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Laurence's PWA New Caledonia adventure #3

Well its been a huge week of racing for me and everyone. The trade wind's have been strong every day, which have made for three days of hectic racing. The afternoons have been the strongest winds around 20-25knots constant.

Tomorrow is the final day

Over the last two days we have had another five eliminations. I have had a mixture of results where I am finally starting to feel comfortable with the location and wind. Tomorrow is the last day of racing where it is expected to be the windiest day so far (around 30+knots). Check out the live feed on the PWA website for all the action.

For those wandering how it all works here is a quick idea of how the eliminations work.
At 10.30 (12.30NZ time) the first elimination starts. At around 1pm (3pm NZ) the final elimination of the event starts. It would be great if you could watch the live feed and get some yelling over the airwaves for me.

To find out which elimination I am in go to the PWA website and view the ladder of competitors. If I reach top 4 I progress to next round. Then if I reach top 4 in the quarter finals I go to the semi-finals. Then the top 4 of semi go to winners final and bottom 4 to losers final.

Day 2

Elimination 4
The wind was a little bit gusty and had filled in much earlier than usual. I went out wanting to play it a bit safe in the opening heat which is where I went wrong. Instead of going on my Isonic 107 I went on the 87 and just had no power out of the gybes. I battled for fourth but just missed out.

Elimination 5
To be honest I can’t actually remember how this heat went. All I remember happening is being hit at the first mark and almost overtook on the final straight but didn’t have enough time.

Elimination 6
This elimination went a lot better. I was a little bit annoyed with how I had been sailing and went out maxxed on 7.0 and the 107. I managed to dominate the start and went through to the quarter finals.
The quarter final I had was absolutely stacked! I was up against Bjorn, Antoine, Tristian, Cousin and Cali. I nailed my start where Antoine tried to luff me up on the start. He overtook me nevertheless (as he has freakish board speed). At the first mark there was a huge battle with Bjorn to lead and I was in fourth. I held my ground until the third gybe where i went easy and Cousin came on my inside. I chased and at the final gybe went on his inside. I however couldn’t get my back foot into my foot strap and he beat me by no more than a board length! I was guttered as it was my stupid mistake that gave him the opportunity to overtake me!

Day 5
Elimination 7
This was a great first heat. I managed to get a cracker of a start and held my position throughout the race.
In the quarter finals it was again a huge battle. I was up against Quentel, Mortefon, Angulo, Tristian and Matteo Iachino. I had a good start but Angulo hit me on the start line which made both of us have a bit of a slowdown. We continued and Annulo slowly powered past me where I was sixth at the mark. Unfortunately Tristian and I couldn’t gain on Angulo on the straights. We would make lots of ground on each gybe but he was just to fast on the straights.

Elimination 8
The opening heat I was late to the start, I managed to catch up on the straights. I overtook two guys with good board speed and gybing which meant I went through to the quarter final.
In the quarter final I had an average start where I got rolled by Iachino and Questel. At the first mark I went on the inside of them and then Cali hit me. He somehow thought he could go inside but couldn’t. This made me crash and it was catch up from there.

Tomorrow is the last day I can make a final so bring it on. It would be great to have as many eyes supporting my last two eliminations of my first PWA event. If you do watch feel free to Tweet or Facebook Ben Proffit and make sure everyone worldwide knows that a kiwi is back on the tour.

I am in heat 3 tomorrow morning which should start at 10.30 (12.30NZ time) weather permitting.

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