Kitesoul Magazine #3 English Edition

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Where there´s a W ave,there´s a W ayTHE NEW NEOW A V E / F R E E R I D Es I z E s4 › 5 › 6 › 7 › 8 › 9 › 10 › 11 › 12A I R T O N C O z z O L I N O"The Neo is the Kite which helped me achieve my first World Champion title.It allows me to do whatever I want on the wave, drifting with me and keeping mesafe at all times. Due to its incredible low end performance,I can always ride smaller sizes as it’s a responsive Kite with a lot of power.The Neo is the best choice for all types of wave;from small beach breaks to the biggest days at One Eye."RELATED DIRECTIONAL BOARDsRider_Airton Cozzolino/Photo_Mario EnteroPRO s ERIEsKONTACTT R U E K I T E B O A R D I N G


EditorRoberta Palaroberta.pala@kitesoul.comWave Thecnique EditorMitu MonteiroFreestyle Thecnique EditorAlberto RondinaThecnical ExpertRenato CasatiPhoto & VideoMaurizio CintiDesignGiuseppe EspositoTexstsJohn Bilderback, Renato Casati, Stefano Gentili,Stefano Gigli, Mitu Monteiro, Alberto Rondina,Reo Stevens.PhotosAlexandru Baranescu,John Bilderback, Christian Black, PascalBoulgakoff, Gilles Calvet, Mario Entero, StephanKleinlein, Josh Pietras, Dave WhiteCover:Rider Luke McGillewiePhoto Dave WhitePublisher and advertisingVISU MediaVia Cavour, 2024030 Ambivere (BG)Amministratore UnicoFederico Sugonifs@kitesoul.comRegistration Tribunaledi Bergamo n°10/2014del 15/04/2014.Periodicità bimestraleCopyright Kitesoul MagazineAll content is copyright of Kitesoul Magazine /Visu Media Srl.DECEMBER 2014 - JANUARY 2015TWO-MONTHLYRENATO “DR. KITE” CASATITechnical ExpertRRD Wave team rider. Kiteboardersince 2000, he hasbeen PKRA athlete and judge.He’s a professional sportswriterfor several technicalmagazines. He lives betweenComo Lake and Sardinia, buthe spends every winter in thewaves of Cabo-Verde.ROBERTA PALAEditorSports photographer since1997, kiteboarder since 2001,she has worked for the mostexponential kite magazinesfor the last 15 years.A free and wild soul, shehas left the luxuries of townliving for a life in contact withnature: a sea and wave lover.Nowadays you can find heron the shores of Capo Mannu,Sardinia, one of the mostbeautiful spots of the MediterraneanSea.MAURIZIO CINTIFilm-makerMovie buff and keen photographer.He’s a skater, snowboarderand wakeboarder,but he actually burns withpassion for kiteboarding. Hestarted off with freestyle afew years ago, but nowadayshe’s more into chasing bigand powerful waves. This iswhat he loves the most.

MITU MONTEIROTechnical Editor-Wave RidingHe comes from Sal. OfficialF-one and Manera rider.2008 KPWT World Championand three-time Vice WorldChampion. He started to surfand windsurf as a kid and buthe definitively fell in love withkitesurf as soon as he discoveredit.FEDERICO SUGONIPublisherHe’s a manager and a businessman.He fell in love with kiteboardingalmost 10 years ago inthe wild and amazing NorthShore of Oahu (Hawaii). Asidefrom kiteboarding there isonly one other importantthing in his life: his babydaughter.ALBERTO RONDINATechnical Editor-FreestyleHe’s the best Italian rider ofthe competitive kiting world.Cabrinha, Neil Pryde andGoPro official team riderand four-time Italian Champion.Alberto has won the2001 edition of the EuropeanChampionship and thirdplace in the 2012 PKRA WorldChampionship.GIUSEPPE ESPOSITOArt directorKiter since he was in the babypram, he is a rider for RRDItalia and studies ComunciationDesign at Politecnico diMilano.With this assignment, hefinally has been able to puttogether his two passions:kite and design.KITESOUL MAGAZINEfrom kiters to kiters

EDITORIALIf at the beginning of 2014, you would have asked any kiter if he had heard of KiteSoulMagazine, s/he would have looked at you puzzled, but now, just seven months after itsfirst launch you have a very good chance of bumping into one of our readers.To date we are the most read kite magazine in Italy (one out of two kiters); in the restof the world our international version is starting to gain a lot of consensus, especially bythe more radical kite community, by industry insiders and pro riders.This is why, after just a few months, we would like to say THANK YOU to our loyal SoulRiders!Thank you because you have immediately trusted us, with nearly 8,000 “likes” on ourFacebook page in the last few months; because you have followed our online magazine;because you have sent us your videos or your appreciative messages, showing us, youlike the work we do every day.A big thank also to those who pointed out our errors, as they are helping us to improve.Thanks to the pro riders and the big brands that have decided to cooperate with us,believing in our project and keeping us up to date with the latest market developments,news, travels, new tricks and important events.Thanks to our staff: real world-kite experts such as Mitu Monteiro (wave-riding), AlbertoRondina (freestyle) and Renato Casati, our super technical weather and equipmentexpert.With this issue, the last for 2014, we wanted to impress you with spectacular imagesfrom Pipeline; progress with the latest “strapless” tips provided to you by the greatReo Stevens; dream with the colors of Tahiti and, with the winter season approaching,expand your horizons by calling one of the leading snowkiting expert: Stefano Gigli, whowrote an entire section full of useful tips for the practice of this fantastic discipline; animportant first step to approach this fascinating winter sport.

Rider: Alberto Rondina | Photo: Stephan KleinleinAfter years of absence in Italy and, after numerous requests from our readers, in thisissue of Kitesoul Magazine we have been able to test and review some of the most excitingmaterials of 2015. You will not find the usual four commercial sentences, as usuallyseen in other magazines, but real kite-tests conducted on the field by our team. Youmay ask: who tested the kites? Our editorial staff has drawn in riders of all levels, bodysize and gender, mostly wave riding and freestyle specialists, including some top-levelathletes.To ensure results were as objective as possible, each tester had to fill in an extremelydetailed questionnaire, which allowed us to collect the data in a more “scientific” waythat once transposed, would provide us with an objective evaluation of the performanceof the kite. In this issue we have used very effective graphics in support of all the evidencegathered, which was also beautifully represented by our Art Director, Giuseppe.And now, what’s next?After this successful trial stage, with our bars pulled in and, trusting our popping technique,we will fly with you towards the New Year, trying to catch up, with a good doseof humility of course, the two or three most important international kiteboarding magazines,something we are already doing on social networking sites. In the next twelvemonths we will come out with six new exciting issues: we will pack our website and relatedvideo channel with exclusive content; we will physically follow the most importantevents of the kite world, and we will create fantastic events in which you, the reader, willbe the real protagonist.All you need to do now, is read this exhilarating number until we meet again in 2015,maybe on the beautiful waves crashing along the Atlantic coast of Cape Town.......Roberta Pala and Federico Sugoni

SUMMARYPortfolioItwNoè Font VSSam MedyskyHistorical momentKitesurf in PipelineEventsChristophe Tack andKarolina Winkowska 2014PKRAWorld ChampionsWave techniqueBarrelTripTahiti

SUMMARYFreestyle movesIndy Glide BS 180Strapless MovesStraight AirTechHow To Chose the IdealKiteStrapless MovesFrontside ReverseSnowkiteSnowkite ColumnTestPivot, ManiaC, TS,Chaos, Dice

14PORTFOLIOAirton CozzolinoRIDER: Airton CozzolinoPHOTO: Mario Entero

16PORTFOLIONiccolò PorcellaRIDER: Niccolò PorcellaPHOTO: Jason Wolcott

18PORTFOLIOBertrand FleuryRIDER: Bertrand FleuryPHOTO: Courtesy Bertrand Fleury/Tuva Jansen

20PORTFOLIOAaron HadlowRIDER: Aaron HadlowPHOTO: Toby Bromwich

22EVENTSChristophe Tack and Karolina Winkowska 2014 PKRA freestyle World ChampionsText and itw Roberta Pala | Photo Toby BromwichCHRISTOPHE TACK AND2014

The PKRA tour champions this year were notproclaimed until the final day of the tour: ChristopheTack wins the title for the men’s freestyleand Karolina Winkowska the female freestyletitle. Lake Bryan and Katja Roose are the newPKRA slalom 2014 champions.KAROLINA WINKOWSKAPKRA

24EVENTSChristophe Tack and Karolina Winkowska 2014 PKRA freestyle World ChampionsThe last three stops of the world tourhave been full of unexpected twists. Acar accident that involved ChristopheTack a few days before the Brazilianstop, and the “yellow” card in the finalheat in Pingtang between KarolinaWinkowska and Gisela Pulido.During the final heat between Pulidoand Winkowska in Pingtan in fact, atrick performed by Karolina but unseenby the jury, almost jeopardized the endresult. If the Polish girl won the heat,she would have won the title mathematically.The judges decided to repeatthe heat the next day, but this was notmade possible because of an injury incurredby Gisela Pulido. In the end thejudges decided to postpone their decisionand re-run the heat at the laststop in Hainan. However the IKA gotinvolved reminding that the RacingRules of Sailing “do not allow any races(or heats) to be held outside of thepublished competition dates.” Thereforeboth riders were scored equal positionand the Slingshot rider KarolinaWinkowska ended up winning her secondworld title.

Christophe Tack managed to win theworld title after a very hot season. Therider worked hard, with modesty anddevotion, fighting remarkable opponents,including the young Liam Whaley,his main antagonist in the tour;Marc Jacobs, who had to leave thetour because of an injury; Aaron Hadlow,who is back in the league winningan overall third place; and Youri Zoonwho stoked everyone with an amazingperformance at the Hainan stop. Astop which saw the greatest number ofdouble eliminations ever witnessed ina competition.Christophe, the BelgianLiquid Force rider, made his first appearanceon the PKRA tour in 2010 butnow that he has won his first world title,he is determined to win some more.

26EVENTSChristophe Tack and Karolina Winkowska 2014 PKRA freestyle World ChampionsWe interviewed him to capture his emotions after his first world title...KS_Tell us something about you…CT_I’m Christophe Tack, my friends callme Mowgli, I’m 21 years old (22 on 29december) and I’m from Belgium, Ostend.I’ve been passionate about kiteboardingsince I was 10 years old.KS_As is waking world champion?CT_It’s amazing to wake up and realizethat I’ve achieved my biggest dream..Absolutely. But at the end not muchchanges, I’m still the same person andI’m still driven to progress. It doesn’tfeel like this is the end, just a highlightin my career. Hopefully I’ll get morehighlights in the future!KS_Tell us something about this seasonPKRA.CT_It has been amazing. A great year,that is for sure! The season started verywell. It was unreal, like I was in a videogame or so and I got more and morestoked during the season. When I thinkback about the season it has been along season, very exhausting too, butit al went very quick. I guess time flieswhen you’re having a good time!KS_When did you realize that youcould “take home” the title?CT_After my win in Tarifa I was prettysure to take home the title. Then Brazilwas a setback with a car accidentand for a second I lost it.. Feeling like itmight not end like I felt 2 weeks beforewhen winning Tarifa. During my train-

ing in Brazil I slowly got the confidenceback. And it luckily worked out!KS_About your gear.CT_I ride with Liquid Force Kites since2009. I ride the new Hifi X, a kite designedwith my feedback, and absolutelylove it. It does what I want andreact how I would want a kite to react.The feeling is very precise and theslack is ideal for my tricks. My board isthe Liquid Force Element. I ride the 139with boots and 1,5” fins. It’s a fast boardwith loads of pop, it has almost no negativeflex and makes it easy to land mylatest tricks. Give it a try and see if youlike Liquid Force kites as much as I do!KS_Your favourite spot on PKRA tourand why?CT_Pingtan China, It’s the only spot wehave whole year with good waves. Thisyear was a bit worse than last year, thewind was irregular but the waves werepumping again! So much more fun thanflat water!KS_Your opponents, Liam has madegreat heats and moves, the relationshipwith the other riders of PKRA?CT_Liam is on fire! He’s riding is amazingand he’s a great competitor witha good attitude too. He felicitated medirectly after I got announced worldchampion. Something that didn’t happenthis year with the girls, haha. Over

28EVENTSChristophe Tack and Karolina Winkowska 2014 PKRA freestyle World Championsall we riders come along well, the wholepkra. Even tho everybody is very competitivetheir is a great sportsmanshipbetween the male riders, which makesour job even more fun!KS_Your best heat this year?CT_I’ve got the highest score of theseason, it was 40,4 against Liam inChina, the heat that would decide if I’llbe world champion or not. I was ableto use the conditions in my advantage,do a Heel front 7 and Toe Back 5, Backside315 and more. All went very welland I was stoked with the outcome!!KS_The most difficult part of the tourof this year, perhaps after the accidentin Brazil? What happens insideof you?CT_Physically I was fine, besides havingvery sore muscles, a slightly injuredankle and a blocked hip. Butthat did change a lot to my riding, Ihad to stop sessions early sometimesbecause of pain. Also mentally washard. I was really hyped that I actuallymade it out alive and well, but then onthe other side you feel like it’s unfairand that you’re going to lose becauseyour body is struggling a bit. I decidedto focus on eating health, rest well, tryto give everything I could every session.So I would feel confident duringPKRA China and have a feeling that ‘Icouldn’t have tried more’.. During thesmall week I had between Brazil andPKRA China, my osteopath helped me alot, I felt flexible and great before goingto China. It couldn’t went better at theend!KS_Moves, style, and new moves, whatdo you think the judges liked more inyour style?CT_I think the flow, When I do tricks Itry to make them look as easy as possibleand have a nice flow in my rotations.Also I focus on landing clean and controlled,having Butt checks costs a lotof points. It is a total package you need,good tricks, kite at a good angle, speedin and out of the trick, travel and goodlandings. Then you need to have 5 tricksfrom 5 different trick categories! Nextyear the judging criteria will change. Wedon’t know how it’s going to be yet butlooks exciting.KS_Winter training and next season…who do you think will be your greatestopponent next year?CT_During this winter I’ll go train in Australia.Next season will be very interesting.Loads of changes in the pro kitetour, and the level will be higher thanever. Alex Pastor and Marc Jacobs willbe back, together with Youri who is onfire, Aaron Hadlow is training hard tooand then you have Liam who was beenshowing his skills past 2 seasons. I thinkwe have 6 potential winners next year..the fight will be on!!

KS_The name of the mag is KiteSoul,your vibrations, your emotions during asession?CT_When I kiteboard I just focus on thepresent time, on the moment it self andI try to get a flow. I focus very hard oneach trick I want to do and I try to stepup my game every single trick. Go a bitbigger, try a bit harder trick, add a grab. Ijust do what feels right at that moment.Kiteboarding is the best, it’s about now,and you don’t need to think about pastor future feelings but just enjoy the momentitself...

FREESTYLE MEN1-Christophe Tack – PKRAWorld Champ2-Liam Whaley3-Aaron HadlowFREESTYLE WOMEN1-Karolina Winkowska - PKRAWorld Champ2-Gisela Pulido3-Bruna KajiyaWAVE MEN1-Keahi De Aboitiz - PKRAWorld Champ2-Pedro Henrique3-Mitu MonteiroWAVE WOMEN1-Moona Whyte - PKRA WorldChamp2-Kirsty Jones3-Jalou LangereeSLALOM MEN1-Bryan Lake - PKRA WorldChamp2-Julien Kerneur3-Oswald SmithSLALOM WOMEN1-Katja Roose - PKRA WorldChamp2-Annelous Lammerts3-Bibiana Magaji2014 PKRA World ChampionsChristophe Tack (BE)- Men’s Freestyle World ChampionKarolina Winkowska (PL) Women’s Freestyle World ChampionBryan Lake (US) Men’s Slalom World ChampionKatja Roose (NL) Women’s World ChampionS

TRSTRIKEAMPAirton CozzolinowearingSTRIKE SERIESStrike amp 4,5 DLSURFING ELEMENTSion-products.com

32HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in PipelineText and Photo John Bilderback

KITESURF INPIPELINEIn the world of surfing there is only one Banzai Pipeline. It is a spectaclethat has been called the greatest ten seconds in surfing. There may beheavier waves in the world in terms of physics: bigger drops, thicker lips,and shallower reefs, but in terms of the place it occupies in the surfinguniverse, nothing can compare. It is the original, the prototype, the alpha.

34HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipeline

Because of it’s intimidatingshape and tightly focusedpower, for many years, itsimply inspired debate.Could it be ridden? Could iteven be survived?But then, as Wikipedia recalls, “It gotits name in December 1961, when surfingmovie producer Bruce Brown wasdriving the North Shore with Californiasurfers Phil Edwards and Mike Diffenderfer.Brown stopped at the then-unnamedsite to film Edwards catchingseveral waves…” Like some royalbaby, it’s life in front of the camera beganon day one. Today the collection ofsuper expensive, super telephoto lensesyou’ll see on any large winter swellis staggering. And with good reason;for surfing imagery it is nearly unbeatable.Even when the waves are largeenough to break boards like matchsticks, the carnage happens only 75yards off the beach. And perhaps thatproximity is it’s defining characteristic.When someone gets a horrible beatingthere, you can almost feel it for yourself.It is well within reach of even amodest amount of empathy.Unfortunately for Oahu kitesurfers witha taste for big waves, Pipeline faces directlyinto the prevailing tradewindsfrom the East / Northeast which blowstraight into the barrel. Even if it weren’tpacked with top echelon surfersevery single day, the angle of the setupmakes it essentially un-kiteable. Oncehowever in 1987, Robby Naish did ridehis windsurfer out there, on a strangeand brief South Westerly wind. His sessiononly lasted 45 minutes before thewind direction shifted. 27 years havepassed now and that event is like aghost, many people talk about it, butfew actually saw it. I was one.Hawaiian trade winds blow about 250days a year. They stop when winterstorm fronts bring Kona winds, (namedfor the town of Kona on the westernside of the Big Island), which blow inbasically the opposite direction. Konaspredictably clock around from theSouth to the West to the North as thefront passes, wreaking havoc on theocean’s surface and they are very oftenaccompanied by rain. This meansthat most kiters simply sit out thefronts and wait for the trades to returnto their usual kiting spots. But theNorth Shore of Oahu is blessed with so

36HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipelinemany fortunate reefs and such a bountyof swell that a handful of kiters haveimpatiently sought out Kona wind kitingoptions. There was Jeff Tobias, whotackled some large storm waves onewinter at Pipe, and Davey Blair who developeda relationship with another bignasty left called Rockpiles just a fewhundred yards up the beach. Both werebold and rode alone, seeing somethingnobody else wanted in the big, nasty,and transient conditions. Despite theirefforts, the photographic evidence wasunappealing. Choppy, grey, and furi-

“BUT THIS WINTER, MY 29TH ON THE NORTHSHORE, HELL MUST’VE FROZEN OVER.”ous, the ocean was not her sexy self.She had an ugly and discouraging look.But this winter, my 29th on the NorthShore, hell must’ve frozen over.January 25th 2014, was a Saturday.I had a pro bono shoot on a piece ofland we’re trying to protect from developmentwith some girls, some cutekids and a dog. I shot and shot, trying tocapture the value of the natural beautyand the loss we’d feel should someonepave over this part of paradise. Aroundmid morning my phone vibrated, once,twice, three times. I try not to be one

38HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipelineof those people endlessly looking attheir phone, but on the ocean I couldsee whitecaps moving left to rightunder the sunny skies. This had happeneda couple of times over the lastfew weeks. The jet stream was shiftedsouth and the storms that producedour typical winter swells were nearbyand brushing us as they passed. Buttoday the weather wasn’t unsettled,the storm was still two days out. So Itook my phone out. Message from ReoStevens: “Checking Pipeline and I’mabout 50% certain its rideable…” Thatwas about 40% more encouragementthan I needed to wrap this shoot. (Howmany photos can you shoot of a coupleof kids and a dog?)I sped off to find Reo standing at Ehukai,the beach park at Pipeline. He waswrestling with what he’d been watching,a tiny bit flustered. His phone’sbattery had died so he was unable toconfer with his partner in kite crimeKeahi de Aboitiz. I could sense Reo’sisolation on this tourist packed beach.He’d seen one really good kiteablewave. It was perfect, and it spit, and

then it was followed by fifteen minutesof rubbish. I got Keahi on my phoneand asked him to get down here. Reoand I assessed the many variables heneeded to consider before committingand grabbing a pump. It looked windy,but was it? The normal pack of surferswas absent, was that a fluke, wouldthey all be paddling out any minute?Would the lifeguards, professionals inrisk management in big surf, just shuthim down when they saw what he waspreparing to do? Was the current sostrong from the left that it would suckall the power out of his kite as soon ashe hit the water? Was that one spittingbarrel the only one we’d see all day?Worst of all, would he be able to walkaway - if he didn’t at least try? This wasPipeline after all, this was not pardonthe expression, just another day at thebeach.We joked that as soon as Keahi showedup, for sure a perfect wave would comethrough, and that was exactly whathappened. Keahi called it on after all ofthirty seconds. They would go. Now asa photographer, the long periods of




crumbly waves didn’t bother me. I amvery well aware that all I need is onegood 500th of a second. Hours can passthat make no difference at all. Thosecould be forgotten. Photos are forever.But as a kiter I also recognized thatthey’d need a fair bit of luck (on top oftheir considerable talents) to be in theright place at the right time, and to findthe good waves amongst the garbage.I also knew they’d really be hangingtheir asses out, not just for themselvesbut for the sport too. What if, on surfing’smost prestigious stage, in frontof hundreds of spectators, things wenthorribly wrong? It was easy to imagineall sorts of dire outcomes: a badlaunch splattering into a few tourists, akite falling impotently from the sky, orthe possibility of a humiliating ‘no waybrah’ from the esteemed North Shorelifeguards. It could end badly dozens ofways, of that much I was certain. ButI would back these two riders againstthe odds any day. I set up my sticksand cleaned my big lens.Keahi and Reo set to work pumping upkites under the confused stares

44 HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipeline

of all manner of beach goers. I wonderedwhat the lifeguard’s reactionwould be when the kites took shapeon the sand. It bears saying that thelifeguards stationed at Pipeline areabove even a shred of disrespect. Beingsome of the most elite watermenanywhere on earth, they simply cannotbe argued with. No one who has seenwhat they do in the heaviest water imaginablewould dare. You’d have to bea complete clown. Their blessing waskey in my mind to the boys just gettingoff the beach.So not wasting any time, or extendingthe duration of the dumb looks fromevery confused visitor staring at them,Keahi and Reo got their kites in the airand their asses in the water. Thankfully,no bullhorn blared from the tower;one hurdle down. Next was the questionof the swift downwind current. Itwas ripping. With too small of a kite,the loss of apparent wind might endthis dream just feet off the beach. Butno, they were powered, and headed forthe next challenge, the shorebreak atGum’s. Gum’s is the little patch of sandthat sits just to the right (downwind inthis case) of the wave at Pipe. Its whereyou either squeak straight out, or getpummeled by brutal closeouts on thesandbar. From years of swimming outat Pipe, I can tell you that Gum’s canbreak your spirit before you’ve evengotten a chance to get your ass kickedwith some dignity up at the peak. Onceyou’re passed that though, you’ll havea relatively easy time getting to thereal action at Pipe. Its all about timing.They set out, climbed some foam,bore off downwind and then bam, theywere outside! Now I was getting excited.This might actually happen! Workingtheir way upwind, feeling their wayonto a few peaks, each moved closerand closer to the lineup. Within minutesthe first proper fade and bottom

46HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipelineturn sent cheers though the crowd.You could feel the support of the previouslyuncertain audience. Whateverthese strange guys were up to, thecrowd liked it.After several tacks, Keahi was the firstto get to the bottom of a big one, on hisbackhand. Reo followed immediatelyon his forehand. This looked promising,the wind was cooperating. Nowit all came down to wave choice. Thebarrel at Pipeline comes from a combinationof the wave hitting the abruptreef and the trade winds holding up

the lip as it throws out. Today the unusualwind was not providing that kindof assistance, so if the wave were goingto tube it would have to be fromsheer horsepower. Most swells camein, stacked up, and bowled as the boyscame off the bottom, but then failedto get round and hollow. But after ahalf an hour of shopping, Reo found agood one. He came from way behindthe peak, did a cutback stall as he gotto the bottom, and pivoted onto his insiderail. He put his weight firmly ontohis back leg, dragged his hand in the

48HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipelineface and tucked under the lip. Andthere it was, a legitimate barrel rideat Pipeline on a kite. The beach wentnuts.I smiled wryly as I knew, no matterwhat, this was a little bit of history.Maybe it wasn’t the biggest orthe most perfect wave, nor the gapinggutter we all know Pipeline canbe, but after having seen Reo’s mentorRobby Naish put his mark on theplace almost three decades earlier Iknew this moment was to be savored.I high-fived the people around me, forhim. I knew right then it would be abig night… Then the World Champ answeredback. Keahi took a page fromthe Pipeline backsider’s handbook andgot one from deep. He pulled up high,grabbed his rail and stuck his butt intothe wave face. The lip threw out overhim, he travelled through the tube,and he’d evened the score. Now thebeach was a full on love-fest. Meanwhile,Konrad Bright had driven downfrom his house at Yards for a look. Bynow he’d seen enough, and began topump up his kite. Within minutes he

was out and in hot pursuit of a piece ofhistory as well. When he found a barrelfor himself his smile was priceless,I could see it through my lens. Havinghelped with launches and watching allthis go down, Richard Whyte realizedhe couldn’t watch it any more. He tooblasted out through the shorebreakand made his way upwind. The tworegular footers, Richard and Keahi andthe two goofy footers, Reo and Konradrotated through the lineup. Each rideseemed to feed the whole group. Oncethey’d gotten a handle on what it tookto bullseye the short thick barrel, theboys put on quite a show. It becameapparent that the long, straight-walledand very fast barrels at Backyardsthey’d been pioneering for the last severalseasons were entirely different towhat they faced here, and it was coolto watch them adapting to it. Insteadof blazing speed, this required precisepositioning and hitting the brakes atexactly the right moment. It was animpressive display of kitesurfing progress.When the session finished, nobodycould immediately process what

50HISTORICAL MOMENTKitesurf in Pipeline

had just happened. It took a coupleof hours, maybe even a day to reallythink through how lucky they’d been,and how glad they were to have seizedthe moment.You must always be alert for uniqueopportunities, as there can be years ordecades in between them. Wikipediamay one day have an entry that you’llbe proud to show your grandchildren, ifyou keep your phone charged and youreyes open. In the words of perhaps thegreatest Pipeline surfer ever, “Youhave to pay attention. That’s why we’rehere in life - to learn how to properlypay attention.”Gerry Lopez

52TRIPTahitiTAHITI...after one year, when i got the mail of Raphael telling me we would have done atrip in Tahiti , i just thought... THANKS!

Text Mitu MonteiroPhoto Gilles Calvet

54TRIPTahitiTahiti has been one of that trip ofwhich i came back different... ibrought something of that landwith me. I remember when i was therefor the first time last year to shoot “Imagine”,the Nuit de la Glise film, my wifecall me and ask if I was happy to flyback home, for the first time ever I answeredher : “ NO , I DON’T !”Its countless spots, its warm water, itscozy people had won my love immediately,but when I saw Teauhpoo… I reallyfelt in love !So now, you can imagine how excitedi was when I got the news that I wouldhave come back in that paradise… andthat time with all the F-ONE team!I can say that my second time therehas been completely different from the


first one. First because I experiencedTahiti by sea. Raphael had bookedtwo splendid catamarans for the teamwhere we spend the most incredible 3weeks of my life. Being in the middle ofthe sea, meant wake up every day withthe sun… watching thousands of starsat night... swimming with dolphins andsharks, shooting whales just in frontof us… and sleeping with the incrediblesounds of Theahpoo breaking fewmeters far from me. We were all dayaround in contact with the nature, thatis the thing that I love more.

118 58TRIPTahitiWhile waiting for the right swell comingin the master of the spot (Teauphoo )we have been around in some incrediblespots like Ha’apiti, Veaira’o . Someof them were really good for wave riding,perfect and clear waves and whileyou are descending the wave it is sogood the background… big and greenhill! I really loved the surf there. Also forstrapless we reached some paradisewhere we shoot unique photos! Ride inthe middle of the sharks is just… unbelievable!

60TRIPTahitiOn the no-wind days i could get advantageof some amazing snorkeling. Thefish there seems to not feel fear! Theyare coming so close to you… I tried tospare fishing (my passion) and I discoveredthat another quality of thosefishes is that they are too smart to befished ;-) We could also train a lot onSUP. The local guys there are amazing!Finally one day on our last week a callarrived: Teauhpoo gonna be work soon!We were in Moorea at that moment andwe did the islands crossing at night.That night the captain, who had got acquaintedwith me, went for a brief sleepand left me the at the helm.

62TRIPTahitiSuch an experience! In the middle ofthe ocean, only me asleep and the dolphins,nothing around, just the sea! Thefollowing morning when I went out ofmy room and I saw the waves breakingin front of me I felt for the second timethat thrills and that adrenaline rushthat I had felt already the year before.Actually the waves were not as big asthe previous time, but the wind wasbetter! A funny anedocte, during a sessionRaph started shaking his hands,trying to showing us something in thewater … well, was a big hummerheadshark! Opposed to what everybodycould think, nobody went out from thewater, on the contrar, we were lookingfor it trying to watch it closer! Crazysurfer people ;-)

64TRIPTahitiI don’t want to say it has been the best trip ever, becuase alsothe othe were amazing, but of course I can say it will be an unforgattableone!

Kite beach clubBeach Bar & RestaurantKite courses, Wave clinic, Down Wind, Surf school!!Relax area and kids corner.The only school to have instaff a World Champ and aNational Champ!!!(Mitu 1x wave world champion; Djo national wave champion)MORE info AT:www.mitudjokiteschoolcaboverde.com - kiteschoolcaboverde@gmail.com

66ITWNoè Font VS Sam MedyskyVSNOÈ FONTSAM MEDYSKYSam Medysky and Noè Font are notjust teammates, but also inseparablefriends. In the last few yearsthey have been touring the worldtogether, making spectacularvideos and comparing theirdifferent kiteboarding styles:the former is an expert ofkickers and rails, the latter,a superb technical rider.The “wise” Sam, recentlyappointed Kiteboarderof the year,confronts face toface the “newbie”two-times PKRAJunior WorldChampion,Noè.

ITW Roberta PalaPhoto Toby Bromwich,Alexandru Baranescu,Christian Blackand Josh Pietras

NOÈVSSAM68ITWNoè Font VS Sam MedyskyFirst Name: NoèLast Name: FontD.O.B.: 25/12/1998Years Kiting: 6 Years.Home Spot: Empuriabrava La Rubina.Favorite Spot: Brazil and Tarifa.Wall of Fame: 2x KiteboardingJunior World Champion.Sponsors: Bestkiteboarding,Ion and Kitecostabrava.Other Sports: Surf,Wakeboarding, skate.

First Name: SamLast Name: MedyskyD.O.B.: June 5th 1990Years Kiting: 16Home Spot: Sauble Beach, CanadaFavourite Spot: Cape Hatteras,USA. Taiba, BrazilWall of Fame: 5X Canadian NationalChampionSponsors: Best Kiteboarding,Woo Sports, Dakine,VitalyOther Sports:Snowboarding,Wakeboarding,HOCKEY!KS_You really are an “oddcouple”; how this friendshipcame about?NOÈ_I met Sam in 2012 at theBestkiteboarding product shoot inPortugal. From there we booth had anormal friendship since we decided tofilm our first video Generations in Brazillast year. I think there is where we gotreally good friends we spent three weekstogether and had the chance to know eachother pretty well. I think while filming Generationsis where we became good friends.SAM_I first meet Noe in Portugal during a productshoot with Best in the Spring of 2012. He wasabout half the height he is now and had long hair.He was almost like a mini me. He was fairly quiet butwhen he did talk he was always pretty funny. We reconnectedin Brazil a year or to later. We were both onthe same page as our view on the sport and the directionwe wanted to take our ride. Not to mention we have a greattime on and off the water together.KS_If you were Noè/Sam, what would you do, first?NOÈ_If I was Sam I would start helping Noè with his homeworkmore often maybe… Well I don’t think it’s a great idea… And I willprobably grow a massive moustache again.SAM_If I was Noe I’d first start by growing my hair longer..... keep upthe beach look for the bikini babes. Then I’d continue training for thePKRA and dominate the competition.KS_Who is the most popular with the girls?NOÈ_I guess Sam had more years to perform the art but I got my fans clubtoo ;-) hahahaSAM_I’m going to say I’m more popular with the girls for the moment but I’mteaching Noe my ways. First step for Noe with women is to NOT tell them he’s 15. Nogirl wants to be known as a cradle robber.KS_What’s the thing that you more envy from him?NOÈ_Probably that he has finished school and I’m not. And his driving license.SAM_envious that Noe is able to do his schooling online and begin traveling and competingat such a young age. My parents are both high school teacher and made it clear that I had toattend class and couldn’t do it online.

70ITWNoè Font VS Sam MedyskyKS_Tell me about one Noè’s /Sam’s fault…NOÈ_We are booth pretty chilled and quiet never any big troublesbetween us. Maybe that time when we… Never mind!SAM_wish he had a driver license so he could be the designateddriver.KS_Fellow riders and teammates, how it feels to be intothe Best Kiteboarding team?NOÈ_Well I think because of that we met each otherand also now it’s pretty fun to have the chance tospend more time at the shoots and meetings. Webooth have a good relationship with the whole teambut it’s always nice to have a good friend in theretoo.SAM_Everyone on the team has a unique rolland image with the brand. We all get alongand are pretty stoked on the products. Notto mention we have a hell of a good timewhen we all get together.

72ITWNoè Font VS Sam MedyskyKS_What are the characteristics of your style?NOÈ_I think I’m more the PKRA kind of rider with new school tricksand Sam is more involved on the Wakestyle/slider world, whichI’m also getting involved now tooSAM_I like all aspects of the sport and have done almost allof them. From the Redbull king of the air to snow kiting inNorway. I’d say what ever fits for the days conditions. I findmyself riding on feature and following the wake boardingmoment a lot these days.KS_And what would you want to pick up from yourfriend’s style and moves?NOÈ_Maybe pick up his rail skills and some of hisgrabs.SAM_Ruben Lenten has a great Megaloopgrabbed front roll. Sam Light can spin off thekicker for days.KS_The most exciting trip, made together...NOÈ_I think we booth are going tosay the same and my most exitingtrip made together is withoutdoubt the time we filmed “NorthernFresh” in Canada this summer.In four words “We hada blast!” If you want to seewhat we were up to therecheck the link here vimeo.com/northernfresh

SAM_We had a pretty great time in Canada. Noe has never been toNorth America before. It was fun to show him around. For me its sameold be it was pretty cool to introduce a foreigner to my country.KS_Who is the best one, on park?NOÈ_Sam by far is the best one on the rails he’s got more experienceas for me I’ve only been hitting the cable park sinceone year.SAM_Just like women.... I’m older and have spend moretime doing it. Noe is young and motivated to learn. Heis quickly progressing and hopefully will be competingwith the top guys in the Real Triple S this year.

74ITWNoè Font VS Sam MedyskyKS_Whathave youlearned fromyour friend, insport and life?NOÈ_ I guessthat’s the best part ofhaving a travel partnerlike Sam, he is older thanme and has more experienceon the kiteboarderlife than me so he showsme many times how to dothis and that. It’s pretty fun!SAM_ Beside learning somenew freestyle tricks, Noe alwaysbrings me back to my roots of whyI got into the sports. It’s all about thefun of progression. The best feelingis trying something new and crashinguntil you finally land it. Riding and life ingeneral is the same. Good things take timeand effort. Just like a fine wine.KS_Tell us about your next projectsNOÈ_We still haven’t planed any new projectsoon but we have a few ideas about what do wewant to do and where.SAM_We have some projects planned for the futurebut it’s timing everything around Noe’s schedule withthe PKRA tour. You’ll be seeing long from the Spanish Canadianduo.KS_Tell him something you’ve never even said...NOÈ_My first ever handle pass was a back mobe.SAM_Noé your sister is going to be gorgeous when she is older.

KS_Our magazine is called KiteSoul, tell us about your vibrations,your emotions during a session…NOÈ_When you spend all your time kiteboarding, you always geta bad session in between the good ones, where everything goeswrong. It’s always frustrating and annoying if the spot is toocrowded, you cannot land your tricks or tangle your lines, butit’s a big part of the game, as without bad sessions you can’thave good ones. In Brazil I have a very luxury problem: UsuallyI get very excited when there are good conditions.But when you spend a longer time here and you basicallyhave the best conditions every day, that excitementstarts to wears off. In the end you just have to findyour own way to have fun. I get more creative withwhat I try and progress and therefore enjoy everysession because that’s why you kite, right?SAM_There are always good and bad sessions.We all want to progress and take our riding tothe next level. Some want to compete andprove themselves against the others andsome are just in it for the personal satisfaction.I’ve been fortunate enoughto make a career from kiteboarding, Ihave traveled to many places I’d neverthought I’d see in my life time, I’vemet ton of people from differentback grounds and walks of life.I’m stoked to have good health,family and friends. Every sessionis a good one no matterthe conditions. “It’s how youfeel for a moment in yourlife when you’re a part ofsomething and if youfind that moment, itlasts forever”

76WAVE TECHNIQUEBarrelTexto Mitu MonteiroPhoto Gilles Calvet/Fone

Mitu MonteiroBARRELIf you are a wave surfer, you yearn for a barrel. The barrel is in thecollective imagination… thanks to the movies, to the surfer legends,everybody knows what is, but only few will actually be inside it.Unlike most of the people think, with a kite is possible to do a barrelas in surfing.

78WAVE TECHNIQUEBarrelFundamental, to do a barrel is the wave choice andthe timing.The right wave allows you to perform a properand long barrel, while the exact timing willbring you out of it safe.The take off is very important, descending the waveyou must keep on controlling how the wave is rollingbehind you. According as it is closing faster or sloweryou will have to regulate your speed. For example, ifdoing the take off you realize that the wave is closingtoo slow, you should descend as much as you canpressing on the back foot for reducing your speedand approaching the impact zone.Once you are in the impact zone,you must bend as more as possible, almost sittingdown on the board, to make your body like alittle “ball” on the board to fit in the barrel.Sometimes you may feel to be too fast compared tothe barrel formation. In this case you need to loosespeed to wait the barrel. To do so, if you are in frontside,you can just place your back hand in the waterand pushing on the back foot.

On the other hand, if you are backside, you need toplace your hip in the water and grap the board withyour front hand .If you feel that you are too much inside the barrel andyou prefer avoid to be smashed in, you must move asfast as your weight on the front feet. This will makeyou gain velocity and going out before it’s too late!In off shore condition, pay attention to the lines,as soon as they touch the water they gonnapush the kite to the opposite sideand in few second your kite will fall in the water. Toavoid this inconvenience, you should compensate forthe other side and come out from the barrel in theshortest time, always moving the weight forward .BaRRELmitu monteiro

STRAIG80STRAPLESS MOVESStraight airText and Courtesy PhotoReo Stevens

HT AIREverything must have a beginning and the beginning of straplessfreestyle tricks starts with the straight air, as this trick is the startto all other tricks. Having the ability and being able to recognizewhen the board is secure to your feet without straps is essential toprogressing your strapless abilities.

82STRAPLESS MOVESStraight air1. Like any jump,whether it’s strapped orstrapless, to leave thewater you must load upthe kite and board bysetting a rail and edgingagainst the kite. Thiscreates added tension inthe lines that you will useto lift you off the water.2. As you load up yourboard, turn the nose ofthe board slightly intothe wind, just enough soas you leave the waterthe bottom of the boardis faced into the wind.You may point the toesof your feet to help youdo this if you feel necessary.3. Though out the air,make sure to keep thebottom of the board facinginto the wind; if theupwind rail goes lowenough for the wind tohit the top of the board,the board will fly off yourfeet.

4. Spot your landingand land like you woulda normal strapped jump.Tips*Take you back handoff the bar, it is easierto rotate your body to aposition that allows youto get the bottom of theboard up and facing thewind.*Use the chicken loop tospeed up or slow downto stay connected withyour board in the air.*If possible, time yourtake off with a ‘kicker’such as a small wave orchop to help you initiateyour jump.

84SNOWKITESnowkiting columnSNOWKITING COLThe winter season is here, so it’s time to get your equipment ready byfollowing our simple tips. Snowkiting is a beautiful and charming sport veryclose to kiteboarding.Being towed by a kite, sliding and gliding on the snow in uncontaminatedplaces, far away from ski slopes, can give you that elusive feeling of freedomfor a few hours.Snowkiting is reasonably widespread nowadays and practiced all over theworld from flat backcountry tracks to the steep mountains of the Alps forfascinating uphill and downhill freeride sessions. The new equipment allowsyou to practice the sport safely without sacrificing the fun and adrenalineinherent to kite-flying.Text Stefano GigliPhoto Pascal Boulgakoff e Courtesy Ozone kites


86SNOWKITESnowkiting columnYou can use a standard inflatable kiteor a dedicated foil kite, but if you wantto make the most out of this truly fascinatingdiscipline, below there is someadvice.To practice snowkiting you need goodskiing or snowboarding off-piste skills,so before you start packing your gear,I recommend you spend a few hours ordays at a ski resort to get confident withsliding on snow and acquire some offpisteexperience.Off-piste riding can be practiced on flator steep terrain but we must alwaysremember that the snow can changein quality, quantity, compactness andhas hidden obstacles; just like kitesurfingon flat, chop or waves on the water.However the wind in the mountains cansometimes change intensity and direction,being overall less constant thanat sea. The mountains deflect the windpath, sometimes accelerating its intensity,other times slowing it down or evencreating turbulent vortexes downwind.Below are a few important tips to makeyour session will be as safe and fun aspossible:We recommend the use of dedicatedfreeride skis and snowboard, a goodhelmet and a back protector for yourjumps because landing on snow is notthe same as landing on water. Note thatthe snowpack does not often exceed50cm of fresh snow, quite the opposite:the wind shapes the surface of thesnow compacting it, and making it hardas ground.In terms of bindings, once again wesuggest you use backcountry freeridebindings with climbing skins, in order towalk on the snow without sinking andfacilitate your movements.If you prefer using a snowboard, you

should invest in some good, light andpractical snowshoes.These simple tips are critical for thepractice of backcountry snowkiting andwill prevent you from getting stuck infresh snow ;-)If you prefer snowkiting on flat land,maybe next to your car, this equipmentis surely excessive, but I always suggestyou use freeride skis or snowboard.Choosing a kite for the snow is quiteeasy and can be split into two simplechoices: a Foil Kite (especially designedfor the practice of snowkiting) or a LeadingEdge Inflatable Kite (LEI kites whichare the same used on water).Foil Kites:Foil kites are the ultimate expressionin terms of performance and safety forpower kiting. Their sophisticated constructiontechnology is based on thedesign of the best paragliders on themarket, making it the forefront of safety.In the mountains we often experiencesudden changes in weather conditionsso swapping or packing down the kiteshould be quick and easy.Recent traction foils have achieved excellentflying characteristics from smaller(4mt) to larger sizes (18mt). There aretwo types of foil kites: Light wind kites(very elongated profile and a high aspectratio of 7) which are a lot of fun onthe flat for long distance sessions andBackcountry Freeride kites, which aremore compact and come in sizes from4 to 12 meters.I recommend using kites for intermediatefliers like the Ozone Frenzy size 7 and12 or 6 and 10 (depending on the weightof the rider and whether you use skis ora snowboard). Remember that skiing ismore versatile than snowboarding whenflying a kite. Skis have the advantage ofbeing able to move your feet and allowyou to reach incredible speeds, makingit more fun than snowboarding. Withsnowboarding you need to use a biggersize kite as the board will generate agreater friction on the snow. If you wantto climb up a mountain you need tomake sure you backpack 2 kites: one forclimbing up and another one for whenyou reach the top and you ride on theflat. Once again foil kites are the bestchoice in terms of safety when ridingin mountains: just release the chickenloop and the kite will land without powerallowing you to retrieve it easily sothat you can pack it down on the spotand put it in your backpack in almost nospace.It is also very difficult to break a foil kitebut, should that happen during a session,in the repair kit of the kite you will

88SNOWKITESnowkiting columnfind some Teijin adhesive ripstop foremergency repairs. Your kite will continueto fly without problems.The only time when the functionality ofyour kite could be compromised is if youbreak one of the attaching bridles. Thiscould happen if your kite drags on theground against some hard or sharp obstacles.The Ozone foil kite also has a handlethat connects the two back lines. Thehandle, when pulled, allows you to parkthe kite where you want and withoutany danger. It is also useful for whenyour kite lands upside down. By operatingthis handle the kite will take off verticallyfrom an inverted position (upsidedown) BUT will then turn itself roundand continue to fly.Securing a foil kite to the ground is quickand easy: just place some snow on theupwind tip and it’ll stay there forever.Launching a foil kite does not requirea kite buddy; you can launch and landyour kite independently.The weight of these kites including bar,does not exceed 5 kg so, carrying twokites of different sizes in your backpackdoes not require a special effort as thebackpack will not weigh more than 5 kg(remember that you use one kite andthe other will be in your backpack readyto be used). Remember that foil kites arepacked down with their bar and lines attached,so there is no need to connectand re-connect.Why we do not recommend LEIs (LeadingEdge Inflatable Kites)Snowkiting with a LEI is not totally contraindicatedas long as you bear in mindthese few tips.The kite is heavier and to inflate it, youneed a kite pump. Temperatures in themountains are often below freezing

point and the plastic valves used to inflatethe kite will harden very easily. I’veoften witnessed valves or pumps breaking,cutting your session short or preventingit altogether before it had evenstarted. A LEI kite is definitely much easierto manage in gusty conditions as itssemi-rigid structure can better absorbthe gusts, however when you crash youhave to remember that the terrain in themountains is not as smooth as water,but presents obstacles (rocks, trees orice ) which can break and puncture yourkite. And when you break a LEI the gameis usually over. Re-launching a LEI kitewhen inverted (upside down) requiresa very large space (at least 25mt). Thekite has to rotate with the LE rubbing onthe snow until the edge of the wind window,and you need to be lucky enoughnot to encounter any obstacles on yourway. You cannot improvise a backcountryhike either because, if your goal isto reach the summit of a mountain, thesafety system of these kites does not allowyou to land where you want to, anddoes not ensure that the kite will notbreak during impact with the ground.On the bright side you can make stunningjumps and glide off a slope, somethingwhich however we advise againstas a kite is NOT designed to fly like aparaglider. In the mountains when youjump off a slope you can easily lift upmore than 15mt off the ground, so ifyou do not have great piloting and flyingskills, landing on top of an obstacleis the most common thing I’ve seen.In addition both the chicken loop andharness are not designed for flying offslopes: you are hooked in only to a pieceof plastic which, if accidentally released,could leave you hanging helpless at 20meters off the ground. Riders who fly

90SNOWKITESnowkiting columnkites in the mountains use mountaineeringharnesses and place a snaphook(karabiner) over the chicken loopfor safety reasons, others even lock theCL with a hook but in my opinion thisis not recommended as there are saferand more suitable “toys” if your kickis to fly off a mountain. Taking off andlanding on the snow with a LEI kite alwaysrequires the help of a buddy, whomight not be always in the right placeat the right time. These kites also weighmore and take up more space: takingalong two kites and a pump might notbe that easy. Remember also that attachingyour lines in the mountains isnot as easy as by the sea. Imagine walkingin fresh snow for 25mt with the coldwind blowing.The last technical advice in terms ofsafety, for all those who want to learnsnowkiting and the discipline of backcountry,is that we should practice thissport with extreme respect for natureand for your friends: remember NOT toleave anyone behind!Anyone who seriously wants to practicethis sport should remember to add a fewmore tools to his/her quiver: a shovel,a probe and an avalanche transceiver(Arva). Failing to bring any of these safetytools with you during a snowkitingsession, could put your life and that ofothers in serious danger.I personally prefer to go snowkitingalone with the necessary equipmentrather than taking with me someonewho is not equipped, as to avoid endangeringother people’s lives.Remember, a kite cannot save your lifein case of avalanches: you cannot jumpyour way out of it.Of course there are schools dedicatedto snowkiting with professional guyswho will give you the right advice in justa few lessons. Make sure you take lessonswith a qualified snowkiting instructor,this way you will be able to enjoy thefreedom of this great sport in just a fewhours.Even if you’re a kitesurfing god and oneof the first human beings to fly a poweredkite, remember that there is alwayssomething new and interesting to learn,especially from someone who knowsthe mountains better than you do andas such can give you some very usefuladvice.For my part, I have been practicing thissport and I have been working in the

I suggest you follow the list below if you want toseriously get into this new and exhilarating sport:+++ + ++++++++Check the wind forecast for the day.Check the snowpack, precipitation and weatherpattern for the past 7 days.Always tell someone where you are going.Make sure you have a GPS.Remember your safety equipment: shovel, probe andavalanche transceiver (ARVA).Bring along a kite repair kit and include ascrewdriver, knife and scissors.Water and energy food.Helmet, mask and gloves.A charged phone (remember that in the mountainsoften the phone does not have coverage, that’s why youshould always tell someone where you are and whereyou plan to go).If you are skiing, I recommend you invest in a goodpair of alpine/freeride skis with telescopic poles andclimbing skins.If you are snowboarding you should wear a good pairof light snowshoes and compact telescopic poles.A good camera or a GoPro to capture your session.kiteboarding business for many years; Iam also a ski and sailing instructor andI like to climb volcanoes with the soletraction of a kite In all these years I havelearned a lot but I think I still have somuch to learn and share.See you in the mountains.Stefano Gigli - Ozone Italia Country ManagerSnowkite schools in ItalyABRUZZO - SnowkiteRoccarasoMARCHE - BigdayTRIVENETO - SnowkiteTonale, Kite4FreedomTo go out for backcountry freeride - Stefano Gigli

FREESTYLINDY GLIDALBERTO92FREESTYLE MOVESIndy Glide Bs 180Text Alberto RondinaPhoto Roberta Pala

In most of the Boardshorts, simple tricks are also themost stylish and difficult ones. Backsides 180’s areperhaps the most common tricks you seen in a wakeboard,skate or snowboard competition. For surethe 720’s, 1080’s etc are very hard to land, but beingable to land a big 180, maybe with a grab, shows thecontrol and coordination you have in the air… it alsogives u that extra touch of style, that not many peoplehave!In the kicker tricks these are the most seen, but alsoin the air tricks same as at the cable, blind landingsare really common and not easy at all.As a matter of physics, when the rear leg is stretchedout and away from the kite, the easier movement togo for its a frontside rotation. So as an example withthis trick, from an indy glide it comes much easierto land toeside or wrapped, instead of backside, solanding blind.E MOVESE BS 180RONDINA

94FREESTYLE MOVESIndy Glide Bs 180Per una questione di fisica, quando la gamba posteriore é stesa, e lontana dalkite, il movimento più facile e rapido, é la rotazione in front side. Quindi, per fareun esempio, con questo trick, l’indy glide viene molto più automatico atterrarlo intoeside o addirittura wrapped, rispetto al backside e quindi atterrare blind.1 2 3With the kite at 45’ degrees,get ready for astrong take off, pushhard with the back legand bend up the frontleg to pull up the nose ofthe board and get someheight.Leave the back hand fromthe bar straight away, to gograb the board on the toesiderail, in the position thatcomes more natural for you,I really like the indy or crail.To keep the kite in the sameposition, you must have putthe front hand right in themiddle of the bar, with a fingeror even too (if you areon a small kite) on the otherside of the depower line.When you reach the grab,move your eyes to thewater underneath you,to calculate the timing ofyour jump, how long youcan hold the grab beforeletting it go and start thebackside rotation.

INDY GLIDE BS 1804 5 6To start the backside 180,turn your head over yourrear shoulder, and pushyour board forward, inthe direction of the kite,so that you are balancedand have the board rightunderneath you.The most common mistakeis not turningenough downwind withthe blind landing, so turnas much as possible,even more then 180’ (likeI do here in the picture).In this way, the kite isgonna barely have anypower, the lines are gonnabe slacked so that thebar is gonna be close toyour hip and really easyto pass behind the back.Bend your knees to cushionthe landing andride away!Ciao!Alby



98STRAPLESS MOVESFrontside reversePOP1.Focus on a target as a small chop, you need agood speed, then pop your board trying to keep itmore vertical than a normal pop air, this will helpyou to do your 180° air rotation.AIR ROTATION2. Push your board tail dowyour back leg and bending ytion is started prepare to lanfrom a leg to another.

nwind to you, extendingour front leg, once rotadswitching your weightSLIDE ROTATION3. After your landing you need to start a new 180°rotation which will be in slide mode, push yourtoeside rail allowing the fins to grab water , this willhelp you to rotate successfully, follow your boardrotation turning your shoulders, taking your controlbar in front of your body pushing it far away fromyou. This will help you to coordinate.

100TECHHow to choose the ideal kiteText Renato Casati - Photo Courtesy RRDHOW TO CHTHE IDEALWhich is the best kite for you? Can you spot all the differentkite models at first glance just by looking at their shape andunderstand what they have been designed for? Can youclassify and understand the basic features of your kite?The availability of kiteson the market is rapidlyexpanding. Every yearmanufacturers come outwith new models to meetthe fast growing needsof new riders; increasingwith the growth ofthis sport. Over the yearsthe development andconstruction of kites hasevolved massively. Lookingat a modern kite,one really wonders howwe could ride those oldconstruction kites, whichtoday we wouldn’t evenfly to have a laugh.On the market today thereare more than thirtykite companies and eachproduce a vast range ofmodels to meet the evergrowing riders’ requirements.FINDING YOUR WAYAROUNDThe variables for theaverage user are way toomany, and often only generateconfusion evenfor those working in thefield, let alone beginners.To simplify we can saythat there are kites whichhave been designedto give the best possibleall-round performance

OOSEKITEWAVERRD - Religion(FREERIDE), and whichare safe, have a widerwind range and they areideal for the beginner tointermediate user. Thenthere are kites which aremore difficult to handlebecause they have beendesigned with a specificpurpose in mind. In thiscategory we find RACE,WAVE, FREESTYLE andWAKESTYLE kites. Thechoice becomes evenmore complicated if weconsider that there arealso hybrid type of kites:for example thereare some freeride kiteswhich are designed tobe faster, as to bettersurf waves, or race kiteswith a lot of hang timedesigned for pulling BigAirs, freestyle kites designedfor jumping big orwake-style oriented kites.Without getting tootechnical (C-kites, Bow,SLE, Delta, Hybrid…), beforechoosing a kite youshould ask yourself a fewsimple questions…

102TECHHow to choose the ideal kiteFREESTYLERRD - ObsessionWAKESTYLE - POWERSTYLERRD - Obsession Pro1.WHAT DO YOU PLANUSING YOUR KITE FOR?Wave, Race, Freeride, Freestyleor Wakestyle riding?Once you have identifiedyour riding style you canstart looking through themanufacturer’s cataloguesand choose a dedicateddesigned model.2.COMPARE MODELS ANDMANUFACTURERSOnce you have identifiedyour needs you shouldexamine (on dedicatedwebsites) the product specificationsof the differentmodels offered by eachmanufacturer and choosethe kite which comescloser to what you have inmind. For example, if youare looking for a wave stylekite and you like to ridestrapless you should buya kite with good “drifting”(please check definitionbelow). On the other hand,if you like to ride strappedin or strapless with full onpower, you need a fasterkite with less “drifting”…3.READ UP AND TEST!Once you have identifiedthe right model for yourstyle, you should read thecomments and reviewsof the kite/s on dedicatedkite forums and, if possible,you should test thekite before buying it. Testinga kite on the wateris very important: onlythis way you can try thoseunique sensations whichare essential to create afeeling between the riderand its equipment, sensationswhich cannot bestandardized.

ALLROUNDRRD - VisionFREERIDERRD - Passion4.ESSENTIAL PARAMETERS TOCONSIDEREach kite has differentcharacteristics, but whichare the essential parametersto considerwhen assessing a kite?In the graphs below wehave tried to summarize,approximately, some ofthe most important parameterswhich are calculatedon the AVERAGEperformance of the availablekites on the market.This way you can spot ata glance, the BASIC characteristicswhich yourideal kite should have.Please remember that itis usually the rider andnot the kite which makesthe real difference on thewater. This said, having akite which was designedfor the purpose intendedis certainly a plus.RACERRD - Addiction

104TECHHow to choose the ideal kiteFREERIDE/ALLROUNDAspect ratio 4.0 /5.0Shape short and largestabilitywaterstartWAVEAspect ratio 3.5 /4.0Shape: short and largeupwindstabilityAll parameters with the samecolor refer to a specific macro-area(freeride, freestyle,race, wakestyle, wave). This divisionis designed to highlightthe distinction of each macro-area.toptop/medimummedimumlow/medimumlow

FREESTYLEAspect ratio 4.0 /5.0Shape: well balancedrstabilitywaterstartupwinddepowerwaterstartfreeride/allroundfreestyleupwindwakestylewaveraceFor each parameter we assigneda value ranging from lowto top through three intermediatesizes. The filled part of thegraph represents the top value,whilst the empty part, representsa low value.

106TECHHow to choose the ideal kiteWAKESTYLEAspect ratio 5.0 /6.0Shape: long and narrowstabilitywaterstartupwindGLOSSARY OF TERMSA.R. (ASPECT RATIO)The numerical proportionbetween the lengthand the width of the kite.All the following characteristicsare a directresult of this rapport.KITE SHAPEA direct consequenceof AR. You can guesswhich kind of kite youhave in your handsand its characteristicsjust by looking at itsshape.COMFORTHow manageable yourkite is. The manageabilityof a kite is a directconsequence of all thedifferent criteria ... windrange,speed, depower,drifting, upwind capabili-

RACEAspect ratio 5.0 /6.0Shape: long and narrowstabilitywaterstartupwindties, hang time etc.WINDRANGEThe low and top windrange sustained by yourkite. For example, a 9mtkite can have a windrange of 15 to 25 knots,whilst another modelcould have a lower rangeof 18 to 23 knots...DEPOWERThe ability to reduce yourkite’s power. It is measuredin percentages. Akite with 100% depowerwill fall off the sky, 90%depower means the kitehas no traction etc. A kitewith a lot of depower isuseful for better managingthe gusts and surfwaves but it is not idealfor riders who do notwant to lose too muchpower when jumping(greater hang-time is neededin this case).SHEETING (IN & OUT)Changing the angle ofthe kiteboarding kite relativeto the wind. Thisis done by pulling thebar towards you to gainpower (sheeting in) orpushing it out (sheetingout) to lose power andstop.RELAUNCHThe shape of the wingdetermines how easilywe can get the kite backinto the air from the water.Remember that 5thline kites are in a leagueof their own.DRIVEHow precisely anddirectly the kite respondsto your commands.LOOP ABILITYThe propensity and facilityof performing akite loop, delivering asmoother and constantpower through the turns,

108TECHHow to choose the ideal kitewithout pulling the ridertoo much.HANG TIMEThe amount of time spentin the air whilst jumping,also known as buoyancy…The lift is the abilityof the kite to “jump high”.Kites with low AR jumpreally high but make youfall just as quickly. Kiteswith high AR jump lessbut have more buoyancy.DRIFTINGThe ability of the kite to“follow” the rider whenthe rider is surfing. Thisis fundamental in onshoreand side onshore windconditions.STEERING (Overpowered)How fast the kite reactsto the pressure of thedepowered bar (sheetedout, hence with slackback lines) when turning.STEERING (Reactive)How fast the kite reactsto the pressure of thepowered bar, so with alot of backline tension.STABILITYHow “predictable” yourkite is when flying, withoutunwanted andunexpected behavior.For example during gustsor when moving fromone wind window to theother.UNHOOKED POPThe ability of the kiteto react rapidly and floatduring an unhookedjump.POWER RELEASE DELAYThe ability of the kite todelay the loss of poweronce the bar is depowered.HIGH BAR PRESSUREHow much pressure isperceived by the rider, onthe arms, when pullingthe bar. This pressure,for some brands, can bechanged by altering theback lines setting.KITELOOP SPEEDHow quickly the kite rotateson its axis.KITELOOP POWERHow much power is deliveredthrough a kiteloop.UPWINDThe ability of the kite tosail close to the wind direction,outside of thewind window. Kites witha high AR go upwind bettervs. kites with low AR.LOW ENDThe power delivered bythe kite in conditionsof low wind, devised forthat specific kite size.Renato “DrKite” CasatiTechnical ExpertRRD Wave team rider. Kiteboarder since 2000, he has beenPKRA athlete and judge. He’s a professional sportswriter forseveral technical magazines. He lives between Como Lake andSardinia, but he spends every winter in the waves of Cabo-Verde.

110TESTKitesoul test 2015KITESOULEST2015


112TESTNaish PivotNAISH, PIVOTREACTIVE STEARING STABILITSTEEARING OVERPOWEREDDEPOWER1. 2. 3.TURNING SPEED UPWINDFREESTYLEPOPLOWENDRACEWAVEALL ROUNDThe Pivot is the newbornkite from Naish, an all-aroundfreeride/wavekite. A new concept anddesign: three bladders,four lines, a kite bornto fill the gaps of theHawaiian company.Our team tested the 6and 10 sq.m. for waveriding on small waves,and for freestyle on flatwater, in various windconditions, from 12 to30+ knots.His name, Pivot, was rightlychosen becauseof its ability to pivot ona small axis of rotation.The kite certainly hasenviable wave riding

NAISH, PIVOTAvalaible sizes5 - 6 – 7 – 8 – 9 – 10 –11 – 12 – 14 sq.m.www.naishkites.com

114TESTNaish Pivotperformance, with excellentdrift, good upwindcapabilities and a hugedepower. The kite immediatelyfelt easy touse: low bar pressure,responsive and fast, the10 sq.m. is indeed veryfast. In wave conditionsaround 4-5ft, our ridersmostly appreciated itsspeed and the drift feltin the bottom turn. Thekiteloops felt strongbut constant, allowingthe rider to recuperatetraction when loosingspeed. Relaunch wasimmediate, thanks tothe reinstatement of theABS front bridle, it alsohas huge and immediatedepower capabilities andit is not prone to backstall;even if, in very lightwind conditions, oneof our riders reportedsome back-stalling.The kite was also testedfor freestyle on flat waterand with strong wind.We can say that it has anice lift and pop, ensuringexcellent freeridingperformance.The bar has also beenchanged: new colorsbut most important newuseful features. Notwithstandingthe “belowthe bar “trim, positionednext to the chickenloop, and not liked bymany of our test riders,the bar has the usual ultra-comfortablegrip andtotally different colors:gray and yellow. The trimof the back lines is internal,where adjustmentscan be made no longerunder the side bar floats,but in a practical housingsituated in the barends. On top of this witha simple movement, youcan change the positionof the “horns” of the bar,with a range of plus orminus 5 cm. On the tip,there are still three attachmentsfor the backlines.The graphics are attractiveas usual; thebag has a new insert forpump storage; an oversizedvalve, in line withother kites on the market:one pump (octopus)system like all other Naishkites (no external tubing,but with internalvalves between the L.E.and the struts); and neoprenecover-valves toprevent damage to theL.E.

The opinion of our teamA kite designed for wave as well as free-riders who want excellent performance,good lift and nice looping. The pure freestyle dedicated Naish kite, is certainly theTorch, whilst the highly successful Park is a good choice for freestylers and waveriders. The Pivot fills the final gap, positioning itself between a versatile freeridingkite and “dedicated “wave riding toy.

116TESTNaish PivotNORTH, DICERACEWAVEREACTIVE STEARING STABILITA’STEEARING OVERPOWEREDDEPOWERTURNING SPEED UPWINDALL ROUNDFREESTYLEPOPLOWEND1. 2. 3. 4.Launched last year byNorth Kiteboarding, theDice is the ultimate kitefor those riders who lovefreestyle as well as waveriding. The Dice immediatelybecame a topseller between those riderswho appreciate asimple and lightweightall-round, four line, threestruts, kite. Well receivedalso by industry insiders,by athletes but especiallyby users, the Dicehas gained a new marketof its own. Neverthelessthis second editionhas been upgraded tofurther raise the performance:a deeper and

NORTH, DICEAvailable sizes4 – 5 – 6 – 7 – 8 – 9 –10 – 11 – 12 – 13 mqùwww.northkiteboarding.com

118TESTNorth Dicemore open profile, gives,to this new version, amore consistent pull andgreater hang time; at thesame time improving itslight wind performance;the kite has also beenmade lighter, with beneficialeffects on the kite’sreactivity. The bridle systemhas been modifiedto provide greater shapestability, whilst the profileof the wing has beentotally redesigned forthe larger sizes (9 to 13sq.m.).We tested the 7 sq.m.,for wave riding, in 4-5 ftwaves; and the 9 sq.m.,for freestyle, on flat water,both strapless andwith a twintip kiteboard.The kite was fast, stableand responsive thanksto its profile shape, verysimilar to a C kite. In thewaves, it was able to followthe rider, reactingquickly to commands,flagging out when needed,and showing a greatdepower. It is especiallyduring wave riding thatthe differences betweenthe Dice and its cousinNeo are more evident:the former is constantly“on the move”, pullingthe rider and always deliveringthe best performance,whilst the lattercan be “parked” whensurfing with excellentdrifting, delivering its fullpower as soon as thekite is recalled. It mustbe said that drifting,which was already verygood, has been enhancedfurther in the latest2015 version. The feelingon the bar is great:the bar pressure, in fact,has been increased toachieve greater responsiveness.Its upwind andlight wind performance,already very good in the2014 version, have alsobeen improved upon.It was only by switchingthe surfboard with thetwintip that we discoveredthe double soul ofthe Dice: an engagingbut not too aggressivefreestyle kite, not a specialistlike the Vegas; butthe ideal choice for riderswho are into mega loopslike King of the Air style.The loop is, in fact, fastand easily manageable,with the ability to delivera constant power throughoutits radius. Theother most importantqualities for freestyle, liftand pop, have also beenfurther enhanced comparedto last year.There are two back-linesettings on the wing tipfor trimming the kite. Thebridles on the front havebeen equipped with anew pulley and there is asmall Y shape accessorybridle towards the finalpart of the leading edge.The bar is lightweight,practical and functional,with a soft grip and decisivecolors. The sensibleintegrated backline adjuster,has been carefullydesigned and is easilyaccessible, as it is locatedinside the bar ends.The length of the bar isalso adjustable and youcan vary it between twomeasurements througha simple rotating mechanismlocated in the barends.The kite has a simpleOne Pump system withan oversized valve, whichallows you to inflate

the kite quickly and withlimited effort. The deflatevalve is located near thetip-end, to achieve a quickand complete deflationwhen rolling the kiteup.The graphics, as mostNorth kites, are simpleand catchy with a goodchoice of colors, nothingexcessive, sober andquite pleasing to the eyewithout being too fussy.The opinion of our teamThis new version of the Dice, after his great success in 2014, did not fall short ofour expectations confirming its qualities and improving them further. The moreopen profile has increased its stability and speed. This kite is the ultimate choicefor many pro-riders and for many “normal” kiters who are into wave riding. Neverthelessits versatility makes this kite part of a wider market, ensuring excellentperformances for freestylers and freeriders overall. We recommend this kite tomost riders, but especially those who, while practicing different disciplines, wantto have one set of kites which can deliver 100% satisfaction in most situations.

120 TESTCabrinha, ChaosCABRINHA, CHAOSRACEWAVEREACTIVE STEARING STABILITA’STEEARING OVERPOWEREDDEPOWER1. 2. 3.TURNING SPEED UPWINDALL ROUNDFREESTYLEPOPLOWENDThe Chaos is the top ofthe range kite from Cabrinha:a bridled four lineC-shape dedicated tofreestyle/wakestyle.Compared to last yearonly a few small refinementswere made, giventhat the product designwas already very successful.The Chaos hadbeen designed to havethe best unhooked performancefor extrememaneuvers and powerfulkiteloops, which iswhy it is used, with muchsuccess, by all CabrinhaPKRA riders.Our team tested the 7square meters and the13

Cabrinha, ChaosAvailable sizes5.5 – 7 – 8 – 9 – 11 -13 mqwww.cabrinhakites.com

122TESTCabrinha, Chaossquare meters in slightlychoppy water conditions,with winds around30 knots (7 sq.m.) and12 knots (13 sq.m.). Themost striking feature ofthis kite is its super loop:such a powerful pull thatliterally gets you off theground, whilst at thesame time, providing asoft landing. However,if you want to make themost out of your pop andachieve the best performancewith the Chaos, isimportant to be very fast.The kite is definitely morephysically demandingthan other models, like aproper C kite should be;this said the sensationwhen riding unhooked isfantastic. The Chaos, infact, gives you the mostsatisfaction when ridingunhooked, being able tofill the needs even of themost aggressive freestyler:a reactive, stable,backstall-free kite, with aflawless “slack” for easybar passes. Its flying isvery fluid and the feelingon the bar is ideal. Thelarger sizes are fasterthis year, the smaller sizesslower: an intentionaladjustment to achievethe best freestyle/wakestyle performance.Another improvement ofthis latest version is thelow end power: usuallyconsidered the “Achilles’heel” of C-shape kites.The depower is also quitegenerous for this kind ofkite, increasing its windrange. On the not so brightside, in some cases,it took a little more timethan normal to water relaunchthe Chaos.Cabrinha bars are usuallywell built and full offeatures: from the depowersystem with twoseparate adjustments(to power or depower thekite) which can be activatedby pulling two adjustablestraps of differentcolor (red and black), tothe quick release systemwhich can be easily rearmedwith two fingers:an indispensable featurewhen arming your kite inthe water. For the purposeof our test we usedthe adjustable Overdrive1x bar where the bar sizecan be altered from 48 to56 cm, simply by slidingthe two bar ends.The inflate/deflate systemis accessed througha single oversized valve,as it has been customfor the last few years,which allows you to rapidlyinflate the kite withminimal effort.The Cabrinha graphics,as usual, are very catchy,with intense colors andpleasing patterns; theequipment is complementedby a functionalgood quality bag.

The opinion of our teamThe Chaos is the ideal kite for those who want to have the best obtainable performanceby a C-shaped kite, especially when riding unhooked, in order to accomplishexplosive wakestyle maneuvers. With its flawless slack for easy bar passesand its powerful, but soft landing, kiteloop, it is considered to be the ideal kite forthose demanding freestylers who want to make the most out of those aggressiveflat or wakepark sessions, or maybe want to compete. Not surprisingly it is thekite chosen by Liam Whaley and Alberto Rondina for their comps. Last but notleast we should remind riders that this kite, whilst having a very specific vocation,can also be appreciated during more relaxed freeride sessions and, wanting toexaggerate, we can say that it shows a discrete behavior even when wave-riding:a good all-rounder companion afterall.

124TESTWaiman, ManiacWAIMAN, MANIACRACEWAVEREACTIVE STEARING STABILITSTEEARING OVERPOWEREDDEPOWER1. 2. 3. 4.TURNING SPEED UPWINDALL ROUNDFREESTYLEPOPLOWENDAfter a long wait, finallyWainman has unveiledits first C kite: the ManiaC.There had been rumorsabout the comingon the market of a pureC kite by the Hawaiiancompany and freestylershave finally seen theirwish come true this year.The ManiaC is a freestyle/wakestyleC kite, fourlines and five bladders,no bridles, projected anddesigned to meet theneeds of experienced riders.Our team tested the 9.5sq.m. both hooked andunhooked, in flat as wellas choppy water condi

Wainman,ManiaCAvailable sizes6.5 – 8.5 – 9.5 – 11.5– 14 sq.m.www.wainmanhawaii.com

126TESTWaiman, Maniactions. The opinion sharedby most riders is that themaniac is a kite dedicatedto an expert user;nevertheless it is quiteeasy to manage becauseof its smooth power delivery.When riding, thekite is quite physical, but,for being a C kite, it hasgood upwind capabilities,and good light windperformance. The kiteis very responsive, withoptimum bar feedback.The kite is equipped withnumerous leading edgeattachments, three forthe front lines and fourfor the back lines, so youcan change the trim, accordingto the wind conditionsand the personalfeeling desired.Water relaunch, a sorepoint for many C kites,turned out to be easierthan expected in strongwind conditions, but alsoexcellent with light wind,a feature that was verymuch appreciated by ourriders.When riding hooked in,the kite felt quite hardwork on the arms, whilst

The opinion of our teamA kite designed for freestyle/wakestyle maneuvers, dedicated to the riders lookingfor a powerful C kite, with wide radius loop, a nice pop and unhooked performancewith flawless slack for easy bar passes.the feeling when unhookedwas incredible. Itfloats in the air very well,allowing for a very fluidpassing of the bar, it hasa nice pop, and is reactiveon the bar. The loop isdeep and with a wide radius,as is to be expectedby a pure C kite.The bar is simple, withouttoo many featuresas it should be for a Ckite, light and functional.The clamcleat is on thefront lines, and it has aremovable finger on thechicken loop.The graphics are veryeffective and the colorsaggressive. One pumpsystem, with the standardtwo valves’ systemto inflate/deflate. A largebackpack, with a separatecompartment for thebar and several additionalpockets.

128TESTBest, TSBEST, TSRACEREACTIVE STEARING STABILISTEEARING OVERPOWEREDDEPOWERTURNING SPEED UPWIND4.ALL ROUNDFREESTYLEPOPLOWENDWAVE1. 2. 3.The TS has been themost sold kite, by BestKiteboarding, of the lasttwo years. It is an open 4line bridled C shape kite,an all-rounder, so versatileand efficient thatAlex Neto decided to useit as his main kite duringthe latest PKRA circuit.Compared to last yearthe kite did not undergomajor changes as thedesign was very successfulin the first place.However a few structuralchanges were made:less dacron and lighterripstop made the kite lighter;a gradual switchbetween the ripstop and

BEST, TSAVAILABLE SIZES5 – 6 – 7 – 8 – 9 – 10 –12 mqwww.bestkiteboarding.com

130 TESTBest, TSdacron on the trailingedge ensured a lowerwear and tear.The bridles are shortercompared to last year,making it more responsivewith excellent bar feedback.We tested the 10 squaremeters in light wind andflat water conditions,and the 8 sq.m. in strongwind and choppy sea.When riding, the kite hasproven to be very stableand light on the bar, easyto handle even whenoverpowered (with thebar completed sheetedout and slack backlines).Noteworthy was alsothe exceptional lift andupwind qualities.We deliberately forced allmaneuvers to check theresponsiveness of thekite and bar; and we canconfirm that, even in difficultconditions, the kiteis solid and has a hugedepower.During testing, the kiteproved to be very responsivewith excellentbar feedback evenin conditions of very lightwind, and with goodpower delivery. The kiteloops quite well: smoothwith a medium-large radius.The feeling whenunhooking was also great.As already stated above,the kite’s front bridlesare shorter this year, andthere are two backlineattachment points. Thebar has a very linear design,it is very comfortable,light, and is available inthree sizes 47-52-57 cm.The chicken loop isequipped with a simpleand reliable quick releasesafety system, whereasthe depower cleat is onthe front lines as usual.

The opinion of our teamThe TS has been the most appreciated kite, between all tested, by our team-riders:it has been proven to be extremely versatile, being able to meet the needs offreeriders, the average wave rider, up to the more aggressive freestyler. Ridersmostly appreciated its upwind qualities, the great depower and its excellent lightwind performance. Last but not least it is exceptionally responsive. A very positiveresult for this all-rounder which, because of its mix of versatility, ease of useand high performance, can be the right choice for riders of any level and style.

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