|XIX Edizione PALERMO - Italy 17-23 MAGGIO 2004||
Città di Palermo
Assessorato allo Sport
World Festival On
La manifestazione che trasforma per una
settimana la spiaggia di Palermo,
Mondello in Sicilia, in un villaggio turistico unico al Mondo
PRESS RELEASE NO.37
THE NATION CUP GOES TO
ITALY, FRANCE AND POLAND BEATEN
RACE” THE SECOND EDITION PLANNED
(24TH of May
The proven formula “more windsurf, more sport, more music”, the 19th edition of the World Festival on the Beach, organizes by the Albaria Windsurfing Club with the collaboration from more than 10 years from Palermo’s Local Council, and from 2 years made even more stronger from the work done by the Sicilian Regional Tourism Department, the festival had once again a huge success, and is already preparing the celebrations for its 20th birthday to take place from the 16th to the 22nd of May 2005, it will be launcing new challenges and new goals to be reached, and will continue to thrill and bring thousands more enthusiastics to Palermo’s beach in Sicily, for a week that becomes transformed into a kind of Los Angeles with the beach volley stars in engaging challenges and the multicoloured windsurf and kite sails that stand out in Mondello’s bay.
At the end of a week of engaging races, it was Italy once again who won the the Nations Cup, a classic of the World Festival on the Beach. Italy takes for the third time running the trophy thanks to the individual work done by Federico Esposito and in particular Marco Casagrande, leaving behind France with Beudou –Vidal and Poland with brothers Maksymilian and Maciej Wojcik.
The windsurfing programme opened up with the world champion raceboarding category begining with the weighing in procedure, this competition brought more than 60 competitors, a number higher than the previous edition held in december in Merida, Yucatan in Mexico.
In spite of the wind playing up, which wasn’t really strong for the first few days of the races, the competition was engaging and recorded the best success from George Fragos from Greece on his Fanatic, one of the few raceboard tables in the race.
It was infact the Olympic Mistral One Design table that stood out, used by more than 80% of the competitors in Mondello at the World Festival on the Beach.
Behind Fragos was Ionannis Chrysochoy also from Greece on a Mistral and Nicolas Beudou from France who is No.16 in the last ISAF ranking.
Alessandro Alberti the first among the Italians has made a come back to the races full time with great results.
If the male raceboarding championships was never questioned, thanks to Fragos leading the races for four days, neither were the female races, giving us a gripping duel from Bryony Shaw from Britain and Lise Vidal from France, No.1 in the ISAF ranking. In the end it was Shaw who took away the title with a difference of only two points, showing neither of the two girls wanting to give in. In third place the forever constant Flavia Tartaglini. The young girl from Lazio was able to keep at bay the high rated Austalian Allison Shreeve, who always comes to the World Festival on the Beach and who up until last month was trying to take a place in the Olympic games with an engaging head to head with Jessica Crisp also from Australia.
She didin’t get a place in the world championships but Shreeve also this year was able to taste once again victory in Mondello, winning for the third year running in the Sicily Grand Prix, individual mistral olympic category races, a great classic of the World Festival on The Beach.
The talented Australian was able to win three races while Alexander Baronjan from Berlin won two and took his second Sicily Grand Prix title.
After winning the first three races, third place in the last race was enough for the German to take away with him the final victory. Behind him was Maksymilian Wojcik from Poland, seventh in the world championships and was nearly always in a battle with the leaders in this weeks Festival. In third place Federico Esposito, the best of the Italians and the best overall athlete from the special overall ranking that includes all of the races held in Mondello, from the Wolrd Raceboarding Championships to the Sicily Grand Prix.
The young Tuscan knew how to manage best the light wind that distinguished this edition of the festival, making the most of his good physical condition and showing a good steadiness in his performance, race after race which brought him to be crowned with no doubt the best winner of the World Festival on the Beach. Among the young men and women Laura Linares (Young womens world championships Mistral Category) took the lead in all the youth categories, minim, juniors and youth, taking twentyfirst place in the overall mixed results. Success for Fabien Heidegger from Alto Adige in the juniors category (10th place), from Paco Wirz in the Masters and from Rosario Cinquegrani in the Grand Masters. In the Alhoa category Giudo Carli got the best of Federico Spanò from Marsala.
The first edition of the “Windsurfers Legend Race” called upon 14 of the windsurfing stars from the 1970’s – 80’s.
The begining years of this sport, invented by Hoyle Schweitzer from California. The begining of success also for his son Matt, who became the first World Champion in 1973.
They came from the far away hawaiian beaches in Maui, which is probably a bit colder than the Baltic Sea in Poland, and from the sea in France, Belgium and Italy, Matt Schweitzer and his brotherly friend Mike Waltze, another legend who lives for windsurfing, didn’t think twice about coming to Mondello from Hawaii to participate in the “Windsurfer Legends race” the first race of its kind which for the first time after many years proposed an engaging and interesting performance of a one against one slalom on a race track set up in an old kind of way which is only a few metres away from the beach, crowded with spectators.
Competitiveness, along with a lot of fun, from the protagonists that took turns in the sea on the old and now rare windsurf tables that went back to sea after more than 20 years.
In the end it was two Italians Paco Wirz and Luca Frascari to take lead of the race after eliminating in the semi- final Manuela Mascia and Mike Waltze. After the huge success of the Legend Race it will enter in the grand classics to be programmed in the World Festival on the Beach, along with the “Nations Cup” and the “Sicily Grand Prix”.
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