Levi Siver has won the first windy stop of the 2014 American Windsurfing Tour. After light winds in Santa Cruz the AWT parade moved on to Pistol River for some great competition conditions. We caught up with Siver for some words on the event. Enjoy the run down and check out a selection of the best images by Si Crowther over the next few pages.
Over to Levi...
I never feel graduated from the school of windsurfing there's always something to improve on
Pistol River can deliver a lot of different looks when it comes to conditions. You can have anything from down the line wave riding to onshore powered up jumping and we had both in two days! There's a core group of riders on the AWT that are lethal and can win on any tour it just boils down to that last heat.
A new format
If your not an avid windsurfer trying to follow a double elimination in windsurfing is very confusing even some of my family and friends still don't understand it after watching it for years. The format we used was so easy to use and follow. It's the same format the ASP uses it's the way forward in my eyes.
I felt good in the event I haven't sailed a lot this year because Maui has been so bad but I felt tuned in with my new gear and was thankful we had a few days practice before the event started, to shake off the dust. To win another event back to back feels pretty sweet.
I was riding the new cube quad and that was the right decision. It felt amazing in those conditions very quick and responsive for tight turns to fit in those somewhat hidden pockets. The waves only offer a moment here and there so you need to be quick and loose to connect with them. I was riding the new Banzai 4.7 and this year it has reached its full maturity, it's fully wired, I don't even think about my sail in my hands any more and that's where you want to be.
Who is hot right now
I would say with a few exceptions from the semi final up everyone was red hot with their sailing. You have the new kids Bernd and Morgan who are ripping, then guys like KP who are so tuned in and polished with their A game. Nathan is always a threat when he's rolling, it's hard to stop him he's won some events and it's just matter of time before he gets another win. Also, Antoine has a pizazz and spontaneity with his sailing that's fun to watch and will only improve.
Then Camille and Brawzino, those guys are killing it. Brawzino was putting on a clinic with his jumping he's got a big bag of tricks there's no limit to where he can take the future of windsurfing. Camille has no fear, he's become a real amazing competitor and he hasn't sacrificed his great style to do it.
In the end it comes down to filling the criteria of judging that will make the difference. Two jumps and two waves can actually be alot to fill in really well sometimes. You can have amazing jumps and struggle to find set waves or you can focus on waves then get unlucky going back and forth not finding a good ramp. So I think flow and rhythm with the ocean and being adaptable is pretty important. I never feel graduated from the school of windsurfing there's always something to improve on. Windsurfing is diamonds in the sand, there's moments of glory that don't come easy but that's why it's so addicting. It's one of the hardest sports in the world and one of the most misunderstood at the same time.
Words by Levi Siver
Pictures by Si Crowther