The last day of the Kate Foyle European Windsurfing Championship (parachute windsurfing) opened in Greece with strong winds. The two Israeli contestants in the semi-finals, Gal Zuckerman and Mia Ashkenazi, entered the same house, so only one of them could make it to the final. In the semi-final cruise, Zuckerman dominated from the first moment, finishing first and advancing directly to the final.
Ashkenazi finished the cruise right after her and as a result rose to seventh place overall in the championship. In the final race, Zuckerman knew that she would have to achieve at least one victory in order to secure a place on the podium, a significant challenge because her opponent, Rollaine Nolleau from France, led throughout the competition and needed a single victory to win the gold. The final cruise began with Zuckerman in third place as she tries to catch up with her bronze medal rival, Spain’s Gisele Burrell, who eventually finished second, leaving Zuckerman off the podium.
“It was a very tough competition,” Zuckerman said at the end, smiling. “The format in the competition gives a big advantage to the leaders in the qualifiers, which this time I was not able to close. All the competitors go straight from here to the world championships, which will start next week, and there the goal is to screw higher already in the qualifiers.”
Shaf Amir, the coach of the sailing team said: “Although without a medal, this is a very successful competition for us. Two surfers in the semi-finals, who threaten the best in the world, says a lot about our team. Next week is the world championship, which includes almost the same competitors, and again we will reach to threaten the podium.”
All results: Gal Zuckerman (4th place), Mia Ashkenazi (7th), Dvir Azoulai (14th), Zohar Harubi (20th), Yael Paz (26th), Dor Zarka (39th).