Antoine Albeau wins the 2009 PWA Fuerteventura

Antoine Albeau (JP/NeilPryde) has done it again, winning the 2009 Fuerteventura Slalom Event by a convincing margin. He now moves even clearer ahead of his competition in his quest for the PWA Overall Title. Finian Maynard (RRD/NeilPryde) and Kevin Pritchard (Starboard/Gaastra/Dakine) complete the podium after fantastic performances.

A calm morning gave way to a gusty afternoon here on Sotavento beach today, as the PWA race crew tried to complete another round of slalom. After an epic display throughout the week, tensions were running high as sailors battled for their final rankings. Unfortunately, there was not enough wind to complete a round today, leaving yesterday’s results standing firm.

Winning the event after yet another world-class performance, the incredible Antoine Albeau (JP/NeilPryde) has proved to the world that he is the number one. After his fourth event win of the year, it is almost certain that this incredible athlete will win the 2009 PWA Overall World Title.

Results such as these suggest that the Frenchman may have had it easy; but nothing could be further from the truth. Albeau has fought hard and dug deep for his victory here, and nothing can be taken away from his outstanding achievement. Congratulations Antoine.

Finian Maynard (RRD/NeilPryde) will be thrilled with his second place ranking, after a long, hard fight with Kevin Pritchard (Starboard/Gaastra/Dakine). Maynard’s speed has never been in question – he is one of the sailors who never fails to impress, as he blasts off the start line into clear water, somehow controlling his equipment in the extreme conditions.

However, his consistency has sometimes been overlooked, and has let him down in the past. It is clear that he has put this problem behind him, after a fantastic event boosts him to second overall in the World Rankings.

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2009 PWA Fuerteventura

Antoine Albeau (JP/NeilPryde) will leave the event site with his head held high, after claiming victory in one of the most daring and stunning displays of slalom in windsurfing’s history.

A morning of shifting winds and abandoned races gave today’s event an electrifying suspense. Early on, the wind speed ranged from 5 – 35 knots, whilst the fleet tried to complete the primary heats. After lunch, however, the conditions switched to create a perfect 40-knot offshore machine, and the racecourse was redesigned to create an epic battle ground.

There was only one round of racing today, yet the quality of the afternoon’s action will be remembered for years to come. The offshore wind meant that the course could be designed so the sailors would hurtle towards the huge crowds for the crucial and competitive first gybe mark.

From the beach, it was possible to make out every detail of the determination, and fear, that showed on the sailors’ faces; not to mention the frightening speed at which they competed in the high-wind extravaganza.

Antoine Albeau (JP/NeilPryde) battled like a champion throughout the day. He had his work cut out for him, after being caught in the dead wind of the pack in the semi final. Despite rounding the opening mark in eighth place, he showed unbelievable speed and skill to overtake four sailors on one reach, and finished the heat in second place.

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2009 Speed World Championship

For the fourth time in a row, the small village Afiartis on the idyllic island of Karpathos is preparing to play host for the world‘s fastest men and women in the speed windsurfing scene.

From July 31st till August 5th all the big names of the sport will compete for points counting towards the 2009 Speed World Tour and, even more important, battle for the one-off Speed Windsurfing World Championship Titles !

In the men’s fleet, all eyes are set to the reigning world champion and 500m world record holder Antoine Albeau from France, who clearly dominated last season.

His strongest opponent is expected to be again European Champion Bjorn Dunkerbeck, living windsurfing legend. He won the 2008 Karpathos Event in the very last heat against Antoine Albeau to become European Champion. But also current tour leader Anders Bringal as well as the 2008 Overall World Cup Winner Cyril Moussilmani are expected to dispute the places on the podium.

Some more world class windsurfers from other disciplines are joining the speed tour this year, like local and Greek record holder Philip Adamidis, and legendary Chris Lockwood from Australia.

Also the women’s fleet is very strong for this major event of the 2009 season, including 2008 world champion and current tour leader Valerie Ghibaudo as well as second ranked Zara Davis.

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