Riportiamo l'interessante report ufficiale di Micah Buzianis sull'appena terminata tappa PWA in Costa Brava:
PWA Slalom Costa Brava
Micah Buzians reports
All photos: PWA / John Carter
Off to Spain and Costa Brava for the third PWA Slalom World Cup of the season. Felt very excited for some more racing after Korea and how good my equipment was feeling. I normally race on very similar equipment in Costa Brava as Korea, so I felt like I should do well. I arrived a day early in Costa Brava to try and get some sailing in and get used to the 12hour time difference from Maui. Luckily it was windy, so I got some good sailing in the day that I arrived and the day before we started racing, on 8.4TR8 and 78JP as well as my 7.6TR8 and my 66JP, a very good warm up for what the forecast was looking like.
Day 1 started out with registration till noon and then a 1pm skippers meeting and a planned 2pm start.
The wind wasn't really looking like it was going to cooperate but just after 2pm it was just enough to get us out there and we were able to get through nine heats before the wind backed off and the clouds came in. A nice easy start to the event and with no major upsets it was on.
As the second day started, it looked as if it might be another teasing day of wind but it finally came in enough to start off where we left off. It was windy but also very gusty, so making the right gear choice was critical and difficult. I was able to make it through my quarters heat and was in third at the first mark in my semis when I stopped planning completely and didn't manage to get going until it was too late and enough guys got out of there to send me to the losers final.
In the losers I had a good start and managed to round the first mark in second, with the light winds it was basically follow the leader around after the first mark, so I had to settle with a 10th place start in round one. My Maui Sails Team mate Taty had managed to make the losers final with me but went over early, while JP team mate Pieter Bijl had sailed his way strongly to the final and finished a great third place to start his event off with a bang. The wind had become too gusty to start another round, so it was called off for the day.
Day 3 brought plenty of wind but with its offshore direction it was very gusty and shifty and it wasn't until waiting around all day that when almost all hope was lost it settled in and we started the second round.
I was on my 7.6TR8 and my 66JP slalom and had plenty of power but an unfortunate bad timing in my quarter final heat saw Cedric Bordes who was in second place mysteriously go down at the third gybe mark. He looked to me that he had completed his gybe and was out of there and just as I went to flip my sail there he was in the water in front of me and I sailed straight into him throwing me over the front and on to my sail making it impossible to get up quick enough to recover.
That was the end to my day. Howevery the wind did stay up long enough to complete the second round before the sun went down. A very disappointing start for me but still a couple of days left and more racing to do.
Day 4 brought good winds early on and turned into a very long day on the sunny, hot, wind swept beach of Costa Brava. Once we finally got under way I spent most of the day on my 7.6 and my 66 board and I had some good races and felt fast but couldn't ever put together a good semi final and had to settle for two losers finals and two third places or 11th for the round. I did get caught out in one race where the wind dropped at the first mark and it was all I could do to stay upright on my board but the first two spots got out of there as did some other guys so they didn't throw up the abandonment flag. We even got started on the third round and I again had an early exit from this round failing to hold my position at the last mark. It was late and the wind started to get very light to we were only able to complete 10 heats till they called it for the day.
Day 5 was still not the normal wind direction for Costa Brava so they had to set the course offshore again but finally by late afternoon it had steadied out enough to get back into round five starting with heat 11. I had to sit back and watch since I had gone out already.
It was getting late and a bit more unstable but the race crew decided to get started with round six but after only one very light heat the wind became too little to continue and it was called for the day. Tomorrow would be the last day and with not much wind in the forecast it looked like it would be a solid packing day.
Day 6. The final day arrived with a bit of fog in the camping area and that is usually never a good sign for this spot. It did however switch around the thermal direction but hovered around 5-7knots most of the day. It was getting right on to the 3:30pm cancel time and the race crew was still undecided on whether or not to get us out there. They were just about to throw it in when the wind bumped up just a bit and they decided to give it a go.
I raced my first heat on the 9.2 and 78 and was starting to get over powered near the end of my heat so I jumped out on my 8.4 for the quarters and was perfect. For my semi's I was going to stay with the 8.4 but after so many over earlies the wind had started to drop and it was looking like I might get caught out on the water on too small of a sail.
Luckily for me my good friend and JP team mate Pieter Bijl came out on the water with my 9.2 and saved me as I really needed it for the semis and I made it to my first final here in CB.
The wind was fluctuating a lot by this time so after a hard debate I decided to stick with my 9.2 for the final. Thank goodness this was absolutely the right call. I felt confident in these conditions and went for it hard at the start and nailed it. First across the start and first across the finish no problem. Finally a little bit of redemption for a not so great performance over the first five rounds.
Now it is back to Maui and another solid month of training and preparing for the next PWA World Cup in Fuerte. It should be a windy time in Maui which will match Fuerte conditions very well. We also will have two Maui Race Series events and Phil and I are doing a free clinic on June 23rd at Kanaha. Looking forward to it all and especially to celebrating the 4th of July at home with the family, will be a good one for sure!!!