The sixth day of competition in St. Peter-Ording, Germany, stood out as a landmark day for two major disciplines at this event. As Freestyle and Airstyle took center stage on this windy morning and afternoon, both onlookers and competitors observed that it was an ideal day considering conditions – the wind strong and consistent at 15-23-knots throughout. The sun even managed to show through at times, giving riders the opportunity to bask in brief moments of summer.
Airstyle kicked off the day early on and began with competitors such as Ariel Corniel (DR), Alvaro Onieva (ESP), and Gisela Pulido (ESP) who showed off their big airs and best board-off maneuvers. Oneiva contributed a lighthearted touch to the event, wearing a costume bull’s head in his heat that he eventually won. At the end of the final heats, Onieva and Pulido proved victorious.
The much-anticipated double elimination also began after a full day prior, wherein Kevin Langeree (NED) and Gisela Pulido (ESP) claimed first place positioning. The top ranking riders new they had earned the day off and would not be riding for some time, yet they still could be seen at the event village, very much keeping in ‘competition mode’. The remaining riders – some of the most talented in the world – went on to compete in all out battles with the championship title in their sites.
Beginning heats between skilled riders like Paul Serin (FRA) and Christophe Tack (BEL) proved to be a great show, as Serin threw down s nice Slim 5 and Blind Judge 3, while Tack executed a Front Mobe and BM5, among other powered tricks. Patrick Blanc (ESP) and Stefan Permien (GER) also put their skills to the test, with a mixture of S3s, Slims, and KGBs. For Blanc, the KGB proved to be his best of this early heat. Interestingly, Johnno Scholte (NED) and Ariel Corniel (DR) engaged in perhaps the closest heat of the day, exhibiting huge power and speed as well as amazing execution and style. Scholte earned advancement in this tough heat.
Later on, the women joined in and demonstrated their most complicated maneuvers to the best of their ability. One official judge revealed that possibly the best female heat of the day occurred between Hannah Whiteley (GBR) and Clementine Bonsom (FRA). This battle ended with an advancement by Whiteley, who executed a Blind Judge 3 and Raley. Highlights later in the afternoon included a close heat between Sebastian Garat and Christophe Tack, as well as an incredible heat featuring Marc Jacobs and Reno Romeu. Looking over his scores after losing his last heat, Sebastian retained a look of disappointment as he realized he had only succumbed to his adversary by one point. Commenting on his defeat, Garat commented, “I would have only needed one trick to have won because we each did six tricks out of the total seven tricks allowed – I wish I would have done one more!”
For the seventh day of competition, lighter wind is expected to prevail at 10-20 knots in the south/southeast direction. In light of this forecast, racing will take priority and possibly up to five races will be run. Freestyle double eliminations will not reconvene until Saturday (Day 9).