NO WIND DAYS STILL KEEP RIDERS BUSY WITH PRONE FOIL ACTION!
With a lack of wind on day three, this meant athletes were spending their time on the water and grasping the world of pump foiling while we caught up on some interviews.
Thursday 16th April 2022 Words: Liam Dredge Photos: Sailing Energy/Engadinwing Videos: Aalvaa Media
It was back to Silvaplana for day three of the Ensis Engadinwing by Dakine GWA Wingfoil World Cup. After a successful day of competition in Surf-Slalom on Wednesday, the crew were keen to power through the remaining heats of the Men’s Surf-Freestyle picking up from where we left off on Tuesday.
We knew early morning that Thursday might be a struggle for wind. The forecast wasn’t looking too promising with northerly winds coming through, paired with an overcast sky that these factors would likely delay the breeze. After patiently waiting throughout the day it was decided by our race director at 17.30 that the competition wouldn’t take place today.
However, there was still action on display from the athletes with the majority of them perfecting their pump foiling. With that being said our crew thought it was the perfect opportunity to speak to local hero, Balz Mȕller (CHE), and get his take on why he enjoys pump foiling so much!
We also caught up with the team from both Ensis and Dakine, two major sponsors of the event this week.
Day three – Thursday 16th – A day of no competition saw some fun, relaxed pump foil action and getting to know some of the event sponsors a little more. Check out our interview with sponsors and Balz Mȕllerbelow.
ENSIS AND DAKINE GIVE THEIR THOUGHTS ON THE EVENT SO FAR AND WHAT IT MEANS TO HAVE A WORLD CUP HERE IN SWITZERLAND
Our media team caught up with two of the biggest brands in the industry – Ensis and Dakine. We wanted to find out their thoughts on the event so far and what it means to them as a brand to have a world cup here in Switzerland.
Members of Dakine came and spoke to us and this is what they had to say.
“For us at Dakine it’s great to see a world cup here and the direction in which wing foiling is heading. As a brand we are now introducing the wings and boards and staying with the sport. There will be more and more growth and competition for the pro riders. This sport will continue to grow as it has great organisations and sponsors behind it, and we’re excited to stay be amongst the future of wing foiling”.
Heading over to Ensis the guys there were really happy with it being a home event for them;
“The event’s been a great start with the freestyle action, which was brilliant. We at Ensis are super happy to have around 12 team riders in the event which is a great number for us as a small brand. We are super stoked as a Swiss brand to have such a big event at our home spot and are happy to help all the international pros – it means a lot to us, our small country and beautiful lakes”.
PUMP FOILING WITH BALZ
Pump foiling is the best alternative when there’s no wind, and today that was proved effortlessly by all athletes. A quick change from their normal wing foil kit meant that the bigger front wings came out and the smaller prone boards got wet! Maximum glide and pumping was needed, beautifully demonstrated by none other than prone foil master, Balz Mȕller.
Pump foiling is a sport we can see evolving rapidly and on days like today, it’s a no-brainer for athletes to practice their skills. As we know every Surf-Slalom course has a downwind pumping track so if the athletes can master it with no wind then coming into these course sections with speed should become easier!
We pulled Balz aside to get his thoughts on why he enjoys pump foiling so much and how he benefits from these non-wind days;
“With pump foiling, we’ve still got the chance to foil on a non-wind day on a flat lake. It’s a great opportunity to get used to your gear, to feel and tune your foil, and to progress your foiling without having the need for a wing. It’s an awesome no-wind activity that brings you forward with your winging and it’s much easier to test your personal pump foiling as you feel the difference pump after pump. The feeling you have at being one with your board is great. It’s perfect training even on a day like today”.
We hope to get the heats back underway on Friday, but if not we’ll look at running a prone foil session which we’re sure will get competitive!