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THE VARGAS, GRAN CANARIA PWA WAVE GRAND PRIX

22:36 16th April 2001 by
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DAY THREE – APRIL 16

We are still on hold here at the Vargas, Gran Canaria, PWA Wave Grand Prix.
The wind has been increasing everyday so far but still hasn’t reached the level
needed to produce competition conditions. The vibe on the beach is still positive
and the word from the locals is that the wind and waves should pick up over
the next few days.

A few sailors sailed this afternoon but many are staying patient, saving their
energy and biding their time for the real thing. World Wave Champion Francisco
Goya (Fanatic, Arrows) took to the water and was utilising a high tech waterproof
earpiece as a communication training aid between himself and coach Scott Sanchez.
Despite the fact they are not being allowed to use the earpiece during competition,
Sanchez still swears by the system as a major advancement in the development
of his training program.

Scott Sanchez (Coach Team MPG)
"We now have on the water one way communication with the athletes.
What it does for us is shorten the time it takes to get feedback direct to the
sailor. I think we can take the sport to a whole new level using this system.
There are no rules at the moment us against us using it but when it makes its
debut in competition I want it to be a long lasting one. I don’t want something
that is just for one event that nobody can do anything about it then they make
a rule that says no! I would like to see other Teams and other individuals using
this system, I think we can take the level to a far higher level of skill"

Meanwhile, ex-World Champion, Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Proof, Neil Pryde) chose to
stay off the water. Dunkerbeck, who has given up racing to concentrate on waves
this season, has been training hard for this event. A win here on his own turf
will immediately put him in a strong position to regain the Overall World Wave
Title. Dunkerbeck has been focusing much of his attention lately towards promoting
his board company, Proof and he is definitely looking hungry for a victory here
in Vargas!

Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Proof, Neil Pryde)
"I am fired up for this contest. The weather forecast did say that
the wind was going to be weak at the weekend but hopefully it is going to pick
up tomorrow. They are talking about a bit of swell as well. We have four more
days so there should be no problem. I was sailing everyday for the past two
weeks before the contest and am feeling really good. I feel I have been sailing
really well and am pretty happy with my preparation. I hope the wind blows strong
as I really like it when it gets rough. At the moment though, I will take anything
from 5.4m down.

I think we will see a lot of doubles going down. I have seen a lot of people
making them. If it gets windy enough there are at least ten people that can
land them. It is not a worry for me, I have been practising them too. Before
there were just a lot of crashes but now everybody has learned to land them!
It’s a different story now!"

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