Final report by Jesper Orth, our man on Aruba, about the PWA Slalom event, the fourth tourstop of the season.

Jesper Orth
Nationality: Denmark
Sailnumber: AUS-10
Sponsors: RRD, KA Sails, Vector Fins, Aeron booms and CTM masts
Sailrepair WA – Jesper Orth


What a day!! Sarah-Quita Offringa and Björn Dunkerbeck overtook the leaders on the final event day and both stepped up to the top of the podium!


Biggest surprise of the day was that Ben Van Der Steen claims 2nd position and pushing Antoine down to 3rd place and Björn stayed cool to get the 1st position.

How did that happen?


The men category

Antoine was in 1st position before the final day, Björn was in 2nd and Ben van der Steen in 3rd. With a lot of calculations going on before the heats, it calculated that Bjoern had to finish in top 4 even if Antoine won to ensure the overall 1st. Ben van der Steen was kind of out of the picture to do better than 3rd. Only a very slim chance could see him getting into 2nd.

The most unexpected happened in the semi-final of elimination 8. I was very close to the start line and it looked like Björn applied a huge pressure onto Antoine in that heat. Antoine was over early but also Björn was over and 2 other guys. This meant that Björn instantly was sure of claiming the 1st position overall after he had won race 6 and 7 before and when he sailed back to his trustfully caddy Victor Couto the “victory man hug” instantly cemented the fact that he got it!

Björn took the third victory of the season at Aruba 2011 (Pic: PWA/ Carter).

Then the most unexpected happened for a second time. Ben van der Steen had to claim 1st position in the 8th final to get 2nd place over all in front of the great Frenchman Antoine Albeau.
Ben did exactly that and with his excellent board speed he smashed the competition in the final to claim the necessary 0.7 to take the 2nd place.

Finian Maynard seems to be back in “business” with a solid 4th place, after his shock result in Costa Brava.
Argentinian Gonzalo Costa Hoevel, who was sitting in 4th before the final race but pulled a “big lemon” out of the hat, when he applied to much pressure in his start of heat 1 and was called over early. It costed him 7 positions and sent him to 11th place. Julien Quentel had a strong last day and placed himself in 5th position.


The Women category

Sarah-Quita Offringa kept her head cool in the final 2 rounds. With a bullet and a 2nd she won the slalom overall. What a week for her, winning both Freestyle and then slalom! The local support for her was amazing. Karin Jaggi had an “average” day on the water but her good results from the other days kept her in 2nd position. Valerie Arighetti had a strong comeback and finished 3rd with even points with Fanny Aubet.


Sarah-Quita Offringa speeds up (Pic: PWA, John Carter).

What a day to end an exciting event in Aruba.

At the price ceremony Björn hold a very good speech and highlighted that he was the youngest sailor to win a PWA in Aruba many years ago and now he was the oldest competitors to win it again. In fact I never think Björn has lost here! Antoine speech mentioned that he was also here many years ago and did beat Björn in one round. All in all it was a very positive feeling from the top 3 competitors.

The biggest cheers came when the microphone went to Ben van der Steen. His speech might only have been a few lines, but he defiantly received well-deserved cheers from all the sailors as spectators for his awesome effort to place himself in-between 2 of the most successfully windsurfers ever.

The top 3 men - Pic: PWA/John Carter


The winners stated as follows:


Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne / Mystic / DunkerbeckEyewear)

“This is amazing; my equipment is really fast so I knew if everything was working I could win. I had a few hiccups at the start of the competition, I crashed in the second final, and went to the wrong mark after they had adjusted the course in another, and then after that I won four out of eight. I am really happy that it came down to the last round and I managed to pull it off.


Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic)

“I was quite inconsistent throughout the competition but every time it went well I came in first which meant I didn’t have to fight really hard today. I managed to win the first final today, which put me just ahead of Karin; I then just had to finish in front of her of within fourth to win.  Karin crashed at the first mark so from then on I just wanted to win second place and not make any mistakes.”


Great music and party followed afterwards


Results PWA Slalom Aruba 2011

Men’s Fleet

1st Bjorn Dunkerbeck (Starboard / Severne / Mystic / DunkerbeckEyewear)?
2nd Ben Van Der Steen (Starboard / Loft / Mystic)?
3rd Antoine Albeau (JP / NeilPryde)?
4th Finian Maynard (RRD)?
5th Julien Quentel (RRD / NeilPryde)?
6th Cyril Moussilmani (Starboard / North)?
7th Antoine Questel (Loft)?
8th Arnon Dagan (Tabou / Gaastra)?
9th Taty Frans (Starboard / MauiSails / Mystic)?
10th Micah Buzianis (JP / NeilPryde)
full result men here


Women’s Fleet

1st Sarah-Quita Offringa (Starboard / Gaastra / Mystic)

2nd Karin Jaggi (Patrik / Severne)?
3rd Valerie Arrighetti (Tabou / Gaastra / Mystic)
4th Fanny Aubet (JP / NeilPryde)?
5th Alice Arutkin (Starboard / North)
6th Cagla Kubat (Starboard / North)
7th Lena Erdil (Patrik / Loft / AL360)
8th Delphine Cousin (JP / NeilPryde)?
9th Zofia Klepacka (RRD / North)?
10th Lise Vidal (Exocet / North)

Full result ladies here


Fact of the day: Balashi is Aruba’s national beer, produced in a fully-automated brewery with cutting edge technology. Built in 1998 at a cost of about US $ 12 million, the state-of-the-art facility is equipped with special computer software from Germany that controls the quality of the brew during the entire process. The beer is a deep golden color and easy on the foam. It has a soft bitterness, an aroma of fresh hops and a short aftertaste.

Tip of the day: When you check in at the airport then keep cool and pretend you travel with this amount of gear all the time. Aim for the “mum type” or the “gay guy” in the check in as they always seem to feel and sympathize for you. Know the baggage rules and keep older baggage receipts on what you paid last time. If things don’t go to plan, then request to speak to the supervisor. Lying in this situation, with the aim of getting your gear onto the plane cheap, is always fully valid. So put your game face on!

PS: Pack your bottom board in your triple board bag in a separate single bag for extra protection. It always seems to be the bottom board getting the most dings in transport.

C7 – Jesper

© continentseven by Jesper Orth 2011