Blown Away Festival 

The festival is for kites & wind sports being co-coordinated by the local wind sports club Wind & Wheels in conjunction with North Somerset Council.

Given enough support this event could grow year on year. In the future we may be able to attract more support from local and national business. We have been given the opportunity to use the whole beach from the Pier to Uphill for a weekend during the Easter holidays. We believe there should be some spectacular views of this event from the new 40m big wheel on the beach lawns near the Tourist information centre.

The AKF & friends will have an arena to demonstrate the pleasure of kite flying and promote their long standing club. This arena will be between the Pier and the SeaQuarium with parking between the Tropicana and the SeaQuarium.

STACK will be hosting the 1st round of the UK national stunt kite championship in an arena alongside the AKF. STACK hope to complete 10 hrs of competition over the weekend including individual & pairs, teams flying dual line and quad line kites in both precision and ballet routines.

The BLSA are hosting the 1st round of the national Blokart championships. They will be based at the Uphill entrance to the beach and will race from the windzone all the way down the beach to the kitesurf competition by the Tropicana car park. Blokarts are mini landyachts that pack down easily to fit the boot of your car.

The SuperCup will be hosting parakarting or kite buggy racing alternating with the BLSA blokart racing on the main length of beach. They will be based at the Royal Sands car park, which will be closed to the public for this weekend. Traffic will be directed to an enlarged Tropicana beach car park.

The BFSLYC will be on hand to demonstrate various types of landyacht. They will also be near the Royal Sands car park. (BFSLYC is the British Federation of Sand and Landyacht clubs). Wind & Wheels is proud to be part of this national federation that represents our sport nationally, in Europe and Worldwide at FISLY (Federation International of sand and landyacht clubs).

The 18th & 19th of April has been chosen for the neap tide which give us plenty of beach throughout the weekend, with high tides of only 8.05m at 13.05 hrs on Saturday and 8.09m at 14.54 hrs on the Sunday, giving us enough sea for the kite surfers.

The BKSA are running a charity kitesurf & landboard competition featuring teams of 2 in fancy dress. Prizes will be awarded for: 

Disciplines – Highest jump
Synchronised - Jumping – Moves in 5 mins
Race – Kite landboard – Kitesurf combined
Best Fancy Dress etc.
This will be happening to the left of the Tropicana beach car park.

Hatteras Island, Pamlico Sound 

A Canadian kiteboarder who was soaring about 40 feet above Pamlico Sound was killed when a fierce wind blew in suddenly and made him fall from the sky Saturday.

"The weather came in fast - you could see it on the horizon," said Carl Giordano, marketing director with Real Watersports in Waves. "My understanding is that everyone had trouble getting their kites under control."

It's the first fatal kiteboarding accident on Hatteras Island, Giordano said. He said the man in the accident was not a Real Watersports customer.

Giordano said that when the front came through shortly before 6 p.m., the wind spiked from about 15 mph to about 35 mph in less than a minute.

Eyewitness accounts reported that the man was dragged in the water by the kite after he fell.

"He either hit something physical in the water or the impact of the water is what knocked him unconscious," Giordano said.

Dare County Chief Deputy Sheriff Phillip Etheridge said the kiteboarder had been riding about 70 feet off Bluefish Court near the north end of Avon. He reportedly was face down in the water for about 15 minutes before rescuers could get to him, Etheridge said.

Twiford's Funeral Home identified the man as Timothy Holman, 49, of Sarnia, Ontario.

Giordano said that Hatteras, with shallow sounds and stiff winds, is a top destination for kiteboarding.

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Aaron Hadlow conquers the 2009 PKRA France 

The third day of the Mondial Du Vent 2009 started again with cold weather and light rain. The mandatory skippers meeting was held right on schedule at 09:00h but due to the high winds, there was a decision to postpone the start to let the winds subside a little.

A decision to switch between starting with the women from yesterday’s postponed heat and starting with the men caused a little confusion for Kevin Langeree (Naish, NED) and Sebastien Garat (RRD, FRA) who weren’t able to check back at the announced time of 10:30h to hear the switch in plans. As a result, the two riders missed their respective heats by several minutes in the singles semi-final round which started at 10:45h.

The action-packed, edge-of-your-seat event ensued but unfortunately for Tom Hebert (Airush, New Caledonia), who wasn’t able to duplicate his strong performance yesterday lost to a fired-up Youri Zoon (Slingshot, NED) who unleashed a ton of moves in the 13th heat. The schedule change enabled Reno Romeu (North, BRA) to secure enough moves for the win against a late Kevin Langeree who came storming out but crashed a few landings early on. Likewise, a late Seb Garat lost to Alex Pastor (Naish, ESP) in the 14th heat while Zoon and Romeu went head to head in the 15th heat with the former winning with higher technical difficulty score and more powered moves. Pastor took the third podium position, out-classing Romeu with more height and powered moves, landing a s-mobe, mobe 5, back to blind, s-bend to blind and kiteloop.

Aaron Hadlow (Flexifoil, GBR) however, was a man on a mission. He started off his heat with a win against Petr Tyuskevich (Flexifoil, RUS) with a lot of his signature moves. He then busted out a new wake style move in the 15th heat against Pastor. Hadlow landed a Bel Air (air tantrum) to blind with an air pass for the very first time in a competition. Along with several other technical and powered moves, the PKRA World Champion easily moved to the final round against Zoon.

In a closely-fought heat, Hadlow once again went huge and technical while Zoon went a little more for power. Hadlow got through and took a 3-2 win with a mobe, blind judge, hasselhoff, s-bend to blind, shifty 3, tantrum, and a kiteloop-backloop with aerial pass while Zoon landed a blind judge with aerial handle pass, back to blind air pass, non-inverted slim, kiteloop-backloop and a front mobe.

The men’s double elimination started right off where the singles ended and there was no break between the two events which was at approximately 14:00h. The doubles elimination round concluded at 19:45h with the wind, even though up and down in intensity remained strong through the finals. The men were on their 7’s while the women were on their 5’s and 6’s for the most part.

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