Filled with drama
Day three of the GWA Wingfoil World Cup Dakhla, presented by Armstrong Foils, saw the compact women’s fleet of five finally get their chance to get on the water. The Netherlands’ Bowien van der Linden opened her account with a surprise win against Whyte, though it was not an elimination round.
That ensured Whyte came up against Spain’s Nia Suardiaz in the semi-final. Both were equal on points for the title, with the one who came out ahead in the contest destined to lift the crown.
It was a heat filled with drama that would have been worthy of the final. Whyte was out of the blocks fast and put two good wave scores on the board before she fell in a wave, broke her leash and lost her wing, losing valuable time.
Suardiaz got her nose in front on the leaderboard. But Whyte’s huge wave score of 6.90 out of a possible 10 in the dying seconds dramatically landed her the win, and with it the world title.
The win earned Whyte a place in the final against Van der Linden for the decider in Dakhla. Whyte showed why she had already become world champion. She took the event win, linking her turns and carving in the critical section of the wave, putting a cherry on the cake.
The men’s contest shifted into high gear in the quarter finals, with the world title contenders needing to perform to keep their hopes alive.
Cash Berzolla (USA) was already one of the stars of the show. He continued his charge in the quarter-final against the top-ranked France’s Hugo Marin. The Frenchman simply could not match the blistering pace of Berzolla, 17, with two nine-point plus wave scores. The defeat ended the Frenchman’s world title dreams.