Race 1: There was shock in the early rounds when Ben Van Der Steen (Exocet, Simmer Sails) and Bjorn Dunkerbeck (T1, North Sails) crossed the start line early, meaning they didn’t qualify for the race final.
In the final, Albeau (Starboard, NeilPryde), Pritchard and Maynard (RRD, NeilPryde) broke away from the pack after the first gybe and proceeded to open up a considerable lead. The spearheading threesome jostled, but on the finish line maintained the same formation that they had had for the entire race. Albeau first, Pritchard second and Maynard third. Dunkerbeck returned to form in the losers final, to take the win.
Race 2: The usual suspects stamped their authority on the first round, with Maynard, Pritchard and Albeau winning their heats. Also joining them was Josh Angulo (MauiSails, Dakine) who showed he’s not one to be left out of contention when the going gets tough.
The final of race two was laden with truly spectacular sailing. Albeau showed why he’s World Champion, entering the first mark in sixth and coming out in second with a magnificent gybe through the fleet. He then chased down Maynard, and overtook him on the final reach to claim his second race win. Maynard got caught in a tussle with Buzianis (JP, NeilPryde, MFC), leaving Dunkerbeck free to steal second place, Maynard third, and Buzianis fourth. Van Der Steen held his nerve to win the losers final.
Race 3: The third race was an epic surf slalom affair. In the final, Albeau looked untouchable in first, leaving Angulo and Pritchard to fight for second. Pritchard put the pedal down and eventually accelerated across the line to beat Angulo to the number two spot. Angulo took third, Dunkerbeck fourth, and Williams came home in fifth.
In the losers final, Micah Buzianis showed class and determination to fend off Taty Frans (Starboard, North Sails) and Sylvain Moussilmani (F2, Simmer) to take the win. Frans sailed well and stole second from Moussilmani who finished in third.
Race 4: Uncharacteristic errors from Buzianis, Maynard and Williams, meant they all failed to make the top five of their respective semi final heats, thus not qualifying for the final.
More upset came in the final, when Pritchard and Angulo crossed the start line early, forcing the heat to be rerun without them. In the rerun, Albeau was tested by Volwater, but kept a cool head to take his fourth successive race win. Volwater slipped into third behind Cyril Moussilmani (Fanatic, North), leaving Cedric Bordes (Tabou, Gaastra) in fourth, and Dunkerbeck in fifth.
In the losers final, Williams owned the show, opening up a huge lead ahead of his nearest rival, Buzianis. Untouched from the first gybe onwards, Williams went on to win in comfortable fashion, leaving Buzianis to take second, and Allen third.
Race 5 witnessed the amazing spectacle of the entire 39 man race fleet battling it out around a mammoth down wind slalom course. A rabbit start kicked off a crazy charge down the first reach as the mass of sailors battled to get clean wind at the first mark.
The amazing race culminated with a frantic blast to the finish, Albeau excelled to claim another first place, Volwater took second, Pritchard third, Williams fourth and Pearch ended in fifth. The race proved to be a stumbling block for Finian Maynard who failed to finish, and Bjorn Dunkerbeck didn’t help his cause, finishing 14th in a race that many had tipped him to be a favorite in.
Race 6: The sixth slalom race of the event saw cracks appear in Antoine Albeau’s seemingly impenetrable defenses. Two falls and a ninth place finish in his semi final heat meant he failed to qualify for the race final.
Signaling changing times, Britain’s Ross William’s and Holland’s Peter Volwater lead the pack in a final depleted of many big name racers. The pair was equally matched, but Williams edged ahead in a final drag race to the finish line. Close behind, Josh Angulo took third, Bjorn Dunkerbeck fourth and Benoit Moussilmani (F2, Simmer Sails) raced home in fifth. Albeau regained his winning form to take first place in the losers final.
Race 7: Failing to make the cut in the qualifying heats, Ross Williams, Micah Buzianis and Josh Angulo all went out in the first rounds, denying them a chance to compete in the final.
No surprises in this one, Albeau lead the final to take another win, Pritchard came second, Allen third, Dunkerbeck fourth and Sylvain Moussilmani fifth.
Recovering in the losers final, Williams relinquished his previous error to take first place, ahead of Buzianis in second, and Angulo in third.
Race 8: Over eager starts for Pritchard, Williams and Volwater meant the final had to be restarted, minus the offenders. In the rerun, Albeau settled into his usual position at the front of the pack. Chasing him down were Dunkerbeck and Buzianis, who never let the leader out of their grasp, but failed to summon enough grunt to overthrow the French World Champion. Albeau walked away with another victory with Buzianis in second, and Dunkerbeck in third.
Race 9: An unfortunate accident saw Micah Buzianis crashed into, and in need of medical attention following a gybe mark incident in the qualifying heats. The incident robbed him of a position in the final, which was won by slalom machine Albeau. Pritchard snapped up another second place finish, and Cyril Moussilmani flew home in third.
Pozo Racing Results 2008: