After two days of light and frustrating winds the Turkish Meltemi wind's finally returned on day five of the PWA Pegasus Airlines World Cup, to provide a brilliant day of racing.
After almost six hours of competition Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / North) now finds himself at the top of the men's rankings, whilst Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Chris Benz / Maui Ultra Fins) maintains her lead at the top in the women's, after another assured display, overall.
Heat sixteen was finally completed on the third attempt, after light winds had brought a halt to the proceedings after the opening gybe on the previous two efforts. Josh Angulo (Angulo / Gun Sails) made a flying start as he burst into the lead, but Andrea Cucchi (Starboard / Point-7) soon found himself in the lead as he showed great pace down the opening reach. The Italian held his nerve over the remainder of the course to claim the first bullet of the day, and more importantly his first ever elimination victory on the PWA World Tour. In the meantime Julien Quentel (RRD / NeilPryde) claimed second place as he held off Cyril Moussilmani (Starboard / Severne) and Matteo Iachino (F2 / Challenger Sails / AL360), who finished in third and fourth place respectively. However, Ben van der Steen (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Different) was left unhappy after an altercation with Angulo at the third mark, which resulted in the flying Dutchman finishing in eighth place.
The second winners' final of the day witnessed a combination of dropping winds and premature starts, which led to numerous re-sails - Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde), Finian Maynard (RRD / Avanti) and Pieter Bijl (Angulo / NeilPryde) were all disqualified from the final having all jumped the gun, leaving just the remaining five sailors to battle it out for top honors. In the final showdown, Cyril Moussilmani made the best start, but before entering the first gybe he sailed into Alberto Menegatti (Starboard / Point-7) which saw Moussilmani drop from first to last, whilst Menegatti found himself outside the top four with both sailors having to radically readjust their sailing line to make the buoy. Antoine Questel (Starboard / Loft Sails) took full advantage, having avoided the carnage, to burst into the lead and by the end of the race he had built a substantial advantage over his closest rival Cyril Moussilmani, who made a fantastic recovery. Menegatti also staged a comeback as he claimed third, with Ludovic Jossin (Patrik / Loft Sails) and Micah Buzianis (JP / MauiSails) finishing in fourth and fifth place respectively.
Hit and Miss!
Tristan Algret (Patrik / Loft Sails / Mystic) threw away a golden opportunity to qualify for the semifinals after dropping his gybe at the third buoy, which enabled Cyril Moussilmani to leapfrog Algret and claim the final qualifying place from heat nine.
Jordy Vonk (Patrik / Loft Sails) - on the other hand - enjoyed a terrific and memorable day as he qualified for his debut semifinal. This time around the Dutchman couldn't secure his place in the winners' final, but he is looking like a name to look out for over the coming years. In the losers' final Vonk was left slightly disappointed after slipping off his board exiting a gybe whilst in fourth place, but overall, today will still stand as a memorable day for the twenty year old.
The fourth elimination was started in the evening and the opening heats of the first round were completed. However, in those four heats they has already been a couple of major upsets as Ben van der Steen and Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne / Chris Benz / Dunkerbeck Eyewear) both took uncharacteristically early exits from the first round.
Sarah-Quita Offringa picked up exactly where she left off from - after her victory in the opening elimination - as she led from start to finish with an accomplished display in elimination two. Valerie Arrighetti (Tabou / Gaastra / Mystic) was pushed all the way by Ayako Suzuki (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic), but the reigning world champion eventually pulled away to claim second place, with Suzuki in third. Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne) started well but eventually had to settle for fourth place.
The second winners' final of the day started under dramatic circumstances as Sarah-Quita Offringa and Valerie Arrighetti collided on the start line, however both women made quick recoveries, but not quite quick enough, as Delphine Cousin (JP / NeilPryde) held the lead into the first mark with Cagla Kubat (Starboard / Loft Sails) and Melek Toraman (Starboard / Loft Sails) just behind as Offringa and Arrighetti approached in fourth and fifth place. Cousin looked confident in the lead and it wasn't long until the young French lady was claiming victory - as she mounts a serious challenge for the world title - ahead of local hero Kubat and Offringa - who eventually fought her way back to third - with Dilara Uralp (JP / NeilPryde) producing a great performance to clinch fourth.
Results After Three Eliminations - Men's Slalom
1st Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / North)
2nd Antoine Questel (Starboard / Loft Sails)
3rd Cyril Moussilmani (Starboard / Severne)
4th Julien Quentel (RRD / NeilPryde)
5th Alberto Menegatti (Starboard / Point-7)
6th Ben van der Steen (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Different)
7th Gonzalo Costa Hoevel (Starboard / Loft Sails)
8th Andrea Cucchi (Starboard / Point-7)
Results After Three Eliminations - Women's Slalom
1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic / Chris Benz / Maui Ultra Fins
2nd Delphine Cousin (JP / NeilPryde)
3rd Cagla Kubat (Starboard / Loft Sails)
4th Ayako Suzuki (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic)
5th Lena Erdil (Patrik / Loft Sails / Mystic / AL360)
6th Valerie Arrighetti (Tabou / Gaastra / Mystic)
7th Fulya Unlu (Starboard / Severne)
8th Dilara Uralp (JP / NeilPryde)
8th Melek Toraman (Starboard / Loft Sails)