The Cabo Verde PWA World Cup 2009

Rekindling memories of the now infamous 2007 World Cup, Ponta Preta once again switched on to deliver world-class conditions to see the Cabo Verde crown returned to its homeland.

Highflyer Angulo.  Copyright: PWA - Andrew BuchananNow in its third year, the Cabo Verde PWA World Cup 2009 has firmly cemented its reputation as a truly world class competition venue, with 2009 being no exception. Three days of logo to solid mast high waves saw both the single and double elimination completed with days to spare.
Almost like clock work, the opening day of the event saw Ponta Preta deliver mast high barrels and cross offshore perfection to complete the entire single elimination in style.
Opening the action, all eyes turned to the high profile return of ex-World Wave Champion, Francisco Goya. The Argentinean certainly didn’t disappoint, with his opening heats seeing him crank often beyond vertical turns combined with his super smooth top to bottom style, proving he’s still more than capable of excelling within windsurfing’s new generation of sailors.
The first major upset of the elimination was the exit of Jason Polakow in round one. The Australian departed after making a huge tactical error, failing to provide a second wave of any magnitude to his score sheet, which was to be judged on the best two wave rides. He’d have to wait for the double elimination to roll around before having another chance to advance.
Moving into the second round, Brit Robby Swift made a stand out performance after he selected some monumentally big sets. His tactical approach paid off, allowing him to link turns all the way through to the inside section of the reef, boosting his wave scores and securing him a place in the next round.
One unlikely candidate to fall in round two was American Levi Siver, who looked to be firing on all cylinders during the warm-up and round one. Unfortunately, the imposing Ponta Preta rocks which can be credited for halting many seemingly certain advances, were to claim yet another victim in Siver.
As the fleet was narrowed down to the final eight, the level of sailing went sky high. Credit has to be given to Kai Lenny for in part provoking this movement. The teen sensation was on another level, being one of the few attempting 360s in the jaws of the biggest set waves, and launching consistently huge aerials.
Departing in the star studded quarter finals were Scott McKercher, who could never seem to sustain his usually solid form for an entire heat, Robby Swift, who was unlucky with equipment breakages in the increasingly fickle afternoon wind, Boujmaa Guilloul who was looking red hot despite getting knocked out and Kai Lenny, who’d already stamped his name firmly on the event.
This left only the final to run, under ominous skies and in increasingly weakening wind. The four finalists: Josh Angulo, Francisco Goya, Kauli Seadi and Kevin Pritchard had to be fully switched on to outwit each other. 
Experiencing the might of Ponta Preta first hand, an on-form Kevin Pritchard fell victim to the rocks mid-way through the heat. Essentially crushing his hopes of winning the final, this must have been a tough pill to swallow for Pritchard, who was clearly capable of claiming the final as his.
Similarly Francisco Goya, who’d already left most of the professional windsurfing community dumb struck with the ease in which he’d found his way into the final of World Cup, stumbled on a similar block when we was washed onto the rocks.

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