Foil Mania in Switzerland
With the rise of foiling, lake Silvaplana in Switzerland has been a frontrunner for large scale windfoil events in recent years. 2021 was no different; the new Severne Predator foil freestyle board made it to the public for the first time, new official iQFOiL champions were crowned, Balz “Radiculo” Muller became foil freestyle world champion, and Lennart Neubauer won the EFPT tow-in championships.
Photos by: Sailing Energy, Fabian Gattlen, Chris Czadilek, Marc Weiler, Emanuela Cauli, John Carter
Alien VS. Predator
For anyone visiting this years’ event, it was hard to miss the Severne stand packed with the latest products from the Severne Hydrofoil Division. Visitors could check out the latest FoilGlide 2 and FoilFreek sails, as well as, Alien foil freeride boards. But the centre of attention was without a doubt the new Predator foil freestyle board which visitors of the Engadinwind were the first in the world to see live.
During the course of the event, anyone also had the chance to test all of the gear on display at the Severne stand. The early feedback for the new Predator board in combination with the FoilFreek sail was clear; a versatile setup that not only appeals to the hardcore foil style rider but just as much to the adventurous freeride foiler looking for a more maneuvreable performance freeride setup.
As usual, all guests were invited for a beer to check out the presentation on stage, which also was the official introduction of the Predator board.
iQFOiL World Championships
Although we’ve seen iQFOiL championships before, this year’s event was the first official iQFOiL world championship. Over 220 competitors formed one of the most impressive fleets seen in windsurfing for a long time.
Over the course of the competition week, spectators got treated to some of the most exciting foilracing ever seen. With winds filling in nicely before noon on nearly all of the competition days, there was course racing, as well as, slalom action all day long. For those who had never seen foil racing before, it was undoubtedly a spectacular sight to see large fleet starts with more than half of the fleet starting on port tack and nerve wracking slalom racing with riders pushing the limit right until the finish line.
After initial qualifier rounds of racing where the fleet was split into two, the fleets were reorganized into gold and silver groups, and after a total of 15 races, it was time for the medal races where the top 12 women and men fight it out for the top positions in an elimination format. The medal race also offered exciting entertainment for the spectators with an Americas Cup style course with a reaching finish right in front of the beach.
The level was at an all-time high, but ultimately, it was Helene Noesmoen from France who took the win in the women’s fleet ahead of Brits Islay Watson and Saskia Sills, and Nicolas Goyard, also from France who took the win in the men’s fleet in an impressive medal race final.
Official 021 titles were also awarded to both the women’s and men’s fleet. Israel dominated the women’s podium with Shachar Reshef taking the win ahead of Helle Oppedal from Norway and Sharon Kantor, also from Israel, taking third place. The men’s u21 division was won by brit Finn Hawkins, who also finished eighth on the overall ranking, ahead of Max Castelein from the Netherlands and Louis Pignolet from France.
“FOILSTYLE” World Championship
Foil freestyle is a movement that is gaining traction year by year. The pioneers of the movement call Switzerland their home. The main innovator of foil freestyle, Balz Müller once again impressed with big, radical moves, as well as, expressed his artistic style which still goes unmatched. Unsurprisingly, Balz took the win at this year’s championships, and can once again call himself king of “foilstyle”.
There are, however, riders following Balz’s footsteps. Severne rider Lennart Neubauer impressed the crowd and the judges to get himself onto third place behind Balz and Balz’s brother Jac Müller who finished second.
This years’ championships were also the first to see the full Severne FoilFreek sail and Predator board combo in action with Michael Näf as the rider.
The wind at Silvaplana doesn’t usually kick in until around noon. This makes for perfect conditions for freestyle tow-in action. The EFPT once again held a successful tow-in championships with an elimination series spread out over three days. Each year, the riders improve, and it’s truly amazing what they now are able to pull off, just by getting towed and building some speed.
The standout was without a doubt Severne rider Lennart Neubauer, who is on a winning streak this year. Lennart also won the tow-in championships at the previous EFPT event in Austria and is now leading the overall ranking comfortably.
More Severne news
The 2022 freestyle season has officially started. The Freestyle Pro Tour (FTP) just finalised its first event at Lake Neuseedl in Austria, and the Severne team occupied podium positions in both the women’s and men’s fleets.
After the return of Defi Wind Superstars in 2021, the full scale Defi Wind we all know is back, and will happen from May 26 to May 29. The Severne crew and the majority of the Severne team will be present throughout the whole event.
Severne reaches yet another milestone by introducing the new “Hydro” foil racing board into its fleet. With the introduction of the Hydro, new team riders like Mateus Isaac and Luuc Vanopzeeland will be pushing this board to its maximum on the racecourse around the world.
Severne Team Rider and International coach Simon Bornhoft continues his Windwise series on how best to develop your windsurfing skills. In this part, Simon goes deeper into how to prepare for your next wave session, even though you might not have access to waves.
Five episodes of “Flight School” videos with Severne rider Sebastian Kördel are now online. These first episodes cover anything from your first steps to nailing those foiling gybes.
Ireland has been on Dieter Van der Eyken’s list of places to visit for years. This winter, he was able to make a visit with his van to explore new beaches and breaks with his van. Here is his video story.
Severne Team Rider and International coach Simon Bornhoft has helped thousands of recreational sailors to get into or improve their wave sailing skills on his Windwise courses. So if you’re on the cusp of venturing into any wave environment here are some skills that can be learnt on flat water and transferred into the rough stuff. Follow these wise words to increase your enjoyment and success rate in 2022!
Lanzarote Foil Challenge 2022 – Mateus Isaac wins iQFOiL division, Amado Vrieswijk finishes second overall
The 2022 edition of the Lanzarote Foil Challenge was a true challenge. With winds gusting up to 30 knots on certain locations, the this years’ fleet weathered a large spectrum of conditions to complete the nearly 200km long journey. For the Severne team it was yet another successful journey with Mateus Isaac winning the iQFOiL fleet, as well as, finishing third overall. Amado Vrieswijk finished second overall.
Severne rider Sebastian Kördel is launching “Flight School”; a series of videos aimed at guiding beginners and experienced foilers alike. Whether you’re a beginner or fine tuning your foil gybes, this will be the right series for you. The first episode covers your first steps into the water, as well as, your first flight.