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28 September 2003, 08:53 am
Wave World Champion Decided in Sylt
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Wave Winner Josh Angulo Pwa/Carter

PWA World Tour
Sylt

28 year old American wave guru Josh ANGULO has taken the PWA 2003 overall wave title here after defeating Bjorn DUNKERBECK (Neil Pryde) in the penultimate heat of the men's double elimination at the Labello, Sylt, PWA 2003 Grand Slam.
Angulo went on to take down Kevin PRITCHARD (Gaastra, Starboard) in the first double elimination final but Pritchard fought back in the second final to take the event victory here in Sylt. In the women's double elimination final Daida MORENO (Mistral, North) defeated Karin JAGGI (F2, Arrows) to take first place and seal the deal for the women's 2003 overall title.

In yet another dramatic day where Sylt's changeable conditions threw up 20 knot side onshore winds and 3-4 foot waves Josh ANGULO stood up to the test in the biggest heat of his life up to this point. Race director Klaus Michael had opted to extend heats to fifteen minutes with three waves and two jumps counting due to the heavy shore break shielding the wind close to the beach. With the world title hinging on one heat, Angulo kept his nerve and defeated Bjorn DUNKERBECK in a battle that could on gone either way.

Dunkerbeck had opened up the duel with a monster wave ride riding the surf on the outside break all the way through to the beach while Angulo headed out from the inside looking for a jump but failed to find a suitable ramp. After nailing a forward loop and a table top on his run out from the beach it looked like the heat was going Dunkerbeck's way. But Angulo gradually started to find his momentum midway through the conflict and put together two solid wave rides closing the gap on the Spanish ex world champion. The 'Terminator' then started to falter in the second half of the heat after riding a wave right through to the shore and then struggling for three or four minutes trying to punch through the white water. With Dunks out of the equation Angulo capitalized on the situation and nailed a back loop, a one handed back loop sand a tweaked out table top. Dunkerbeck eventually made it out through the surf failed to get back in tune with the conditions for the rest of the heat. In the tense moments that followed, both sailors waited for the results knowing that the world champion was about to be announced. The judge's decision went to Angulo and the emotional new world champion celebrated by hugging his wife Claudia.

With the title in the bag the next job on the agenda for Angulo was to take on Kevin PRITCHARD in the battle for the event victory. Continuing his momentum from the massive battle with Dunkerbeck, Angulo went on to take the first of two finals with a 4-1 decision from the judges. The Hawaiian had managed to find three solid waves and all of his jumps whilst Pritchard had sailed well but failed to land a vital back loop at the end of the heat.

In the second final Angulo opened up his wave account with a sick backside air over an ugly section of Sylt dredging beach break. Unfortunately the maneuver was just outside the competition area and not scored by the judges. Pritchard seemed out of tune with the conditions for the opening half of the heat but pulled back with a clean back loop, tweaked table top and several solid wave rides. Towards the end of the heat Pritchard turned on the pressure on his last wave and nailed a backside air and then a clew first aerial on the inside section. Angulo replied to Pritchard's attack with a one handed back loop, tweaked table top and clew first floater on the last wave. Angulo's opening ride outside the area proved to be his demise and the judges decision went 4-1 in favor Pritchard who had managed to pull of a superb display to take down the new world champ!

In the women's wave double elimination Karin JAGGI (F2, Arrows) kicked of the day by taking down Nayra Alonso of Spain lining up a head to head against Daida MORENO in the final. The first attempt at running the heat was eventually called off after eight minutes due to a lull in the wind. Daida Moreno had failed to make it out through the beach break during the heat and taken several poundings by the vicious shore dump. When the wind returned Moreno won the battle with a convincing margin after making the best of the tricky conditions and pulled off two back loops and several forwards despite Jaggi fighting it out all the way.

Yesterday's action was enjoyed by tens of thousands of spectators braving the chilly north-westerly winds to watch the world best in action. Sylt has already delivered the goods in terms of superb conditions, organization and parties. We now have one day remaining and the battle for the racing event title and PWA overall champion yet to be decided.

Stay tuned to the PWA web site for the final countdown here in Sylt where Buzianis, Albeau, Williams and Brzozowski all have scores to settle!

JOSH ANGULO

Every thing is awesome I am stoked! I was a bit nervous before the heat with Bjorn. I started the off badly and then just kind of hung in there. Honestly in the first five minutes of the heat I was just thinking to myself…oh no I am losing the title! Then I just pulled it together and made it through the heat. I did not smoke him but I beat him. In the last heat against Kevin I thought I sailed much better than I did in the first heat and was actually a bit surprised that the decision went his way but at this point I am not too worried about it. I won the world title, got second here, the events over, I can relax.

KEVIN PRITCHARD

I am pretty happy about today. I went out there and I was not even nervous. I just went out there and sailed the first heat and when I heard I had lost I still did not get nervous. I just went back out there and sailed good. Actually the for first ten minutes I was just sailing back and forward looking for something. I could not find a wave and could not find a jump. I n the last five minutes I caught two waves and landed a decent back loop. I am pretty stoked; Sylt is a big one to win. You can hear the crowds cheering after your wave rides when you are competing. It is not too often that there are 100,000 people on the beach cheering you on.

DAIDA MORENO

The wind was really light and I was on a 5.3m in the final. I don't know what happened, it was hard there were eight minutes left in the heat and I still had not made it out through the shore break. Luckily the heat was abandoned and I got a second chance. Second time I made it out and concentrated on my heat and did what I had to do. It was tough out there, I feel happy but I can't really demonstrate it right now. If I have a few drinks tonight maybe I will feel better!"

MEN'S WAVE RESULTS AFTER DOUBLE ELIMINATION

1. Kevin Pritchard (Gaastra, Starboard)
2. Josh Angulo
3. Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Neil Pryde)
4. Matt Pritchard (Gaastra)
5. Vidar Jensen (North)
5. Victor Fernandez (Fanatic)

WOMEN'S WAVE RESULTS AFTER DOUBLE ELIMINATION

1. Daida Moreno (Mistral, North)
2. Karin Jaggi (F2, Arrows)
3. Nayra Alonso
4. Uli Hölzl (F2, Arrows)

MEN'S OVERALL WAVE RANKINGS 2003

1. Josh Angulo
2. Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Neil Pryde)
3. Vidar Jensen (North)
4. Matt Pritchard (Gaastra)


WOMEN'S OVERALL WAVE RESULTS

1. Daida Moreno (Mistral, North)
2. Karin Jaggi (F2, Arrows)
3. Iballa Moreno (Mistral, North)
4. Uli Hölzl (F2, Arrows)

Event Media (As Amended By ISAF News Editor)
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