Pino Tronzano-Maccagno, Lago Maggiore – The highly anticipated Intercontinental Cup Formula Windsurfing 2023 concluded in Italy after facing unforeseen wind challenges. The event, which was extended to four days of racing as part of the Coppa Italia 2023 Formula Windsurfing and Formula Foil, took place on the picturesque northern coast of Lake Maggiore from July 13th to July 16th.
Despite the enthusiasm and dedication of the organizers and athletes, the wind conditions proved to be uncooperative throughout the championship. A strong heat wave, which had been sweeping across Europe in recent weeks, made the weather even more unstable, resulting in minimal wind activity on Lake Maggiore. Sailors had to wait for four days in hopes of favorable winds, but unfortunately, only one race was successfully completed on Saturday.
During that solitary race, winds remained below the desired limit, causing significant challenges for the participants. The lack of wind resulted in most of the fleet struggling to glide, with only one sailor managing to navigate the course. The race took an unusually long time to complete, nearly 40 minutes for the lone glider to cross the finish line.
Sunday’s attempts to conduct additional races were equally unsuccessful. Despite the organizers’ efforts, the winds remained elusive, and the race couldn’t proceed as planned. The race committee, understanding the limitations of the wind conditions, canceled the event and sent the sailors back to shore.
The championship, though challenged by the wind, still managed to maintain an international flair. Four Brazilian and one Spanish windsurfers added a touch of diversity to the competition. However, the absence of two Portuguese and several Iberian participants resulted in a smaller fleet, but one of high-quality and competitiveness.
The Formula Foil discipline, while promising, did not garner as many participants as hoped. With only six athletes competing in the foil races, it’s clear that further efforts are needed to attract more windsurfers to this exciting category.
Despite the wind-related setbacks, the spirit of camaraderie and sportsmanship prevailed throughout the event. Sailors from different corners of the world came together, cherishing the opportunity to forge lasting friendships and experience the joys of windsurfing in such a beautiful setting.
Francesco Leoni emerged as the victor of the single completed race, showcasing his talent and skill. The only windsurfer to stay planing throughout the course, Leoni exhibited remarkable expertise, leaving his competitors in awe.
The Formula Windsurfing Intercontinental Cup may have faced wind challenges this year, but the passion for the sport remains unwavering. Participants are already looking forward to next year’s edition, eager to embrace the thrill of windsurfing once more. As the windsurfing community prepares for future events, it’s time to train and gear up for the upcoming competitions, including the highly anticipated Brazilian championship in the paradisiacal Icaraizinho in Ceará at the end of August.
The Formula Windsurfing Intercontinental Cup continues to demonstrate the allure and excitement of windsurfing, bringing together athletes from around the world to share their passion for the sport, no matter the challenges they may face.
*Note: The report was based on two separate reports by Ticardo Conde and Andrea Volpini, providing insights into the Formula Windsurfing Intercontinental Cup held on Lake Maggiore, Italy. The article highlights the difficulties faced by the event due to unfavorable wind conditions while celebrating the international camaraderie and determination of the participants.*