JAPAN, KOREA & PORTUGAL. She always started out from her home spot Bodrum in Turkey, and flew to those places to become PWA Slalom Vice World Champion 2018! This is Lena Erdil TUR-33! Photos by PWA/Carter
Ciao Lena, in 2 months, 3 events! 3 shots to go get to the final ranking of the year. Are you happy to be Vice World Champion in Slalom? Was this your best result so far in slalom?
Yes, the 2018 racing season has been short and sweet! Great windy events, of course when the goal is to be first 2nd place is never that satisfying, and I have been Vice Champion already.
You had a good winter with lots of wave sailing till you joined the team in Lanzarote in February to train slalom. Did the winter preparation plan worked out well to achieve this result?
Personally, I felt that I made a lot of mistakes this season, I could really feel that having trained less slalom this winter partly due to my foot injury in New Caledonia and partly because I spend more times preparing for wave competition was maybe not enough. When I went back to slalom training in February my foot injury turned out to still bother me a lot, especially jibing, during the wave sailing I hadn’t really felled it, so it kind of came as a surprise and meant I pretty much did as little jibing as possible to give my foot more rest and prevent reinjuring it in the same place. So, considering this I guess second place is a solid result.
Looking back at the PWA women few years ago, we saw a lot more girls in the fleet, and a higher level. We have seen lots of girl handling well also strong wind. Is this the right feeling we are having? What is the reason?
Yes, it’s true it’s been amazing to see how well all the girls fleet did with the hardcore conditions we had in Both Korea and Portugal! Mistakes are not forgiven, and we saw some new girls claiming bullets and top 3 places during the events! So that’s a good indicator of what’s in store for the upcoming seasons I’m excited about the girl’s fleet growing in numbers and level each year!
You had 2 events with very strong wind. You girls had almost the same size of the guys. 5.0 against a 5.6. Did you feel the need to have a smaller sail? Any plan on that?
Yes 5.0 was big at times! So, for next year I am planning to register a no cam or 2 cam sails around 4.5 :)! Hope we will get this kind of strong wind conditions more often!
What are your favourite conditions for slalom? 87l and 5.6 fully powered I think!
I think that’s around 25-30 knots in terms of winds.
As the slalom season is over for the women PWA, this year we have seen you competing in Morocco at the wave event. You took part also at the freestyle in Portugal, but you are normally knowing to be a pure slalom sailor. What is the plan as there is still many events for the women in waves, but also the last event of freestyle in Fuerteventura?
Haha yes, I made my freestyle debut in Portugal, but I don’t think I’m quite ready to participate in more events! But yes, I am super excited to be doing the full wave tour this year!! I have never been in Pozo and jumping is my wave sailing weakness now, so the plan is to go quite soon and see if I can learn some new tricks to pull off in competition! Pozo with its super strong winds always scarred me a bit, but with the slalom season officially over I am looking forwards to push my limits in this discipline!
How do you see foiling at the PWA? Do you know which direction it will take? Would you want it the same direction the men division is taking it too?
Yes, the girls will be ready to compete in Foiling next year. I will be training from now on as well and am really looking forwards to compete in yet another discipline! I believe Foiling is here to stay and think we are in the process of developing not only the equipment more and more, but also the racing format so that it will be exciting to watch for a wider audience
Which was your favourite event till now? Will Portugal be confirmed for next year as well?
Yes, Portugal was great, the Hotel FEEL VIANA really did an amazing job at hosting us! It is a sport hotel with a focus on outdoor sports like mountain biking, surfing, windsurfing and kiting. It also has a great SPA with Yoga rooms saunas and a gym fully equipped with functional training equipment! Right on the beach next to a forest it really is incredibly beautiful. So not only was the event super windy but this is also a place I would come on a Holliday to!! So yeah, I really hope we’ll be back again next year!