PWA SLALOM WORLD CUP:

30.07.2017 - Antoine Albeau Finishes in Style to be Crowned King of Fuerte Again​
There was almost an anticlimax to the slalom, after an otherwise amazing 5 days of racing, as the wind looked as though it may disappear before the finals could be completed. However, thankfully, the wind machine burst back into life after a slight blip to allow one more elimination to be completed.

Slalom
Men's Elimination 8
Coming into the final day the top three - Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde), Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses) and Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses) - were separated by just 4 points, but in order for Iachino or Williams to have a chance of winning they would need Albeau to finish outside the top 4.

However, Albeau has won here almost every year since 2006. In fact he has been so dominant that he has only been denied by Finian Maynard (99NoveNove / Gun Sails) in 2012 and when there was no slalom in 2013 and he continued that dominance today as he signed off in style by winning the 8th elimination to be crowned the champion again.
Reigning world champion - Matteo Iachino finishes in second with Williams completing the podium just ahead of Ross Williams.

Elsewhere in the final elimination of the week - Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins) put yesterday’s crash behind him to secure 4th place, while Tristan Algret (Starboard / Severne / Mystic / Chopper Fins) rounded off the event with his best performance as he finished the winners’ final in 3rd place.

Maciek Rutkowski (Tabou / GA Sails) also signed off the week with his best performance - after a lacklustre couple of days - as he won the losers’ final to finish in 9th place, while Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti) bounced back from the disappointment of being pipped to the last qualifying place into the winners’ final by Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails) to secure 10th - which sees him finish 5th overall - after Sebastian Kördel (Starboard / GA Sails) dropped his final gybe in Heat 15.

The prize giving was held around 4pm to bring down the curtain on another superb installment of the Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam. Full event summary to follow on Tuesday.

Result 2017 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Men's Slalom:
1st Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde)
2nd Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses)
3rd Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses)
4th Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins)
5th Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti)
6th Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails)
7th Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne)
8th Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails / Chopper Fins)
9th Ben van der Steen (Patrik / Gun Sails)
10th Antoine Questel (Starboard / GA Sails)

29.07.2017 - Frans & Mortefon OK After Serious Crash as Iachino, Williams and Albeau Head into Tense Final Day in Contention ​

For the most part the penultimate day of the 2017 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - sponsored by René Egli - saw more scintillating action as the wind continued to howl for the 9th day in a row, however, the days racing became somewhat insignificant with Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic) and Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins) involved in a serious crash, which resulted in Frans being rushed to hospital - the second sailor this week after Ethan Westera (Tabou / GA Sails) was injured on Day 3.

Unfortunately during the final heat of the day - Winners’ Final of Elimination 7 - a serious crash occurred between Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins) and Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic) as the pack approached the first mark in winds exceeding 40 knots, which resulted in Frans needing urgent medical attention, while it is a miracle that Mortefon survived the potentially fatal crash unscathed. Thankfully, both sailors are said to be fine. Frans was initially feared to require an operation but the latest developments suggest that the Bonairean only requires stitches, while Mortefon has experienced pain in his back and foot, while obviously been shocked by the crash.

Final Day
For the first time in this event Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) lost the No.1 spot after a semifinal exit in Elimination 6, which was eventually won by Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses) as the Brit claimed back-to-back bullets. However, reigning world champion - Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses) assumed control of the event after securing second place.

At this point Williams trailed Iachino by just 0.4 of a point, while Albeau was only 2.4 points behind and there’d be more drama to follow in Elimination 7 as Iachino was eliminated from the first semifinal to leave the door open for Williams.

However, with the Winners’ Final seemingly at his mercy Williams span out upon exiting his final gybe and would end up in the drink alongside Sebastian Kördel (Starboard / GA Sails).

Unfortunately, as previously mentioned the Winners’ Final was overshadowed, but Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti) came out on top, while Albeau secured second place to reassert himself at the top of the event rankings heading into the final day.

To stay up to date with all the latest developments from Fuerteventura — including the live stream, elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply click HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.

Current Ranking Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Men’s Slalom
*After 7 Eliminations
1st Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde)
2nd Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses)
3rd Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses)
4th Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins)
5th Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti)
6th Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails / Chopper Fins)
7th Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails)
8th Ben van der Steen (Patrik / Gun Sails)
9th Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne)
10th Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic)

28.07.2017 The Wind Kicks in Late As Williams Wins First Bullet of Week
For a long time today it looked as though there may be no racing on Day 8 of the Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - sponsored by René Egli - with light onshore winds for much of the day. However, the wind did eventually swing offshore and filled in late to produce an exciting evening of racing in 20-25 knots of wind, which saw most sailors reaching for their 7.0s-8.0s.

Slalom
Men’s
Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses) looked be in fine form today as he won both his quarterfinal and semifinal and the Brit carried that blistering form into the winners’ final as he secured his first bullet of the week, which cements his 3rd place in the current rankings while also bringing him into event title contention. Williams is now 5.3 points behind Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) with two days to go.
 
Albeau still holds a healthy lead at the top of the rankings, but has seen his advantage greatly reduced from the opening day. AA finished 4th in today’s final, while reigning world champion Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses) continued his excellent form as the Italian claimed 2nd place, which sees him close to within 3.6 points of Albeau.

Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins) missed out on the winners’ final for the 3rd time in 5 races, but still rises two places - 6th to 4th - in the current rankings after the Frenchman won Heat 15 to finish 9th in Elimination 5. Mortefon could still make the podium as he has also won two races, but he’ll need to make no further mistakes and for the second discard to come into play in order to do so.

Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails / Chopper Fins) has recovered brilliantly since a disappointing showing in the opening race of the week and the Frenchman rises to 5th place, from 8th, in the current rankings after another excellent 3rd place today.
 

Pascal Toselli
 
Coming into today Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails) had qualified for every winners’ final so far, but unfortunately he lost his perfect record today as he failed to progress from Heat 13. The Frenchman had the potential to advance from the semifinal as he rounded the opening buoy in second place, but a sloppy second gybe cost him dearly. Bordes is still enjoying by far his best event of the season and currently occupies 6th place.
 
Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic) falls two places to 7th after being eliminated in the quarterfinals. The Bonairean was comfortably qualifying for the semifinals but ended up in the drink at the third mark and despite his best efforts he couldn’t quite fight his way back into the qualifying positions.

Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti) and Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne) both had days to forget with Quentel suffering a shock second round exit, while Moussilmani was eliminated in the next round. However, they remain in 8th and 9th place.
 
Ingmar Daldorf (Tabou / GA Sails) climbs one place to complete the current top 10 at the close of play with the Dutchman recording his best individual result so far, which saw the 26-year-old sail superbly to secure 5th place in Elimination 5.
 
Marco Lang (Fanatic / NorthSails) continues to recover from a slow first day when the Austrian was ill and has climbed back into the top 16 after qualifying for his first winners’ final of the week to finish 6th today. That place in the winners’ final came at the expense of teammate Jordy Vonk (Fanatic / NorthSails), who dropped his gybe at the third buoy when his first winners’ final of the week beckoned as well, so the Dutchman had to settle for 11th place today - 14th overall.
 
The forecast doesn’t look that great for tomorrow with slightly less wind than today being predicted and also the direction looks as though it could even be slightly northwest, so we will have to wait and see what happens, but a few of the locals think it will be similar to today. The skippers’ meeting has been called for 11am tomorrow morning with the action commencing from 11:30am (GMT+1) onwards. Make sure you tune into www.pwaworldtour.com to follow all of the racing as it happens via the PWA live stream.
 
To stay up to date with all the latest developments from Fuerteventura — including the live stream, elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply click HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.
 
Current Ranking Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Men’s Slalom
*After 5 Eliminations
 
1st Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde)
2nd Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses)
3rd Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses)
4th Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins)
5th Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails)
6th Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails)
7th Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic)
8th Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti)
9th Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne)
10th Ingmar Daldorf (Tabou / GA Sails)


27.07.2017 Iachino Charges Back into Contention to Keep Albeau in Crosshairs

Despite the lighter wind forecast, the world’s fastest sailors were still left reaching for their 5.2-6.2s as the wind continued to blow on Day 7 of the Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - all be it from a much more offshore direction. After patiently waiting throughout the morning the wind finally stabilised around 1pm to allow a further two eliminations to be completed.

Overnight leader Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) could’ve been out of sight by the end of the second day after the 23-time world champion secured another bullet in the opening race of the day, but his over early in the next elimination leaves the door slightly open for Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses), who staged the biggest comeback of the day.

Slalom
Men’s
Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) picked up where he left off yesterday as he dominated again to claim his second bullet in 3 races and it looked as though AA was in danger of completely running away with the competition even at this early stage. Albeau then comfortably qualified for the next Winners’ Final again - winning both his quarterfinal and semifinal - but then jumped the gun in the final to be disqualified meaning he received an 8th place - which he instantly discards - but it does open the door ever so slightly, while keeping the event interesting, with his lead cut to 5.6 points.

Antoine Albeau leads the way
Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses) and Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti) both slip one place to 3rd and 4th respectively. Both sailors made the opening winners’ final before being eliminated in the quarterfinals of Elimination 4 - which is the first time this week. that Williams has missed out on Heat 16, but he remains on course for his 3rd consecutive Fuerte podium as things stand.

Matteo Iachino started the day in 18th place after a disastrous first race yesterday when he was eliminated in the 3rd round, but since then the Italian has shown the sort of form you would expect from a reigning world champion with a 3rd, 2nd and 4th in his last 3 races. With the discard coming into play after the 4th elimination, Iachino flies up with rankings from 18th to 2nd and he’s now Antoine Albeau’s closest contender.

Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic) is another man on the move as he climbs 6 places from 11th to 5th. The Bonairean was eliminated in the quarterfinals of Elimination 1 after misplacing his feet while gybing when in the qualifying positions, but since then he’s hardly put a foot wrong - subsequently qualifying for each Winners’ Final since and progressively getting better with 7th, 6th and 2nd place finishes.

Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins) began day 2 of the slalom with a less than ideal start as the current vice-world champion crashed out in the quarterfinals. The 27-year-old bounced back from a slow start yesterday and did the same again today as he claimed a crucial bullet in Elimination 4 to keep himself in contention - remaining in 6th at the close of play - but you’d have to feel he can’t afford any more slip-ups now.

Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails) had a disappointing start to the season, but the Frenchman seems to have recaptured his best form here after qualifying for every Winners’ Final so far, which leaves him in 7th place at the moment, while fellow countryman Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails) has steadily improved - finishing today with an excellent 3rd in Elimination 4 - which sees him rise to 8th in the current event rankings.

The top 10 is currently completed by Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne) and Ben van der Steen (Patrik / Gun Sails). Moussilmani enjoyed another solid day, while van der Steen couldn't quite replicate yesterday’s level of performance.

While racing in high winds is often classed as the pinnacle of slalom, it of course has its dangers and unfortunately today those risks became apparent with PWA Youth World Champion - Ethan Westera (Tabou / GA Sails) - being involved in a high speed racing collision, which resulted in the 19-year-old being taken to hospital before undergoing an operation to reattach the tendons in his lower leg. Ethan is said to be fine, but disappointed to have had his competition cut short and everyone from the PWA would like to wish Ethan a speedy and successful recovery and we hope to see him back competing soon.

The forecast looks as though the wind will be light in the morning before kicking in again in the afternoon, so the skippers’ meeting has been called for 11am with a first possible start of 11:30am (GMT+1). Make sure you tune into www.pwaworldtour.com to follow all of the racing as it happens via the PWA live stream.

To stay up to date with all the latest developments from Fuerteventura — including the live stream, elimination ladders, entry list, images and live ticker simply click HERE and scroll to the bottom of the page.

Current Ranking Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam - Men’s Slalom
*After 4 Eliminations

1st Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde)
2nd Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses)
3rd Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses)
4th Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti)
5th Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic)
6th Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins)
7th Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails)
8th Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails)
9th Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne)
10th Ben van der Steen (Patrik / Gun Sails)

26.07.2017 - Antoine Albeau in Cruise Control as 23-time World Champion Dominates Opening Day​

For the 6th consecutive day, Fuerteventura delivered howling winds, which saw the men reaching for their 5.2m-5.6m sails and small boards as many of them struggled to stay in control. Over the course of the opening day of slalom, Fuerte’s death chop claimed numerous victims and will likely claim many more over the next 4 days, but one man who didn’t struggle is 23-time world champion - Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) - who finishes the day as the clear event leader after a brilliant display.

Antoine Albeau (RRD / NeilPryde) will be very happy with his opening days work in Fuerteventura after making a superb start which saw the 23-time world champion record one bullet and a solid second to take control of the event rankings from the word go. AA dominated this event here in 2016 and the early signs are that if the ferocious winds continue then he could well do the same again. Many sailors look out of control, but Albeau is making taming the choppy Fuerte waters look simple and almost effortless.

Albeau’s two biggest rivals Pierre Mortefon (Fanatic / NorthSails / Chopper Fins) and Matteo Iachino (Starboard / Point-7 / Shamal Sunglasses) both suffered earlier exits than they’d have liked the opening race with Mortefon struggling with his gybing in the semifinals and having to settle for 14th place, but the biggest upset of the day involved the reigning world champion, who was knocked out in his first heat of the event - 3rd Round. However, both bounced back in Elimination 2 to steady the ship with Mortefon securing his first bullet of the week, while Iachino finished 3rd, which leaves Mortefon 6th after Day 1, while Iachino is currently in a lowly 18th.

As mentioned in the preview Ross Williams (Tabou / GA Sails / Mystic / Shamal Sunglasses) holds an excellent record in Fuerte over the last couple of seasons and the Brit has made another strong start with a 4th and 5th place. However, it wasn’t all plain sailing for Williams after going down at the opening mark in his second semifinal, but he did brilliantly to fight his way back as he somehow avoided Pascal Toselli (99NoveNove / Loft Sails / Chopper Fins) who went down at the last, to book his place in another winners’ final.

Julien Quentel (Patrik / Avanti) has had moments of brilliance - winning in Japan - mixed with moments of mediocracy - Costa Brava - but today he was back to somewhere near his best which sees him complete the current event top 3. The 30-year-old finished second in the opening race before limiting the damage after narrowly missing out on the winners’ final by winning Heat 15 to claim 9th.

Both Ben van der Steen (Patrik / Gun Sails) and Cedric Bordes (Tabou / GA Sails) have made much needed excellent starts to the event as they currently languish 20th and 25th in the overall rankings when you’d really expect to see them pushing for the top 10 and beyond. At the close of play on day one they sit in 4th and 5th place respectively after qualifying for both winners’ finals.

Cyril Moussilmani (99NoveNove / Severne), Ingmar Daldorf (Tabou / GA Sails) and Alexandre Cousin (Patrik / GA Sails / Chopper Fins) occupy 7-9th after all three sailors qualified for the top 16 on both occasions today.

Brazil’s Gabriel Browne (Goya Windsurfing / Point-7) made a flying start in the opening race as he clinched a superb 3rd place but then suffered a quarterfinal exit to finish Day 1 of the slalom 10th overall.
Elsewhere, Taty Frans (Starboard / GA Sails / Mystic) sits just outside the top 10, while Enrico Marotti (RRD / NeilPryde) sailed brilliantly in the opening elimination to secure 4th place before he jumped the gun, along with Basile Jacquin (Starboard / Point-7), Josh Angulo (Angulo / Gun Sails) and Steve Allen (Patrik / Severne) in Heat 11 to be eliminated in the quarters.






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