Monday, June 18, 2012

The Naish Pistol River Wave Bash Rewind · +H2O

Day One ·  Pete Dekay reported: " The AWT was once again blessed with wind and waves as the 2012 Pistol River Wave Bash presented by Naish got off to a stylish start. The junior heats got underway at 11 am and the conditions just seemed to build, and were truly blasting by the time it came to run the pros!

Morgan Noireaux was ripping from the first heat on as he took the youth single elimination against some stiff competition. Despite challenging wave riding conditions he was still able to get incredibly vertical lip-hits that always impress the judges. Ingrid Larouche was back defending her Women's title from last year and really put on a show, but now she really has to look back over her shoulder with 15-year-old Fiona Wylde charging the way she is. One sailor everyone noticed on the water was Attila Tivadar. This guy was always on the best set waves and making the most of them with "bucket-throwing" slashes and impressive airs. Tivadar took the Amateur single elimination and was narrowly beaten by Brian Caserio and Jeff Albright in the Masters.

The rider of the day in the Pro division has to be Sean Aiken (pictured left). His silky smooth style and plan on where to go to get the best waves have taken him all the way into the final, which will run first thing today. Joining Sean in the Pro final are Levi Siver, Kai Katchadourian and Bernd Roediger... it will be quite a show. Other highlights included Kevin Pritchard's impressive Wave 360 in difficult conditions and Graham Ezzy losing half a tooth (OUCH!) to his boom in a heat! " Chris "Muzza" Murray added:  "Great first day of the contest here at the AWT Pistol River Wave Bash, with loads of action! It’s full power windy with some decent chunky waves, brilliant moves being thrown down including some massive jumps, one footed backies and super big forwards from Levi. KP pulled off a sweet wave 360 in his heat."

Graham Ezzy (photo right) reported: "I’m at the Pistol River Wave Bash in Oregon. In the second round of competition, I started my heat with a big crash and busted up my face. The bones are fine– just some bruises. The flesh, aside from being tender, is a bit cut but nothing requiring stitches. My front teeth, however, were not so lucky– I lost most of my top left front tooth. The blood everywhere and the intermittent pain weren’t so bad, but my vanity took a hit. Unfortunately, I lost my head a bit (not just literally) for the rest of the heat and ended up with neither intact front teeth nor a win. Well, the double elimination is coming up this weekend, and I’ll put in my contest time before attending to fixing my face."

Chris Freeman added: "Pistol River is a wild and rugged place which initially shakes you to the core before you start to warm up and get into the action. Arriving late Tuesday afternoon to calm winds and sun we had to wait until Wednesday for our initiation Pistol style. Being maxed on 4.0m on inhospitable and cold waters really does wake you out of the Ho'okipa dream. This is real windsurfing and reminds me just what I miss while insulated by our tropical cocoon. After day one I must admit I was a little shell shocked, not just the cold but the extreme conditions on tap."

Day 1 Photos: AWT ~ Windsport ~ Windsport Registration Day ~ Individual Heats: Pro ~ Amateur ~ Women ~ Masters ~ Youth

Single Elimination Results:

Day 2 ·  Pete Dekay wrote:  "It was another great day with plenty of wind at the 2012 Pistol River Wave Bash presented by Naish! Due to slightly smaller and less consistent waves the call for most of the day was to run the Amateur and Masters double elimination along with a few more women and youth heats.

Morgan Noireaux continued to dominate the Youth with his huge jumps and smooth riding style. But the rider of the day may have been Zane Schweitzer who Push Looped his way passed Casey Rehrer into second. Both of these guys are sailing insanely well and will likely be putting pressure on Noireaux as the year progresses.  Chris "Muzza" Murray added: "Here in America they are starting them young, standing out in the ladies was Fiona, and in the pro’s Bernd, who are both 15 year old! In the pros single final Bernd narrowly lost to Levi Siver by just a few points pulling a sick one handed backie, beating all the season pros easily to get second place. Fiona was pushing the ladies going for some crazy forwards, brilliant stuff! 

The Women's fleet continued to impress with Ingrid Larouche holding off Fiona Wylde for the lead. These ladies may be serious competitors on the water but it's great to see their camaraderie on the beach as they show how much fun a wavesailing competition can be. The Masters division displayed some amazing sailing from local host Dana Miller who climbed all the way from 10th place to 4th on day two. The final came down to a close heat with Brian Caserio edging out Attila Tivadar, with Jeff Albright bringing up the final podium spot. The events biggest fleet is the Amateurs with 26 entrants. Sailors like Rob Dies, Brett Greene and Dan O'Sullivan made the most of the double elimination to move multiple places up in the standings. The final came down to a battle between Attila Tivadar and Ingrid Larouche with Tivadar getting the final nod for the top podium spot.

By days end the waves improved just enough to run the final of the Pro Single Elimination. There was plenty of wind and shoulder high waves gving these four final competitors plenty of spots to showcase their skills. Bernd Roediger started strong with a stylish one-handed Back Loop right in front of the judges. Sailing slightly upwind for the entire heat was Sean Aiken who also landed and early Back Loop and racked up some nice wave rides. Kai Katchadourian started slowly but heated up as time went on scoring some of the best waves late and also sticking a solid Back Loop. But not to be outdone, Levi Siver (pictured right) took the final with a nice Back Loop and a tweaked-out waveriding style that none of the others could match. But everyone will have another go at these boys with two days left to run the Double Elimination."

Chris Freeman revealed: "Today (Friday) after a slow start the wind turned on but the ankle high waves made heats especially challenging for the riders and the judges. The waves did improve slightly during the day as the doubles ran through and late in the day it was time to defend and attempt to move up. Not much to say but I sailed a bad heat and deservedly lost out and had to settle for third."

Day 2 Photos: AWT ~ Individual Heats: Pro ~ Amateur ~ Women ~ Masters ~ Youth

Double Elimination:

Day 3 · Pete Dekay reported: "After two long days at the beach, head judge Matt Pritchard gave all the competitors a chance to sleep in by calling for a 1 pm skippers meeting on day 3. It was the perfect call with the wind and waves showing up a little later then previously… but it was time to rip into the Pro double elimination. Early heats saw Casey Hauser sailing very well, but our sailor of the day pick goes to Morgan Noireaux. Not only did he win the youth competition but he is still alive with only three riders left in the Pros. Can he take out Bernd Roediger and Levi Siver? We’ll find out on day four of the Pistol River Wave Bash presented by Naish!

The Womens division was decided on day 3 with Ingrid Larouche taking the title. The competition for second place ended up tied so Fiona Wylde and Sam Bittner were sent out for a battle royale. Wylde narrowly defeated Bittner but all were left smiling after a super fun event."

Day 3 Photos: AWT ~ Individual Heats: Pro ~ Amateur ~ Women ~ Masters ~ Youth

Day 4 ·  Pete Dekay reported: "The AWT saved the best for last at the 2012 Pistol River Wave Bash presented by Naish. A west swell hit pumping the waves up to logo high for a day that would showcase the final two heats as well as an expression session for a Chinook Carbon Boom.

The first heat saw Morgan Noireaux taking on Bernd Roediger in clash of two of the worlds top young pros. Noireaux started off strong but it was not enough to take down Roediger who was sailing incredibly well. The final came down to Roediger against Levi Siver and it started seeing both riders hitting some big jumps and solid rides... until Siver landed a perfect Wave 360 right in Roediger's face. The battle was definitely on. Roediger tried to match Siver with a Goiter but crashed. The heat was over and Siver claimed victory. What a final heat!

The final session of the event was the Expression Session for a Chinook Carbon Boom. Competitors took the water to see who could land the biggest and most impressive move for the judges. Russ Faurot stuck a massive Back Loop taking and early lead... until Graham Ezzy's Upwind 360 on the wave gave him the lead... but Kevin Pritchard was not to be denied landing his signature one-handed one-footed Back Loop. It was an all Ezzy team podium for the expression session!"

Levi Siver (photo right) said everyone had a blast. He was stoked with his back to back victories and looks forward to the next stop in Baja.

Day 4 Photos: AWT ~ Individual Heats: Pro ~ Amateur ~ Women ~ Masters ~ Youth

The next AWT event is the US Windsurfing Nationals.
Hood River, Oregon: The Event Site
July 23-26
Slalom, Formula, Freestyle Nationals
Presented by the American Windsurfing Tour
Monday, July 23: Check in and Freestyle Event at Event Site
Tuesday, July 24-July 26th: Racing begins and Freestyle continues

*I will post new material to this report when it's available*

Photos from Oregon Sports Authority

Morgan Noireaux reports

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