Clayton Dougan in the Taranaki Wave Classic

The Taranaki Wave Classic is New Zealand's premiere windsurfing event.

Held at 4 possible locations around the legendary coastline of the Taranaki peninsula, the Labour weekend event will sample some of New Zealand's best wind and wave conditions.

All skill levels are welcome with fun being the main focus, or you can come along, chill-out and watch the action.

Epic down the line wave sailing, barbies, and a few beers what more could anyone want. Maybe the chance to win a state of the art Carbonart Windsurf Board as well as sails, masts, booms and other wonderful prizes.

Total prize pool of over $7000 dollars.

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2009 PWA Turkey in Alaçati

A perfect start to Alaçati as race 1 sees Ross Williams and Sarah Hebert take the early advantage.

A strong morning wind and glorious sunshine gave competitors the perfect opportunity to get tuned up and registered in the beautiful Alaçati bay in preparation for the afternoon of racing ahead. The atmosphere on the beach was fantastic, with a local DJ banging out the tunes and the crowd relaxing on sunbeds.

Race 1 kicked off at 2pm with a 4-gybe downwind slalom course, in 25kts of wind. Most competitors selected sails around the 7.0-8.0 range and boards around 100-110 liters, and the racing was intense from the outset.

Standout performance of the early rounds was local hero Bora Kozanoglu (Starboard/NeilPryde). In the first heat of the day he flew into the lead, holding off Dunkerbeck (Starboard/Severne) for the entire race, winning in front of a cheering home crowd. Having just finished 1st in the Turkish Championships, he is clearly going well and was unlucky to go over the line early in the quarterfinals.

Other local standout was Enes Yžlmazer (JP/NeilPryde) who was sailing well all day. At only 18 years old and already 2 times Youth World Champion, he is clearly one to watch for the future.

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2009 PWA Turkey in Alaçati

Alaçati, on the Cesme peninsula, opposite the Greek island of Chios and on the same latitude as Athens, is a perfect windsurfing spot on Turkey's Aegean shores. Until recently, Alaçati was a sleepy little village populated by fishermen, craftsmen and farmers; now they share it with many enthusiastic windsurfers.

The combination of consistent winds and a very safe, 500m by 400m shallow section with completely flat water makes Alaçati an extremely attractive destination for windsurfing beginners, intermediates, speedsters and freestylers.

The competition

Alaçati is the penultimate round of the tough and varied PWA slalom tour. Following on from ruthless Canaries leg, Turkey offers contrasting racing conditions, with perfect flat water and gentle winds. Top speeds, starting skills and consistency will prove to be the key ingredients for the 2009 champion.

Antoine Albeau (JP/NeilPryde) has to be the favourite. His consistent performance throughout the year has seen him win 4 out 5 events. However with the world title already in his hands, the real battle is going on right behind him. With only a handful of points separating the top 5, we are in for a treat next week as the elite fight it out for the remaining podium positions.

Leading the charge are Finian Maynard (RRD/NeilPryde) and Ross Williams (Tabou/Gaastra). Ross started the season with an impressive win in Austria, followed by a 2nd place in round three, Costa Brava. Finian meanwhile got off to a slower start but finds himself in a great position after a string of consistent results, topped off with a 2nd place in Fuerteventura.

At the moment they have equal points, but Finian is ahead on the tiebreak and will hope to further his advantage in Turkey.

One small step behind are the likes of Kevin Pritchard (Starboard/Gaastra/Dakine), Micah Buzianis (JP/NeilPryde) and Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard/Severne). All highly experienced racers and all within easy reach of the podium spots. Dunkerbeck was last years winner here in Turkey so must be a champion candidate heading into the penultimate contest of the year.

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