The KTE 2013 season officially started this morning with the 1st skippers meeting hold by course director Markus Schwendtner and freestyle head judge Bas Koole. The tour starts in France/ Almanarre with 46 Racers – 39 men and 7 women – as well as 49 Freestylers – 37 men and 12 women. This first edition of the European tour stop on the Côte d’Azur, is going to be a great event with a parallel execution of the two disciplines.
The registration was hold yesterday afternoon with over 95 riders from 14 countries coming to compete in the bay of Hyères. The riders has had more than 6 month to train and to learn new tricks to prepare. The best European riders are here to claim the 2013 European title in Freestyle or to get points for the IKA World Ranking in Course Racings as well to take home a part of the 10.000€ prize money.
The first day brought strong 30-35 knots. The action was intense right from the beginning. We started with the men’s single elimination and right from the start we could see that the they trained hard over the winterbreak.
The men were riding with 7 meters kites and after to get used to the conditions, the spectators could seen some spectacular tricks. MINI KTE 2012 title holder Mario Rodwald from Germany (NKB) and German starlet Sabrina Lutz (NKB) won the Single Elimination. With eyes wide open the spectators got a glimpse of a pretty bright kitesurfing future. The day ended with heat #34 in the double elimination. All of the riders demonstrated incredible progression and will go on tomorrow morning.
Focusing on course racing, the competition day proved to be actionful as well. Racers entered the water in the morning, hungry for a day full of racing action. At the end of the first day, French rider Maxime Nocher (NKB) won 3 of four races following by Julien Kerneur (RRD). The riders were always quite close and handled out arresting battles. British race women Steph Bridge from UK (NKB) holds first place positioning by winning 2 of 3 races and hopes to keep it that way for the following competition days. On second place after three races, Katja Roose from Netherlands is fighting to get the leading position, too.
We could not have a better way to start the season with a grateful opening ceremony and perfect conditions to run Freestyle heats and Course Racing legs. Tomorrow nonstop action is planned. With competitors of an high level, the action is going to be top graded.