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Top riders land coveted World Tour spots

  • Men’s and women’s world champions crowned at first wingfoil Masters World Cup

  • Spanish resort hosts second historic GWA Qualifying Series’ event 

GWA Challenger QS and Masters World Cup, Costa Lago Beach, Torremolinos
10-11 June, 2023

The winners of the first GWA Challenger Qualifying Series (QS) at Torremolinos, Spain, have bagged prized places on the GWA Wingfoil World Tour.

The top three men and women in the Challenger QS FreeFly-Slalom event earned the right to compete at upcoming GWA Wingfoil World Cup events.

The Spanish resort also staged the first-ever wingfoil Masters World Cup in FreeFly-Slalom, which ran in tandem with the Challenger QS. It crowned Alexandre Ruoys and Sonia Le Boutellier the men’s and women’s Masters world champions.

The Challenger QS, an enhanced qualifying series event, became necessary as GWA Wingfoil World Cup events are oversubscribed because of the mushrooming popularity of the sport.

Spanish teenager triumphs

The men’s Challenger QS drew 21 men who batted through three elimination rounds over the weekend of 10 to 11 June. Spanish teenager Xavier Corr triumphed with two elimination round wins, ahead of Mariano Gil (ESP) and Nathan Berger (ESP).

The women’s five-strong fleet got through three elimination rounds, with the best of the conditions on the opening day of competition bringing perfect thermal breezes all day. Spain’s Nia  Suadiaz, 16, was victorious with a perfect three elimination round wins, with Sonia Le Bouteiller (FRA) and Regaliz Sollom (GER) taking second and third places.

Le Bouteiller also took the title in the Masters World Cup, for athletes of 35 years and over, where the five-strong fleet managed to complete six elimination rounds. Le Bouteiller proved unbeatable, taking all six elimination rounds.

First Masters titles

The men’s Masters World Cup crown was taken by France’s Alexandre Ruoys, who won three from four elimination rounds. He was helped by a discard after four rounds, that allowed him to throw out a low score in the third elimination.

Former European Formula Windsurf champion, Ramón Pastor (ESP), took the second podium step and was also saved by the discard. He had also posted a low score in round three which could have been costly in the face of strong and consistent performances.

Italy’s Raimondo Gasperini, a former national windsurfing champion, won the third elimination round that helped him to the the third podium step. The trio headed of the pack of 16 riders.

Two Fun Races for amateur riders—regarded as a key part of the event to encourage inclusiveness in the sport—were both won by France’s Gautier Guichard, who topped the 24-strong fleet.

GWA Challenger QS  Torremolinos 2023

Men’s results
1 Xavier Corr (ESP)
2 Mariano Gil (ESP)
3 Nathan Berger (ESP)

Women’s results
1 Nia Suardiaz (ESP)
2 Sonia Le Bouteiller (FRA)
3 Regaliz Sollom (GER)

Masters World Cup Torremolinos 2023

Men’s results
1 Alexandre Ruoys (FRA)
2 Ramón Pastor (ESP)
3 Raimondo Gasperini (ITA)

Women’s results
1 Sonia Le Bouteiller (FRA)
2 Lena Thyssen (GER)
3 Serena Zoia (ESP)

words: Ian MacKinnon
images: Antonio Herrera Trujillo

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