It was a long and complicated day of competition in Dakhla, Morocco, as the inconsistent conditions led to a lot stops and starts. The entire crew and athletes pushed as hard as possible to advance through the heats, finally completing 7 full heats of Men’s Round 4.
Men’s Round 4
The conditions gradually started improving during Men’s Round 4. During each two-man heat, the athletes fought hard as only one person would advance to the next round. The judging criteria remained the same as previous days, 22 minute heats with each rider allowed ten waves, and the top two scores counting. Wave selection was everything, and riders had to choose wisely if they wanted to really make the most out of the difficult conditions. The riders who advanced into Round 5 and remained in the competition were local rider Ali Beqqali, Hendrick Lopes, Gray Foster, Yaris Dellomo, Camille Delannoy, Airton Cozzolino, and Mounim Maji.
The highest score of Round 4, and from the entire event so far, went to none other than Airton Cozzolino, who was on a mission and hungry to advance, with a total score of 18.13, the highest score of the event so far.
“My focus now is really to win this event,” explained Airton. “To get the World Championship title now will be complicated, as James only has to win one heat. But I’m motivated to do my best here, and winning the event would be perfect.”
Various attempts were made to advance with the competition, firstly with Women’s Round 4, Heat 11 which was Carla Herrera from Spain vs Charlotte Carpentier from France, and secondly with Men’s Round 5, Heat 23, but both heats were cancelled within minutes due to a deterioration in wind conditions.
After a long day of waiting and many attempts, the Race Director called it a day at 7pm. There are still two days left of competition, and we are all hoping for enough wind to make it an epic final event of the year. Skippers meeting has been called for 9.30am tomorrow, with the first possible start at 10am.