Gripping a surfboard with your bare feet and flipping a flimsy sail in a 42 knot wind above the waves is a tough call. Thankfully the best professional windsurfers in the world will be in El Medano from 4 to 10 August to show how to do it with grace and flair. The PWA World Cup returns to El Cabezo beach (beyond the swimming beaches and pier, a few minutes walk around the headland) on the Granadilla coast, and the 32 men and 16 women have plenty of tricks to wow the public.
Tenerife has become a big favourite on the World Tour of 15 events not just for the great waves that El Medano produces but also for the year round devotion of local surf dudes to the disciplines of surfing and kite surfing. Local based Brit, Adam Lewis, will be joined by riders from Australia, Spain,Turkey, Finland and Holland to compete for glory and prize money; last year’s pot was €35,000. A new twist this year will be a series of jump challenges at the Wave Palace in Siam Park, Costa Adeje, these will take place outside of the main beach competition.
In 2013 the winds were particularly strong, even the planes from the nearby Reina Sofia airport looked down in awe at the sporting strength of the wave skimmers. Philip Koster of Germany blitzed his way to the men’s title and Daido Ruano of Gran Canaria pipped her twin sister Iballa to the women’s crown. They will be returning to face more challengers.
Competition starts early each day from around 10am through to early evening and according to the changing moods of the wind and sea. Each rider gets a 12 minute slot in each round to impress the judges, with the two best rides and jumps counting. The action takes place close enough to shore to appreciate with the naked eye and a large pits area and chill-out zone with snack bar make it a great, informal atmosphere as riders mix with fans. Announcements are made in English as well as Spanish so you can keep up with scoring and positions, and the numbers on the sails will identify your favourites.
When there is a lull in proceedings the special food and drink promotions around El Medano will come in handy, and informal night time concerts spring up all over town.
PWA World Cup Windsurfing; free to watch; competition may finish a few days early if the weather is on top form, check website for full daily updates.
Category : days out
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