Big congratulations to our first North Wing Race champion Gunnar "Chinatown" Biniasch @kitechino following the second stop of the Spain Wingfoil League Tour in Oliva, Valencia, July 2021.
Blessed with one day of good wind, the League managed to hold three slalom races in 15-18 knots. Gunnar won all three races with a good margin on his trusty 6m Nova Wing.
Gunning for the National Title
Gunnar's second tour stop race win makes 2 wins out of the 3 stops for 2021, so with a good result at the final stop in Chiclana de la Frontera in December, will be enough for him to clinch the title of Spanish Wingfoil Race champion.
The first stop of the tour (Gunnar's first-ever wing race) was held in Tarifa in June: "It was the first time in almost 2 years since I competed. Funny enough my last race in Formula Kite was at this exact spot in 2019. I did not know what to expect. I prepared as much as I could, but mainly was training for freestyle. In the end, we didn't have good enough conditions to finish the freestyle at either event."
Slalom Race Format showcases wing foil skill
The race was a Slalom format, so this was all about speed and consistency in the gybes around the buoy. This played into Gunnar's hands perfectly as he was very confident on his gybes.
"On Day One we had pretty decent wind of around 15 knots during the first race. I used my 4.2 Nova and cruised through the first group into the finals. I switched up to the 5m for the finals and won that easily - or so I thought. Turns out after 2 years of not competing I got a bit rusty. I rounded buoy 3 first, went back upwind to 2 back down to 3 and then 4 and finished, in theory covering more distance than the rest of the feel, but a disappointing DSQ non the less.
"So I had to pull myself together and make sure I did no more errors in any of the other races. Winds were sketchy. It was gusty with huge lulls down to 6 knots or less at the buoys. I went into safety mode and just concentrated on getting out front of the fleet at the starts into clean air and being able to gybe around the marks without too much pressure from behind. I took my 6m Nova Wing as the wind was light on the inside of the bottom of the course. This worked well and thanks to my equipment working exactly how I wanted it to, I managed to win every race without too much effort, mainly battling myself to not take risks and just get to the finish line safely.
"After winning Race 4 the comeback was complete and with the discard of my DSQ in Race 1, I managed to win the event. Many thanks to Dani Jiminez for finding me a start watch for day two, that really saved my a**."
SWL Oliva Event 2 Wing Race Champions: 1st Gunnar "Chinatown" Biniasch, 2nd Fabian Muhmenthaler, 3rd Jorge Spinosa
The SWL Tour comes hot on the heels of the GWA Global Wingfoil Tour announcement of a GWA WIngfoil Race Class in June.
Follow the Spain Wingfoil League here or get into it yourself - find your local Wingfoil Event here.
All Photo credits: Spain Wingfoil League.