everyone becomes accustomed to the Paros lifestyle and atmosphere
the first day has provided a chance for some fun racing, allowing
sailors to re-tune their kit and their minds to suit the local
first race begun with a full fleet beach start, providing plenty
of white water as sailors battled to get away from the beach and
into clean wind. As the fleet moved away from the beach towards
the first mark the wind blew across the bay, staggering the fleet.
The competitors then had to complete a course including an upwind
mark followed by three downwind marks back towards the beach.
bay suddenly came alive as the fleet created a stream of colour
and movement, charging out towards the first mark. The sailors
who chose to use course boards had an advantage over the other
sailors, taking a closer line to the wind. Nobody on the beach
could avoid the spectacle and the point in front of The Paros
Surf Club was lined with spectators. Christoffer Rappe S-39 (Mistral,
North) took the lead from Thomas Larsen D-68 (Mistral, Neil Pryde)
at the upwind mark.
"I knew I had to be well ahead of Rappe at the upwind mark. I
tacked early, too early. But that was good fun, nice way to start."
opened up a convincing lead and made it to the beach with plenty
of time to make the short sprint up the beach to the finish flag.
His nifty chop hop at the start paid dividends.
It was super gusty out there, at the start I jumped over the rope
of the boat and that gave me a couple of extra metres upwind.
Thomas had a good start but I caught him up at the buoy."
Baker K-77 (F2, Arrows) was denied a chance to make an early impression
when he was forced to retire.
" I set off and decided to tug in on my outhaul. As I did it broke
and that was it, race over." Ben Van Der Steen H-57 (Fanatic,
Art) is here with fellow Dutchman Ramses Landman H-72 (F2, Arrows)
" It was great fun I was on my big production board that allowed
me to get really far up wind." It was a close race on the beach
between Ben and Ramses as they both headed for the flag.
"I was just behind Ben all the way. I liked the beach start
and think they should extend the course a little and maybe go
out round the island."
was referring to the two small islands that sit off the shores
of Golden Beach, rather than a round Paros event. I don't think
anyone was quite up for that level of adventure this afternoon!
It was the perfect start for 'Rapper' who is hoping to retain
his event title from last year.
top three results of the first race were,
Christoffer Rappe S-39 (Mistral, North) 2. Thomas Larsen D-68
(Mistral, Neil Pryde) 3. Steve Allen KA-0 (Fanatic, Art)
continued his form in the next race and after taking his second
win of the day Christoffer said, "It's a great way to start, I
was having fun and it does help to give me more confidence. I
hope I can keep it going for the rest of the week."
Roegild D-173 (Starboard, Art) followed Christoffer over the line
in race two and Ramses Landman came third.
so many fans of Paros gathered together there was an ideal opportunity
to hear why some of the reason why they love it so much. Ant Baker
has been coming here for eight years and has no shortage of reasons
for returning each year.
"It's a beautiful place to windsurf the wind blows every day and
the conditions are unreal. Here your sails are rigged up five
metres from the beach, it's really relaxed and easy to get out
and sail. You've got 'Punda Beach' just down the road and It's
a real good fun place to be. I finished fourth here two years
ago and I'll be pushing hard for a first. The nice thing about
Paros is you know you'll always have a great time."
Beach is a short car journey from The Paros Surf Club on Golden
Beach. It's a top party destination, drawing crowds from across
the island everyday and into the night. Another possible reason
for the Paros fan club?
Maynard KV-11 (V2 Max, Neil Pryde) has a reputation for being
a very intense character yet he also finds comfort in the Paros
leg of the PWA tour.
I grew up on an island in the Caribbean and Paros definitely reminds
me of home a lot. It's generally a more forgiving event and everyone
has a good time here. There's a great reef of coral that you can
stand on out there and watch the sailing. The wind is quite consistent
and it's not hard on the body or soul to be here! "
came third four years ago and we'll see what happens this year."
Allen KA -0 (Fanatic, Art) is another fan of Paros who is happy
to be back again this year.
" I had to miss last year due to a broken rib. I've been coming
here as long as the event has been running and this was one of
my first PWA contests."
a great temperature here day and night. There are always really
good conditions for racing and its' always a lot of fun, lots
of little bars to relax in. There are so many people coming down
here for holidays and to have fun. There's not a cloud in the
sky, it's perfect. The islands developed a bit in the last few
years, It used to be all camper vans down on the point and you
still get a lot of backpackers visiting here. The event hasn't
changed much and that's what makes it so good."
official racing will begin but the atmosphere should remain the
same. The magic of Paros holds strong and it looks like everyone
is set to enjoy another classic week on Golden Beach.