The last week I have been in France for the second stop of the EFPT in Le Brusc and it’s absolutely been a great week where in I won my first EFPT event ever in my life!
I travelled up to France together with Rick Jendrusch to share the costs. After a long drive with a little de-tour as there are apparently 2 Le Bruscs (one with water and the other one only with cows on the road) in the South of France, we arrived in Le Brusc on Thursday. With a lot of rain on Friday there was no chance for a warm up session and ended up in a day at the hotel, good to relax before the competition would start with a really strong forecast for the next 2 days.
On Saturday we had the registration for the competition with the first possible start at 12.30. On the registration list we had some really big names like Tonky Frans, Antony Ruenes and of course leading the ranking this year Davy Scheffers, but also a lot of local French guys with high level like Julien Mas, Adrien Bosson (local hero) etc. So a really high level of sailing was guaranteed! The competition started a bit later than planned which gave me the perfect time to warm up on my 4.4 Freek which is the nicest size you can have in Le Brusc, but with a forecast of increasing wind I already put my Freek 4.0 ready as I was pretty sure I would need that. I was in the second round one of the last heats so I had a lot of time to relax before the action would start.
Around 3 o’clock I came in action for the first time and didn’t sail my best heat but enough to advance, I knew I needed to get my rhythm up a bit more if I wanted to keep advancing the next rounds, in the third round I met up with Max Mattisek (the first guy I ever won from in a PWA heat) and finally got my heat sorted out, Skopus both ways, burners both ways, big shaka both sides, Kono, double spock etc which gave me a lot of confidence toward the next heat against Davy Scheffers (who won from me twice on the last Dutch championships). Against Davy I sailed pretty much the same heat but also landed a shovit-spock instead of the double spock. I saw Davy pulling out some great moves too but in the end I won because I was more consistent in my moves and crashed
less than him.
In the semi final I met up with Mattia Fabrizzi who stormed his way through the single defeating Julian Mas in the quarter finals, I managed to control the stronger getting wind a bit better than him and sailed another solid heat to make me advance in the final against number 5 in the world Tonky Frans. By the time this heat started I was absolutely flying away on my 4.0 and pretty much had no control which resulted in one of the lesser heats from the single, both me and Tonky were struggling very hard and in the end it was Tonky who won the heat, next time I would take my 3.6 if it’s so windy I thought to myself so I have at least a bit more control.
On Sunday we had the double in even stronger winds, this time I didn’t even bother to put my 4.4 ready just 4.0 and 3.6 Freek. A few heats before my heat I started to test the conditions a bit and decided to give my 3.6 Freek prototype a try for the first time and I was absolutely amazed with how good the sail was even in 40 knts it was still very easy ducking so I already knew which sail I would use in my heat. Davy came storming through the double defeating a really well sailing Rick Jendrusch, Antony Ruenes, Mattia Fabrizzi and Adrien Beholz before having another match up against me. The wind was strong and even on 3.6 I was having a hard time making me even sometimes struggle with a normal spock, but with a really solid heat again I felt pretty sure about my win against Davy who I saw crashing more than me as he obviously was getting tiered from all the heats.
So next up was Tonky again who definitely was having some problems with the cold that day as I think it was only about 11°C with really cold wind on top of that making it feel like winter pretty much and made him not land too much in his first heat against me making me win and get into a super final. In the super final Tonky got a bit warmer and sailed much better not wanting to give his first place away without a fight and I sailed the best I could in the final heat, landing moves like Culo, Burner both ways, shaka both ways, skopu etc. In the end Tonky went only for the really big moves which made him crash a bit more but also land sick ones like the only pushloop of the event and the only Bongka of the event so I wasn’t sure about my win till Tom Hartman announced me as the winner of the double elimination which gave me a really big smile on my face!! First time I could beat Tonky and win an elimination in the EFPT!
After that we had 2 days of no wind and some Tow-in, I made it into the finals here but couldn’t get into the top 5 as all the Frenchies where pretty good in this, I guess they did a bit more training in this.. All by all it was a great show with an amazing level of tow-in on a nice sunny day!
The last day there was predicted a lot of wind again to run another single in offshore wind but the counsel forbid us to run the competition because of security reasons and there was a red alert warming for the entire area. This gave us a last day of no action and my first ever EFPT win!! I would like to thank the organizers again of the event who did a great job!! Hope to come again next year!
Now I’m on my way for the last EFPT in England, I’m not in the running anymore for the title as every event will count this year (I missed the one in Sigri due to exams) but I do hope to stand on the highest place again - will see!
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