SCHEVENINGEN – Supported by the appearance of current World Champion Freestyle Youri Zoon at the beach of Scheveningen the Easterly side-offshore wind turned up before noon. Flat water and clear blue skies formed the stage of an exciting day of action.
As the racers got on the water quickly after the skippersmeeting, the challenging aspects of racing in offshore conditions at the shores of metropolitan city The Hague forced all riders to make the right material choices. As the wind seemed pretty low in the morning at the first race competitors were out on their biggest sizes available, while the wind started to pick up big time. Outstanding performance in the first overpowered race came from the side of Dutch local Rolf van der Vlugt who ended up winning the first race. In the quick transition time between back to back racing there was a gigantic switch of kitesizes probably ever displayed on the beach of Scheveningen. 19’s got replaced by 13’s and for some of the lighter racers even 10’s to hit the water for the second race.
Stephanie Bridge dominated the Course Race on the women’s side, navigating effectively through big wind gaps and adapting to the sometimes shifty winddirection. Also the British veteran experienced a though couple of races today. Looking back, with a smile she comments: ‘Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes you don’t. The conditions are all the same for all competitors. I’m satisfied with my results, it was a good day.’ Race Director Markus Schwendtner ‘you still see the top ranked guys winning their races in these difficult conditions. Today we have completed six races with five different winners, which isn’t common.’ The German Florian Gruber is holding a firm grip on the ranking with three wins, during day three of the MINI Kitesurf Tour Europe Scheveningen. Followed by the Polish Blazej Ozog, who didn’t win any races, but really consistently finished in the top three. Third ranked racer is the Spaniard Alejandro Climent Hernandez, winning the sixth race. Big highlight of the day was the 14-year old French talent Anastasia Akopova , winning her first race ever, leaving Steph Bridge and also Katja Roose behind during the last race of the day.
As the wind kept picking up during the late afternoon, the Freestylers got out to test conditions for a possible end of day three with the newest tricks. As visitors lined up at the beach, the wind died as quick as it seemed to pick up before, leaving the freestylers with no other chance then return to the shore. As wind looks very promising for tomorrow, riders are expected at the beach for an early first announcement at 8:30 am.
Course Race Results (after 7 races)
1. Florian Gruber (Germany)
2. Blazej Ozog (Poland)
3. Alejandro Climent Hernandez (Spain)
4. Maks Zakowski (Poland)
5. Rolf van der Vlugt (Netherlands)
1. Stephanie Bridge (England)
2. Aga Grymska (Poland)
3. Katja Roose (Netherlands)
4. Anastasia Akopova (Russia)
5. Astrid Berz (Switserland)