NO it isn`t, I really did survive my first WORD CUP ever with a hydrofoil
Racing in between the best man and woman of the world! Racing with race kites on short lines, which I rode in total 1 or 2 times. I didn’t go here to win, neither to lose but sometimes you have to jump into the deep water to realize you can swim. And since I have a lot of swimming certificates, I think I can swim. I always need a goal in my live something to go for. If not, no improvements, no learning options or challenges, I will seek something else. There is always something. Unless I might had the oldest material, the shortest mast, the less experience and didn’t trained that much (and the only one with a waist harness)… it worked out quit good!
World cup Sardinia – 17 t/m 21 October
17th of October – registration day: This was a rainy day! The beach was flooded and parking lots where under water. A typical Dutch autumn day
18th of October – day 1: A day where the forecast said a lot of wind from an opposite direction, but the wind was still cross shore. The waves did not seemed that big, but once you were out there……They were really big, the Dutch coast and a north west or south west storm is nothing compared to that.
The first race I launched the 11m after setting up the 14m, because everybody did. But on the beach I was flying (with 15m lines on the bar). So decided quickly to change for the 8m. (Without having the best beach boy ever… I wouldn`t be so quick). The wind was perfect for the 8m. The biggest challenge was to get out there with 60 other people and those big waves smashing on you. With a twin tip I would have loved it J . To make it even a bigger challenge, there was a red line with buoys going outside, which was not so visible with the waves. I managed to tangle my foil around it and also managed to get it off in that waves, don’t ask me how…. Out there the waves where still big, big enough to see the kites of riders but not the riders itself. The second challenge was the timing of gibes and takes, the waves made it hard. And the dropping – gusty wind right after we started as second challenge. My third challenge was the start…… I could say I started alone after everybody. The reason for that was… we did something with my foil but didn`t finished or tested it so it was feeling like an Anker. I even tough there was something behind like seaweeds or something… Luckily I didn’t go to the shore straight but decided to live with it and just go. I managed to get 3rd (woman class). The second race I took the 11m. A bit better but also way too late, I started. Didn’t manage to do the jibes and tacks quickly (because the kite was not flying straight…. I managed to get 3rd again.
19th of October – day 2: no racing for us today. We had some problems with the forecast, the mistral wind and the terminal wind. It was fighting against each other. And the forecasted wind being not that strong. On the end it seemed like we had some wind (7 knots or …). We settled up in 20 minutes and everybody ready, not on the water, but on the beach. The wind decided to drop again. The water became flatter than flat and … time to pack up. And climb the mountain. Stayed 3th
20th of October – day 3: Kind of the same but a bit more wind. We waited the whole day (how I hate that!!). On the end of the afternoon the wind became enough and a bit more stable (at least somewhere out there). But still a bit from behind the mountain. I went out with the 18m, which was enough. More on the water it was more, they were right. We didn’t start straight away. (We should have). But once we started I had a good start and made my gibes and tacks nicely above the water, sometimes I had to pull the kite up, pump the board to stay above the water and in order to continue riding (foiling). I made it all the way but to the last mark, I came in a wind shadow, like a dead leave my kite dropped while I was still foiling trying to save it….. Nothing to do about it, not to save anymore and I had to pack it up. The last few meters, the last downwind reach, I almost made it….. Next time I just need to be faster in order to have the wind before it dies down The first time I had to roll an 18m foil kite in the water…(tips? ) I managed to make a nice package and…. It could dry in the air conditioning at home J Unfortunately I dropped down to the 4th place.
21st of October – day 4 Final day: offshore wind, thermic wind, onshore wind… we have had it all. The whole day we have been waiting again. Until suddenly someone measured 8 knots on the boats out at the marks. On the beach it was not that much tough… So 18m again. I made it out and indeed, more wind over there. Once again, I missed the start. And once again during the way the wind dropped. Or it’s me or…. I was not fast enough or not going upwind enough. But I made it to the finish this time, struggling, pumping finding the wind and going through the wind shadows this time. Somewhere as last but I finished. And stayed 4th – at least I didn’t get doubted by the man who are SUPER- fast.
I guess it will take some time for me to get used to the starting sequence. And to optimize the materials I have. To get used to big kites, short lines and swims. To learn how to get faster and adjust to the circumstances…. Lets Go!