La Coupe des Isles
Baker and Pritchard are joint winners as the Magdalen’s deliver the goods !
Freestyle Grand Prix Day 5
samedi 7 septembre 2002 –
The predicted winds arrived in force overnight here in the Magdalen’s and today’s competition, which was held at Corfu, beach saw solid 25-knot winds and up to logo high waves. Stone was on fire today, obviously reveling in the more wave orientated freestyle conditions. In the single elimination he defeated Chris Audsley (Mistral), Eric Troostheide (Mistral, North) and Diony Guadagnino (JP, Neil Pryde) on route to the final. Stone pulled out all of his ammunition today and was throwing huge forwards, push loops, back loops and a variety of on the wave freestyle maneuvers. His opponent Matt Pritchard was also posting some solid heats and had won through against Peter Volwater (F2, Arrows), Vidar Jensen (North) and Nik Baker (Mistral, North). Stone took the single elimination final after producing a largely aerial routine and was all smiles when the results were announced.
Ricardo Campello, who won the first round of double elimination here in Canada was not really tuned into today’s hectic conditions and went down in his opening heat to Konan Lang (Naish boards, Naish sails) of Brazil. In the double elimination, Campello was obviously out to make amends but once again failed to deliver the goods, this time against John Skye (F2, Arrows) of England. His early exit meant the door was now wide open for Baker and Pritchard to take the overall event victory.
RICARDO CAMPELLO (JP, Neil Pryde)
"I am not really happy with my last result here. It was not my day today. That is life ! You lose and win. In Bonaire I am going to do my best !"
As the heats boiled down towards the final, Nik Baker and Matt Pritchard once again came through the losers round to face each other. At stake, was a place in the ring against Josh Stone and more importantly the overall event title. The heat went to Nik Baker who pulled a variety of moves including a Crazy Pete, a table top forward and a spock, straight into a clew first spock ! Pritchard battled bravely but failed to match the Bakers more varied repertoire.
MATT PRITCHARD (AHD, Gaastra)
"I had a great time out there today. They were my type of conditions ; I love this kind of wind, waves and this direction. I could of done better but you have to go with the punches. I was on my 5m and powered up most of the time. I had no excuses today and was a bit bummed I did not win the second double"
Nik Baker then went on to win the first of two double elimination finals against Josh Stone who had been waiting patiently for his chance to secure his first elimination victory this season. Stone had failed to nail several key moves and now had to take on Baker for a second time to seal the deal. Baker was on his own personal agenda of winning the overall event title and was well fired up for the challenge. In the second final it was Stone’s turn to pump up the volume ! He opened up with several huge jumps whilst Baker struggled to plane and seemed underpowered. Baker came back with some strong moves towards the end of the heat, whilst Stone struggled to land his closing transitions. When both sailors came back into the beach the tension was clearly visible on both sailors faces as they waited for the decision. Stone was once again elated when the decision was announced, 3-2 in his favor.
JOSH STONE (JP, Neil Pryde)
"Matt Pritchard owes me some money ! That feels good that’s is all I have to say about that. This year has been tough for me. I have been fighting hard and have been worked by the both young guys and the old guys. I felt today was my kind of conditions, bigger waves, which is my specialty…freestyle on waves. I went with a bigger sail in the second final and it looked like Nik, who stayed with his 5.3m was a bit underpowered. The crowds on the beach made all the difference today. I am stoked !
NIK BAKER (Mistral, North)
"I was a bit disappointed I did not win that last final and take the overall for the event. I feel I could of won but Josh sailed a great heat. We have had a fantastic competition from flat water freestyle to freestyle in waves. I have used 6.9m all the way down to 4.5m. If you look at the results I think you will see that experience has come through with myself and Matt Pritchard. I have been training hard for this and it seems to have paid off. I will have to thank Scott from MPG for that !"
The event closes tomorrow with an amateur long distance race and of course the prize giving ceremony. The charming Magdalen Islands have won the hearts of all the PWA sailors both in terms of its warm hospitality and its superb conditions. The islands have undisputedly delivered the goods for the first visit of the PWA world tour with two incredible double elimination freestyle eliminations.
2. Josh Stone (JP, Neil Pryde)
3. Nik Baker (Mistral, North)
4. Matt Pritchard (AHD, Gaastra)
EVENT OVERALL RESULTS
1. Nik Baker (Mistral, North)
2. Matt Pritchard (AHD, Gaastra)
3. Josh Stone (JP, Neil Pryde)
PWA FREESTYLE OVERALL RANKINGS
1. Ricardo Campello (JP, Neil Pryde)
2. Nik Baker (Mistral, North)
3. Matt Pritchard (AHD, Gaastra)