Rapid fire recap: Aussie powerhouse Michael Booth has opened his EuroTour campaign with a big win at the Agios Nikolaos on SUP event in the Greek Islands, outlasting French superstar Titouan Puyo and Brazilian workhorse Vinni Martins to claim week 4 of the European summer.
It was an all-French affair in the women’s race, however the standard tables were turned as Amandine Chazot took a great victory ahead of her higher-ranked compatriot Olivia Piana. German youngster Noelani Sach was once again impressive in the bumps en route to her second straight EuroTour podium.
Boothy went out hard early on the 15km semi-downwind course, establishing a 100 metre lead before almost being caught at the tricky, unique “land bridge” canal crossing that separated the two halves of the course. After a chaotic incident with a boat, in which the Aussie got both a free ride and a free dunk in the ocean, the field spread out as the small downwind bumps killed any hopes of drafting.
Titou fought hard but probably needed another 10 knots of wind to be in the hunt, with the current Paddle League World Tour ratings leader extending his lead over the second half of the course that stretched along the scenic Cretan coastline; Boothy showed once again why he’s considered the strongest paddler on the planet right now.
FULL REPLAY OF TODAY’S EURO TOUR LIVE STREAM
Full replay from week 4 of The Euro Tour in the Greek Islands for the Agios Nikolaos on SUP event Thanks to everyone for tuning in, and we'll see you next weekend in Spain!
Posted by The Euro Tour on Sunday, May 27, 2018
The front two were well clear of the pack for most of the race, with the real excitement being the battle for third between Brazil’s Vinnicius Martins and Hungarian hero Bruno Hasulyo. That duel went all the way to the line before Vinni held on for a well-deserved podium spot, with the ever-smiling athlete – who has become something of an honourary local over here on Crete after making friends with virtually everyone all week – stoked to be on the European podium that has always eluded him.
Bruno was solid once again to continue his summer momentum and will clearly be a threat every time he’s standing on the start line, while another big result came from Italian Paolo Marconi.
Long the bridesmaid at home behind Leo Nika, Paolo paddled like a man possessed from start to finish to not only be the top rated finisher from Italy (and the Italian crew always roll deep on the EuroTour), he also snuck into the top five of a very competitive field after holding off consistent young Frenchman Martin Vitry by half a board length in a final, strategic sprint to the line.
Daniel Hasulyo, Leo Nika and Federico Esposito rounded out what was a very competitive top 10 – with Brazil’s Arthur Santacreu just outside in 11th – as the European Summer of SUP gathering serious momentum as we look ahead to week five in Alicante, Spain next Saturday.
Amandine was an ecstatic winner on the women’s side, punching the air in relief and celebration after crossing the line in the Venetian-style town of Agios Nikolaos just before the clock struck noon. Oliva was never far behind, however the current world number four could never close the gap after Amandine pulled away in the early stages.
Amandine’s win matched Boothy’s to give Team Starboard yet another a double victory, while Team NSP also had a double podium thanks to Titou and Noelani’s strong performances.
Susak Molinero was in the hunt for the women’s podium all day but couldn’t match the German youngster in the bumps, while Italian dark horse Caterina Stenta rounded out the top five as the sun pierced grey clouds to produce a beautiful sunny afternoon in the Greek Islands.
Stay tuned on Facebook and Insta for more photo/video highlights of the action (follow @paddleleague and @eurotoursup for interviews and behind-the-scenes Insta Stories), and you can also watch a full replay of today’s EuroTour live stream above — thanks to everyone that tuned in!
EuroTour Week 4 Results
Agios Nikolaos on SUP, Crete, Greece
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