The first day of the Pingtan Kiteboarding World Cup got underway today in side-onshore wind that was ideal for the start of the twin-tip course racing discipline. In total, three full races were run and Julien Kerneur (FR) and Katya Roose (NL) swept their respective fleets in each of the day’s races.The first day of the Pingtan Kiteboarding World Cup got underway today in side-onshore wind that was ideal for the start of the twin-tip course racing discipline. In total, three full races were run and Julien Kerneur (FR) and Katya Roose (NL) swept their respective fleets in each of the day’s races.
Starting the day off early, the opening ceremony was held in full Chinese style with dignitaries and local officials present to welcome the riders and officially open the competition. After a quick break for lunch, the wind was already blowing up to eighteen knots and twenty-one men and ten women took to the water to do battle around the three-buoy course that was punctuated by a long upwind mark immediately following the start.
Riders from both the freestyle and slalom disciplines competed amongst a large field of Chinese competitors. In the end, the more seasoned racers had the advantage and proved to be fastest around the course.
In the evening, registration for the freestyle event was finalized and in total, 49 riders representing 18 nationalities registered for this very important event. With so much at stake for both the freestyle and slalom disciplines, the anticipation from competitors is palpable. This event will decide the men and women’s slalom world titles. Also, the results here can decide the fate for both the men and women’s freestyle world titles, even with one more event remaining.
As the week continues on, the stage is set for epic battles to ensue. The event site in Pingtan offers consistent wind, wide sandy beaches and all the elements required for the worlds best to put it all on the line in hopes to advance in the rankings, and for some, to secure the title of 2015 PKRA World Champion.
The forecast for the next two days is for wind ranging from 12-16 knots. Race director Erik Troostheide anticipates beginning the slalom discipline tomorrow. Riders will meet at 11 am with a first possible start at 1 pm. The wind is expected to increase on Monday when it is likely we will begin the start of the freestyle single elimination. As always, stay posted to the PKRA Facebook and Twitter feeds for all the latest results and news from the event.