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Sarah-Quita Offringa Defends Her Windsurfing Freestyle World Title

Courtesy of PWA World Tour, view original article here

Sarah-Quita Offringa continues to make Aruba proud as she claims her 10th windsurfing Freestyle World Title! This year's PWA World Cup was action packed, filled with top of the line competition, making it quite possibly the most exciting one yet.

Offringa held on to win by just 1.2 points and with it, she continues to rewrite the history books as she defends her freestyle world title, making it her 10th PWA Freestyle World Championship and 13th overall. The final day of the Freestyle at the 2017 Fuerteventura PWA Grand Slam was one of the most exciting women’s freestyle finals in history, as Maaike Huvermann pushed Sarah-Quita Offringa all the way. However, the 19-year-old couldn’t quite do enough to prevent Offringa from winning as the Aruban continues to remain on top - after enduring an emotional rollercoaster of a week.

The two ladies produced quite possibly the best women’s freestyle final ever seen with the lead continually changing hands as they traded blows throughout. Offringa dug deep as she called upon her champion winning qualities to produce a few moments of magic - with the best being a perfect burner - but the tie still hung in the balance with Huvermann landing a puneta just before the buzzer. Both women were forced to wait on the beach for the decision, which must have felt like a lifetime, but eventually it was announced that Offringa had held on to win by just 1.2 points and claimed her 10th Freestyle World Title.

Sarah-Quita Offringa shared some words on sailing under the pressure of trying to capture World Title No.10 and making it a reality: “It was a really tough week mentally for me. Everybody is quite supportive of me here but also make it sound like it's guaranteed like I'll win. Which isn't the case. I still have to go out and do it. I think that built up into more pressure than usual combined with the fact that I could win ten titles. Which is a nice number no? so I guess also some pressure from myself because I did want it pretty bad. So the hardest part was keeping my emotions in check and to sail without thinking too much about the future. Normally I want to put down a really good heat but this week I was more focused on sailing good enough to pass the heats. So, I sailed well everyday I think but also quite reserved. Then in the final I could mostly hear cheering for Maaike which is understandable but threw me off guard I guess. Anyway I watched her sailing and she sails with much more confidence and has been able to put together some amazing heats! Especially after she injured herself at the beginning of the year… I think it's amazing she came back like that. Massive congrats to her, Oda and Arrianne for finishing in the Top 4. These were some of the toughest Fuerte conditions I've competed in and I think we put up a great show.”

Huvermann can walk away with her head held high after coming so close to becoming the first person to beat Offringa in a freestyle heat for 9 years and the 19-year-old ends the year as the vice-world champion for the second year in a row and with another year of training under her belt it looks as though she would have a realistic shot at the title.

Congratulations to all of the competitors for their hard work and putting on a great show, we are especially proud of Sarah for continuing her legacy, inspiring female athletes around the world and representing our beautiful island of Aruba!

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Photos courtesy of PWA World Tour

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