Novotna puts on a show-stopping performance to claim her first GWA Wingfoil World Tour event win on day one of the Ensis Engadinwing by Dakine.
Tuesday 14th April 2022 Words: Liam Dredge Photos: Sailing Energy/Engadinwing Videos: Aalvaa Media
We’re back for the second GWA Wingfoil World Tour event of the year and this week sees us in the iconic Swiss Alps for the Ensis Engadinwing by Dakine GWA Wingfoil World Cup.
Surrounded by the breathtaking scenery of Silvaplana and St Moritz this is an event that everyone is very eager to participate in both the Surf-Freestyle and Surf-Slalom disciplines that will run this week.
Day one – Tuesday 14th – delivered a consistent thermal wind from 10.30am, read on for an action update for all competitions that took place today:
Tuesday morning began with 51 men and 11 women attending Riders Registration whilst we patiently waited for the thermal to kick in. No cloud to be seen, the sun was shining and with a light breeze from early on, we knew that an afternoon of competition was on the cards.
The famous thermal wind kicked in earlier than expected so it was full steam ahead to get the Women’s Surf-Freestyle rounds underway and on the water with 10-11 hours worth of Surf-Freestyle to get through at this event across the men’s and women’s competitions.
Last year we saw the GWA Wingfoil Race European Championships take place here in Silvaplana, but this is the first time the Surf-Slalom and Surf-Freestyle World Cup disciplines have been staged on these waters, which is an exciting prospect for riders and spectators!
WOMEN’S SURF-FREESTYLE –
ENSIS ENGADINWING BY DAKINE GWA WINGFOIL WORLD CUP SWITZERLAND
Czech rider Paula Novotna put on a sublime performance from start to finish during day one of the GWA Wingfoil World Cup. Landing big tricks earned high scores from the judges in each of her heats and this is a well-deserved first title win for Paula who came off the water with a huge grin on her face!
“I feel incredibly happy that I managed to win my first Wing Foil World Tour event. I haven’t trained too much before the event as I’ve been focusing on my kiteboarding, but I managed to stay calm and focused during my heats and believe that’s what helped me win. I know I’ve got the tricks, the level is really high and I want to congratulate all the other riders. I’m looking forward to the next one!”
Off the back of her win in Leucate, France at round one, Spaniard Nia Suardiaz came up just short in the final with a heat score of 19, narrowly losing out to Paula’s 21.8. Despite missing out on first place however, Nia can still keep her head held high as it was a great overall performance from the young 15-year-old, who keeps on proving why she’s consistently a force to be reckoned with at every event!
France’s Flora Artzner battled Netherland’s Maaike Huvermann for third place and was able to show her competitive consistency with another third place finish in Surf-Freestyle – a mirrored result from Leucate.
The level of riding from the female athletes today was off the chart. It’s clear that the training happening behind the scenes and the desire to push the limits is why we’re seeing such close heats, especially as we get into the bitter ends of the rounds!
WOMEN’S SURF-FREESTYLE RESULTS
Paula Novotna (CZE)
Nia Suardiaz (ESP)
Flora Artzner (FRA)
Maaike Huvermann (NLD)
The action continued directly with round one of the men’s Surf-Freestyle competition. The wind was blowing and with no sign of stopping the event, the crew put their foot on the gas and got underway.
It’s still early stages with plenty of rounds to take place but Balz Mȕller pulled off the highest trick of the day in his opening heat. He scored a whopping 8.67 with the famous Radiculo 720! If that’s round one then who knows what is inbound over the coming days, but it leaves us excited and looking forward to more action for tomorrow.
The men’s action was called to a halt once the thermal wind subsided in late afternoon. We couldn’t have asked for a better start to the event, round two of the GWA Wingfoil World Tour 2022.
Women’s Surf-Freestyle is complete and tomorrow’s forecast looks great. We are heading down to St Moritz for a full day of Surf-Slalom for all competitors with first possible start at 11.15.