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THE VARGAS, GRAN CANARIA PWA WAVE GRAND PRIX

22:35 16th April 2001 by
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DAY TWO…

The waiting game continues here at the Vargas, Gran Canaria, PWA wave Grand
Prix. Steady trades have blowing here at the beach today but by no means strong
enough to reach competition requirements. The forecast however is excellent
and it is expected that the nuclear winds that have put Gran Canaria on the
map over the years will return with a vengeance over the next few days.

Most of the sailors have been using the time to fine tune their equipment and
prepare mentally for the challenge that awaits them. With two events in Gran
Canaria this season it is essential that sailors can perform well in the port
tack cross-onshore conditions that prevail here in the Canaries. This is one
of the few places on the world tour where sailors regularly find themselves
using their smallest sails. When it blows here, the vicious winds generate waves
providing perfect ramps for monster jumps. The locals such as Bjorn Dunkerbeck
(Neil Pryde, Proof) and Vidar Jensen (North Sails, Drops) thrive in these type
conditions and both have won the event in previous years.

Gran Canaria is one of the principal destinations for tourists from Europe.
It is known world-wide for its 236 kilometres of coastline, which is dotted
with extensive beaches of golden sands, rugged cliffs and small coves. Drenched
in sun all year round it is no wonder that the Canary Islands have become so
popular.

The atmosphere on the beach today seems mellow but in reality tension is building,
especially with such an excellent forecast. With the stage set for battle some
of the sailors voiced their predictions on the eventual winner!

Matt Pritchard (Gaastra Sails, AHD)
"Uuugh, that’s a tricky one. I am here to win this event, I am going
to give it my best shot. There are a lot of guys that can win the event, Vidar
and Bjorn are both pretty much firing. Francisco is also looking pretty good,
he is on fire. Nik Baker is also looking good, Pritchard junior is looking good
and Pritchard senior is feeling pretty good. Its anybody’s game…May the
best man win!"

Iballa Moreno (North Sails, Mistral)
"I am going to win! Me or my sister! Nobody else has a chance! We will
try to be first and second. We are at the opposite end of the draw so hopefully
we will meet in the final. We will have to see what happens! I will be going
for doubles, so watch out!"

Nik Baker (North Sails, Mistral)
"The winner? I’d like it to be me. So far from what I have seen in
the training before the event I think Francisco is one of the best guys. There
are a lot of very good locals as well. If it gets really windy then guys like
Vidar and Bjorn will be strong contenders. I am here to do the best I can, I’d
like to win or at least get in the top three. Top three, top five would be a
good thing for me since I had a ankle injury over the winter"

Scott McKercher (Naish, Starboard)
"God knows who is going to win! I am a bit injured so it’s going to
be tough for me. I think its going to be a Canarian, Bjorn or Vidar, maybe even
the young guy Daniel Bruch"

Josh Angulo (RRD)
"Who is going to win?…Me! I am watching out for every body, including
myself. I have been training hard, I kind of suck in these conditions but hey
that’s all right, I have faith!"

Levi Siver (North Sails, F2)
"Oh God I don’t know who is going to win! I am in the running though..Hell
yeah! Cisco is the main guy to watch out for although pretty much everybody
is motivated to win. I am going to go big, if the moment comes about I might
bust out some doubles..We will see!"

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