PKRA Fuerteventura: air stylist

It was a beautiful day in Sotavento today. Sunny blue skies and powerful howling winds made for perfect freestyle kiteboarding action. Race director Erik Troostheide announced that he would begin with the freestylers this morning and later in the day make a decision to run any races or not.

After a short 20-minute lunch break, Troostheide released the racers for the day so that the crew could focus on finishing the men’s and women’s freestyle single eliminations.

The abandoned men’s heat from yesterday kicked off the start of the day. Cesar Portas (North, ESP) eliminated Puerto Rican rider Frederick Zamora (North, PRI) in the first heat, but was later defeated by Dominican rider Ariel Corniel (Ozone, DOM). Corniel has been on top of his game the past couple events defeating most of his competitors.

Corniel eliminated Youri Zoon (Slingshot, NED) in a 3/2 judge’s decision due to a blind judge 5 and better overall execution and height in difficult wind conditions, but was later defeated by Kevin Langeree (Naish, NED) in the semi final round in a close 3/2 judge’s decision due to better kite position and cleaner execution. Langeree made his way to the finals against Spanish rider Alex Pastor (Airush, ESP).

Langeree defeated Pastor in the men’s final with a 5/0 judge’s decision due great execution and variety of technical tricks such as a mobe 7 and front mobe to blind. Corniel went on to make it to the men’s losers final against Australian rider Andy Yates (Slingshot, AUS) but had to stop competing seconds before the end of the heat due to a crash on his last trick that caused a slight concussion.
Yates benefited from Corniel’s injury landing him in third place in the single eliminations while Corniel unexpectedly takes fourth.

It was a successful day for the beautiful Brazilian rider Bruna Kajiya (Flexifoil, BRA). Kajiya has struggled in the past couple of events, but regained her status here in Fuerteventura defeating Polish riders Asia Litwin (Nobile, POL) and Karolina Winkowska (Slingshot, POL).

Kajiya moved on to the final round against Spanish rider Gisela Pulido (Airush, ESP). Kajiya proved once again that she’s back in the game by winning the women’s freestyle single eliminations. Pulido eliminated German rider Kristin Boese (Best, GER) in the second round as well as Angela Peral (North, ESP) due to her powerful technical moves earning her second place in the single eliminations.

In the women’s loser final Karolina Winkowska (Slingshot, POL) defeated Angela Peral (North, ESP) with a 5/0 judge’s decision due technical difficulty of tricks.

Tomorrow’s skippers’ meeting is scheduled for 10:00am for racers and 12:00pm for freestylers.

SINGLE ELIMINATION RESULTS

MEN

1. Kevin Langeree (Naish, NED)
2. Alex Pastor (Airush, ESP)
3. Andy Yates (Slingshot, AUS)
4. Ariel Corniel (Ozone, DOM)

WOMEN

1. Bruna Kajiya (Flexifoil, BRA)
2. Gisela Pulido (Airush, ESP)
3. Karolina Winkowska (Slingshot, POL)
4. Angela Peral (North, ESP)

The Maurice Lacroix Bering Strait Expedition: tough challenge, indeed

A team of adventurers has set out to cross the Bering Strait by kiteboard, setting three world records in the process. But the Maurice Lacroix Bering Strait Expedition is more than just a top-class sporting event: it is also an exciting journey of discovery through the pathless terrain of Alaska and Russia.

The Maurice Lacroix Bering Strait Expedition will begin in July 2010 with the motto of “Follow Your Convictions”. The goal of the expedition is to cross Bering Strait from Alaska to Russia on kiteboard, setting three world records:

1. The first crossing of the Bering Strait by kiteboard.
2. The first crossing from America to Asia by kiteboard.
3. The first crossing of the International Date Line by kiteboard.

“If these extreme athletes are successful in their expedition, they will go down in history and thus prove that you must follow your own convictions to achieve big things,” says Martin Bachmann, Maurice Lacroix CEO, speaking of this unparalleled adventure.

100 km – six to eight hours of complete dedication – must be travelled by kiteboard, but the adventure begins long before the actual crossing. Extreme athletic performances of this kind require a preparation phase of several months, with daily training. Only those who are physically and mentally fit stand a chance against wild waters with temperatures as low as 2-3°C.

In addition to the physical challenges, the expedition team also faces organisational difficulties; the journey to the starting point in Wales, Alaska is in itself an adventure through pathless territory.

The team will set up its base and prepare for the traverse in Wales, Alaska. They will then have three weeks at the most to wait for the perfect weather conditions and attempt the world record before the Bering Strait freezes over again.

PKRA Fuerteventura: even faster than the media guys

The wind began to pick up in strength slowly this morning making it possible for the eager racers to get out on the water. The day commenced with two consecutive races.

In the first race of the day, Bruno Sroka (Cabrinha, FRA) rushed his way across the finish line first followed by fellow French competitor Julien Kerneur (Takoon, FRA) in second place and Rolf Van Der Vlugt (Airush, NED) in third. These racers have been neck to neck in the past couple of events. They are extremely eager to take the PKRA world racing champion title.

In the second race of the day, French racer Bruno Sroka (Cabrinha, FRA) made a couple of errors, which would cost him the first place position. Julien Kerneur (Takoon, FRA) managed to take advantage of this error and made his way through the finish line first followed by a near photo finish for second place between Rolf Van Der Vlugt (Airush, NED) and Sky Solbach (North, USA). Solbach got a little tense and crashed inches from the finish line giving way to Van Der Vlugt whom finished in 2nd followed by Solbach in 3rd and Sroka in 4th.

It was an all around winning day for North rider Steph Bridge (North, GBR) who managed to race her way gracefully across the finish line first in both races today. In the first and second race of the day French racer Caroline Adrien (Cabrinha, FRA) battled for second place with Katja Roose (Airush, NED). Adrien managed to finish second in the first race of the day while Roose took third place however in the second race of the day Roose rushed her way to the finish line second while Adrien finished third.

At 1:00pm there was a brief pause in order for everyone to have lunch. The racers were released for the day and the men’s freestyle single eliminations began. A total of 3 freestyle heats were completed for the day. The fourth heat of the day was postponed due to the diminishing winds. The wind was non-existent for the remained of the day, which was cause for an early end to the first day of competition.

Tomorrow’s skippers’ meeting is scheduled for 10:00am.

The Fuerteventura Kiteboarding World Cup 2010 is organized by Rene Egli with the help of many sponsors such as Rene Egli, Ayuntamiento de Pajara, Cabildo de Fuerteventura, Islas Canarias, Melia Gorriones, Fuerte Action, Tropical, NeilPryde and Cabrinha.

RACING RESULTS

RACE #1 MEN

1. Bruno Sroka (Cabrinha, FRA)
2. Julien Kerneur (Takoon, FRA)
3. Rolf Van Der Vlugt (Airush, NED) R

RACE #2 MEN

1. Julien Kerneur (Takoon, FRA)
2. Rolf Van Der Vlugt (Airush, NED)
3. Sky Solbach (North, USA)

RACE #1 WOMEN

1. Steph Bridge (North, GBR)
2. Caroline Adrien (Cabrinha, FRA)
3. Katja Roose (Airush, NED)

RACE # 2 WOMEN

1. Steph Bridge (North, GBR)
2. Katja Roose (Airush, NED)
3. Caroline Adrien (Cabrinha, FRA)