Today was the backdrop for what will be yet another successful event for the PKRA World Cup 2011 Tour Season. Riders from all around the world made their way to Leucate, France to partake in the hottest kiteboarding world tour action beginning with the men’s and women’s freestyle trials followed by the main freestyle event which will begin once the trials have been completed to determine the best riders amongst many.
The wind conditions this morning were variable averaging anywhere from 15 to 20 knots under clearing skies. Competitors struggled with the wind as well as against the strong current during the trials therefore race director Erik Troostheide called the competition to a halt in hopes for a change in the wind pattern.
Near 3:00pm a new competition box was set up in the lagoon approved by the Mayor, which allowed for the continuation of the trial eliminations today. Hundreds of spectators watched as riders geared up their 9 to 12m kites as the first round of action packed trials came to an end. Thomas Paris (North, FRA), Christophe Tack (Liquid Force, BEL), Mikael Blomvall (Nobile, SWE), Mario Rodwald (North, GER), Luis Alberto Cruz (Star Kites, DOM), Alvaro Onieva (Slingshot, ESP), Robinson Hilario (F-ONE, DOM), Tijn Van Esch (Advance, NED), Cesar Portas (North, ESP) all move into the main event after having executed a variety of technical tricks with more speed, power and style than their opponents. In the second round, Erik Volpe (Slingshot, ITA), Alexandre Neto (Liquid Force, BRA), Boris Judin (CrazyFly, Serbia & Montenegro), Ariel Corniel (Ozone, DOM), Axel Tack (Slingshot, BEL), Nils Wesch (Naish, GER) and Michael Schitzhofer (Best, AUT) all move on to the third round which will resume tomorrow. The winners of the third round will all move into the main event.
The Mondial du Vent has been part of the PKRA world tour lineup for the past 13 consecutive years and will continue to invest their support in our team. It is the largest kiteboarding event in all France, in addition to the oldest ongoing kiteboarding event in the world with their debut in 1998.
The PKRA World Tour has kicked off a very powerful competition season for 2011 beginning in Hua Hin, Thailand in March and will continue to run smooth and highly successful competitions for all the years to come.