Andrea Cucchi: the dark sail prevails at the Défi Wind

Andrea Cucchi has sailed faster to claim to the 2014 Défi Wind, at Gruissan, France.

A record number of 1,000 windsurfers from 27 countries participated in the 240 kilometers of races, held in between 25 and 46 knots of wind. The "Woodstock of Boarsports" was greeted by a powerful Tramontane.

The final 40-kilometer race, saw more than 700 sailors blasting the first leg in record time. At the first buoy, Andrea Cucchi is in the lead followed by Bringdal, who falls, Belbeoch, Moretti, Standhart, Guadagnino, Brault and Warembourg.

The stakes are high: victory for the overall ranking is being played out here in this last confrontation. They have been up against each other all week with the same fighting spirit as if they were competing for a world cup.

Fast and constant throughout the race, Andrea Cucchi lets no one take this final duel away from him, comes in ahead of Bringdal, who makes a good recovery, Gerald Pelleau and Patrice Belbeoch. Denis Standhart, as effective as ever at top speed, makes a comeback amongst the leaders and overtakes Nicolas Warembourg, who, as a result, loses the overall by a hair's breadth.

In the end, Cucchi, the solid, cheerful Italian wins the 14th Défi Wind. In the Women's division, Delphine Cousin, the 2013 Slalom world champion 2013, claims the overall ranking.

"Last year, I lost it on last day. This year I got it on the last day. Défi is one of those events that gives you a great feeling to win," says Andrea Cucchi.

"It's hard for the mind and for the body, and the 1000 people around make it unique. Thanks to the support to all my friends who were on the beach keeping me focused."

In the young division, the winning trio is made up of Nicolas Goyard, William Huppert and Benjamin Augé.

2014 Défi Wind Results

Men
1. Andrea Cucchi - Italy
2. Nicolas Warembourg - France
3. Patrice Belbeoch - France
4. Denis Standhardt - Germany
5. Valentin Brault - France

Women
1. Delphine Cousin - France
2. Marion Mortefon - France
3. Estelle Barre - France

Youth 13-15
1. Jimmy Thiémé
2. Tom Auber
3. Muehlemtatter Dominik

Youth 16-19
1. Nicolas Goyard
2. William Huppert
3. Augé Benjamin