KPWT Essaouira

The 2009 KPWT Essaouira is the last chance for the riders to push the rankings and take the overall titles for the year.

There are some serious contenders within the Men’s Wave Master and the Freestyle disciplines.

The likes of Petr Tyushkevich (RUS, FLEXIFOIL), Leander Vyvey (BEL, JN), Jesse Richman (HAW, CABRINHA), Jan Marcos Riveras (DOM REP, STARKITES) and Mitu Monteiro (CV, F-ONE) will all be looking for their championship title for 2009.

For the women, Kari Schibevaag (NOR, OZONE) will be fighting off the challenges from Kirsty Jones (UK, NORTH) and Gisela Pulido (SPA, AIRUSH) and look to complete a highly successful year on the tour.

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KTA - Kiteboard Tour Asia

The world’s fastest growing and newest watersports phenomenon is set to come to the shores of high tech Hong Kong at the start of December.

The Kiteboard Tour Asia (KTA) which is staging the second round of its five stop international competition tour in Hong Kong from the 2 – 5 December 09. The event will be based on the beautiful Cheung Sha beach on South Lantau at the new purpose built, Palm Beach watersports centre.

A good local rider turnout is anticipated for the Hong Kong tour stop along with a strong international field from countries across not only Asia but further a field also. Competition will take place between 10am – 5pm each day with competitors displaying their talents in both the freestyle and course racing events – all sanctioned for world ranking points under the IKA and ISAF.

Whilst the KTA tour promises to be a unique sporting spectacle as it travels around the region over the next few months, it also has another target it is determined to fulfil and that is to create new opportunities and chances for local riders, an opportunity not only to compete on an international stage in Asia, but to been seen and recognised by the wider watersports community worldwide. In support of this the KTA has put in place a Riders Grant scheme, details of which can be found on the KTA website.

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Melissa Gil

The Speed Strip was opened yesterday at 2PM to take advantage of the incoming tide to give competitors as much time on the water as possible. Many of the bravest took chances in marginal water conditions at the start, having to sail perfectly judged lines to stay in the deeper water. Even a fraction of a second of lost concentration or unfortunate choice of racing line meant a hard crash – and these were legion, with numerous awesome face-plants at over 40 knots.

Wind never picked up more than around 30 knots, but it was super-steady, and conditions on the run were glassy-smooth.

Leading the men was Christophe Prin Guenon (F One) with an excellent 46.88 knots, and Rob Douglas (Cabrinha) on his heels with a best of 46.54. This shows how much the equipment and technique has improved over last year – getting over 46 knots would have been a brilliant achievement in perfect race conditions last year, now competitors are reaching these speeds even on moderate days.

The difference between 46 knots and 50 is massive, however – and every knot faster than 50 is an exponentially harder velocity to achieve. But the possibility of beating l‘Hydroptére is within the kitesurfers’ reach. All they need now is strong wind.

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