It was then that Principi put on the after-burners and racked up three nine-plus scores, including a 9.13 for a double kite loop back roll board off and 9.10 for an S-loop board off. Jacobs netted an incredible 25.10 for his heat, but was trumped by Principi’s 27.33 that took him to the final.
After those heroics, the four-man final with Principi, Casati, Vlugt and Van Dijk going head-to-head was a slightly mixed affair. Casati struggled to find his groove and finished third.
Van Dijk came out charging throwing down extreme double kite loops with front rolls, back rolls and board offs that the judges loved. He quickly netted a total of 25.57. Principi, by comparison, crashed twice but kept his composure to finally throw down an S-loop board off for 9.07 and a total of 25.57. Principi took the win courtesy of the 9.07, the heat’s highest trick score, that helped him to his second Big Air crown.
“I’m so happy to be two-times world champion,” said Principi. “I’m here with my family and they’re all here watching me and so proud of me. Super-stoked. It was tricky in the final because the wind was gusty and I was crashing, two or three times. So I told myself to ‘stay calm, find the gusts and believe’ and I became world champion.”
Van Dijk was equally pleased with dispatching Whaley to reach the final and his second place, even though he had matched the winner’s score.
“Up against Liam Whaley, the world champion, I knew I had to do my own thing,” he said. “Lucky enough I had the gusts, the height and the extremity and got to the final. The final was incredible. Just being there for me was already winning, I couldn’t be more happy.”
words: Ian MacKinnon
images: Samuel Cárdenas
- Location: Balneario beach, Tarifa, Spain
- Dates: 26 May — 16 June
- The official Race Notice and event schedule can be found here
- All event information here