The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) regrets to announce that the contract between IKA and the Professional Kiteboard Riders Association (PKRA) has been terminated. All World Championship rights for all kiteboarding disciplines including Freestyle, Big Air, Wave and Slalom immediately revert to IKA.
Neither PKRA nor its new ownership, currently known as Virgin Kitesurf World Championships, are able to conduct any further World Tour events after the conclusion of the event currently taking place in Tarifa.
Following the acquisition of PKRA by new ownership, PKRA changed the branding of its competition, and continued to conduct competition events under this brand, in material and persistent breach of the existing contract.
The IKA has attempted since September 2014 to reach agreement on a new contract that would enable PKRA to, among other items, conduct competition events under its desired branding. However despite these repeated attempts, PKRA failed to both rectify their consistent contract breaches or agree a new contract.
The IKA recently served PKRA a final formal remedy period of 28 days in which to rectify their consistent breaches of the existing contract. After receiving no response from PKRA that were capable to remedy the breaches, the IKA has no legal option but to terminate the contract.
IKA continued to attempt to negotiate the contract as it believes a successful agreement would have been in the best interest of riders internationally; by securing higher media coverage of events, greater prize money and an enhanced international profile for the sport.
The extinct contract between IKA and PKRA stated that the PKRA was able to host events that count towards the IKA Kiteboarding World Rankings and IKA World Championship titles in individual disciplines.
Following the announcement made in August 2014 that new investors had purchased the PKRA and the PKRA wished to alter this agreement for events, the IKA in good faith continually attempted to negotiate a new contract with the PKRA to cover this development.
The new contract was necessary in order to recognize the new ownership, support the new ownership’s desire to secure exclusive rights to the World Championship Tour for existing disciplines such as freestyle, and support exclusive rights to additional disciplines such as wave, slalom, big air and the overall title.
A new contract would also have enhanced fairness, transparency and independent judging for riders, with the aim of avoiding conflicts of interest between tour owners, brands, judges and riders. Additionally, the new contract would have required improvements to the newly introduced PKRA scoring and qualification systems, which the IKA is aware have created significant dissatisfaction amongst riders.
Further, the new contract would also have ensured the tour’s successful rebranding as the “Virgin Kitesurf World Championships”.
The IKA is hopeful that all stakeholders can work positively together to achieve the best outcome for the sport. The organizers of the upcoming events, namely Fuerteventura and St. Peter Ording, have been contacted following this announcement.
The IKA assures riders that with the PKRA now not able to conduct World Tour events, the IKA will secure a seamless and continued world tour for all riders.