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2021 iQFOiL European Championships22-28 October 2021 - Marseille, France

Updated: Oct 31, 2021

With the European Freestyle-title in the pocket I decided to fly back home for 10 days to relax ,see my family and receiving the “Windsurfer of the Year Bonaire 2021” award.

Normally oktober has little to no wind on Bonaire but in the 10 days I was treated well by nature. Good wind and enjoying every minute at the best spot on the globe Sorobon.

A great welcome by the team of the Tourism Corporation Bonaire

Always catching the action on camera Mr. and Mrs Kuma

But as time flies the departure date came quick and I headed back to Europe to train with the Olympic Team #TeamNL in Scheveningen , The Netherlands for a few days and travelled via Paris to Marseille at the southcoast of France.

Rough training in Scheveningen

Together with Lupe , cruising through Paris

Arrival in Marseille, France .

Preparing and continue training for the upcoming European IQFoil Championship.

The sailing venue for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

On oktober 22nd, it was registration-day. In the afternoon 68 women and 141 men entered for the competition. Riders from 38 nations. I went out for a last trainings- session before it all really started.

The forecast for the whole week was not looking promising , but locals say that conditions could change fast. All eyes were looking out for wind on the first day, but it was not enough for competition and the fleet was released at 5pm without entering the water, but enjoying ourselves in the sun and catching up with everybody.

On day 3 , around 2 pm there was a light wind which was enough for the race- committee to send us all out on the water and give it a try.

I was in the first heat ( yellow 1 ) , rigged and ready to go ..

Crossing the startline I was in second position at the first mark but then suddenly the wind started switching directions and also big holes started to appear on the course and therefore the heat was cancelled as there is a time limit of 3 minutes which means the first finisher of a heat has to pass the finish line within 3 minutes.

The wind got even more unsteady and dropped completely so we where send back to the beach without any results.

Day 4 the forecast was predicted to be a bit better from the same direction as day 3 so everybody was early on the beach to get there gears ready.

It took quite some time before the wind became suitable enough for the fleet to start.

Around 3pm we were send on the water to re-start and I must say I have never even foiled in such light wind .. it was really about make sure to stay up on the foil and have a great start or else there was no chance to be able to foil in the front of the pack.

I started off my first heat pretty well until I dropped off the foil at the second mark en the guys behind me were able to pass me with the next gust that came trough..

The conditions were about 3-6 knots .. `VERY LIGHT

This day we managed to do 4 races in total and with having good and bad races I saw myself on a disappointing 39th position but enough to qualifie for the gold fleet

Happy faces on Day 5 . I could not wait to start as the wind was blowing up to 20 knots and we had a light swell coming trough witch made is more technical to sail.

I had some good races .. some bad races.. some plastic on my foil and therefore my results were up and down.

First race of the day:

I rounded the first mark in a 5th place , going to the second mark there was a plastic bag that I could not see as we were sailing straight into the sun so I catapulted and lost allot of places there.

Second race :

I finished 6th which was a very good race and result.. The start was pretty poor but was able to make up some ground in the race it self ,

Third race :

A very windy race.. I was sailing in 6th position going to the last mark as I hit a bit swell and took my front foot out of the straps and I ended up in the water and unfortunately again lost allot of places .

In the 4th race I was disqualified because of touching another sailer and because of the rule ( port/starboard ) I was disqualified .

So with 4 races like this the points stack up pretty quick

We had 6 races in total , the first 4 were not the best but the last 2 where decent

After the 6 races I climbed up too a 19th place in the gold fleet with only 2 more days to go.

It was a bummer as the penultimate day was a long day on standby ,waiting on the beach and saw my chance to climb the ladder for at least a 8th place to race the important medal series going through the drain.

Our last day of competition started with the top 8 men ( and also the women) fighting for the podium in 3 medal-races and right after that the remaining gold fleet (places 9-74) and silver fleet (places 75-141) could fight to improve their ranking.

The wind picked up and came from a direction with allot of mountains witch makes it a difficult on the race area as there were a lot of windshifts. It was key to know were these wind shifs were and to take advantage of them..

As we started I could get 2 bullets and a 10th place in the 3th and last race of the day/event

Very happy with the improvement from a 19th up to a 13th place overall.

It was a great event.. great racing and lots of lessons learned. (again)

Im starting to understand more and more about this format of racing and the tactics which gives me more motivation to start training even harder in this discipline.

A big thanks to the organizers, all riders for the good times and a congrats to Nicolas Goyard FRA465 and Helene Noesmoen F-57 winning the event.

Thanks to TEAMNL and coach Koops for the good times training together and look forward to the next challenge.

Whats up next ??

I will stay in the south of France to start training for the PWA- event in Marignane from November 12-21. I will participate in the disciplines slalom and of course freestyle.

Thanks for checkin in on my blog and more news will follow soon .



NB-20 or NED-2020

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