Fluttering flags in the wind, sails in all imaginable colours speeding along in the water in front of me and loud music booming from the big loudspeakers. In between the presenter’s announcements. On the beach of Sant Pere Pescador there is a lot going on. Hot surfer boys, waiting for their turn in the race, excited fans and family members, curious tourists, big tents and lots of colourful windsurf sails and boards. The wind is howling in my ears and sand is scratching in my eyes. First, I have to get my bearings. After a few photos, I find a place between all the surfboards lying in the sand. I’ll sit down, wrapped up in a towel. Why didn’t I put on more clothes?… Well, after some time I don’t care anymore, because the windsurfers fascinate me so much I forget everything around me…
PWA World Tour Catalunya
Here in Sant Pere Pescador, on the beach of Cortal de la Devesa, which provides the perfect conditions because of the Tramontana wind, the PWA World Tour was taking place from the 23rd to 28th of May. After Korea and Japan, Catalonia was the third stop of the PWA World Cup Tour, where the male windsurfer elite comes together for the world championship of windsurfing.
Once upon a time…
What started 25 yeas ago as a meeting among windsurfer friends, is today a famous competition known worldwide, organized by the PWA (Professional Windsurfers Association) with seat in Hawaii, which holds it every year under the name PWA Worldtour.
Over time, there have already been a lot of different disciplines, like for example freestyle, boarder cross and slalom. The new discipline of this year is the so called foil windsurfing, where you can see the boards floating, almost flying above the waves. The hydrofoil, more precisely, lifts not only surfboards, but also boats or ships at a certain speed out of the water.
What are hydrofoils?
Hydrofoils are kinds of wings, mounted on struts below the hull, or across the keels of a catamaran in a variety of boats. When increasing in speed, the boat or, in this case surfboard, equipped with a hydrofoil develops enough lift to raise the hull out of the water, which reduces hull drag. This enables an increase in speed and fuel efficiency. Foil Boarding is the latest and hottest trend in windsurfing.
Winner is Albeau