2002 PWA Freestyle Qualifier Neuesiedler See Austria Day 4
Ten thousand people came to watch the show at the Neusiedler See, a lake located 30 minutes from Vienna.
Freestyle at its best was shown by 32 riders from 12 countries. Strong wind from both sides (west and east) made it a very complete competition. The riders pulled out unbelievable tricks like clew first spock 540 variations, grubbies, newly invented moves like the Swayze (a flay water Taka) from Web Pedrick, Diabolos, flat water Goyters, all kinds of Willy Skipper variations and also a wide range of classic moves like 360s,backwind jibes, body drags and speed loops.
Some of the riders had a strong come back, like the inventor of the King of the Lake Alex Humpel (Neil Pryde/JP)(4th place),the Austrian who now lives in Maui, Michi Schweiger (Naish/Naish)(5th place ex aequo) and the Italian champion Raimondo Gasperini (Fanatic) (5th place ex aequo).
The top three riders however were going off in a spectacular way. US Freestyle rider Web Pedrick in his powerful and complete-disregard-of-danger style was chasing the two el Yaque based riders Diony Guadagnino (Neil Pryde/JP) and Remko de Weerd (Gaastra/AHD). Diony showed that he improved a lot since his win at the King of the Lake 2000 and that he is a serious threat to all riders this year. The winner Remko de Weerd (Gaastra/AHD) however is amongst worlds best freestyle riders due to his amazing technical skills and he showed that he can pull out his tricks with all sail sizes and that he is one of the riders who will battle for the Freestyle World title 2002.
1. Remko de Weerd (Gaastra/AHD)
2. Diony Guadagnino (Neil Pryde/JP)
3. Web Pedrick (North Sails/AHD)
4. Alex Humpel (Neil Pryde/JP)
5. Michi Schweiger (Naish/Naish) ex aequo Raimondo Gasperini (Fanatic)
Not only on the water but also at the parties all riders showed what was possible and also several impossible moves and they all agree that the party week at Podersdorf is the mother of all parties. At the closing ceremony tonight in the big party tent up to 2000 people are expected.
It was good to see such a high level of sailing and thousands of fans who enjoyed the show. Let the show never end!!!