Finals – Zoon and Pulido World Champions 2011
The final day of the Kitesurf World Cup in St Peter Ording took place during ideal, windy conditions. The event site was flooded from last night’s storms but it didn’t cause any changes to the day’s plan which included finishing the last heats of the double eliminations and possibly crowning two world champions.
We started the doubles where we left off yesterday. Reno Romeu (BRA, North) was on a mission to win against Langeree (NED, Naish) this would get him to fifth place overall depending on Tom Hebert’s (FRA, North) results as both riders from the North team are neck and neck at the moment.
Unfortunately for both Hebert (FRA, North) and Romeu (BRA, North), Langeree’s reputation held strong and the Dutch rider was on fire. His intense training after his knee injury paid off as he proved that he could still beat the top guys after a year out of the tour. Kevin and Reno felt that they had a pretty bad heat and the very strong current they battled throughout made it painfully obvious to both that they should have gone with a bigger kite.
It was a very close heat but Langeree (NED, Naish) made the difference by landing a powered Hasselhoff (front side pass 180) and demonstrating more trick variety.
Two very good friends and top riders were up next, the locals of Cabarete (Dominican Republic), Robinson Hilario (DOM, F-One) and Alex Soto (DOM, F-One) had to battle each other. Alex Soto has been teaching all his moves to Robinson, so it was interesting to see if the student was going to be able to beat the master. It resulted in a very close heat as expected but Alex showed a little more variety overall and won the heat.
In the girls division Joanna Litwin (POL, Nobile) beat Hannah Whiteley (GBR, Wainman) and kept her fourth place, easily advancing against Bruna Kajiya (BRA, Flexifoil).
A lot of riders reckoned it was very hard to pick the size of their kite today as the wind kept increasing and the current was very strong. Unless they went in the water to try out their size they ended up in the heat with the wrong kite.
This is what happened to Bruna Kajiya (BRA, Flexifoil) who had to change her kite during her heat as she was overpowered. This resulted in the loss of a lot of time while Litwin (POL, Nobile) was charging with no fear and landed a Blind Judge, Sbend pass, 313 and Slim. Kajiya landed some decent tricks but didn’t find enough time to match the variety and power of Joanna’s and this allowed her to advance against her good friend Winkowska (POL, Slingshot) who is currently sitting in third place.
Kevin Langeree (NED, Naish) kept making his way back, winning against Alex Soto (DOM, F-One) and Tom Hebert (FRA, F-One). Both riders crashed a lot; Tom went with too much commitment, crashing a slim, mobe and front mobe with incredible power. Alex Soto also crashed too many tricks and ended up in the downwind area. Meanwhile, Kevin has been competing for a long time now and knows the game play, he was able to secure his heat first with regular mobes, 313 and Blind Judges to then get into double handle passes: a front mobe to blind against Hebert and a Back mobe to wrapped against Soto allowed him to get into the fight for fourth place against Marc Jacobs.
Marc Jacobs (NZL, Switch) stopped him in fifth place as the judges were incredibly impressed by the power and commitment shown in all of Jacobs tricks, “he had so much more power than Kevin and he managed to keep his kite much lower to the water, he deserved the win!” said judge Carlos Saez.
Finally, it was time for the last heats of the day and the fight for podium places.
Joanna Litwin (POL, Nobile) lost by landing only one trick against Winkowska (POL, Slingshot) who was secured with four powered tricks. She observed the dangerous crashes that Joanna was experiencing close to the shore as the tide was now high enough to reach the public lined up on the beach.
The same danger was felt when Alberto Rondina (ITA, Cabrinha) crashed his kite into the public in the downwind area, tangling his lines around the flags and losing some precious time while competing against Alex Pastor (ESP, Airush), who landed a lot of tricks with better overall execution and consequently advanced into the finals against Youri Zoon (NED, Slingshot).
The women’s final took place in strong wind conditions and Pulido (ESP, Airush) pulled out a very nice heat, landing seven tricks in total including a front blind mobe, slim and 313. Winkowska couldn’t match the variety of tricks, nor the execution shown by the triple crowned world champion Gisela Pulido (ESP, Airush).
In the finals of the men, there was unanimously one moment to be recorded when Youri Zoon completed a massive back mobe off a kicker with the kite low. He had to steer the kite up to ease his landing, it made a massive spray but Zoon managed to land the trick clean. On his side, Pastor did a very nice blind judge 3 to start off his heat, and later landed a blind judge 5 and a very powered front blind mobe.
The speed going in and out the trick gave Zoon the edge in this very close final.
By winning this event and the fifth one in a row, Youri Zoon takes home his first world champion title! Youri commented “I couldn’t be happier, it’s hard to believe, I’ve been fighting for so long now, I had my knee injuries that have held me back for a while but now, finally I got it! Super stoked!”
The same thing happened in the girls with Gisela Pulido (ESP, Airush) taking her fourth PKRA World Title.
Congratulations to all the riders and we will be back soon for the Freestyle event in Brazil, 14th to 18th of September. Youri Zoon is expected there to be the first rider winning every single event on a PKRA for a year!
Official Results Kitesurf World Cup St Peter Ording 2011:
1. Youri Zoon (NED, Slingshot)
2. Alex Pastor (ESP, Airush)
3. Alberto Rondina (ITA, Cabrinha)
4. Marc Jacobs (NZL, Switch)
1. Gisela Pulido (ESP, Airush)
2. Karolina Winkowska (POL, Slingshot)
3. Joanna Litwin (POL, Nobile)
4. Bruna Kajiya (BRA, Flexifoil)
MEN COURSE RACING
1. John Heineken (USA, Ozone)
2. Adam Koch (USA, Ozone)
3. Julien Kerneur (FRA, Takoon)
4. Olivier Dansin (FRA, North)
WOMEN COURSE RACING
1. Katja Roose (NED, Airush)
2. Steph Bridge (GBR, North)
3. Caroline Adrien (FRA, Cabrinha)
1. Tom Bridge (GBR, North)
2. Denis Zurik (POL)
3. Guy Bridge (GBR, North)