL)
5th Jenna Gibson (UK | Fanatic / Duotone)
Current Event Ranking 2023 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Men’s Freestyle
1st Adrien Bosson (FRA | Fanatic / Duotone / Maui Ultra Fins)
2nd Antony Ruenes (FRA | Tabou / GA Sails)
3rd Yentel Caers (BEL | JP / NeilPryde)
4th Amado Vrieswijk (NB | Future Fly / Severne Sails)
5th Niclas Nebelung (GER | Fanatic / Duotone)
5th Balz Muller (SUI | Severne / Severne Sails)
5th Antoine Albert (NC | Goya Windsurfing)
5th Sam Esteve (FRA | JP / NeilPryde)
Result 2023 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Men’s Slalom
1st Nicolas Goyard (FRA | Phantom / Phantom Sails / Phantom Foils / AL360)
2nd Johan Soe (DEN | FMX Racing / Point-7)
3rd Matteo Iachino (ITA | Starboard / Severne Sails)
4th Amado Vrieswijk (NB | Future Fly | Severne Sails)
5th Pierre Mortefon (FRA | Fanatic / Duotone / Phantom Foils)
6th Maciek Rutkowski (POL | FMX Racing / Challenger Sails)
7th Bruno Martini (ITA | JP / NeilPryde)
8th Daniele Benedetti (ITA | FMX Racing / Challenger Sails)
9th Enrico Marotti (CRO | JP / NeilPryde)
10th Nicolas Prien (GER | JP / NeilPryde)