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30 September 2005, 11:17 am
Crack of Dawn Wave Session
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PWA Nivea World Cup Sylt 2005
Sylt, Germany

Before the sun was properly up this morning, the first PWA riders were out on the water, preparing for the 2005 Sylt wave performance. Germany's Steffi WAHL (G-303, F2) was the first one out at 07:00, while the morning light was not even bright enough for the early risers on the beach to distinguish her sail brand.
One hour later, the contest got underway in solid 25 knot side shore winds from the left with the men's wave competition and another hour later still, Thomas TRAVERSA (F-3, Tabou/ Gaastra) stuck the first and only textbook double forward of the day before most Sylt residents had even gotten out of bed.

The high paced action continued up until 09:30 when the wind suddenly dropped, putting the contest on hold to be picked up again shortly after. As vicious rain showers swept across the beach, round number one was completed without any shocking events. Right after the first round was completed, the wind died and swung to onshore just as forecast. While the wind came back quite quickly, the waves had completely gone down, forcing the fleet to wait it out for the tide to drop and the waves to return. At around 15:30, the wave situation had improved sufficiently to continue the show with the first heat of round two, in which Robby SWIFT (K-89, JP/ Neil Pryde) dealt with Phil HORROCKS (K-303, JP/ Neil Pryde) and Bjorn DUNKERBECK (E-11, North Sails) took care of Ben VAN DER STEEN (NED-57, Fanatic/ Neil Pryde), VAN DER STEEN having his equipment annihilated by the shore break in the process. Two heats later, local hope Bernd FLESSNER (G-16, F2/ Neil Pryde) was taken out by Orjan JENSEN (E-19, North Sails) and two heats after that another German favorite was knocked out of the contest as Klaas VOGET (G-4, Fanatic) was splashed by Xavier HUART (F-33, Mistral/ North Sails). The remaining heats of the second round saw all the usual suspects moving on to the last sixteen.

After the second men's round was completed, the competition area was moved further up the beach as the waves seemed to be better there. The judges swapped their harsh jury container for several luxurious Range Rovers parked on the beach, provided by Land Rover, one of the events sponsors. First up to try the new contest arena were the women's wave sailors. Without any unexpected events, the top women secured their spot in the quarters which will feature Annemarie REICHMAN (H-98, Naish/ Naish) vs. Karin JAGGI (Z-14, F2), Uli HOELZL (AUT-123, F2/ Neil Pryde) vs. Iballa MORENO (E-63, Mistral/ North Sails), Junko NAGOSHI (J-11) vs. NAYRA Alonso (E-4, Fanatic/ Severne) and Silvia ALBA (E-67, Tabou/ Gaastra) against Daida MORENO (E-64, Mistral/ North Sails). The women were released for the day after that and it was back to the men for the battle of the final sixteen.

This is were things got more tense, as Robby SWIFT (K-89, JP/ Neil Pryde) was up against Bjorn DUNKERBECK (E-11, North Sails) and made it through at the expense of the event's leading Slalom 42 racer. In that same heat, Nik BAKER (K-66, Mistral/ North Sails) disposed off Orjan JENSEN (E-19, North Sails) with his trademark powerful backside aerials. Next up were Antoine ALBEAU (F-192, Neil Pryde) and Vidar JENSEN (N-44, North Sails) taking each other on. Jensen turned out to be the better sailor in that heat and ALBEAU could hang his wetsuit out to dry for the rest of the day. In the same heat young gun Alex MUSSOLINI (E-30, JP/ Neil Pryde) terminated reigning wave champion Scott MCKERCHER (KA-181, Starboard/ Severne) in a super close heat. After that, Victor FERNANDEZ (E-42, Fanatic) sent off Jonas CEBALLOS (E-40, Fanatic) with a massive stalled forward among others. At the other end of the heat, favorite for the wave title Kauli SEADI (BRA-253, Quatro/ Naish) was facing Xavier HUART (F-33, Mistral/ North Sails). The Brazilian nailed it with a huge back loop and an air chachoo, but HUART gave him a serious run for his money. In the final heat of the day, Peter VOLWATER (H-24, F2) beat John SKYE (K-57, F2) and Greg ALLAWAY (KA-38, Mistral/ North) knocked out Kevin PRITCHARD (US-3, Starboard/ MauiSails).
Vivienne Masters (As Amended by ISAF), Phil HORROCKS hits the lip © PWA/Carter
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