Lina Augaitis from Canada arrived in the UAE for her first showing on the Stand Up World Series, already an acclaimed paddler, but a new face on the Series. On Day one, she came out of the gate firing all cylinders to take a comfortable win in the long distance. Meanwhile on day 2, Lina maintained her composure and powered her way through the rounds to reach the Final heat of the day.
Up against current ratings leader Angie Jackson (Fanatic), France’s Olivia Piana (Fanatic) and Slovenia’s Manca Notar (Naish) amongst other high profile athletes, it was always going to be a tough battle, as the 6 finalists lined up for one last showdown here at Day 2 of the 2014 Abu Dhabi All Stars Grand Slam.
After a tight race, Lina finished in an impressive 2nd place behind Angie Jackson (Fanatic) in the sprint racing, giving her the much deserved overall win for Stop #2 on the 2014 Stand up World Series. It is clear that Lina will be a name to watch out for as we head through the season and make history here on the Stand Up World Series.
Angie Jackson (Fanatic) makes an impressive comeback here at the Abu Dhabi All Stars Grand Slam, storming to victory in the World Series Sprint Racing amidst an elite women’s fleet.
From Round 1, it was clear that Angie was looking for redemption, dominating each of her heats on her journey to the final, taking the well deserved win. Unfortunately having to withdraw from the 1st Day of competition might well make this a throw away result for Angie, as we wait to see how the remainder of the 2014 season unfolds, but certainly Angie Jackson is looking strong after the first leg of the 2014 season.
Manca Notar (Naish) ones again puts on a impressive performance here at the Abu Dhabi All Stars, as her racing goes from strength to strength. Despite the fact that she trains in the snow at this time of year, wearing a dry suit, she adapted unbelievably well to the heat here in Abu Dhabi.
Finishing in 2nd place in the long distance, she then went onto finish in 3rd in the sprints, right behind the event winner Lina Augaitis, taking 2nd overall for the event – congratulations to this young athlete who clearly has an exciting future ahead of her here on the Stand Up World Series.
Finishing in 4th place in both the Long distance racing and the sprints, Olivia Piana (Fanatic) from France has been on great form here at the Abu Dhabi All Stars Grand Slam, consistently matching up against these elite women athletes to post another strong result on the Stand Up World Series.
Olivia was the Abu Dhabi All Star back in 2013, so continues to have a good experience here in 2014, with an impressive performance in the pool as well. As we look towards the European Cup, there is no doubt that Olivia will be a major player on this year’s Stand Up World Series.
Kelsa Gabehart was a new face on the Series this year, with a strong finish in Brazil backed up by another strong finish here in Abu Dhabi, putting her in a strong position in the overall rankings after two events, but also placing her in 4th place overall for the Abu Dhabi All Stars, with her 3rd place finish in the Long distance and 5th in the sprints.
A great performance from this US athlete, who is looking strong as we look ahead to the US Stops on the Series and to see how the remainder of the year will unfold.
So that wraps up an incredible World Series event for the women here in Abu Dhabi, except for of course the Team Relay event today at the Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club, where we will see a fun Team format taking to the water in front of the corniche on the final day of the All Stars Grand Slam.
Congratulations to all our women athletes and make sure to stay tuned for highlights, recaps, galleries and news from this final day, as well as for the event as a whole at www.watermanleague.com