200km of racing in one day
An event to remember. Over 200km is what it took to go around the island of Lanzarote on a wind foil. The fleet set off from the south of the island at 9 am only to return over nine hours later. It was a massive challenge, but the race was still on. Severne riders Mateus Isaac and Sebastian Kördel took turns winning the six stages the race crew had planned with Mateus taking the overall top spot. Closing off the podium was Severne rider from Spain Ramon Pastor.
Photos by Dieter Van der Eyken
The volcanic coast of Lanzarote as the backdrop
With the current coronavirus restrictions worldwide, this concept hit a home run, as well as, offered a different view of Lanzarote and its volcanic coastline. Racers and crew got an up close view of the “fire mountains”, the island of La Graciosa and all of the well known windsurf spots on the east side of the island. The final stage was a massive 30+ km reach down towards “Papagayo” on the south of the island before going back on land at Marina Rubicón; a marina and sailing central used by many Olympic teams.
The competitors were all met with a dramatic landscape and a large variety of conditions throughout the day. When the fleet set off at the south of the island in the morning, the wind was 12-14 knots with a small swell rolling in from the Atlantic ocean. As everyone worked their way up along the west coast of Lanzarote, the wind decreased. The final upwind stretch towards the island of La Graciosa had the lightest and hardest conditions, but as the fleet set off on a downwinder along the east coast of the island, the wind increased steadily and was gusting over 20 knots on the home stretch to Playa Blanca.
Dramatic scenery and a large variety of conditions.
Severne rider from Portugal was among the riders pushing hard in the long, light wind stretches.
Mateus Isaac takes the win
“It feels incredibly good to finally be racing in Europe and to know that my training is paying off,” said Mateus who was in a tight battle with Sebastian Kördel over the whole race. Commenting on his strategy Mateus said; “the race was very close even though it was long. I was trying to look into the horizon all of the time to understand what the wind was doing. It was hard to predict but I believe I did some good tactics because of that“.
Needless to say, it was a new experience for all riders who took part in this event, and Mateus confirmed that; “Insane experience!! Definitely a good feeling now after finishing it. I would love to be back next year.“
Sebastian Kördel takes second place
Being one of the favourites at this event, Sebastian showed incredible form throughout the whole race. Winning the first race, Sebastian took an early lead until Mateus struck back in the later stages of the race. The two were very close until the downwind portion of the race where Mateus impressed with sharp downwind tactics and technical skill.
In the final leg of the race which was a 20 minutes long reach Sebastian had a comeback, but it wasn’t enough to tip the scale in his favour, and he had to settle with second place.
Ramon Pastor takes third place
Ramon showed strong form throughout the whole race and it was clear that he has been spending his winter training at his home base Tarifa. Especially on the second half of the race which was predominantly downwind, Ramon showed excellent form to bring himself up to third place.
Ramon Pastor sailing in the strait between Lanzarote and La Graciosa
To read more about this race, you can visit www.lanzarotefoilchallenge.com
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