KANAHA - After 10 days of winds surpassing 40 mph, the Maui trades backed off to a more normal 25-30, and Micah Buzianis and Peter Slate had a racing duel at Kanaha Beach Park in Saturday's North Sails Slalom, the first event of the 28th annual Maui Race Series.
"It was crazy wind conditions the last couple of weeks," Buzianis said after winning the pro division and 40-49 titles, with Slate finish second in each.
"Today was really nice, classic summer slalom day. A little swell made it a bit more challenging. You had to time your jibes, even on the reaches a wave would jack up in front of you."
Peter Slate leads Micah Buzianis during a 40-49 division race in Saturday’s North Sails Slalom at Kanaha Beach Park.
TOM COOPER photo
Junior winner Casey Rehrer jibes around the third mark.
TOM COOPER photo
Dan Ellis leads Pieter Bijl in a 19-39 race. Ellis won this heat and the division.
TOM COOPER photo
Sam Bittner leads Mike Yasak (left) and Jeff Henderson in a 59-59 race.
TOM COOPER photo
Three weeks ago, Buzianis won the Professional Windsurfing Association's $70,000 Ulsan World Cup in South Korea, defeating defending world slalom champion Bjorn Dunkerbeck of Switzerland. Buzianis, a 41-year-old Paia resident, is the only racer on the PWA tour who represents the U.S.
On Saturday, the 1989 St. Anthony High School graduate was challenged by not only the waves but also Slate, a 41-year-old Kula realtor and former PWA pro.
Slate won the first two races in their 40-49 age group, with Buzianis second. In the third race, they were almost even going to the final outside mark, with Buzianis holding the inside position.
"We knew that race would decide it, because if I won, I would win (the division)," Slate said.
"He was not giving up. We were mast to mast and when I saw him start to turn, I turned. I must have gotten my boom caught on his shoulder or back, and my sail got stuck, and I got thrown over the front."
By the time Slate got back on his board, he had been passed by six more competitors.
Buzianis and Slate then went 1-2 in the fourth and final heat.
The best three finishes are used for a total score, with the fourth serving as a tiebreaker.
"Slate was sailing good," Buzianis said. "His starts were amazing. It was nice to have someone push me out there."
In the pro division, Buzianis had three wins and a runner-up finish while Slate had a win, a second place and two thirds.
"Toward the end I was starting to cramp in my arms and legs and things, and I gave it away in the jibes. That's the difference between an ex-pro and a pro," Slate said.
"I had good starts and good board speed. I was loving it. It's easy to have a good day when you're in the front. I had a good support team with my daughter Caroline."
Buzianis leaves next week for the $50,000 PWA event in Costa Brava, Spain.
"It was really good practice here, super similar to the Canary Islands," he said. "In these conditions, the guys on Maui are some of the best racers in the world."
The other winners were Dan Ellis (19-39), Mike Yasak (50-59), Todd MacFarlane (60 and over), Casey Rehrer (juniors), Reinhard Elischka (semipro), Chris Freeman (expert), Tammy Bockius (women), Deniz Bicaki (advanced) and Connor McKenney and Dax Barker (co-champions in menehune).
The series' next event is the Da Kine Classic, scheduled for June 16 at Kanaha.
MRS NORTH SAILS SLALOM
At Kanaha Beach Park
19-39-1. Dan Ellis 10-0.7-0.7-2-3.4, 2. Pieter Bijl 10-2-3-3-8, 3. Isaac DeVries 0.7-4-4-5-8.7, 4. Neil Turpin 4-3-6-4-11, 5. Peter John 10-9-2-0.7-11.7, 6. Griffin Freysinger 3-5-5-7-13, 7. John Smalley 2-6-10-6-14, 8. Chris Freeman 5-7-8-8-20, 9. Vinnie Armato 6-8-7-9-21.
40-49-1. Micah Buzianis 2-2-0.7-0.7-3.4, 2. Peter Slate 0.7-0.7-8-2-3.4, 3. Elon Wong 6-3-2-3-8, 4. Kai Hopf 4-4-3-10-11, 5. Geof Pease 5-12-5-4-14, 6. Mark Nelson 3-5-10-8-16, 7. David Dowhan 8-7-7-5-19, 8. Reinhard Elischka 10-12-4-6-20, 9. Tom Hammerton 11-6-6-9-21, 10. Olaf Sutor 7-8-9-12-24, 11. Osamu Kubota 9-9-11-7-25.
50-59-1. Mike Yasak 0.7-2-0.7-0.7-2.1, 2. Sam Bockius 3-0.7-2-3-5.7, 3. Jeff Henderson 4-3-6-2-9, 4. Ben Massenburg 2-7-3-4-9, 5. Ted Hunter 5-6-4-8-15, 6. Chris McNeil 6-5-11-5-16, 7. Matt Daniells 11-4-7-6-17, 8. Bobby Reader 7-8-5-7-19, 9. Dave Dalgetty 8-10-8-11-26, 10. Chris Marsh 9-9-9-11-27.
60 and over-1. Todd MacFarlane 0.7-0.7-0.7-0.7-2.1, 2. Szabolcs Maguranyi 2-3-3-2-7, 3. Greg Thomas 3-2-2-3-7, 4. Jonathan Teuscher 4-5-4-4-12.
Women-1. Tamara Bockius 0.7-0.7-0.7-0.7-2.1, 2. Argentina Jimenez Bonilla 2-2-2-3-6, 3. Sam Bittner 3-3-3-2-8.
Juniors-Casey Rehrer 0.7-0.7-0.7-0.7-2.1, 2. Deniz Bicakci 2-2-2-2-6.
Pro-1. Micah Buzianis 0.7-2-0.7-0.7-2.1, 2. Peter Slate 3-0.7-2-3-5.7, 3. Pieter Bijl 2-3-4-2-7, 4. Dan Ellis 4-4-5-5-13, 5. Peter John 14-9-3-4-16, 6. Elon Wong 5-5-6-7-16, 7. Mike Yasak 6-12-7-6-19, 8. Neil Turpin 8-6-8-8-22, 9. Geof Pease 10-7-9-10-26, 10. Matt Daniells 7-13-11-9-27, 11. John Smalley 9-10-10-14-29, 12. Isaac De Vries 11-8-14-14-33, 13. Kai Hopf 14-11-12-11-34.
Semipro-1. Reinhard Elischka 2-0.7-0.7-2-3.4, 2. Jeff Henderson 4-3-2-0.7-5.7, 3. Sam Bockius 0.7-2-3-7-5.7, 4. Ben Massenburg 6-5-4-4-13, 5. Todd MacFarlane 7-4-8-5-16, 6. Tom Hammerton 9-8-6-3-17, 7. Szabolcs Maguranyi 10-6-5-6-17, 8. Ted Hunter 5-7-7-8-19, 9. Griffin Freysinger 8-11-11-11-30.
Expert-1. Chris Freeman 3-3-0.7-0.7-4.4, 2. Olaf Sutor 0.7-0.7-3-3-4.4, 3. Casey Rehrer 4-2-2-2-6, 4. David Dowhan 2-4-4-5-10, 5. Osamu Kubota 5-5-6-4-14, 6. Argentina Jimenez Bonilla 6-6-5-6-17.
Advanced-1. Deniz Bicakci 2-0.7-0.7-0.7-2.1, 2. Vinnie Armato 0.7-2-2-2-4.7, 3. Diane Takemoto 4-4-3-3-10.
Menehune-1t. Connor McKenney, 1t. Dax Barker.