After eight gruelling days of non-stop action in Gran Canaria, the PWA world tour now moves over to the neighbouring island of Fuerteventura for a world cup freestyle and Super X demonstration.
Registration commences on 17 July and the freestyle event will run through until the 21 July with the Super X running from the 22 to 24 July.
Sotevento, Fuerteventura is one of the most legendary flat water, cross offshore freestyle venues in the world, with wind statistics to dream of. Spanning over several idyllic miles upwind and downwind of the competition site, the beaches down in Sotevento are truly a windsurfers paradise. The Rene Egli Pro centre at Sotevento is the event Headquarters and is probably one of the best equipped windsurf centres in the world.
The prevailing wind conditions are 15-30 knots, cross offshore from the left. Waves are generally flat although occasionally Sotevento is blessed with perfect clean 3-4 feet waves.
Ricardo CAMPELLO (JP, Neil Pryde) is hot favourite going into the event after taking a clean sweep in the Gran Canaria freestyle. Campello who sails for Brazil but lives in Margarita (Venezuela) represents the new school of freestyle and his mind blowing routines are action packed with all the latest hot moves, pulled off with his innovative free flowing style.
Kauli SEADI (Naish, AHD) of Brazil is also tipped for a possible podium placing after taking second place in Gran Canaria. Seadi is another young gun in the freestyle world and is definitely a force to be reckoned with highly technical routines, which he has perfected to be able to reproduce consistently.
Last years world champion Matt PRITCHARD (Gaastra) suffered a devastating blow in Gran Canaria after injuring his knee in the third elimination. Pritchard is currently in Gran Canaria awaiting doctors advice to see if he will be able to compete at full strength in time for the event.
Other names to watch out for in Fuerteventura will be Tonky and Taty FRANS (Gaastra, AHD), Robby SWIFT (JP, Neil Pryde), Christian SAMMER (F2, Arrows) and Remko De WEERD (Gaastra, Fanatic) who will all be hoping for podium finishes.
In the women's freestyle Spanish sailor Daida MORENO (Mistral, North) is firm favourite after her clean sweep of the silverware in Gran Canaria, although her sister Iballa MORENO (Mistral, North) and Karin JAGGI (F2, Arrows) will no doubt be challenging hard.
The spectacular 3000 square meter marquee which acts as a daytime home for the 80 sailors competing, is night time home for relaxed drinking and partying on the beach. The legendary closing party in Fuerteventura is one of the biggest parties on the PWA world tour when sailors say goodbye to the Canaries leg of the tour in rocking style.
For the first time in PWA history, it is planning a trial of the new super x discipline! This exciting new format, which combines racing with freestyle tricks will take place on 22 through to the 24 of July.
For years now there have been attempts at obstacle type racing and similar variations on that theme, but now for the first time, we will see a truly professional concept that harnesses all the speed of slalom racing with the control and versatility of the freestyle discipline.
Freestyle gave a very rounded look to the family of PWA competition disciplines, but there were still some areas left unexplored, a radical angle, and a gladiatorial arena, which would leave just one man standing at the end. Super X provides that arena.
The PWA, together with major manufacturers, event organizers and the windsurfing press has collaborated to form this new discipline and to bring about its first trial run at the Fuerteventura, PWA Freestyle Grand World cup this year. Fuerteventura has always been a fantastic testing ground for new ideas and was instrumental in some of the earliest Freestyle experiments on the tour. This year, Fuerteventura will become windsurfing's Coliseum as the gladiators of the PWA do battle to take victory in this new format.
Speed, whilst essential, will not be not sufficient on it's own. Flamboyance and dexterity will not suffice without a good start. Control and experience will be invaluable, duck gibing the marks and getting over a 50 cm high obstacle, with 7 other contenders, whilst travelling at around 20 knots will be no easy job!
The first one over the finish line will be the winner and will stand out as an all-rounder. He will have proved that he is skilled in all areas of windsurfing techniques. There will only be one winner!