300 kiters from 28 countries competed in the world´s biggest and toughest snow kite competition that took place on the icy mountain plains of Hardangervidda in Norway. Only 4 kiters managed to complete the whole kite race.
The scenery was amazing with sun and clear blue sky, but constantly diminishing wind throughout the day made it challenging for the kiters.
Among the 4 kiters that managed to finish the race were the top 3 men kiting on skis and the winner in the snowboard class for men, Norwegian Sigve Botnen.
– The first lap was a bit slow, but when I changed to a bigger kite it went much better. My tactic was good, and so was the sight. This years Red Bull Ragnarok has to be the toughest I’ve ever been part of, I can feel the lactic acid in my thighs real good, says Sigve Botnen.
Ever since Red Bull Ragnarok was first arranged back in 2010, its popularity has only been growing. This year´s fifth edition was so popular the fight to secure a start number was almost as hard as the battle itself.
Among the lucky to secure spots, two thirds were international kiters. Many of the them travelled from countries such as Greece, South Africa, Croatia and Brazil, trading board shorts with windproof clothes and for some, it was even their fist time kiting on snow.
While some had been training long and hard to go all in, others, like three guys representing The Dominican Republic.
– I´m born ready! I’ve been kiting since the sport was popular in the 90s. Today has been amazing. Norway is fantastic, the nature is incredible, and the kiting on the plains of Hardangervidda has been extremely exhausting, but also priceless, says Luis Perez Paulino.
Among the international participants were some of the world’s most well known riders, like Dutch Ruben Lenten and Dimi de Jong, and Belgium´s Christophe Tack.
In spite of being in the world´s elite of kiting, Red Bull Ragnarok became one of the toughest kite races they have ever participated in.
Men ski: 1. Felix Kersten (GER), 2. Klemet Store (NOR), 3. Michael Kaspar (SUI)
Men snowboard: 1. Sigve Botnen (NOR) 2. Reinhold Gehrer (AUT) 3. Peter Martel (CAN)
Women ski: 1. Steph Bridge (GBR), 2. Camilla Ringvold (NOR), 3. Eugenia Gueorguieva (USA)
Women snowboard: 1. Linda Viktoria Olofsson (NOR), 2. Ingrid Danielsson (SWE), 3. Marit Nore (NOR)