The inaugural day of the 2013 PWA Pegasus Airlines World Cup began with a bang with the Meltemi wind in full swing the opening eliminations of the week started just after 1pm, and by 4:30pm results for both the men's and women's fleets had been obtained.
Both Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) and Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Chris Benz / Maui Ultra Fins) claimed the first bullets of the week with commanding displays.
Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (Starboard / Loft Sails) came flying out of the starting blocks as he made the perfect start to cross the line in first place, but his lead didn't last long as a rampaging Antoine Albeau flew down the opening reach to storm into first place by the opening gybe and from here the reigning world champion only extended his lead with a combination of blistering speed and fluid gybes, and it wasn't long until he was claiming the first bullet of the week. Behind him Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / North) turned on the afterburners as well as out maneuvering several sailors at the first mark to move into second place, a position that the Frenchman was able to secure as he crossed the finish line to make a strong start to the week. Costa Hoevel eventually finished in third place ahead of Antoine Questel (Starboard / Loft Sails) - who held off the strong challenge of Ross Williams (Tabou / Gaastra) at the final mark to complete the top four - meanwhile, Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne / Chris Benz / Dunkerbeck Eyewear) had to settle for sixth place.
Elsewhere in elimination one twenty year old Jordy Vonk (Patrik / Loft Sails) did well to advance into the quarterfinals after escaping from a tough first round heat, but he couldn't quite find the performance to book his place in his first semi-final of his career. A few big names were eliminated from the first round though as Ludovic Jossin (Patrik / Loft Sails), Maciek Rutkowski (Patrik / Point-7 / Maui Ultra Fins), Cedric Bordes (Tabou / Gaastra) and Andrea Rosati (RRD / Point-7) all took early exits. The second semi-final saw a collision between Ben van der Steen (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Different) and Pieter Bijl (Angulo / NeilPryde) at the final mark as they battled for the final qualifying place, but in the end neither of them qualified after their crash.
The second elimination was also started and the first three heats were completed before the conditions deteriorated shortly before 18:00.
The first winners' final of the week started under dramatic circumstances as reigning world champion Valerie Arrighetti (Tabou / Gaastra / Mystic) was disqualified along with Marion Mortefon (Starboard / Severne) after both women mistimed their starts. The second attempt to begin heat four saw yet more drama as a further two sailors were disqualified for premature starts - this time Lena Erdil (Patrik / Loft Sails / Mystic / AL360) and Delphine Cousin (JP / NeilPryde). However no mistakes were made on the third attempt to complete the final as Sarah-Quita Offringa took full advantage of the absence of several big names, including the current world tour leader Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne). The Aruban gem - making her first appearance of the season - put together a commanding display to claim victory by a substantial margin over her closest challengers Cagla Kubat (Starboard / Loft Sails), Ayako Suzuki (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic) and Ceren Yaman (JP / NeilPryde) who completed the top four.
The losers' final saw the Turkish women dominate as they claimed the top three places. Fulya Unlu (Starboard / Severne) came out on top with Melek Toraman (Starboard / Loft Sails) and Deniz Sekercioglu in second and third place respectively, Karin Jaggi though could only manage a fourth place finish after colliding with Gelly Skarlatou at the third mark.
The day was eventually concluded at 6pm as deteriorating and increasingly gusty winds brought an end to the proceedings.
Results After Elimination One - Men's Slalom
1st Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde)
2nd Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / North)
3rd Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (Starboard / Loft Sails)
4th Antoine Questel (Starboard / Loft Sails)
5th Ross Williams (Tabou / Gaastra)
6th Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne / Chris Benz / Dunkerbeck Eyewear)
7th Sylvain Moussilmani (Tabou / Simmer)
8th Josh Angulo (Angulo / Gun Sails)
Results After Elimination One - Women's Slalom
1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Severne / Mystic / Chris Benz / Maui Ultra Fins)
2nd Cagla Kubat (Starboard / Loft Sails)
3rd Ayako Suzuki (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic)
4th Ceren Yaman (JP / NeilPryde)
5th Burce Vardarli
6th Dilara Uralp (JP / NeilPryde)
7th Lena Erdil (Patrik / Loft Sails / Mystic / AL360)
7th Delphine Cousin (JP / NeilPryde)
Scope the action
For more information on all the entrants, and to keep up to date with every piece of the action, click on www.pwaworldtour.com