After the first Slalom event in France, the PWA tour and our team moved to the other side of the world for the Asian leg, with Japan up as first. With the biggest fleet ever in Foiling and a full fleet of Slalom the anticipations where big coming into the event. With a promising forecast for nearly daily action, it was looking good for the Grand Slam event in Japan. However the wind never really materialized and was only enough to complete racing in the Foiling discipline on this occasion.
With mainly very light wind foil racing (5 - 8 knots), the lightweight RSX riders impressed with their course racing experience. Kiran Badloe was looking good towards a potential win on his debut event in the foiling discipline, but an over early disqualification in elimination 3 ended the hopes of his debut PWA event victory. Amado Vrieswijk who won the opening event of Freestyle in Bonaire, showed consistency to finish in 6th closely followed by Matteo Iachino in 7th.
In the women's fleet, we saw a great fight between PWA newcomer and Olympic gold medalist Marina Alabau and Delphine Cousin, for the event victory with Marina Alabau eventually taking second, and her younger sister Blanca Alabau finishing 4th.
We caught up with Marina, just as she´s traveling to the next PWA event in Korea, about her first PWA experience and her plans ahead for the rest of the year.
2nd place at your first ever PWA event after 7 races. How did you find racing your first PWA event?
It has been a very good experience, I’m coming from the Olympic world and this was a much more relaxed atmosphere for me.
You raced an M course with a short upwind leg. Would you like to see different courses in the future?
I am used to upwind and downwind racing from the Olympics, but I love this format. It’s a short intense race with lots of technical jibing and more action.
When did you start foiling?
I tried the foil for the first time nearly 5 years ago, but at this time I was still focussed on the Olympics program and I didn't really get too much into it yet. Last summer is really when I started to train it properly.
What other contests will you be joining this year?
I will do the PWA in Korea, the IFCA foil world's in Poland, the open world's in Silvaplana, Azores and New Caledonia if they offer the foiling discipline.
How do you see foil windsurfing develop over the next years?
I think the foiling is super fun, easy and exciting for racing. Maybe it will become Olympic and I hope we will see more and more girls join the PWA events in the future.
What sail were you using during the event?
I was using the Severne HyperGlide2 8.0 throughout the whole event. Let's see if I´ll get to use my 9.0 in Korea.