The last day of the Gard Kitesurf World Cup 2007 in the wonderful northern coast of Germany at St. Peter-Ording kicked off to a sunny and windy day. The temperature was at a low of 15 degrees Celsius and a high of 17 degrees Celsius with the wind averaging 19 to 22 knots from the north-west. The game started right on time with the Freestyle event at 10:00 am, half an hour after the mandatory skippers meeting, and concluded at 12:00 pm. There was a one-hour break after the Freestyle while the course was being set for the racing event. To keep the large crowd at the beach entertained, the freestylers went to the water for an ‘expression session’ joined in by none other than the world famous Robby Naish.|
The last day of the Gard Kitesurf World Cup 2007 in the wonderful northern coast of Germany at St. Peter-Ording kicked off to a sunny and windy day. The temperature was at a low of 15 degrees Celsius and a high of 17 degrees Celsius with the wind averaging 19 to 22 knots from the north-west. The game started right on time with the Freestyle event at 10:00 am, half an hour after the mandatory skippers meeting, and concluded at 12:00 pm. There was a one-hour break after the Freestyle while the course was being set for the racing event. To keep the large crowd at the beach entertained, the freestylers went to the water for an ‘expression session’ joined in by none other than the world famous Robby Naish.
The racing event started and finished very quickly with the wind picking up strength. After the race, an awards ceremony was held at the beach at 3:30 pm which wrapped up the day.
Heat #15 of the womens freestyle between Naish teammates Jalou Langeree (Netherlands) and Karolina Winkowska (Poland) were the ones to first hit the water. The heat was a close battle at first but eventually ended up with a 5-0 decision in favor of Winkowska. The kiteboarder from Poland landed a huge blind judge, raley to blind and a double front while Langeree landed a krypt to surface pass and a big kiteloop but lacked technical tricks and had to settle for 6th place.
In heat #16, Winkowska came face to face with former world champ and Germany’s best Kristin Boese (Best) who took on the ‘new school’ crowd and gave the home crowd something to cheer about. The German champ nailed a sent handle pass in the opening seconds of the heat while Winkowska was on the back foot early on. Boese then continued with a raley to blind, front to blind and raley to wrapped. Winkowska meanwhile, landed a blind judge and a raley to blind but lacked the variety and technical tricks to qualify for the next round.
After defeating Winkowska, Boese took on another young gun in the person of Ania Grzelinska (North, Poland) and defeated her in the process. The 30-year old German kiteboarding champion landed another sent handle pass, a raley to blind, kiteloop to blind, downloop-frontloop, raley to wrapped and front to wrapped. North rider Grzelinska on the other hand had a mere raley to wrapped, raley to blind and a kiteloop.
Advancing in the next heat, Boese met another new school opponent, this time, her Best teammate and PKRA’s current world number two Bruna Kajiya (Brazil). However, Boese seemed to have used up all her new school defeater pills and bowed down to the Brazilian kiteboarding champ. Although Boese landed a sent handle pass in the early seconds of the game, Kajiya went on to land a blind judge, raley to blind, raley to wrapped and kiteloop while Boese struggled in the onshore current and choppy water when her kite wet down in the surf.
The final round proved to be another showdown between two top-ranked riders Kajiya and Gisela Pulido (Slingshot, Spain). Noticeably this year, one of these two took the top podium position at every leg of the tour so far. This time, the Spanish champ being the winner of the first round would have had a second chance against Kajiya had she lost in the doubles but eventually did not need it. Pulido landed a blind judge, front mobe, slim, raley to wrapped, s-bend to blind with air pass and sent handle pass. Kajiya also tried her best in winning the heat and the trophy with a blind judge, non-inverted slimchance, and s-bend to blind with air pass but went down on a kiteloop handle pass and raley to blind plus she lacked the technical variety of Pulido’s moves.
Meanwhile, heat #31 of the continuation of the men’s freestyle between Meira who was on a charge and Randy Hereman (F-One, Netherlands) took to the water in succession of the women’s heats. Both athletes threw down huge moves in the heat to get a chance to fight the single elimination finalists. Meira busted out a huge front mobe in the opening seconds of the heat and followed it up with a mobe 5, regular to switched slim, regular to switched KGB and a big blind judge with aerial handle pass and s-bend to blind with aerial handle pass. Hereman on the other hand, landed a front mobe to blind, regular to switched mobe and a 313 but lost the heat with a higher kite angle and less technical variation.
In the following heat, Meira went up against Spain’s Cesar Portas (North) defeating the Spanish athlete with a regular to switched KGB, a big and powered mobe, front mobe, s-bend to blind with aerial handle pass, blind judge with aerial handle pass, kiteloop handle pass, and slim. These moves proved too much for Portas who could only manage a regular to switched slim, regular to switched back to blind air pass, mobe and front mobe.
After defeating Portas, Meira went on to tackle another Spanish champ, this time, Best rider Alvaro Onieva. Meira was on a charge and again defeated Onieva to claim a spot on the podium, stomping a regular to switched KGB, slim, mobe 5, front mobe, blind judge with aerial handle pass and kiteloop handle pass. Onieva had several powerful moves, nailing a blind judge with aerial handle pass first up and a mobius 540 but blew it up on landings with his other moves, struggling in the choppy waters.
So eventually, Meira finally had a chance to face Aaron Hadlow (Flexifoil, UK). However, the UK champ was on a mission to have his chance against Kevin Langeree (Naish, Netherlands) who defeated him in the singles. Hadlow threw down some big moves including a kiteloop bosch mobe, huge KGB, switched back to blind air pass, regular to switched front mobe, mobe, slim, s-bend to blind with air pass and a blind judge. Meira must have ran out of energy because he missed a couple of landings plus his kite had wandered a little higher. He did however land a regular to switched KGB, front mobe to blind, slim and mobel. Hadlow went after technical difficulty and variation plus he had much more power on his moves.
Before the final heat, Langeree was already on the water warming up around the competition area and who looked like a man on a mission to win the German leg. The young Naish rider rode with a super low kite angle and busted huge tricks. Langeree did not miss a single trick in the final round while Hadlow missed some of his usual repertoire of moves. Langeree threw down a massive blind judge with aerial handle pass and KGB in his first run in the box while Hadlow stacked a blind judge with aerial handle pass and butt checked a switch back to blind air pass. Langeree followed up with a mobe, 313, front mobe, switched mobe and another super powered front mobe (trying to go for double pass or blind landing), late mobe, slim, kiteloop handle pass, switched KGB and mobe to wrapped in the dying seconds. Hadlow went all out with a huge KGB of his own, a blind judge with aerial handle pass, s-bend to blind with air pass, front mobe to blind, slim and switch mobe but lacked technical variety and style while the power was there.
1. Gisela Pulido (Slingshot, Spain)
2. Bruna Kajiya (Best, Brazil)
3. Kristin Boese (Best, Germany)
1. Kevin Langeree (Naish, Netherlands)
2. Aaron Hadlow (Flexifoil, UK)
3. Rui Meira (Naish, Portugal)
There were two racing events held just before the afternoon was over with North racer Sky Solbach (U.S.) winning both races with a serious downwind speed. In the first race, Bruno Sroka (Takoon, France) gained a lot of ground on the second upwind leg to finish second behind Solbach. Germany’s Dirk Hanel (another North racer) rounded up the top three. Mexico’s Sean Farley (also a North racer) on the other hand, got tangled up, breaking a line and did not finished the race.
In the second race, Farley got his act together and came in second just ahead of event winner Sami Gali (Best, Spain). Alberto Rondina (Cabrinha, Italy) and Sroka got tangled up at the top mark and both got a disqualification.
1. Sami Gali (Best, Spain)
2. Sky Solbach (North, U.S.)
3. Sean Farley (North, Mexico)
1. Gina Esteva (Best, Spain)
2. Kristin Boese (Best, Germany)
3. Steph Bridge (North, U.K.)
World Champion Titles:
Men: Bruno Sroka (Takoon, France)
Women: Steph Bridge (North, U.K.)
1. Sky Solbach (North, U.S.)
2. Mikael Blomvall (JN Kite, Sweden)
3. Rolf Van der Vlugt (Airush, Netherlands)
1. Kristin Boese (Best, Germany)
2. Jalou Lageree (Naish, Netherlands)
3. Gisela Pulido (Slingshot, Spain)
Congratulations to Kevin “Big Kev” Langeree and Gisela Pulido!
The Gard Kitesurf World Cup 2007 was proudly sponsored by Gard, We Love Active Summer, TV Today, Suzuki, Colgate, the St. Peter-Ording local government, Jever, Naish, and Kitelife. For the official PKRA riders standings, point your browsers to www.kiteworldtour.com. Next stop, Brazil! See you there from September 19-23, 2007.