Day 3 of the Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam — sponsored and organised by René Egli — saw the wind continue to produce the third consecutive day of explosive freestyle, which saw the men’s and women’s double eliminations completed. Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins) was able to successfully defend her single elimination crown and she is now a major step closer to an incredible 9th freestyle world title — 11th overall — while Amado Vrieswijk (JP / Severne) fought back in the double to overhaul Yentel Caers (JP / NeilPryde) and take control of the current men’s ranking.
Maaike Huvermann (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins) may have been disappointed with her result and performance yesterday, but today she can be extremely proud of the day she sailed. The 18 year old came out with all guns blazing as she won five heats on the bounce today, and six overall in the double elimination. Huvermann, who finished 3rd overall last year, landed anything from flakas and shakas to spocks and grubbys, and as her confidence grew she even busted out regular konos to firstly defeat Lene Kyte (Fanatic / NorthSails) before also clinically dispatching of Birgit Rieger, Olya Raskina (JP / NeilPryde), Maxime van Gent (JP / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins), and Arrianne Aukes (Fanatic / NorthSails) before clinching victory against Oda Johanne (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins) in a fiercely fought battle.
After storming back through the double Huvermann had earned the opportunity to take on Sarah-Quita Offringa in the winners’ final and she put on a bold show. Huvermann made a flying start to the heat as she landed a fully planing regular kono and she soon backed it up with a big forward — having only learnt to forward yesterday — while also attempting a culo. For a while Huvermann led the heat, but SQ soon reassumed the lead with a combination of a stylish shaka, perfect culo and a powerful ponch, before also landing a burner, shaka360 and a double puneta to extend her unbeaten run — which currently stretches to 8 years.
Single Elimination II
In the afternoon the second single elimination began, but couldn't quite be completed as conditions deteriorated during the evening. However, Huvermann and Offringa will line up once more after successfully navigating their way into the winners’ final after defeating Johanne and Aukes in the semifinals.
Amado Vrieswijk faced Jose ‘Gollito‘Estredo (Fanatic / NorthSails / MFC) in the battle for 2nd and 3rd place, while fighting for the opportunity to take on Yentel Caers (JP / NeilPryde) to steal his single elimination crown. The heat between Vrieswijk and Gollito proved to be one of the heats of the day with sailors both going massive. However, it was Vrieswijk, who managed to gain the upper hand with a combination of shiftys, paskos, spock culos and a brilliant backloop. Gollito nailed a pushloop off flat water and an air kabikuchi, but crucially he used his final move on port tack to try and follow suit after Vrieswijk’s backloop, but couldn’t emulate his effort. Having reached 7 moves on port, the 6-time world champion then went onto land a radical shifty, but unfortunately it didn’t count due to his scoresheet being complete already.
Winners’ Final / Super Final
Having defeated Gollito, Vrieswijk, came out even more pumped it against Caers knowing that he had a shot at his first double elimination victory. The Bonairean came mighty close in Austria — forcing a super final, but eventually lost out. However, he wasn’t going to let the opportunity slip through his fingers again and the 20 year old continued his blistering form to force a super final after a close heat against Caers.
With adrenaline levels still running high Vrieswijk once again produced a masterclass of freestyle as he quickly racked up an amazing shifty, pasko, clean kabikuchi and a superb planing double culo to really put the pressure on Caers. The Belgian produced a few stunning moves, but he couldn’t quite replicate the form he showed in the prior heat or day.
Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne) was visually disappointed with his display yesterday, but he’ll feel much better after today’s performance, which saw the reigning event and world champion rise to 4th in Fuerteventura after winning seven heats on the bounce. The Belgian rediscovered the form which saw him earn top honours last year with a combination of spock culos, kabikuchis and massive skopus on the outside as he took down Francesco Cappuzzo (RRD / RRD / Flymount / AL360), Balz Müller (Patrik / Severne), Kiri Thode (Starboard / GA Sails), Nico Akgazciyan (99NoveNove / Challenger Sails / Maui Ultra Fins) and Phil Soltysiak (Starboard / Sailworks) before he pushed Gollito all the way, but he eventually just missed out.
Single Elimination II
The first round of the men’s second round was also completed and so far all the names you would expect to progress have escaped unscathed.
The forecast predicts lighter winds for tomorrow, but there is still the possibility of more action with the gradient wind in the correct direction for the local thermal to kick in. The sailors will meet again tomorrow morning at 10am skippers’ meeting — with the action commencing from 10:30am (GMT+1) if conditions allow. Make sure you tune into www.pwaworldtour.com to follow the amazing action as it happens via the PWA live stream.
Result Women's Double Elimination - Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam:
1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins)
2nd Maaike Huvermann (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins)
3rd Oda Johanne (Starboard / Severne / Maui Ultra Fins)
4th Arrianne Aukes (Fanatic / NorthSails / Maui Ultra Fins)
5th Maxime van Gent (JP / NeilPryde / Maui Ultra Fins)
Result Men's Double Elimination - Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam:
1st Amado Vrieswijk (JP / Severne)
2nd Yentel Caers (JP / NeilPryde)
3rd Gollito Estredo (Fanatic / NorthSails / MFC)
4th Dieter Van der Eyken (Starboard / Severne)
5th Phil Soltysiak (Starboard / Sailworks)
6th Nico Akgazciyan (99NoveNove / Challenger Sails / Maui Ultra Fins)
7th Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic / Maui Ultra Fins)
7th Kiri Thode (Starboard / GA Sails)
9th Jacopo Testa (RRD / RRD / AL360)
9th Tonky Frans (Patrik / Sailloft Hamburg / AL360)
9th Steven Van Broeckhoven (JP / NeilPryde / Shamal Sunglasses)
9th Balz Müller (Patrik / Severne)
Words and Photos adapted from PWA