- 05 June 2009 | Kiteboarding
KPWT returns to Santa Cruz for the Ocean Spirit Grand Slam 2009.
Santa Cruz is one of the most popular places in Europe for Wave Riding and boasts perfect conditions for all water-sport enthusiasts.
It is situated on the southeastern shore of the sunny Madeira Island, with beaches stretching over 20 kms.
It has a solid beach break with the North Westerly bringing in the swell.
The ideal wind for this region is the easterly and the water temperature ranges between 15-19 degrees Celsius, which is perfect in the summer heat.
This year, the likes of Jesse Richman, Antoine Auriol, Jan Marcos Riviera, Mitu Monteiro « World champion 2008 » and many more local and top wave-riders will fight for the waves title.
In the womens division Santa Cruz welcomes back Ainhoa Garcia, Anna Grezlinska and Kirsty Jones « World Champion 2008 », all having a super 2008 season in the Waves and eager to compete for the 15 000 euro prize money on offer.
- 04 June 2009 | Kiteboarding
Triple-S Invited Riders met underneath the Red Bull Tent for the daily 11am riders meeting and then hit the water for a full day of riding action starting at 1:30pm. Building SW winds saw the riders opting for kite sizes in the 10-12m range for session #1 and then 7-9m range for session #2.
Tuesday s riding took place entirely in The Slick with the entire REAL Slider Park set up including the REAL Funbox and Flatbar, REAL Kicker and the new John Wayne Cancer Foundation Slider. A new flag system was put in place to thin the crowd down to only 12 riders at a time for 30 minute sessions. This system allowed maximum focus and progression for each group, and also provided the resting riders a recharge period (more Red Bull!) and the ability to watch their friends blow it up !
The new JWCF Slider continued to be the main draw of the day, with the riding level through the roof. Going the full distance on the rail was no longer good enough. Riders pushed the bar higher and higher with handlepasses on every part of the rail,passing going up, passing across and passing down, gapping the center section, gaping with a flat 3, tail pressing, nose pressing, 270 on to 3 up the up rail to nose presses on the downrail, you name it !
Standout riders for the day included wildcard winner Petter Johnsen (mad technical style), Ruben Lenten (balls to the wall progression), Dylan Thomson (smooooooooth snow/skate style), Dre (fast, fast, fast, did we mention fast ? ) Brandon Scheid (pulling every type of press and grab there is), Aaron Hadlow (he could be the world champion in any boardsport), Slezy and Sammy (both showing all their friends why Cape Hatteras is the bomb), wait a minute. I think we will need to say something good about everyone, which could take 10 pages !!!!! Whether it was the JWCF, kicker or flatbar, the 24 , and guest rider for the day Lulu Vroman, were all riding off the richter scale and pushing each other to new limits !!!
The REAL Kicker and Flatbar also saw a lot of action as these features were downwind of the JWCF and allowed riders to continue their downwind run and hit two more sliders before heading back upwind. The Kicker was positioned right off North Point with riders blazing in and booting huge. At one point, Billy Parker and Greg Norman Jr were going so high people were cringing in anticipation of their landings. You have to remember, NOBODY is sending their kites above them off of these things. It is all forward momentum and speed, so you have to stick it and there is no spotter (ie. the kite) to save you from a mistimed landing.
- 03 June 2009 | Kiteboarding
It turned out to be a ‘whitsunny’ weekend, during Hollands biggest kitesurf event on Notorious Beach in Noordwijk. This year, all the elements were right for the Kite Board Open (KBO). Professional kitesurfers, rookies and amateurs joined together with sun admirers and party people. And there was wind.
On Sunday may 31st the event started early in the morning, when kiters from all over Europe crawled out of their vans to get the gear on the beach and a big up of coffee in the sun. Although the wind started out offshore, the forecast predicted a change of direction in the afternoon.
It just gave everyone enough time to wake up and walk around the festival area, where the newest gear was ready to be tested, free surf- and kayak clinics were offered, breakfast was served and DJ’s were getting in the mood. And obviously, also the pros need some time to show up.
National and international professionals usually never tend to skip the KBO. It’s a party guaranteed, all about the sport and has a totally relaxed atmosphere. This year the event unfortunately missed out on some big pros because of the Triple S event on the US east coast. Nevertheless, there were enough pros around to watch and enjoy.