Lobster Shack Cervantes Windsurf Challenge 

4-6th of January 2019

Cervantes, Western Australia. The small fishing town lies right in the middle of the windiest coastline in Australia, and some of the best windsurfing conditions in the world. With its point jutting westward into the Indian Ocean and the miriad of offshore reefs, Cervantes boasts a sheltered, lagoon-like bay with a shallow sandy bottom stretching as far as you can see.

Zen Events and Photography Services

Now in its third year, the Cervantes Windsurfing Challenge is rapidly becoming one of Australia’s premier windsurfing events. GPS speed competition, slalom racing, tuning tips from professional windsurfers, drone footage, friendly gatherings at the catered lunches and dinner, cash prizes for the winners and random draw gear prizes. What more can you wish for?

Patrik speed clinic - Zen Events and Photography Services
image:Zen Events and Photography Services

The event was opened on Friday with a highly informative gear tuning masterclass with none other than Patrik Diethelm himself, with insider tips optimize slalom gear for ultimate speed.

Later, as the sea breeze built to 30 knots, the GPS speed competition commenced. Competitors found a flat section of water to record their 2-second peak, 5 x10sec, nautical mile, and 1 hr average speed. The overall results were derived from performance in all of these categories.

The GPS overall Results

GPS WOMEN Overall
GPS Overall Female:
1st Kellie Tusler
2nd Jo Wellings
3rd Nina Schweikardt

GPS MEN OVERALL

GPS Overall Male:
1st Craig Spottswood
2nd Daniel Engdahl
3rd Craig Mclaren

Day 1 of the Slalom competition was met with enthusiasm by all competitors, as the sea breeze picked up in the morning to a solid 25 knots. The start line was a 10 minute sail upwind of the rigging area, part of the fun was cruising up over the crystallise waters and negotiating the shoals and craypots to reach a ledgey beach adjacent to the start boat. The countdown sequence was initiated by flags on the boat and then the 300m start line was crowded with the 75+ competitors on the gun, all hammering down the first leg with loaded 7.0-5.6 sails. Gybing tactics had to be adjusted to accommodate the congestion at the first mark, and often a large radius was helpful to avoid the competitors in the water when coming in on a high line and still being able to exit fast.

The second leg had a fun section of steeper chop halfway down, and then the gybe mark in a sheltered, flat piece of water, and back out to sea for 1.5 kilometres for the final outside mark. This mark required a bear away just before it to avoid a reef which felt great as bearaways always do.

AeroVisionz-1
image:AeroVisionz

Back to the last inside mark close to the shore and then the final leg to the finish line after avoiding the pervasive craypots. The last leg was almost a speed run, with a good angle across the rolling chop to really push it, and with all the hard work behind, this leg became a test of outright speed, and positions were frequently swapped over the 1 kilometre stretch. The finish line was right next to the beach, and the speeds of over 30 knots for some made for a lively spectacle, especially with the persistent opposing wave pattern in just the right place on the finish line to loosen up the board trim right in front of the spectators.

Instead of the standard flagged sequence, competitors were met with the event organiser Isaac DeVries in a rabbit costume riding a jetski to execute a ‘Rabbit Start’ for the final two races of the day.

Steve Schneider Rabbit Start Jetski2
image:Steve Schneider

The winners of each division for the slalom competition are listed below:

Slalom – Crazy Waves (competitors limited to wave sails/boards):
1st Brendan Little
2nd Tim Brazier
3rd Fabio Canella

Slalom – Junior:
1st Kai Dunn
2nd Dylan Tusler
3rd William Mcaullay

Slalom – Women:
1st Karin Jaggi
2nd Kellie Tusler
3rd Jo Wellings

Slalom – Grand Masters (55+):
1st Claude Lecoq
2nd Nick Bozikovic
3rd John Grulich

Slalom – Masters (45+):
1st Daniel Engdahl
2nd Pierre Fallourd
3rd Thomas Frener

Slalom – Open:
1st Patrik Diethelm
2nd Bastien Escofet
3rd Jesper Orth


 

The Cervantes Windsurfing Challenge and all competitors express their sincere gratitude to:

The team of volunteers who helped with the event operations and logistics.

Second Wind Sailboards
Simmer Style WA
Safety Bay Yacht Club
Lobster Shack
RRD
Cervantes Chamber of Commerce
World of Windsurf
OceanZone
Revolution Boardsports
Cockburn Joinery
Aerial Diversion
Jurien Bay Concrete and Earthworks
Cervantes Transport Services
Severne Sails
Pinnacles Edge Resort
Seabreeze.com.au
Zen Events and Photography Services
AeroVisionz
Visioneer Studios


By Shane O'Neill - Lobster Shack Cervantes Windsurf Challenge 2019