Pozo delivered the howling winds it is renowned for over the last 7 days with winds approaching 50 knots accompanied with small waves for the Gran Canaria Wind & Waves Festival. Despite the small waves, the action on offer was anything but small as the most talented wave sailors in the world produced a remarkable display to kick off the 2017 PWA Wave World Tour in spectacular fashion.
Philip Koster enjoyed a dream return from injury as the former 3-time world champion quickly returned to winning ways as he defeated reigning world champion – Victor Fernandez – in an extremely tight final. In all honesty, it was like the 23-year-old had never been away as he landed trademark stalled doubles and pushloop forwards, while his wave riding looked like it may have even benefited from an enforced break.
Philip Koster on his winning return:
“Approaching the start of the season I wasn’t even sure if I was going to be able to compete, so even just to be participating was a big thing for me. After all the surgery and rehabilitation it’s amazing to be back. The first heat was more than a test than anything just to see if I could jump high, but after that I just forgot about my knee and decided to fully go for it. Usually my injury would take over a year to recover from, so I’m even happier to be back ahead of schedule. It’s no secret that the last year has been really, really tough for me with lots of physio and rehab – for the last 3 or 4 months I’ve been going to the physio for 6-8 hours each day, so its definitely been the toughest year of my life. I also wasn’t sure that after such a serious injury whether I’d be able to windsurf to the same level as before – particularly jumping – but everyone around me has been so positive and I’ve worked really hard to come back as strong if not stronger than before. Mentally I think it’s really improved me and I’m just unbelievably happy to win the event.”
Daida Moreno continued her incredible dominance of Gran Canaria to be crowned the Queen of Pozo once again as she fought off the challenge of her sister Iballa Moreno in the final. The Twins have been at the top of the wave sailing world for the last two decades and show no sign of slowing down as they continue to keep the rest of the competition at bay. Daida takes a deserved early season lead in the title race and will look to gather more momentum in Tenerife, while Iballa will be looking to level up the scores as she goes in search of a 4th successive world title.
We caught up quickly with Daida after claiming another victory at her home spot to ask her when she’s going to let someone else win here – we’ll have a full interview with Daida next week:
“Never. Ever. I don’t know everybody is asking me when I’m going to retire and if I’m not tired of winning all the time, but I’m not. It’s my home spot and it’s the place where I most like to win because I train so many hours over the year here and I still have the drive and desire to win. So as long as I have sponsorship and help from the industry and outside the industry then I will continue to give my best. I always want to try and perform bigger and better moves, but that isn’t always possible without epic conditions. However, I think anyone who windsurfs never gets tired of windsurfing. And one of my goals is to just go out there and have fun and try and go bigger.”