Kitesoul Magazine #26 International Edition

In this issue: Brandon Scheid claims the Triple-S Invitational 2018, Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol claim inaugural Air Games, Nocher Marks his Come- back by Grabbing World Series’ Opener, Shopping on line: Kite- worldshop’s backstage, Rob Douglas at full speed, Skrova: An island of opportunities, Is kiteboarding a dan- gerous water sport?, How to change the leading edge bladder, HARNESS: Hot to choose the right size, and much more!

In this issue: Brandon Scheid claims the Triple-S Invitational 2018, Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol claim inaugural Air Games, Nocher Marks his Come- back by Grabbing World Series’ Opener, Shopping on line: Kite- worldshop’s backstage, Rob Douglas at full speed, Skrova: An island of opportunities, Is kiteboarding a dan- gerous water sport?, How to change the leading edge bladder, HARNESS: Hot to choose the right size, and much more!


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Competitions<br />

Triple S Invitational | Air Games 2018<br />

Trips<br />

Skrova | Kenya | Egypt<br />

Interviews<br />

Nico Delmas | Shawn Richman<br />

Product Focus<br />

RRD: Religion MK9 & Varial | NAISH: Hover 112 | CORE: GTS5

O N E H I S T O R Y<br />


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Editor<br />

David Ingiosi<br />

david.ingiosi@kitesoul.com<br />

Wave Thecnique Editor<br />

Mitu Monteiro<br />

Freestyle Thecnique Editor<br />

Alberto Rondina<br />

Thecnical Expert<br />

Renato Casati<br />

Photo & Video<br />

Maurizio Cinti<br />

Design<br />

Giuseppe Esposito<br />

Translations italian-english<br />

Daniela Meloni<br />



Texts<br />

David Ingiosi, Kari Schibenvaag,<br />

Michelle "Sky" Hayward, Nicolas Delmas,<br />

Shawn Richman, Dylan Van der Meij,<br />

Alby Rondina, Andrea Ubertallo, Mario<br />

Saragò/Photokitesurf, Naish, Cabrinha,<br />

Core, RRD, F-One.<br />

Photos<br />

David Ingiosi, Thomas Burblies,<br />

Bromwich, Robervania Bösch, A<br />

Ydwer van der Heide, xel Reese,<br />

Svetlana Romantsova, Mario Saragò/<br />

Photokitesurf, Reemedia, RRD, F-One,<br />

Cabrinha, Naish, Core.<br />

Cover:<br />

Photo: Naish Courtesy<br />

Publisher and advertising<br />

VISU Media<br />

Via Cavour, 20<br />

24030 Ambivere (BG)<br />

Amministratore Unico<br />

Federico Sugoni<br />

fs@kitesoul.com<br />

Registration Tribunale<br />

di Bergamo n°10/2014<br />

del 15/04/2014.<br />

Periodicità bimestrale<br />

Copyright <strong>Kitesoul</strong> <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

All content is copyright of <strong>Kitesoul</strong><br />

<strong>Magazine</strong> / Visu Media Srl.<br />


Publisher<br />

He’s a manager and a businessman.<br />

He fell in love with kiteboarding<br />

almost 10 years ago in<br />

the wild and amazing North<br />

Shore of Oahu (Hawaii). Aside<br />

from kiteboarding there is<br />

only one other important<br />

thing in his life: his baby<br />

daughter.<br />

He’s responsible for the 2014<br />

launching of KiteSoul <strong>Magazine</strong>.<br />


Editor in Chief<br />

Professional journalist and<br />

video maker with a solid<br />

experience in sailing, sea<br />

adventures, travels and water<br />

sports, he has been reported<br />

the “blue world” from the<br />

inside for more than 15 years.<br />

He fell in love with kitesurf<br />

several years ago in Sardinia,<br />

then travelled all over the<br />

world as Iko instructor.<br />


Film-maker<br />

Movie buff and keen photographer.<br />

He’s a skater, snowboarder<br />

and wakeboarder,<br />

but he actually burns with<br />

passion for kiteboarding. He<br />

started off with freestyle a<br />

few years ago, but nowadays<br />

he’s more into chasing big<br />

and powerful waves. This is<br />

what he loves the most.<br />


Art director<br />

Kiter since he was in the baby<br />

pram, he is a rider for RRD<br />

Italia and he have a Bachelor<br />

in Comunciation Design at<br />

Politecnico di Milano.<br />

With this assignment, he<br />

finally has been able to put<br />

together his two passions:<br />

kite and design.


Feel The Flow<br />


Technical Editor-Wave Riding<br />

He comes from Sal. Official<br />

F-one and Manera rider.<br />

2008 KPWT World Champion<br />

and three-time Vice World<br />

Champion. He started to surf<br />

and windsurf as a kid and but<br />

he definitively fell in love with<br />

kitesurf as soon as he discovered<br />

it.<br />


Technical Editor-Freestyle<br />

He’s the best Italian rider of<br />

the competitive kiting world.<br />

Cabrinha, Neil Pryde and<br />

GoPro official team rider<br />

and four-time Italian Champion.<br />

Alberto has won the<br />

2001 edition of the European<br />

Championship and third<br />

place in the 2012 PKRA World<br />

Championship.<br />


Technical Expert<br />

RRD Wave team rider. Kiteboarder<br />

since 2000, he has<br />

been PKRA athlete and judge.<br />

He’s a professional sportswriter<br />

for several technical<br />

magazines. He lives between<br />

Como Lake and Sardinia, but<br />

he spends every winter in the<br />

waves of Cabo-Verde.<br />


Professional translator<br />

Daniela mainly lived abroad<br />

where she graduated<br />

in Law and worked. She<br />

discovered her passion for<br />

water actvities back in 2007<br />

when she moved back to the<br />

Sardinian west coast and met<br />

her husband, the kitesurfer<br />

Enrico Giordano. Professional<br />

translator since 2009. She is<br />

a SUP lover and an amateur<br />

photographer and never<br />

misses to photo or video<br />

shoot a Kite or Sup wave<br />


SplitboardsIn<br />

recent years the concept of assemblable boards, the so-called splitboards,<br />

continues to be explored by shapers and design workshops world-<br />

great trip<br />

wide which by taking advantage of new materials and improved construction<br />

techniques are now able to offer more and more versatile and good<br />

companions<br />

quality products.<br />

Upsides: reduced bulkiness and light traveling<br />

The drive to this research comes from the need to meet an increasingly widespread<br />

practical kiters’ necessity: contain the bulkiness of the equipment.<br />

Kitesurfing is a pretty essential sport nonetheless with a set of different kite<br />

sizes, harness, pump, wetsuit, twintip or surf board, eventually it turns out<br />

that one travels full loaded. Well, first of all the upside of a splitboard is that<br />

you can travel light. For example, traveling by plane: we’ve all experienced<br />

the extra charge applied by the majority of air companies on extra baggage.<br />

These charges can come to hundreds of euros and in case of low-cost flights<br />

can even exceed the ticket price. Not to mention the queues at the check-in<br />

and endless discussions with the clerk on duty.<br />

But the advantages of boards that can be dismantled are not only related<br />

to air travels. The reduced bulkiness saves room in the car, especially if<br />

you have a small economy car or a sports car, facilitates the stowage of the<br />

equipment on a boat, allows to get to the beach by scooter or bicycle.

A niche market, close to craftsmanship<br />

Splitboards are no longer rare on the beach and nowadays when about<br />

to buy a new board a kiter who is a frequent traveller definitely considers<br />

it. And what does he find? The current international market offers a good<br />

choice of assemblable boards, although not unlimited. In fact, despite<br />

the technological development, the splitboards’ industry remains a niche<br />

sector where only few big brands decide to invest, the rest is for small<br />

artisan factories. There are various reasons for this.<br />

To start with, there’s been a general continuous downsizing of one-piece<br />

boards that from long and narrow became shorter and wider over time.<br />

Today a freeride board is between 130 and 136 cm long and 40-42 cm<br />

wide. Also, the use of composite fibres such as carbon or Kevlar greatly<br />

reduced the weight. In other words not every enthusiast feels the real<br />

need to use a splitboard. The inevitable doubts about its performance<br />

remain, as well as about its robustness, load and torsion resistance compared<br />

to boards that were born one-piece not by chance and are now<br />

offered let's say as a kit. Proof is that pro riders keep well far off from<br />

splitboards, at least during competitions.<br />

David Ingiosi<br />

Reliable and versatile, but expensive<br />

Another factor that hinders the market of assemblable boards is their<br />

rather hefty cost, although justified by a slower, more complex work<br />

compared to the traditional ones. Finally, many brands aren't interested<br />

in this sector due to the objective difficulty of developing 100% reliable<br />

technical solutions, particularly for the assembling systems. In other<br />

words, is it worth risking the brand's name?<br />

All valid arguments. Anyway, the splitboard's market keeps rolling and<br />

those looking for a space-saving board can easily find the object of desire.



EVENTI<br />

RECORD<br />

18 30 36<br />

Brandon Scheid claims<br />

the Triple-S Invitational<br />

2018<br />


SPEED<br />

TRIPS<br />

EGYPT<br />

KENYA<br />

52<br />



58<br />

Undiscovered spot: Seahorse<br />

Bay, Egypt<br />

62<br />

A kiter seduced by the<br />

love islands<br />

BRAND<br />



94<br />


NEW COLLECTION 2019:<br />



106<br />

The second life of Bianca:<br />

from passion for<br />

kitesurfing to bikinis for<br />

female riders<br />

TEST<br />

114<br />

Is kiteboarding a dangerous<br />

water sport?<br />


132<br />



136<br />

Inobo: the new interchangeable<br />

and cool<br />

board<br />

140<br />




38 44 48<br />

Carlos Mario and Mikaili<br />

Sol claim inaugural Air<br />

Games<br />

The 2019 KiteSurf World<br />

Tour schedule<br />

Nocher Marks his Comeback<br />

by Grabbing World<br />

Series’ Opener<br />


ITW<br />

RIDER<br />

72<br />

Islands of strangers: a<br />

cold water kiteboarding<br />

experience<br />

76<br />

Portfolio Shawn Richman is back<br />

in (the kiting) business<br />

84<br />

Portfolio NICOLAS DELMAS: NOW<br />




118 126 130<br />

Thierry Schmitter: I am<br />

paraplegic, I kitesurf and<br />

I just don't care<br />

Shopping on line: Kiteworldshop’s<br />

backstage<br />



148<br />

RRD: Religion MK9 &<br />

Varial | NAISH: Hover 112 |<br />


18<br />


Pete Cabrinha<br />



20 PORTFOLIO<br />


RIDER: Mitu Monteiro<br />

PHOTO: F-One Courtesy

22<br />





24 PORTFOLIO<br />


RIDER: Tim Walsh<br />

PHOTO: Frankie Bees

26<br />





30<br />

EVENTS<br />

Brandon Scheid claims the Triple-S Invitational 2018

Brandon Scheid claims the<br />

Brandon Scheid and Karolina Winkowska<br />

have taken out the 2018 Triple-S Invitational,<br />

at Cape Hatteras, in North Carolina.

32<br />

EVENTS<br />

Brandon Scheid claims the Triple-S Invitational 2018<br />

It's been hailed as the most prestigious wake-style kiteboarding contest on<br />

the planet and, this year, the Triple-S Invitational got underway in all wind<br />

directions.<br />

Once again, 34 riders put their skills to test and attacked the two kickers,<br />

82-foot A-frame, 56-ft rooftop rail and 45-ft reverse rainbow on offer.<br />

Athletes performed progressive maneuvers, huge aerial stunts, and creative<br />

tricks in the features, and were not profoundly affected by the tricky<br />

wind conditions that challenged the region during the event.<br />

In the men's division, Scheid was finally able to raise the trophy and a $12,000<br />

check, after attempting to claim the contest for six years. The kiteboarder<br />

from Hood River was a deserving winner.

The female fleet proved that the performance gap between them and their<br />

male counterpart is getting closer. Karolina Winkowska took to the skies<br />

and smashed her opponents with a brilliant show.

34<br />

EVENTS<br />

Brandon Scheid claims the Triple-S Invitational 2018

"I can't believe this happened! Thank you to all my sponsors for believing in me, and<br />

also a big shout out to Wind Voyager and Real Watersports for running the sickest<br />

kiteboarding event of all time," said the Polish riders.<br />

"Last but not least, a big thank you to all the girls ripping in the park during the entire<br />

event. You guys killed it! I love you all!"<br />

Men<br />

1. Brandon Scheid<br />

2. Ewan Jaspan<br />

3. Noe Font<br />

4. Sam Light<br />

5. Alex Maes<br />

Women<br />

1. Karolina Winkowska<br />

2. Julia Castro<br />

3. Annelous Lammerts

36<br />

RECORD<br />



The event sanctioned by the <strong>International</strong><br />

Kiteboarding Association (IKA)<br />

returned to the Arabian Peninsula and<br />

got underway in unrivaled wind conditions.<br />

The American kiteboarder secured the<br />

world title for the third time, in a competition<br />

that gathered 13 male athletes<br />

and two female kite riders in the<br />

flat waters of the Sultanate of Oman.<br />

The organization managed to run five<br />

rounds of races. Douglas was the only<br />

kiteboarder to hit a top speed of 50<br />

knots, and also secured the fastest<br />

port tack ever recorded in competition.<br />

"I would like to dedicate this special<br />

victory to four wonderful friends who<br />

fought the great fight and passed<br />

away this year - my grandmother Millie<br />

Guzalak, my good friends Gerd Zuther,<br />

Michael Petrikov and Rick Haller. Love<br />

you forever," expressed Rob Douglas.<br />

Rob, who was diagnosed with cancer<br />

two years ago, was coached to victory<br />

by three-time kitesurfing world champion<br />

Nico Parlier.<br />

"It started with a plan: get a great<br />

coach, get a fast kite, train, travel to<br />

Oman and win the 2018 IKA Kite Speed<br />

World Championship. Mission complete!"<br />

Mandi Browning ended up being the<br />

fastest female kiteboarder with a top<br />

speed of 35.028 knots.







Men<br />

1. Robert Douglas (USA) 50.252 knots<br />

2. Alex Caizergues (FRA) 49.111 knots<br />

3. David Williams (GBR) 45.761 knots<br />

4. Robert Harding (USA) 46.484 knots<br />

5. Enrico Giordano (ITA) 42.642 knots<br />

Women<br />

1. Mandi Browning (USA) 35.028 knots<br />

2. Anna Weld (GBR) 25.737 knots

38<br />

BIG AIR<br />

Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol claim inaugural Air Games<br />

Carlos Mario<br />

and Mikaili Sol<br />

claim inaugural<br />

Air Games<br />

Photo: Ydwer van der Heide<br />

The inaugural edition of the Air Games is over, and<br />

the Brazilians have reasons to celebrate. At the end<br />

of the season, Mario and Sol have raised the greenand-yellow<br />

flag.<br />

The cold German waters ended up deciding the<br />

world champion in a winner-takes-it-all season<br />

showdown.<br />

If Carlos Mario won another final, he and Jesse<br />

Richman would finish the tour on equal points,<br />

but the Brazilian would win on count-backs having<br />

won more times than the American.<br />

If Jesse won - and he'd have to beat Carlos twice<br />

as he won the single elimination - the Hawaiian<br />

would have an overall points lead.<br />

Despite all the efforts from Jesse, Mario's kite loop<br />

with late back roll, 317, and triple backroll secured<br />

him another world title.<br />

"Before, I was training only for freestyle, but I knew<br />

that I needed to do big airs and board-offs," explained<br />

Carlos Mario.<br />

"So, I started to learn them in Tarifa and continued<br />

in the Dominican Republic. I had to train hard to be<br />

able to do them and win. I worked a lot, and now I<br />

have to thank God for this result."

Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol have been<br />

crowned 2018 GKA Kiteboarding World<br />

Tour champions, in Fehmarn, Germany.

40<br />

BIG AIR<br />

Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol claim inaugural Air Games<br />

On the women's side, and on the last day of competition,<br />

Mikaili Sol knew she only needed to win<br />

a single heat to take the world title. And that was<br />

precisely what the 13-year-old did.

"In this final, I was really stressed. In the beginning,<br />

I wasn't making it, but then I switched on, and<br />

I made it. I feel amazing. I feel super stoked<br />

for winning it, and I can't wait for next year,"<br />

expressed Sol.

42<br />

BIG AIR<br />

Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol claim inaugural Air Games<br />

2018 GKA Kiteboarding World Tour Air Games |<br />

Top 4 Men<br />

1. Carlos Mario (BRA) 6,234<br />

2. Jesse Richman (USA) 6,234<br />

3. Maxime Chabloz (SWI) 5,871<br />

Women<br />

1. Mikaili Sol (BRA) 6,300<br />

2. Hannah Whiteley (UK) 6,201<br />

3. Pippa van Iersel (NED) 6,102

44<br />


The 2019 KiteSurf World Tour schedule<br />

THE 2019 KITESURF<br />








The 2019 Kite-Surf World Tour (wave kitesurfing) and the Air Games (big air kiteboarding) calendars<br />

feature new event locations.<br />

The tour kicks off at Sal's Ponta Preta in February, and it will travel to improbable spots like Malmö and<br />

Maui. Germany is still not in the official lineup for 2019.<br />

The GKA also announced that it has a new executive board. Jorgen Vogt leads the fleet, which also features<br />

Till Eberle, Robby Naish, Max Blom, and Klaus Warkentin.<br />

GKA runs two World Sailing-sanctioned world tours, while Kiteboarding Riders United (KRU) is responsible<br />

for the freestyle kiteboarding division.

2019 GKA SEA<br />

PROVIS<br />

46<br />


The 2019 KiteSurf World Tour schedule

SON<br />










48<br />

RACING<br />

Nocher Marks his Comeback by Grabbing World Series’ Opener<br />

N O C H E R<br />

Marks his Comeback by Grabbing<br />

World Series’ Opener<br />

Multiple world title holder, Monaco’s Maxime<br />

Nocher, signaled his comeback to form by<br />

clinching the opening round of the <strong>International</strong><br />

Kiteboarding Association (IKA) KiteFoil World<br />

Series in Weifang Binhai, eastern China.<br />

Nocher’s performance over the regatta’s<br />

five scintillating days of competition<br />

and a remarkable 22 races was<br />

characterised by steady progress that<br />

saw him only top the leaderboard on<br />

the penultimate day, matched by a<br />

cautious error-free final day in which<br />

he sealed victory.<br />

“Compared with the last year I’ve been<br />

very steady,” said Nocher. “I’ve been<br />

training hard and you can see it in my<br />

results. At the start of the year I was<br />

10th, then 5th at the Europeans, 3rd at<br />

the Worlds and 1st here. So, I’m quite<br />

happy about that. I’m not the fastest,<br />

but I am the most consistent and<br />

that’s good.”<br />

Reigning IKA Formula Kite World<br />

Champion, France’s Nico Parlier,<br />

pushed Nocher all the way. He moved<br />

steadily up the order as the regatta<br />

progressed, taking three wins from<br />

three in the final day's 8kts to 11kts<br />

breezes that blew over the smooth Yellow<br />

Sea track that gave him the second<br />

spot on the podium.<br />

Parlier appeared to struggle for consistency<br />

at the start of the tour stop<br />

due to a lack of training and unfamiliarity<br />

with new kites and foils that<br />

racers may use in the “open”, unregulated<br />

IKA KiteFoil events. But increasingly-quick<br />

and consistent by the<br />

close, he narrowed the gap to Nocher.<br />

“I’m happy, it was a good last day,”<br />

said Parlier. “I’m pleased, too, with<br />

the way I went towards the end of<br />

the regatta. I feel good and I’m happy<br />

that I’m going well even in the lighter<br />

winds we had on the last day.”<br />

Britain’s Connor Bainbridge paid the<br />

price for the growing pace and consistency<br />

of both Nocher and Parlier.<br />

Bainbridge had a lock on the leaderboard’s<br />

top spot for the opening three<br />

days and looked unassailable, racking<br />

up win after win.<br />

But over the final two days of the competition<br />

Bainbridge began to falter,<br />

surrendering his second spot to Parlier<br />

when he posted two low-placed<br />

finishes on the final day. Still, the Briton<br />

took heart from his dominant early<br />

showing and the third podium, his<br />

highest-place finish of the year.<br />

“I’m a little bit disappointed with my<br />

performance on the last day,” said<br />

Bainbridge. “I got a little bit unlucky in<br />

the first race and got in a tangle at the<br />

windward mark. After that my head<br />

wasn’t in the race. But I’m stoked with<br />

my overall performance even though<br />

today was a difficult day because I let<br />

the pressure get on top of me.”<br />

The trio, among 32 athletes from 16<br />

countries, got to share in the €60,000

50<br />

RACING<br />

Nocher Marks his Comeback by Grabbing World Series’ Opener<br />

prize purse, the richest in kiteboarding,<br />

and take a step closer to the IKA<br />

KiteFoil World title awarded at the end<br />

of the scheduled four-stop tour to the<br />

best overall racer.<br />

Most of the athletes will travel south<br />

to Fujian province’s windy Pingtan island<br />

for the second of back-to-back<br />

KiteFoil World Series stop in China<br />

next week, where another $40,000 of<br />

prize money will be on offer.<br />

In the women’s group, which raced<br />

together with the men, the US’s triple<br />

Formula Kite World Champion, Daniela<br />

Moroz, still just 17, bested her rival,<br />

Russia’s Elena Kalinina, and took 16th<br />

spot overall in one of the highest-level<br />

kitefoil fleets ever assembled.<br />

“I’m pretty happy,” said Moroz. “I was<br />

trying to do some new and different<br />

things; taking many more risks to see<br />

if they worked better for me. I’m certainly<br />

more comfortable in the light<br />

winds than I was two years ago.”<br />

Perhaps one of the biggest disappointments<br />

was for Britain’s Guy Bridge.<br />

After a faltering start, the teenager<br />

looked untouchable at the mid-point<br />

and briefly held the top ranking, only<br />

to see his campaign come unstuck<br />

with some bad luck that put him down<br />

to fourth overall, just ahead of older<br />

sibling, Olly Bridge.<br />

“I feel a little disappointed, but I knew<br />

that after the first few days when I<br />

started so badly it was going to be difficult<br />

with the three discards already<br />

gone," said Guy Bridge. “I had a bit of<br />

bad luck too, with the helicopter and<br />

everything. But fourth is not bad.”



—THERE’S NO<br />


AFTER<br />

Alan Van Gysen Rider: Nick Jacobsen Contact: Pryde Group GmbH Bergstraße 7, 82024 Taufkirchen, Germany Tel: +49 89 6650490<br />




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No sad faces here though... because ALL our wetsuits use Yamamoto so you can<br />

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Yamamoto neoprene has a unique cell structure and has<br />

a 23% higher closed cell ratio for added buoyancy and<br />

flexibility [1]. The cells are evenly spaced and filled with<br />

nitrogen gas that increases heat retention [2].

52<br />

TRIPS<br />


SKROVA<br />


In Vestfjorden in Lofoten, approximately 8 km away from Svolvær, you find a small and beautiful<br />

island called Skrova. The island’s area is actually less than 4 square kilometres, and<br />

only 190 people live here. It is a fishing and whaling village. Skrova has been on my bucket-list<br />

for a long time. It is only an hour and a half away from where I have my mini house at<br />

Flakstad, but for some reason I have never found the time to go.<br />

Truls and I checked it out on Google maps and decided it was time to finally go there. It<br />

looked like the island had several good kite spots with many small white, sandy beaches on<br />

the outside. I really wanted to try out these spots, so we were excited about travelling there.<br />

We packed my old camper van and drove from Flakstad to Svolvær to do both some hiking<br />

in the region and see to Skrova. I brought my car because it’s my house when I travel, but<br />

you don’t really need a car if you want to visit Skrova. You can catch a boat from Svolvær and<br />

sleep in a tent, rent a room or a fisherman’s cabin (also known as a “Rorbu”).<br />

I wanted to start with some hikes in the Svolvær area before catching the boat. More specifically,<br />

I really wanted to do some of the most famous hikes in this region – Svolværgeita and<br />

Djevelporten. When hiking to Svolværgeita you have to climb the last part, so getting a local<br />

guide for this hike is recommended, but Djevelporten is close by and easy to get to. The view<br />

from Djevelporten is amazing and you can actually see Skrova from there. I sat on the top<br />

looking out over Skrova together with Truls and thinking that it was time to take the boat<br />

out there. If you are traveling in Norway, more specifically in Lofoten, don’t miss out on these<br />

two hikes and take some time to go out to Skrova. This island is definitely worth visiting. It<br />

is beautiful and has a lot to offer.

54<br />

VIAGGI<br />

SKROVA, un’isola di opportunità


Depending on season, the number of boat departures changes. We travelled in September<br />

when the boat has departures per day. The boat trip was really short, only 30 minutes or so.<br />

It was a beautiful boat trip, and I really enjoyed sitting there watching the island coming<br />

closer and closer.<br />

I was going to meet some friends at Skrova, but they were still back at the mainland when<br />

I arrived at Skrova, so I was just killing time by driving around to see the island. It took only<br />

10 minutes to drive around the whole island! However, I did not see any beaches and was<br />

wondering how to get out to them?! I stopped by a mountain, Skrovafjellet, that is 281 meter<br />

above sea level. It’s the highest mountain on the island, so I climbed it to get a good view<br />

over the island. When I reached the top, I could see the beaches and the crystal-clear water.<br />

I knew then that this was a paradise for kiters.<br />

The only problem was – how do I get there?<br />

I went back down to meet up with my friends who had finally arrived with the boat. I told<br />

them what I was thinking about the island. They told me that it would be easy – with a boat,<br />

and lucky for me, they got one.

56<br />

TRIPS<br />


We went out with a boat that night to have a look around, and I have to say, this island is<br />

good for so many activities. Diving, fishing, small hikes, kayak, SUP and kiting, just to tell<br />

you some. The next morning it was windy, and I knew I could kite. I was excited to get out and<br />

placed my kiting gear in the boat. It was hard to decide what beach to stop at, so we started<br />

at the top and kited from beach to beach with the boat following behind. It was cool to cross<br />

around between the islands and getting to a new beach with just short distance. The water<br />

was crystal clear, and I found spots with super flat water. What a day it was! This was a lot<br />

better than expected.<br />




After experiencing Skrova, I knew that I wanted to go back there, so I started planning a kite<br />

camp there with my friends. And it happened! We arranged the “Sea Skrova festival” in August<br />

2018, gave kiting lessons and had a kite gathering.<br />

I couldn’t wait to get back to these beaches and this island. I took my tent, so I could sleep<br />

out on some of the smaller islands outside Skrova. The good thing is that the sun is shining<br />

almost 24/7 this time of year, so it is possible to go for a SUP trip or have kite lessons in the<br />

middle of the night if the weather is good. I love Skrova and I hope to be back there soon.<br />

Hope to see you there again guys!

58<br />

EGYPT<br />

Undiscovered spot: Seahorse Bay, Egypt<br />

Undiscovered spot<br />

Seahorse Bay,<br />

Egypt<br />

For many people, the word Egypt conjures<br />

up images in their mind of the<br />

pyramids, the Nile river and the history<br />

of ancient pharaohs. But venture just<br />

a little further South of Cairo and you<br />

will find a kitesurfers paradise. Blue<br />

water, white sandy beaches and most<br />

importantly wind! If it weren’t for the<br />

odd camel walking by, you would think<br />

you are in the Caribbean.<br />

When choosing a particular kitesurfing<br />

destination in Egypt, most riders<br />

will flock to El Gouna, Hurghada, Soma<br />

Bay or other similar popular spots. The<br />

wind and sun are guaranteed, and the<br />

holiday feel is tangible. There are plenty<br />

of places to go and see and there<br />

are lots of activities for those who do<br />

not kitesurf. So why go anywhere else?<br />

What not a lot of riders know about<br />

is a small bay between El Gouna and<br />

Hurghada, known as Seahorse Bay.<br />

Having been to El Gouna before, I was<br />

open to trying a new spot - and now<br />

I much prefer it to anywhere else in<br />

the world! Just like El Gouna, the wind<br />

blows consistently and smoothly over<br />

the blue, butter flat water. But unlike El<br />

Gouna, the water is quiet and uncrowded.<br />

There are also no sea urchins or obstructions<br />

in the water like some of the<br />

other popular spots. There is still lots<br />

to do if you don’t kitesurf and you can<br />

stay just a few steps from the water.<br />

When it comes to the conditions<br />

you really can’t get any better than<br />

Seahorse Bay. We went during July/<br />

August which is the hottest time of<br />

the year, so the air temperature was<br />

around 40 degrees Celsius and the<br />

water about 30 degrees. Since it is so<br />

hot, be sure to pack lots of sunscreen,<br />

a hat and a long rash vest or even a<br />

very thin wetsuit. We also found it<br />

very helpful to wear flip flops on the<br />

beach while setting up since the sand<br />

is extremely hot. It is really safe there,<br />

so we often just left our flip flops and<br />

pump on the beach while we were out<br />

on the water. It is also crucial to bring<br />

your GoPro and camera, since you will<br />

want to be taking photos of this beautiful<br />

spot all day long! I also found<br />

it helpful to wear my Wetsleeve. It is<br />

a wearable hydration sleeve which<br />

you wear on your arm – so you can<br />

drink water while you kitesurf. It really<br />

helped me to stay hydrated and<br />

not to get sunstroke. It is very easy<br />

to use and doesn’t get in the way of<br />

your riding, even if you are practicing<br />

technical tricks. The wind was an average<br />

of 15 knots, usually strongest<br />

in the morning and afternoon, and<br />

Michelle "Sky" Hayward

60<br />

EGYPT<br />

Undiscovered spot: Seahorse Bay, Egypt<br />

sometimes slacking off slightly at<br />

lunchtime. We had a few days where it<br />

was closer to 10 knots and a few days<br />

where it reached 25 knots. The great<br />

thing about the wind there is that it<br />

stays quite consistent during the day<br />

and never suddenly picks up or dies<br />

down. We often had two sessions a day<br />

and if weren’t so tired we could easily<br />

have had more. I was delighted that<br />

the wind had enough power behind it.<br />

When traveling to other warm places<br />

like Zanzibar, the warm wind is so light<br />

and has no power behind it making it<br />

difficult to enjoy yourself on the water<br />

or learn anything new. But<br />

in Egypt when the forecast<br />

says it is going to be 15<br />

knots, it really is 15 knots<br />

and it feels like it too! Out<br />

of the 3 weeks we were<br />

there, we only had about 4<br />

no-wind days. Which was<br />

a great opportunity to go<br />

and explore the surroundings<br />

and relax. The flat<br />

water and sandy bottom<br />

make it ideal for all riders,<br />

from beginners to freestylers.<br />

The wind is cross-onshore,<br />

making it very safe<br />

for all levels. It is much<br />

less crowded than the<br />

other spots around Egypt<br />

so even though there were<br />

a few beginners in the water,<br />

they never got in our<br />

way. You will feel like you<br />

have the entire Red Sea all<br />

to yourself. In hindsight<br />

I would have preferred to<br />

go end of August/early<br />

September since the temperature<br />

is slightly cooler and the wind<br />

is said to be stronger and blow more<br />

regularly then.<br />

The best place to stay is a small hotel<br />

called Sweet Home. It is surrounded<br />

by big resorts which I would not suggest<br />

staying at if you are a kitesurfer;<br />

since there is no place to store your<br />

gear and you have to walk a long way<br />

from your hotel room to the beach. And<br />

the beaches at those resorts are also<br />

not ideal for setting up your kite since<br />

there are beach chairs on the beach<br />

and boats in the water that would get<br />

in your way. That’s why Sweet Home is<br />

ideal. It is situated right along the water’s<br />

edge and boasts a private beach<br />

to set up your kite. We have travelled<br />

all around the world in search of amazing<br />

kite spots and this is the closest<br />

we have ever stayed to a kitesurfing<br />

spot. You can sit on your private deck<br />

and watch the kitesurfers and then<br />

walk just 50 steps to the launch spot.<br />

Afterwards you can enjoy a beer from<br />

the mini-bar and watch the last few<br />

kiters from your deck ride out the sunset,<br />

unless you decide to join them for<br />

yet another session. For me, it’s the

little things that count when choosing<br />

a place to stay. Things like the<br />

incredible family-style hospitality we<br />

experienced from the hotel staff and<br />

the amazing service we received in all<br />

aspects of our stay. They even know<br />

how to land and launch your kite if<br />

you are traveling alone and there is<br />

an outdoor shower to wash off your<br />

gear. And of course, Wi-Fi and air-conditioning<br />

which are always a must. I<br />

would suggest going for the fully inclusive<br />

option, so you can kite all day<br />

without worrying where you are going<br />

to go eat. They also serve a large variety<br />

with plenty of food, so you will have<br />

more than enough energy to go kitesurfing<br />

all day long.<br />

On days that there is no wind or for<br />

those who do not kitesurf there is<br />

still lots to do around the hotel and<br />

outside surroundings. Things like<br />

snorkelling, shopping, camel riding<br />

and quad biking are all very popular.<br />

You can also get a taxi, uber or bus<br />

to downtown El Gouna and go to the<br />

many restaurants and shops there.<br />

Hurghada is also popular for their<br />

waterfront, markets and historical<br />

sights. If you want to go for a longer day<br />

trip you could go and visit Luxor, which<br />

prides itself in having many temples<br />

and historical tours; just be sure to<br />

check the temperature before you go to<br />

Luxor or anywhere inland since it can<br />

get unbearably hot once you are too far<br />

away from the sea breeze.<br />

With just a short flight from Europe, I<br />

can highly recommend Egypt, particularly<br />

Seahorse Bay. You may fly to Cairo<br />

first, or straight to Hurghada, where<br />

the hotel will fetch you and drive you<br />

to the spot. I am already planning my<br />

next trip back and am sad to say I don’t<br />

think I will ever find a spot I love as<br />

much as this!<br />

Undiscovered spot<br />

Seahorse Bay, Egypt

62<br />

KENYA<br />

A kiter seduced by the love islands<br />

KENYA<br />

Text & Pictures David Ingiosi

A kiter seduced by the love islands<br />

A kitesurfing instructor working in Watamu, Kenya, is exploring the coast to reach a picturesque<br />

bay dotted with islands that form a lagoon of incredible colors and "out of time" atmosphere. Surfing<br />

in this African spot overlooking the Indian Ocean has a magical flavor and gives great emotions.

64<br />

KENYA<br />

A kiter seduced by the love islands<br />

Having the good fortune of riding in a dream spot is dangerous<br />

for a kiter’s life. The Indian Ocean which offers a<br />

thousand shades of green, white sand like talcum powder,<br />

water that marks a temperature of 28 degrees and the wind<br />

blowing at 20 knots every day kidnap you and you do not<br />

want to leave. The risk is to take root on that beach, remain<br />

planted there without any intention to move to not give up<br />

on these fantastic conditions. But moving, exploring new<br />

beaches and promote the discipline of kitesurfing along<br />

the Kenyan coast is one of the tasks I have been assigned.<br />

Discovering new beaches along the coast<br />

The school that I manage is called Watamu Kiteboarding<br />

and is located inside the Garoda Resort, an elegant African-style<br />

lodge overlooking the beach of Watamu Marine<br />

Park: the spot according<br />

to a list compiled in<br />

2016 by CNN is among<br />

the 25 most beautiful<br />

in the world. The kite<br />

center is located in a<br />

corner of paradise, but<br />

we just opened the season<br />

and we must make<br />

ourselves known, beat<br />

the territory to hunt for<br />

other beaches where to<br />

take our students and<br />

recruit new ones.<br />

The chance to get out of this "garden of Eden" just comes<br />

from one of my students. His name is Michele and is here in<br />

Kenya as a responsible of the tour operator Bravo at another<br />

Watamu resort, the Seven Islands. The village has younger<br />

customers and is located in one of the most evocative<br />

locations of this coast: the Love Islands Beach. Michele<br />

asked me to participate in the briefing that welcomes<br />

guests, present my school and propose kite demonstration<br />

lessons. So, one morning I decided to go.<br />

In this piece of Africa, animals rule<br />

I prepare the equipment, a kite of 12 meters, harness, a<br />

board for my session on the water and a trainer kite with<br />

two cables to do the lessons. As a guard of the school I<br />

leave Tom, a local boy who works with me as an assistant,<br />

and I walk towards the main gate of the Garoda. Along the<br />

way I pass through the "technical" area of the resort that<br />

includes the back of the kitchen, space for garbage treatment,<br />

the gas storage and laundry.<br />

Right there I see some guards with the classic khaki uniform<br />

and a stick. I hear voices and I find that one of them<br />

has just captured a small cobra that skirted the shadow of<br />

the wall. Now he keeps him hanging from a stick to show<br />

it to everyone. I take a look too: it is black and shiny. It is<br />

not the first snake I see around, indeed we are in Africa,<br />

a step away from the bush and nature won’t stop in front<br />

of a few tourists drinking cocktails. A few meters after to<br />

point out that here animals rule, monkeys are sitting on<br />

the branches of trees and when I pass by they jump on the<br />

wall to get closer and see if I have anything for them. They<br />

stare with those little shiny eyes, attentive, then when they<br />

realize that I got nothing<br />

for them, they I look at<br />

each other, as if to take<br />

heart, or they pretend to<br />

look the other way.<br />

When I arrive at the Garoda<br />

gate, the guard on<br />

duty smiles at me and<br />

comes towards me: "<br />

Good morning Mr. David.<br />

Are you ok?" She is<br />

a woman who knows me<br />

well because often lends<br />

beach service. For safety reasons, whoever comes out of<br />

the resort must say who it is, where it goes and the time of<br />

come back. If you are in the car this is searched, including<br />

the trunk. Hakuna Matata for me, that is no problem, so I<br />

left the gate and said goodbye.<br />

Moving on with a Bajaji, the helmet is optional<br />

To reach the Seven Islands which is located about 6 km<br />

north of Watamu, I cannot walk. The choice is between classic<br />

taxis, useful for long distances, the tuk-tuk, sort of Ape<br />

Car vibrating around on dirt roads as if it were always about<br />

to split and Bajaji. This is a bike that takes the name by the<br />

Indian factory of the produce, the Bajaji Auto Ltd.: here in<br />

Kenya they sell only one model, the CT 100, for ease of maintenance<br />

and finding spare parts. The Bajaji are everywhere,<br />

driven mostly by guys who work for taxi companies. Those<br />

who are lucky enough, buy a used one for 600-800 euro and

66<br />

KENYA<br />

A kiter seduced by the love islands<br />

bring in their own. In fact, it is the cheapest way to move<br />

on, traveling in two, also three, all strictly no helmet. From<br />

Garoda to the villages of Watamu and Timboni the rate is<br />

a euro each way. Those who live here like me usually have<br />

their own network of trusted Bajaji you can call at anytime.<br />

This morning I go for Kalimba, a Rasta guy who lives on the<br />

bike h24 chewing sprigs Marunghi, a local stimulant plant.<br />

Before setting I tell him to pull over for a moment at the<br />

market in front of the Garoda. I must give a ball to Luky, a<br />

10 years old boy son of the owner of a kiosk that sells fruit,<br />

flour and cigarettes. A few days earlier I walked in front of<br />

it and saw his group of buddies that were running through<br />

the trees. They are kids who have nothing and spend their<br />

days under the sun playing in the dust and the rubbish<br />

piled up near the barracks. I arranged to run a race and to<br />

the winner, who turned out to be Luky, I promised a ball. I<br />

bought a red fire colored, faux leather stitched one for a few<br />

euros. When I give it to him, Luky smiles happily surrounded<br />

by other children and they all start running after the ball<br />

throwing kicks in the middle of fields.<br />

Among markets, villages and land for sale<br />

Kalimba restarts the bike and we move on. Here in Kenya<br />

you drive on the left, a legacy of the ancient British rule. The<br />

cars, however, are few, some pick-ups from work, the mammoth<br />

jeep safari with 8 seats and buses carrying staff of<br />

the resort. Common people mostly go for the grinding km<br />

walk all day, some use bicycles on which to pile up mountains<br />

of stuff. From the main road branch of sandy paths<br />

leading to the tribal villages of Ghiriama into the bush or to<br />

some land owned by Italians, British or Germans who came<br />

to live in this area. Today with the crisis, many of them go<br />

away and often you see signs reading "for sale".<br />

To the majestic resort entrances, such as Medina, the Hemingways,<br />

the Ocean Sports, along the way alternating clusters<br />

of shacks that sell junk, safari agencies or small rotisseries<br />

where you eat cooked chicken on the grill. Kalimba<br />

drives silent wrapped in his duvet vest and slows down<br />

carefully to avoid the speed bumps traffic and small herds<br />

of goats that sometimes leave the shadow of the trees and<br />

cut off the road suddenly. Meanwhile, the wind in the distance<br />

begins to sweep the fronds of the palm trees and

creeps through the branches of the baobabs arranged radially.<br />

Also, today will be a good day of kiting.<br />

Dusty roads, tourist pizzerias and voluntary schools<br />

We overcome the crossroad to Timboni with its large outdoor<br />

market and reach the village of Watamu. I ask Kalimba<br />

to stop in front of the Equity Bank because I need to withdraw<br />

from an ATM and he took the opportunity to get gasoline.<br />

Kenya currency uses shilling (KES) that according to<br />

the current exchange rate is equivalent to about 90-euro<br />

cents, but in practice anywhere one shilling equals one<br />

euro. The cost of living is quite low, but at least if you go to<br />

tourist facilities managed by Italians, restaurants, pizzerias,<br />

ice-cream shops, the prices are very similar to our big<br />

cities: a pizza € 8, an ice cream € 6... The interest rates of<br />

banks on current accounts are quite high, some even reach<br />

11 percent. Certain Europeans here live this way: some money<br />

in the bank and at sea all day.<br />

The Seven Islands are waiting for me, I get back in the saddle<br />

with all the equipment and Kalimba drives fast. A group<br />

of children in uniform, shirt and short pants, pulls alongside<br />

us with a smile, they are students of primary schools<br />

who return home after class. One of these schools I know<br />

it well: it's called Happy House and is been running for 16<br />

years by an English lady, Sue Hayward, with the help of<br />

volunteers; it welcomes especially orphans and disadvantaged,<br />

but also those included in the adoption process by<br />

European families.<br />

Young Maasai guarding the resort<br />

We finally arrive at the resort, greeting Kalimba and the<br />

warden makes me escorted to the front desk by a Masai.<br />

He's a very tall boy wearing traditional red blanket Shuka<br />

cross on his shoulders and kept tight by a leather belt; it<br />

has the lobes of the ears elongated and carries a quantity<br />

of beads necklaces and metal bracelets; he wears sandals<br />

with upturned tip made from old car tires. "I do not change<br />

them for 16 years," he says proudly. The Masai here are recruited<br />

to oversee the property and the beach and prevent<br />

access to outsiders.

68<br />

KENYA<br />

A kiter seduced by the love islands

Michele greets me with a smile and offers me an iced pineapple<br />

juice. It’s perfect under this equatorial sun pounding,<br />

even though it is February. The guests have already arrived<br />

and gather for the briefing at the bar in front of the pool:<br />

they are still pale skin, a bit tired from the long journey but<br />

excited by the new experience. I tell them about the school,<br />

the class, I explain the equipment and invite them to get to<br />

the beach to try to steer the kite.<br />

Seven islands in the heart-shaped lagoon<br />

We pass a dense tropical garden with palm trees and fragrant<br />

bougainvillea and by a wooden ladder gain access to<br />

the beach: finally here they are, the famous Love Islands.<br />

The view on the large bay is something that takes your<br />

breath away. At this time there is low tide that shows, as an<br />

open casket, a huge expanse of coral reef with bright colors,<br />

emerald green, turquoise and intense blue. White sandy<br />

tongue ​alternate with small natural pools of calm water,<br />

clear and warm. In the background, at 500 meters from the<br />

waterline, there are seven small islands of different sizes<br />

that emerge from the sea like giant mushrooms, forming<br />

a sheltered lagoon. They are rocky ridges covered with lush<br />

vegetation that can be reached on foot by taking advantage<br />

of low water that reveals countless starfish, crabs, shells<br />

and tropical fish. They are called "Islands of Love" because<br />

during low tide the lagoon surrounding takes the form of a<br />

giant heart. The scenario is an absolute beauty, reminds of<br />

some beaches of Thailand or even better of Polynesia.<br />

Lessons and kite surfing on the reef waves<br />

I prepare the equipment for the lessons and the guests of<br />

the Seven Islands alternate to run the trainer, a small foil<br />

kite two cables. The wind is fresh, and the kite is very fast<br />

and responsive. The excitement of playing with the kite is<br />

strong, it is a bit like being a kid again, and time flies by between<br />

explanations, chatter and laughter under the curious<br />

gaze of beach boys, local guys who live on the beach trying<br />

to make a living selling a bit of everything. Some of them<br />

ask me to try and I agree identifying with them in their desire<br />

to have fun without thinking about shillings.<br />

It is coming at high tide and I decide to go into the water for<br />

a session. The typical wind of the winter season is the Kusi<br />

monsoon and also in this bay north of Watamu it comes<br />

from the North-North East, side on starboard tack. With the<br />

islands in front it seems to surf in a natural amphitheater<br />

of wonderful colors. As soon as you pass the islands the<br />

wind becomes stronger. I enjoy it for a while with the waves<br />

that form on the reef, then I return to the lagoon dodging<br />

the traditional wooden Dhow of the local fishermen willing<br />

to buoy. I admire the coastline from the water that after the<br />

Seven Islands on the right continues with the Temple Point<br />

Beach and then with that of Sun Palm Beach Hotel and<br />

Marijani, all rather chic facilities, surrounded by greenery<br />

and relaxed. The time for a few photos and I go back to the<br />

beach in ecstasy.<br />

Chill out in the magical oasis of PapaRemo<br />

I take the trainer and hold it in the air touring among the<br />

sunbeds and umbrellas on the hunt for potential aspiring<br />

kiters. Meeting Erika, a girl from Livorno, I ask her to try to<br />

pilot the kite. She replies: "It's no use, I can’t swim." "Ah, just<br />

like the Kenyans," I reply, explaining that here the locals<br />

fear the ocean and no one teaches children to swim. Even<br />

fishermen often barely hold afloat. As we talk she tells me<br />

that she left her job in sales in Italy and after a holiday, few<br />

months ago she decided to move here in Watamu. Now she<br />

runs a lodge renting it to tourists.

70<br />

KENYA<br />

A kiter seduced by the love islands

We decide to eat something and go to PapaRemo. This<br />

charming beach bar overlooking the Islands of Love is very<br />

popular both for the fairytale setting and for the timeless<br />

atmosphere that you breathe. Also, its history, as well as<br />

the name, are quite original: "Dad" Remo is a gentleman<br />

who came to this place many years ago when it was still<br />

wild and savage and camped here for over a month with a<br />

tent. He fell in love with this stretch of the coast of Africa so<br />

much that he decided to move here and open a bar with his<br />

wife and two sons, Robert and Laura, who now carry on his<br />

dream with the same passion.<br />

After having enjoyed a carpaccio of fresh tropical fruit salad<br />

and seafood under the shade of the palms I leave Erika. It<br />

is time to return to Garoda and once placed the equipment I<br />

go to greet Michele. While I call Kalimba I get his answering<br />

machine with an African background music, I give a last<br />

look at this magical bay that fills your heart with peace and<br />

beauty.<br />

Dear Remo, you were so right ...

72<br />


Islands of strangers: a cold water kiteboarding experience<br />



How can a cold water kiteboarding<br />

session turn out an unforgettable<br />

experience? Lewis and Harris is the<br />

largest island in Scotland. Located in<br />

the Outer Hebrides, it is also the third<br />

largest island of the British Isles, after<br />

Great Britain and Ireland.<br />


74<br />


Islands of strangers: a cold water kiteboarding experience<br />

With a population of around 20,000 residents, Lewis and<br />

Harris is a quiet, yet fascinating region surrounded by mighty<br />

Atlantic swells, high winds, and shifting weather patterns.<br />

Liam Whaley, Paul Serin, Set Teixeira, Pauline Valesa, Camille<br />

Delannoy, Mallory de la Villemarque, and Maxime Chabloz<br />

are all members of the Manera team.<br />

And they traveled to the Outer Hebrides in search of the<br />

endless coastal spots and inland bodies of water Lewis and<br />

Harris has to offer, all year round.<br />

Together, they explored the "Islands of the Strangers" - the<br />

name given by the Scottish Gaels to the Outer Hebrides - and<br />

found plenty of rewards and reasons to return.<br />

The raw beauty of Lewis and Harris is an ode to Mother<br />

Nature. And all seven riders made sure they appreciated the<br />

once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Shawn<br />

I S B A<br />

76<br />

ITW<br />

Shawn Richman is back in (the kiting) business<br />

Text and photo: RRD Courtesy

Richman<br />

C K I N ( T H E K I T I N G ) B U S I N E S S

78<br />

ITW<br />

Shawn Richman is back in (the kiting) business<br />

Where did you grow up?<br />

I was lucky enough to grow up in Maui, Hawaii.<br />

Tell us more about your background in kitesurfing?<br />

Good question! Where to begin? I got involved back in the<br />

early days of kiting. My brother Jesse and myself started<br />

trying to figure out how not to die while being strapped to<br />

kites around 2001 to 2002. It took almost a year of being<br />

picked up from school by our amazing dad and every day<br />

heading to the beach to get dragged around by these absolute<br />

bullies of kites to finally stay upwind. We were on 2 line<br />

1.5m, 2.5m, 3.5m and then we had this 4.5 four line. I swear<br />

those kites kicked the daylight out of me more than any<br />

other kite since!<br />

Once upwind we progressed quite quickly as we were completely<br />

addicted and spent as much time as we could on<br />

the water. Almost every day! I remember spending a summer<br />

out of school and I only spent 3 days not hooked into<br />

my kite over 4 months, and that was only because I had<br />

such a bad harness rash.<br />

Before both Jesse and I knew it, we were sponsored, heading<br />

off to contests, traveling solo, winning events, loosing<br />

events with the desire to win the next one. My family were<br />

all taken on this wild ride with us, we were so young.<br />

Everything continued from there! Kitesurfing was my childhood,<br />

my teenage life, as well as most of my early 20’s.<br />

I loved it, and also hated it! As fun as it was, I also found it<br />

very difficult. I loved meeting new people, seeing new places<br />

and giving happiness to those that enjoyed my style<br />

of riding. I found the politics hard to deal with, the dance<br />

monkey dance photo shoots of the same riding spot over<br />

and over just on a newly painted board and a mock up kite.<br />

All trying to get the same shot as 6 months ago but with the<br />

“New and Improved” gear. I found myself not enjoying riding<br />

anymore, not putting the gear in the car, and not being<br />

motivated to kite. It felt like a chore and at the ripe old age<br />

of 26 ha-ha I burnt out my stoke for the sport.<br />

It’s been a few years since I put down the kite competitively.<br />

I went from riding 300+ days a year to just twice a year.<br />

I needed to experience something different, see what else<br />

life had to offer. I ended up joining my wife in her wildlife<br />

conservation efforts in East Africa. I was waiting for the<br />

day that I had that urge to kite again with no expectations.<br />

And…. It finally came. In the strangest place. Anna, my wife<br />

was filming a tribe in the desert, we were so far from anything<br />

kite related, and I just got that…. feeling! The next<br />

week we drove our land rover ocean bound and haven’t<br />

looked back. The amazing thing is I have a clean slate to<br />

begin my relationship with Kitesurfing again. I am treading<br />

with caution, making sure this time that it’s all about the<br />

love for the sport. I want to ride with good people and for<br />

a good brand. I want to be proud to fly their flag! Also, and<br />

most importantly - I kite when I feel the stoke, and that is<br />

what it’s all about… and with that mindset I’ve wanted to<br />

ride everyday since I got back to the ocean.<br />

Why RRD?<br />

Sponsorship is like being in a partnership, a relationship,<br />

and a family. When I was thinking about who I wanted to<br />

talk to about getting back in the sport I thought back on<br />

all the connections that I had made in my career, one person<br />

stood out that I’ve always had the upmost respect for.<br />

That was Roberto. He was more stoked than anyone on the<br />

beach, so genuine and passionate about all the gear that

Nationality<br />

Hawaiian definitely not American<br />

Date of birth<br />

11-04-1989<br />

Residence<br />

Lamu, Kenya<br />

Discipline<br />

Big Air, Freeride<br />

Favorite Manouvers<br />

Inverted tweaked Front roll, Hand Drag.

80<br />

ITW<br />

Shawn Richman is back in (the kiting) business<br />

he makes but more importantly how it helps the rider have<br />

more fun! He is someone who will take the extra time, put<br />

that extra effort in, make the more expensive decision if the<br />

result will better the experience for the rider.<br />

That is so important to me. I sent him an email after not<br />

speaking to him in years and he responded within hours<br />

being the same stoked Roberto that I remembered.<br />

What I did not expect was who he then put me in touch with!<br />

None other than, Alex Vliege!! This is a guy I first met years<br />

ago at one of my first international contests. A guy that I<br />

also respect for his passion and dedication to the sport,<br />

so fitting that he is now <strong>International</strong> Marketing and Team<br />

Manager for RRD. I knew that I had made the right decision,<br />

this is the kind of family that will make all the difference as<br />

I enter this new chapter of kiting.<br />

What is your favorite gear?<br />

I am absolutely loving my PASSION 7m kite, BLISS 136 board,<br />

loving my RRD H FLIGHT FOIL- by far the best foil I have ridden<br />

and appreciating the little things on my GLOBAL BAR. I<br />

love how tightly put together the gear feels and how much<br />

attention to detail there is. I picked up my gear and within<br />

5 minutes, I felt like I was as comfortable with my gear as I<br />

would on a 6-month-old quiver.<br />

Which is your favorite spot?

Kizingoni beach on Lamu Island in Kenya. I can’t get enough<br />

of this spot, so much so I have decided to set up a shop<br />

here!! I am currently building a unique kite and yoga retreat<br />

and advanced training centre. The wind is so consistent;<br />

the tides are always changing giving a whole new beach<br />

each and every day. Warm water, good food and island<br />

vibes. Can’t beat it! To wake up in my luxury yet rustic beach<br />

cabana and have my kite pumped on the beach as my view<br />

from bed… I am stoked!<br />

What are your goals for 2018?<br />

To have fun and share the stoke it can bring. But most of all<br />

to begin my journey as a kite educator and pay it forward.<br />

We are still building the retreat, but our accommodation<br />

is up and pumping. Any and all are welcome. If you want to<br />

watch our progress on the kite zone you can follow me on<br />

insta@shawnrichman.<br />

www.lamukiteandyoga.com<br />




Simplicity is our mission.<br />

We remove any unnecessary items, instead of adding them,<br />

to make every component more functional.<br />

Simply said : ”you cannot break what does not exist”.<br />


We obviously still deliver you the bar with the exclusive RRD Rigid thread lines. These lines are made with using the most recent<br />

fibers and an innovative production process. Not only are the lines easier to untwist, but most importantly, they don’t stretch!<br />






No need to ‘change any game’ with the release of our 8th version of the RRD Global Bar.<br />

Because of the great history of performance, we have kept our new version simple, reliable,<br />

and packed with the same great features of the previous versions. But with the V8,<br />

we now take another step forward with new components and redesigned parts.<br />





CAN STRETCH UP TO 25.0 cm<br />


CAN STRETCH UP TO 2.5 cm<br />



84<br />

RIDER<br />




Nicolas Delmas, an ex-Next Generation rider, now he is<br />

coaching the F-One's Next Generation kids.<br />


86<br />

RIDER<br />


I started kiting at the age of 12 on the Étang de Thau‘s spot called "Tocs". These are sandbanks<br />

stretching from Sète to Marseillan: it is there that everything began. My father introduced<br />

me to kitesurfing. Since I started, he was very available: every time it was windy, he came to<br />

get me out of school to go training. When there was no wind, we would go wakeboarding to<br />

refine my glide. I appreciate the chance to share this passion with my parents, without them,<br />

I would not be here today.<br />

I must have been 14, I went kiting to Gruissan because the tramontana blows more often<br />

there than at my home spot. I remember that day there were many people, including Raphael<br />

SALLES. I was kiting all day, I landed the 4 tricks that I knew at the time. At the end of the<br />

session, Raphael goes up to my father and offers that I join the F-ONE Family... Seven years<br />

later, I'm still part of the Team! The Next Generation period at F-ONE was a dream for me: to be<br />

able to travel to the most beautiful spots in the world; surrounded by young riders of different<br />

nationalities who shared the same passion for kiting; supervised by Etienne LHOTE. And<br />

at the end, a beautiful movie directed by Olivier SAUTET. I was lucky to live this experience

NICO-<br />

LAS<br />

DEL-<br />

MAS<br />

between the age of 15 and 18 years old: it was just incredible. These years remain my fondest<br />

memories!<br />

Competing is one of the reasons for my passion for the sport, it allows me to have goals to be<br />

achieved in order to go as far as possible and exceed my limits. I started to run in the Junior<br />

competitions: the French Championship, the Cup of Europe and the World Championship. In<br />

2015, I won the title of European Champion and the title of Champion of France. In the Senior<br />

category, I finished 5th in my first competition in Egypt (2016). For 2 years, I joined the world<br />

circuit and I am currently in 5th place in overall ranking of the GKA Air Games Tour.

88<br />

RIDER<br />


Kiting was not always easy for me because I injured my knee very young, in 2014 (rupture of<br />

the ACL). I was 16, I made the decision not to have surgery at that time because my growth<br />

cartilage had not matured, so I kited for 2 years without ACL, protected by splints and muscle<br />

reinforcements large enough to allow me to kite at a high level. I then made the decision to<br />

have the surgery in July 2016 therefore to sacrifice 7 months of kiting.<br />

It was very difficult mentally as well as physically, but it made me grow up enormously. I<br />

came out stronger and more motivated than ever!

90<br />

RIDER<br />


I realized my first coaching in Greece with Oscar PERRINEAU and Osaia REDING COMMAILLE<br />

back in June. These are two groms from the actual Team F-ONE Next Generation with a huge<br />

potential. During these weeks of training, I enjoyed sharing my passion for kiteboarding, my<br />

experience and my vision of training. Living these moments with them enriched me personally.<br />

Sharing my kite experience is just fabulous!

H<br />

N<br />

2<br />

T<br />

94<br />

BRAND<br />

Naish 2019

ERE IS THE<br />

AISH'S<br />

NEW<br />


019 KITE AND<br />


96<br />

BRAND<br />

Naish 2019<br />


PIVOT<br />


SIZES: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14<br />

Winner of 2018 Red Bull’s King of the Air, the Pivot is direct,<br />

versatile and efficient, maintaining its stand out performer<br />

status in the Naish kite line. Perfect for both novice<br />

and professional kiters alike, the Pivot provides plenty of<br />

sheet-in-and-go, predictable power, direct bar pressure,<br />

easy jumping and control in the air. The superior choice<br />

for versatile performance, the Pivot maintains a large wind<br />

range, proving dynamic and responsive in everything from<br />

waves to flat water.<br />

It has earned an impressive reputation for its intuitive<br />

steering and tight, quick axis of rotation and the 2019 Pivot<br />

continues to push its capabilities even further. With<br />

the Quad-Tex material, we have managed to remove heavy<br />

Dacron panels along the struts reducing weight while retaining<br />

canopy rigidity. The leading edge seam has also<br />

been “beefed-up” with a new thread that has tested off the<br />

charts in overall strength. The new Pivot also comes with<br />

Bladder Lock, which eliminates the risk of bladder movement<br />

in the leading edge and struts to ensure they stay in<br />

place when inflating, deflating, crashing or packing.<br />

While the Pivot has received various tweaks and improvements<br />

that enhance the performance characteristics, it<br />

continues to stay true to its loyal following and remain as<br />

one of the most sought-after kites worldwide.<br />

- Quad-Tex Ripstop Fabric = Stiffest, strongest canopy material<br />

on the market.<br />

- Shark Teeth Trailing Edge = Reduces weight while minimizing<br />

& dispersing canopy flutter.<br />

- Precision turns on a small axis with minimal power increase<br />

in a turn.<br />

- ABS Bridle = Consistent forward drive + maximum depower<br />

+ no back-stalling.<br />

- “Sheet-in-and-go” feel + easy jumping.<br />

- Quick water relaunch.<br />

- Natural drifting effect.<br />

- Constant leading edge taper.<br />

- High-flow valve.<br />

- Octopus Inflation System = Lightest, easiest single-point<br />

inflation system delivering uniform pressure in the struts<br />

and leading edge.<br />



SLASH<br />


SIZES: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12<br />

- Quad-Tex Ripstop Fabric = Stiffest, strongest canopy material<br />

on the market.<br />

- Shark Teeth Trailing Edge = Reduces weight while minimizing<br />

& dispersing canopy flutter.<br />

- Precision turns on a small axis with minimum power increase<br />

in the turn.<br />

- ABS Bridle = Consistent forward drive + maximum depower<br />

+ no back-stalling.<br />

- Unmatched drifting ability.<br />

- Ultra-reinforced wingtip construction.<br />

- Quick water relaunch.<br />

- Constant leading edge taper.<br />

- High-flow valve.<br />

- Octopus Inflation System = Lightest, easiest single-point<br />

inflation system delivering uniform pressure in the struts<br />

and leading edge.<br />

The ideal choice to stoke out dedicated wavekiters, the<br />

2019 Slash delivers unmatched drift, a wide wind range and<br />

quicker reaction time.<br />

The leading edge bladder has been further tapered through<br />

the wingtip, creating an even smaller diameter for improved<br />

turning speed and response. Providing incredible<br />

low-end power and the best down-the-line drift in the Naish<br />

line, the bar pressure has also been slightly decreased to<br />

help fight fatigue and keep kiters on the water even longer.<br />

Made to take a beating in heavy surf, the Quad-Tex canopy<br />

remains the strongest material in the industry, while the<br />

leading edge seam features a new thread that tested off<br />

the charts in strength. Thanks to the strength that Quad-<br />

Tex provides, Dacron strut panels can be removed without<br />

a loss of canopy rigidity, allowing for further weight reduction.<br />

Bladder Lock has also been added to ensure there is<br />

no movement in the leading edge bladder or struts when<br />

inflating, deflating, crashing or packing.<br />

The Slash has established itself as Naish’s premier wave<br />

kite, providing incredible down-the-line drift and stable<br />

flight, perfect for park-and-ride style kitesurfing.<br />


98<br />

BRAND<br />

Naish 2019<br />




- Quad-Tex Ripstop Fabric = Stiffest, strongest canopy material<br />

on the market.<br />

- Shark Teeth Trailing Edge = Reduces weight while minimizing<br />

& dispersing canopy flutter.<br />

- ESP = Greater angle of attack control for more instant depower.<br />

- Precision response for hooked & unhooked riding.<br />

- Direct bar feel.<br />

- Solid power through turns.<br />

- Superior unhooked control.<br />

- High-flow valve.<br />

- Small leading diameter.<br />

- Octopus Inflation System = Lightest, easiest single-point<br />

inflation system delivering uniform pressure in the struts<br />

and leading edge.<br />

SIZES: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14<br />

The longest running kite in the Naish line, the Torch with<br />

ESP has kept freestyle and big-air specialists stoked for<br />

over a decade.<br />

With input from Red Bull King of the Air Champions and top<br />

freestyle kiters, the Torch continues to be refined and tuned<br />

to deliver smoother power and precise handling for predictable<br />

flying. For 2019 the focus has been on improving<br />

its low-end power. Each size has been overhauled, receiving<br />

adjustments to the leading edge diameter and profile<br />

along with adjustments to the 5th line to ensure that there<br />

is maximum power delivery in marginal conditions. Also receiving<br />

updates are the removal of the Dacron solid frame<br />

panels as the strength of Quad-Tex has proven this feature<br />

no longer necessary. The removal of these panels reduces<br />

the weight while retaining the rigidity of the canopy. Also<br />

enhancing the strength is a new thread material used on<br />

the leading edge, which tested off the charts in strength<br />

testing. With this you can have confidence your kite will<br />

hold strong, beating after beating. Bladder Lock is another<br />

new feature, securing the bladder in place and preventing<br />

slippage. The ESP setting allows kiters to tune the flying angle<br />

for better control and easier depower.<br />

Year after year, the Torch with ESP continues to set the bar<br />

as the pinnacle of freestyle performance and the 2019 model<br />

further reinforces that legacy.<br />


MONARCH 132X41<br />


Pro Performance Freestyle<br />

The Monarch has built a loyal following of freestyle kiters<br />

all over the world thanks to its state-of-the-art, no-compromise<br />

freestyle design. Delivering direct power for upwind<br />

drive and explosive pop on demand, this is the board Kevin<br />

Langeree chooses to ride when pushing the limits of big air<br />

kiteboarding.<br />

Defined edges powerfully engineered stiff flex and deep<br />

channels provide outstanding grip—even when at speed in<br />

choppy water. A lightweight basalt fiber construction gives<br />

the Monarch an incredible strength-to-weight ratio and<br />

responsive flex. Its radiated Carbon V delivers insane pop<br />

when loading for freestyle maneuvers or huge jumps.<br />

The performance proven 3D bottom shape is composed of<br />

beveled channel rails and steep quad tips for increased<br />

tracking and phenomenal edging. The reduced concave in<br />

the center section improves water entry and optimized flex<br />

between the rider’s feet.<br />

Highly engineered and sleek in design, this board is ready to<br />

perform to the rigorous demands of every bold kiteboarder.<br />


- Wakestyle Rocker = Chop-eating & forgiving with aggressive<br />

pop + soft landings<br />

- Low Flex = Powerful & responsive handling<br />

- FTC 2.0 (Flex Torsion Control) = Optimized stiffness in both<br />

the axial & torsional axis + superior control<br />

- Sintered Base = Extreme durability + slider proof<br />

- Centered Binding Inserts = Even wear + increased longevity

100<br />

BRAND<br />

Naish 2019<br />

STOMP 135X42<br />


The Stomp offers riders the best of all worlds: superior freestyle<br />

and freeride performance with the advantages of a<br />

wakestyle-inspired design. With input from 2017 Triple-S<br />

Champion, Ewan Jaspan, the Stomp has been shaped to<br />

hold up to the most demanding maneuvers. Ideal for aggressive<br />

wakestyle riders using footstraps or boots, this<br />

board delivers insane drive, edging and pop.<br />

The medium-to-high rocker answers the crucial needs of<br />

any freestyler. It delivers solid upwind performance and increased<br />

speed; grants superior pop, while remaining forgiving<br />

in flat landings; and maintains a smooth ride—even<br />

in choppy water. Its tapered rails reduce weight in the tips,<br />

defining the edges for increased grip and solid directional<br />

stability. Centered inserts allow riders to switch stance setup<br />

so both edges can be ridden on their heelside, extending<br />

the lifetime of the board for riders who spend time in<br />

the park. 3D bottom shaping gives confidence to freestyle<br />

maneuvers with deep center channels and trapezoidal skid<br />

plates provide<br />


- Wakestyle Rocker = Chop-eating & forgiving with aggressive<br />

pop + soft landings<br />

- Low Flex = Powerful & responsive handling<br />

- FTC 2.0 (Flex Torsion Control) = Optimized stiffness in both<br />

the axial & torsional axis + superior control<br />

- Sintered Base = Extreme durability + slider proof<br />

- Centered Binding Inserts = Even wear + increased longevity

DRIVE 134X41<br />


Drawing inspiration from the Naish Motion—a global favorite—the<br />

Drive features a similar freeride shape in a high<br />

performance-oriented design. Ideal for intermediate-to-advanced<br />

riders who demand an extremely lightweight and<br />

responsive board, the Drive delivers and offers superior<br />

speed and upwind performance.<br />

Its carbon glass fusion construction makes it the lightest<br />

board in the Naish line and features heightened durability<br />

alongside a crisp and responsive ride. The Drive’s rails<br />

gradually taper, providing lightweight tips and defined<br />

edges for outstanding grip and optimum flex.<br />

Beveled tunnel edges enhance the smooth riding experience.<br />

Its supreme pop wood core provides unmatched<br />

reflex characteristics while its freeride rocker delivers aggressive<br />

pop and a dynamic ride through both chop and<br />

flatwater conditions.<br />


- Freeride Rocker = Chop-eating & forgiving rocker + back<br />

foot directional stability.<br />

- Low Flex = Powerful & responsive handling.<br />

- Flex Torsion Control = Boosts rigidity in axial & torsional<br />

axis + heightened control.<br />

- Supreme Pop Wood Core = Unmatched reflex characteristics.<br />

- 3K Carbon = Extremely lightweight + exceptional flex characteristics<br />

+ high strength-to-weight ratio.

102<br />

BRAND<br />

Naish 2019<br />

MOTION 134X41<br />


The Motion has built a global following over the years, providing<br />

unrivaled versatility in one “do-it-all” design. This<br />

board offers something for kiters of all stages and styles<br />

from freeride and freestyle performance to twin tip waveriding<br />

functionality.<br />

Its full rocker and beveled razor channel rails handle even<br />

the choppiest of waters smoothly. The pop wood core gives<br />

the Motion responsive flex while providing balanced power<br />

and superior edging while helping to absorb hard landings.<br />

The added fin beam in the tip section adds rigidity to the<br />

fin mounting area, increasing edging ability and hold when<br />

traveling upwind.<br />


- Flex Torsion Control = Boosts rigidity in axial & torsional<br />

axis + heightened control.<br />

- Medium Flex = Dynamic, all-around handling.<br />

- Freeride Rocker = Chop-eating & forgiving rocker + back<br />

foot directional stability.<br />

- 4° Angle Fin Platform = Superior grip + upwind performance.

HERO 130X41.5<br />


The Hero is designed to take riders from their first reaches<br />

and beyond in this user-friendly freeride board. Not easily<br />

outgrown—nor is it only for beginners—the high flex Hero<br />

provides a forgiving ride and on-demand control that even<br />

the most experienced kiters love.<br />

The slightly wider outline gives plenty of planing surface<br />

while maintaining easy edging control thanks to its parallel<br />

rails and progressive curve. The flat rocker eats through<br />

chop and makes edging upwind simple and easy. Strategically<br />

placed impact reinforcement zones help diffuse impact<br />

throughout the board, providing maximum durability<br />

as skills grow with time. Whether just learning, growing, or<br />

cruising, the Hero is the easy, all-around board designed to<br />

keep the experience fun.<br />


- High Flex = Riding fluido, confortevole.<br />

- Torsion Laminate = Precisione nel flex in aree strategiche<br />

per un controllo superiore.<br />

- Freeride Rocker = Grandi prestazioni anche con chop e<br />

stabilità direzionale.<br />

- Tapered Rails = Tips leggeri + grande grip.

104<br />

BRAND<br />

Naish 2019<br />

ALANA 132X38<br />


The Alana is designed specifically for women who demand<br />

all-around freeride, freestyle and TT waveriding performance<br />

in a single board. The outline, flex and dimensions<br />

are all specifically designed to respond to lighter degrees of<br />

rider input and lower loads.<br />

The medium rocker is the perfect blend of responsive feel<br />

and forgiving ride while the supreme wood core delivers a<br />

soft, natural flex without sacrificing strength or weight. 3D<br />

bottom shaping ensures this versatile board can meet and<br />

exceed performance demands, as the Alana is shaped for<br />

excellent edging, chop piercing precision and superior grip.<br />


- Medium Flex = Dynamic, all-around handling.<br />

- Freeride Rocker = Chop-eating & forgiving rocker + back<br />

foot directional stability.<br />

- FTC 2.0 (Flex Torsion Control) = Optimized stiffness in both<br />

the axial & torsional axis + superior control.<br />

- 10° Angle Fin Platform = Superior grip + upwind performance.

ORBIT 152X45<br />


The Orbit is designed to get kiters out on the water and riding<br />

with ease when the wind is light.<br />

Featuring a large surface area and flat rocker, the Orbit<br />

planes quickly and easily. The double concave bottom and<br />

responsive flex gives it a smooth and forgiving ride. Its<br />

asymmetric design maximizes efficiency in marginal conditions<br />

for strong upwind performance while maintaining<br />

a fun, playful ride.<br />


- Medium Flex = Dynamic, all-around handling.<br />

- Light Wind Rocker = Low drag early planing<br />

+ balanced riding.<br />

- Framework Deck = Lightweight + adds rigidity.<br />

- FTC 2.0 (Flex Torsion Control) = Optimized stiffness in both<br />

the axial & torsional axis + superior control.

106<br />


The second life of Bianca: from passion for kitesurfing to bikinis for female riders<br />

David Ingiosi

The second life of Bianca<br />



Love for kitesurfing leads to travel, go around the world<br />

but also change life. Bianca Forzano knows it too well, Roman<br />

with Calabrian origins, who chose to give everything<br />

up and move to Cabarete, in the Dominican Republic, to<br />

reinvent her life. She dismissed her Engineering Degree,<br />

an MBA and a job at PricewaterhouseCoopers, one of the<br />

biggest consulting firms in the world. So now, she teaches<br />

kitesurfing in Santo Domingo, but most of all she designs<br />

and produces her own line of bikinis, highly appreciated<br />

among the female pro riders and enthusiasts of this sport.<br />

Here is her story.

108<br />


The second life of Bianca: from passion for kitesurfing to bikinis for female riders

Who is Bianca Forzano?<br />

I feel like I've lived two lives. That’s because I made a radical life change. Ten<br />

years ago, as an engineer with a career ahead, I moved to the Caribbean to pursue<br />

a great a passion for the sea and water sports, especially kitesurfing. This<br />

passion led me not only to quit my job, but also my loved ones and my life in<br />

Italy. Therefore, I totally reinvented myself within the kitesurfing universe, that<br />

means work-wise too. Besides being a kitesurfing instructor, I started producing<br />

sporty and technical bikinis inspired by my personal experience, that's why<br />

the brand is called Bianca Bikinis and it's dedicated to all water sports enthusiasts.<br />

I design a beachwear and an activewear line, as they are both bikinis,<br />

leggings and tops, in other words everything necessary for those who practice<br />

surf, kitesurf or SUP and just want to be fashionable at the same time.<br />

When you started this sport what type of female garments did you wear?<br />

I felt the lack of female technical products especially designed for this type of<br />

sport: wetsuits, lycras, shorts like female swimmer 90' style or the typical swimwear<br />

useless for this sport as it unties, breaks, wears out easily and it's uncomfortable.<br />

Female riders and surfers both in Italy and abroad actively live on the beach<br />

and spend many hours in the water. What type of sportswear do they need?<br />

I travel a lot all over the world to look for new spots, see competitions or take part<br />

to events. Girls that live in that environment need suitable garments, strong,<br />

technical but also versatile that can make them comfortable both in the water<br />

and on the beach sunbathing or at a pool party. So, I designed garments capable<br />

of meeting both functional and aesthetic needs.

110<br />


The second life of Bianca: from passion for kitesurfing to bikinis for female riders<br />

When you decided to set up your brand, did you choose a personal or a market<br />

approach?<br />

I adopted a personal approach in terms of needs, tastes and inspiration, but I<br />

manage my brand with a technical approach, making use of my previous professional<br />

experience as an engineer and business consultant. A company has<br />

many aspects: design, production, accounting, marketing and communication.<br />

Nothing can be left to chance. I'm a rider, a designer, but above all I am an entrepreneur.<br />

Bianca you live abroad but you are 100 percent Italian. As a clothing entrepreneur<br />

what do you do to promote the "Made in Italy" in the world?<br />

I've always wanted to keep my Italian identity through my personality and my<br />

image. This approach is even more important for my products, I seek the Italian<br />

quality of the product in terms of design, production and manufacture. I use only<br />

Italian raw materials, as well as tailor shops and especially workforce from my<br />

own country, it's a matter of work ethics and sustainability. This is what drives<br />

me to use also recycled products from industrial materials such as lycras.

How do you get your values across: the Made in Italy, the quality of the product,<br />

the philosophy of sustainable production?<br />

I try to spread my values ​both in person and through the brand ambassadors,<br />

girls who are surfers or kiters, in line with my philosophy. Sporty girls, travellers,<br />

who love the sea and have an environmental consciousness.<br />

How many collections do you currently have?<br />

I have two main collections: the Surf Collection inspired by Hawaii, therefore<br />

very colourful, with floral patterns, with very small bikinis, close to minimal, just<br />

like female surfers like it: then the Kite Collection with more covering items,<br />

long sleeve tops and leggings also because riders need to protect from sun rays.<br />

Where is Bianca Bikinis more popular these days?<br />

Currently in the Dominican Republic and throughout Europe where I sell on-line<br />

and through local shops. I would like to be more popular in Italy too, so that<br />

through my products I could popularize both kitesurfing and the other water<br />

sports which don't have to be a men’s monopoly, like abroad where women enthusiasts<br />

are so many.

112<br />


The second life of Bianca: from passion for kitesurfing to bikinis for female riders<br />

Where can people buy your bikinis from?<br />

On my website www.biancabikins.com and on my social networks Facebook and<br />

Instagram. For those who want to try them on, on my website there’s a list of the<br />

shops that sell them both in Italy and abroad.<br />


Bianca<br />


114<br />


Is kiteboarding a dangerous water sport?<br />

Is kiteboarding a<br />

dangerous water<br />

sport?<br />





In 2012, Amit Inbar, an Israeli windsurfer<br />

stated that "kiteboarding is ten<br />

times more dangerous than windsurfing".<br />

Both sports were fighting for a<br />

spot in the Olympic program, and the<br />

discussions between both sides of the<br />

barricade were slightly heated up.<br />

But, how accurate was Inbar's statement?<br />

Were people putting their<br />

lives at risk by riding a kite in medium-to-high<br />

wind conditions? The<br />

truth is that kite accidents are everywhere.<br />

They're in the news, and scary<br />

footage featuring horrendous tragedies<br />

can be easily found in any popular<br />

video-sharing website like YouTube<br />

or Vimeo.<br />

We all know the horrible truth. People<br />

have been seriously injured or killed<br />

while kiteboarding, and that is not<br />

good for any sport.<br />

They've been slammed against piers<br />

and breakwaters, buildings and parking<br />

lots, or thrown up in the air like<br />

marionettes before free-falling from<br />

impossible heights.<br />

In the first decade of the new millennium,<br />

kiteboarding developed a negative<br />

reputation essentially through<br />

terrible pictures and frightening videos<br />

of incredible crashes and disastrous<br />

line entanglements.<br />

Sports specialists and detractors said<br />

that kite lines are like knives in high<br />

winds and that kites are bombs ready<br />

to explode at any moment. Kiteboard-

ing was constantly attacked for being<br />

a life-threatening sport that also<br />

put other people's lives - mainly surfers,<br />

windsurfers, bodyboarders, and<br />

beachgoers - in jeopardy.<br />

So, is kiteboarding really dangerous?<br />

Are water sports enthusiasts signing<br />

a death warrant when they try kitesurfing<br />

for the first time? Or are safety<br />

issues one of the myths that continue<br />

to depict the sport?<br />

And if you take into consideration that<br />

the percentage of sports accidents<br />

taking place in the water and on land<br />

is identical, then it is fair to say that<br />

kitesurfing is, as we know it today, a<br />

reasonably safe sport.<br />

The truth is that knowledge reduces<br />

danger also in kiteboarding. Like with<br />

any other physical activity, kiteboarding<br />

will never be a risk-free sport. There<br />

are many technical, environmental,<br />

and personal variables involved in the<br />


116<br />


Is kiteboarding a dangerous water sport?<br />

Wind is a very serious power source<br />

and is constantly shifting. But today,<br />

safety is in the riders' hands. They're<br />

the ones who make kiteboarding a<br />

pleasant and secure sport, or a lethal<br />

activity. And more than 90 percent of<br />

the risks can be handled by getting to<br />

know how the sport works, and what<br />

should be done to mitigate accidents.<br />

If you've decided to learn to ride a<br />

kite, book a few lessons in a certified<br />

school. And never go out by yourself<br />

without understanding how your wing<br />

flies in the wind window. If you're desperate<br />

to start kiteboarding, get yourself<br />

a kite and fly it in an open space<br />

area, unhooked from the harness, and<br />

in light wind conditions.<br />

Get acquainted with the fundamental<br />

rules of kiteboarding and the safety<br />

sailing procedures, and respect everyone<br />

in and out of the water.

"The truth is that<br />

knowledge reduces<br />

danger also in<br />

kiteboarding. Like<br />

with any other<br />

physical activity,"

118<br />


Thierry Schmitter: I am paraplegic, I kitesurf and I just don't care<br />

Thierry Schmitter<br />


David Ingiosi

Sport and adventure have always run in Thierry<br />

Schmitter's veins. French by birth but Dutch by<br />

adoption, he spent his childhood by the sea, on the<br />

beach of Scheveningen at Den Haag, where he still<br />

lives at 47 years of age. However, as a boy, mountains<br />

fascinated him more than wind and waves:<br />

he dreamt of becoming a mountain guide. And<br />

mountains, although giving him many emotions<br />

and unforgettable days, also ripped off a piece of<br />

his life. Actually, a piece of his body, his legs. In fact,<br />

at twenty years old Thierry becomes paraplegic. In<br />

1998, during a family holiday in Switzerland, while<br />

climbing a frozen waterfall with his father he was<br />

hit by an avalanche which made him fall off for over<br />

70 meters.<br />

He saved himself, but in that gorge in the Alps he<br />

broke his back and lost the use of his legs. "In the<br />

mountains there is always a challenge in front of<br />

you - he says - and you must make the right choices<br />

very quickly, you have to face constant risks and<br />

learn how to handle them. You pay directly for the<br />

consequences of your decisions with no discounts.<br />

Of course, this means danger, but it also gives you<br />

great rewards".<br />

For my children the<br />

wheelchair is just a toy<br />

Despite this serious accident Thierry never gave<br />

up. "I was never really discouraged or depressed<br />

not even for a moment. I am like that, I always keep<br />

on looking to the future and I like making plans. At<br />

that time, sport was everything to me and I had lost<br />

everything that was important to me. But I soon realized<br />

that I had to put myself back together both<br />

for myself and for my young family with two small<br />

children”. That's when Thierry received great support<br />

from his family and his children. "Children<br />

don’t pay attention to my wheelchair. For them it's<br />

just a toy, nothing more".<br />

The joy of the bronze medal<br />

at the London Paralympic<br />

Games<br />

Thierry put himself back into play with a new<br />

fighting spirit and once he had finished his rehabilitation,<br />

he found a new way to live his passion<br />

for sports: sailing. He started sailing on a special<br />

one-design for disabled people like him, the 2.4mR.<br />

He slowly started to enjoy it and began to train seriously<br />

to take part in competitions. His dedication<br />

was rewarded with a beautiful bronze medal at the<br />

London Paralympic Games in 2012. The previous<br />

year he had been elected disabled athlete of the<br />

year in the Netherlands. But Thierry doesn't particularly<br />

value this title. "I am much prouder of my<br />

second position at the World Championship where<br />

I competed against the best sailors in the world".<br />

He learns how to kitesurf in<br />

Aruba<br />

Despite his gratifications in the international sailing,<br />

some years later Thierry Schmitter starts to<br />

suffer the stress of that world and discovers kitesurfing<br />

on a beach in Brittany. He wanted to learn<br />

that sport as he thought it was perfect for sailing<br />

seated and full of adrenaline, so he left for the Caribbean<br />

island of Aruba, where in 10 days he learnt

120<br />


Thierry Schmitter: I am paraplegic, I kitesurf and I just don't care<br />

how to pilot the kite and handle the board. "Kitesurfing<br />

makes me feel totally independent and truly<br />

in touch with nature and everything around me,"<br />

explains Thierry. Since that beginners’ course, Thierry<br />

Schmitter has been kitesurfing for many years<br />

also in competitions and he's one of the pioneers of<br />

the so-called "Sit Kite", that is kitesurf for disabled<br />

people.<br />

He moved back to Den Haag and works as examiner<br />

at the European Patent Office of marine technology.<br />

But as the wind picks up, he goes to the beach for<br />

some amazing sessions. He uses F-One kites and a<br />

standard hydrofoil board of the same French brand<br />

that he modified with the help of the designer<br />

Charles Bertrand, equipped it with reinforcements<br />

and a special seat made of a carbon fibre monocoque<br />

piece.<br />

There's nothing I need, just<br />

take me to the water<br />

"I am a member of Jumpteam, an association which<br />

counts 1.000 members. We have a club house on the<br />

beach and even in winter, there is always someone

there that takes me with a cart on the beach to the<br />

shore. It's important for me to do my sport without<br />

much help and be able to handle almost everything<br />

by myself. If you need an army of helpers, then fun’s<br />

over. I just need someone that gets me in the water<br />

and helps me launch and land the kite".<br />

But cruising is not enough for Thierry. "Shallow<br />

water bores me. I love riding waves and I use them<br />

for jumping and surfing. I often go for long downwinds<br />

of at least 20 km. With a great advantage: my<br />

thighs never start burning” (he laughs).<br />

Sit Kite is spreading<br />

worldwide<br />

As well as practice it, Thierry Schmitter travels<br />

the world as Sit Kite ambassador and he<br />

would love to see this sport more and more<br />

accessible to those who have a handicap like<br />

him. "I am old now, but the next sit kiters generation<br />

will certainly throw kiteloops and handlepasses.<br />

This year, I want to produce video<br />

tutorials to inspire even more people with disabilities<br />

to approach this sport".

122<br />


Thierry Schmitter: I am paraplegic, I kitesurf and I just don't care<br />

For those who would like more information, go to Thierry's website<br />


"Shallow water bores me. I love<br />

riding waves and I use them for<br />

jumping and surfing"



THERMAL REBOUND lining is directly derived from survival blankets<br />

for the protection against cold conditions. Extra protection layer between<br />

the neoprene and zodiac lining to reflect body heat and to block wind chill.<br />


Stay warm with the light Aluminium coated lining THERMAL REBOUND

126<br />

MARKET<br />

Shopping on line: Kiteworldshop’s backstage<br />




David Ingiosi


SUGONI<br />

The eCommerce universe has now infected also the kiters' community which<br />

for years has been turning to virtual shops to buy any equipment, accessories<br />

and technical clothing. One of the advantages of buying online is the<br />

large range of products immediately available, secure payment methods and<br />

fast deliveries. However, technical advice from the designated personnel is<br />

still important to help customers make the best choice as well as the after-sale<br />

assistance service. One of the eShops that is increasingly growing at<br />

international level is Kiteworldshop. We've asked Federico Sugoni, passionate<br />

rider, manager and owner to tell us all about this virtual shop that is creating<br />

a model of efficiency and satisfaction among those riders who choose it.

128<br />

MARKET<br />

Shopping on line: Kiteworldshop’s backstage<br />

Federico, when did you start kitesurfing and how did you<br />

get the idea of an e-shop?<br />

I started kitesurfing back in 2006 in Hawaii and it was love<br />

at first sight. Unfortunately, back then instead of joining<br />

a course I relied on a good friend of mine to help me as a<br />

beginner and this is why for me the beginning was quite<br />

frustrating and difficult, especially considering that my<br />

very first sessions were in a spot that I wouldn’t call fit for<br />

beginners, Mokuleia, North Shore of Oahu. ECommerce was<br />

born from my desire to combine my work to my passions<br />

and thanks to my strong managerial experience in the German<br />

group which controls Mediamarkt (Mediaworld) as<br />

Sales Director and as head of eCommerce in Italy, once I<br />

started my entrepreneurial career, I also started Kiteworldshop.<br />

Why did you choose the name Kiteworldshop?<br />

Because our ambition is to become the best eCommerce<br />

website in the world dedicated to board sports. Today we are<br />

already among the top 5-6 websites in the world in terms of<br />

turnover, but we still have a long way to go to reach the top.<br />

We currently have thousands of customers worldwide and<br />

offer the majority of the brands in the market.<br />

In your e-shop there is quite a lot of dedication to the<br />

universe of kiteboarding but not just that, right?<br />

That's right, we have the largest SUP selection in the market<br />

and our catalogue continues to enlarge its offer with<br />

wetsuits and accessories, but we also put dedication into<br />

windsurfing as well as surfing and soon we’ll offer a wide<br />

choice for wakeboarding enthusiasts.<br />

Which brands do you work with at the moment?<br />

We have built a relationship with those brands that supported<br />

us since the beginning such as Cabrinha, Naish,<br />

NP Surf, Prolimit and JP Australia but we continue to create<br />

partnerships with the major brands in the market and<br />

we aim at offering the widest selection ever in the web. To<br />

date, our offer also includes Core, F-one, RRD, Duotone, Fanatic,<br />

ION, STX, Jobe, Moses, Levitaz, Ronix, Flysurfer, Ocean<br />

sunglasses, Aqua marina, Volcom and soon also Eleveight,<br />

Slingshot, Ride engine, Mystic and Matuse as well as other

ands related to wakeboarding and surfing.<br />

Today sports enthusiasts prefer online shopping compared<br />

to the past. How do you meet their needs?<br />

Making our customers happy is our only mission, that's<br />

why we spend a lot of our time with them in live chats or<br />

on the phone trying to find the products that best suit their<br />

specific needs. Our wide offer gives us the opportunity to<br />

widely extend our search of the right match customer/<br />

product and this is highly appreciated, I believe that the<br />

high level of our advice is one of our strengths.<br />

Customer service is a strategic area of this business.<br />

What is your experience about it?<br />

As I said, we firmly believe that the success of a website is<br />

necessarily related to a high-quality customer support service,<br />

this why we pay our full attention and professionalism<br />

in the management of our customers. Usually we reply in<br />

much faster times compared to the average in the industry<br />

and we strive for finding the solution that makes the<br />

customer satisfied. This is why we are very happy to see<br />

that our customers satisfaction mirrors in the reviews we<br />

receive on Trustpilot where we have a score of excellence<br />

that varies between 9.3 and 9.4.<br />

You recently attended a convention on the state of the art<br />

of e-shops as a positive model. How did it go?<br />

I can tell you that talking about our project for over an hour<br />

in front of the enthusiastic audience of the Prestashop Day<br />

Milano, with an audience of over 2,000 people curious and<br />

full of questions, was particularly exciting, confirmed the<br />

happy moment we are experiencing and gave us the right<br />

motivation to further accelerate our growth process.

130<br />









1.<br />


Come into the trick with proper speed<br />

and your kite high. Kick up your board<br />

while gaining some lift out of the kite<br />

and put your front hand in the water.<br />

Keep sending the kite to the other side<br />

slowly, and keep the power in the kite<br />

by sheeting in. It might take you a few<br />

tries to get the right combination of<br />

speed and power in the kite so you will<br />

get the right height. Experiment with<br />

sheeting the bar in and out!<br />

2.<br />


Speed is key for this trick! Go into the<br />

carve full speed and send your kite<br />

to the other side as hard as possible<br />

while maintaining your edge. When<br />

your kite is on the other side, it's time<br />

for the backroll. Try to keep line tension<br />

throughout the carve and make<br />

the same pop-movement like a normal<br />

backroll.<br />

3.<br />


Jump like a normal transition and<br />

grab the lower fin on the heelside edge<br />

on the nose of the board. Kick up your<br />

leg and circle around the board, once<br />

you reach your arm, let go and quickly<br />

finish the rotation with your leg.<br />

Then grab the board again. Try to keep<br />

your board in the same position while<br />

letting go of your hand. Keep up the<br />

board with your foot that is still in the<br />

straps.<br />

4.<br />


Unhook with the kite high, send it<br />

to the other side and get launched.<br />

Rotate from the take-off and pass.<br />

Sounds easy, it is not ;)<br />

5.<br />


Sheet out and send the kite over 12<br />

o’clock. Keep edging throughout the<br />

whole rotation and 180* your board<br />

when you finished the rotation. Sheet<br />

in again to gain speed and ride away.<br />

6.<br />

OFF AXIS:<br />

Basically, two backrolls with the last<br />

one inverted. Take off with your kite at<br />

12 so you jump up straight instead of<br />

forward. Start the first backroll from<br />

the take-off. When you finished the<br />

first rotation you have to force yourself<br />

into the second, inverted one by<br />

flipping your upper body. Don’t forget<br />

what side of the bar to pull to make it<br />

a transition and start pulling a little<br />

bit once you started the second rotation,<br />

this will make sure you will gain<br />

some speed on the landing instead of<br />

falling out of the sky.<br />


132<br />

















134<br />






Note: While today’s kites are much more durable than the ones built a few years ago, a damaged<br />

bladder is still a fairly common problem. If your kite has a bladder that is damaged beyond repair,<br />

you can easily buy a new bladder blank and self-stick valves to build your own replacement.

136<br />

TEST<br />

Inobo: the new interchangeable and cool board<br />

Inobo: the new interchangeable and cool board<br />

This new board is designed for any<br />

kitesurfer for any style, from Freeride<br />

beginners to more experienced Freestyle<br />

riders that unhook or throw double<br />

Handlepasses, to kiters that land<br />

aggressive megaloops. It's called Inobo<br />

and surprised us with its versatility<br />

and performance.<br />

Technology<br />

The frame of the board consists of<br />

2 main parts. The Skeleton, a lightweight<br />

carbon frame produced in<br />

France is the basis of the board. (the<br />

whole board is manufactured in<br />

France and only the pads are manufactured<br />

elsewhere in Europe). And the<br />

Deck which is the underside part and<br />

it’s interchangeable to your liking or<br />


You can choose among the following<br />

5 decks:<br />

- Wavio / Wave Freeride. It's a deck<br />

with a very soft progressive flexibility,<br />

suitable for Freeride and light riders.<br />

- Stratos / Freeride Bigair. It's a deck<br />

with a progressively stiffer flexibility<br />

at the centre and softer on the nose<br />

and tail, allowing to absorb vibrations<br />

in choppy conditions and soften very<br />

hard landings. It has a great pop and<br />

is great for Freestyle hooked.<br />

- Woodio / Freestyle. It's a stiffer deck<br />

compared to the Stratos, but the material<br />

offers an excellent riding comfort<br />

and allows harder pops and greater<br />

buoyancy.<br />

- Evio / Freestyle. It is a pure Freestyle<br />

board with explosive pop.<br />

- Nevio. It's a deck for heavy riders,<br />

light wind conditions and suitable for<br />

kitesurfing schools.<br />

For our test we tried the Stratos deck<br />

size 138/41 cm.<br />

The idea of this board is really the<br />

technical state of the art. More than<br />

once I happened to crawl my board<br />

over the rocks and I had to throw it<br />

away. This technology allows you to<br />

bin only the deck and with only 100 euros<br />

you have a new deck. The design is<br />

spectacular: all this carbon together<br />

with Lexan (a material also used for<br />

the police riot shields) it's fantastic.<br />

One sure doesn't go unnoticed on the<br />

beach with a board like that. It attracts<br />

everyone's attention.

138<br />

TEST<br />

Inobo: the new interchangeable and cool board<br />

I am 1.90 cm tall and 95 kg of weight<br />

and I was amazed by the buoyancy of<br />

the board and its upwind capacity. The<br />

frame allows a unidirectional flex that<br />

nullifies the chop effect while cruising<br />

offering a comfort never felt before<br />

also thanks to its high-quality pads<br />

made by SP BOARDING, very soft and<br />

with an excellent grip.<br />

In this version the pop is not too much.<br />

For advanced Freestyle it's necessary<br />

to go for the wood or carbon version,<br />

but for a "light" Freestyle unhooked<br />

use it's more than excellent.<br />

At first the board feels fragile, but I<br />

must confess that once I've had it, my<br />

rider friends and I tested it real tough<br />

in any condition and hard landings<br />

from over 10 m and it behaved just fine<br />

bearing and unloading all the power of<br />

very aggressive megaloops.<br />

It is very comfortable for Freeriding<br />

and at first the feeling is unique as<br />

never felt before with other boards. It<br />

adapts well to light wind allowing you<br />

to ride upwind pretty easily.<br />

It was also tested by riders with knee<br />

problems: a normal board cannot absorb<br />

all the vibrations coming from<br />

waves and chop. With this board it's<br />

as if the chop does not exist.<br />

Another upside is that anyone can<br />

personally test the board over different<br />

spots. As Ambassadors for Italy<br />

we can make you test the board at the<br />

Stagnone of Marsala. You just need to<br />

get in touch beforehand on Instagram<br />

or Facebook on our page Photokitesurf<br />

and let us know which set up you<br />

would like to try. Once tested, it's really<br />

difficult to go back to a "normal"<br />


For more info check out<br />

www.photokitesurf.com<br />

and www.inobo.fr

140<br />





Are you buying a new harness for your kiteboarding sessions?<br />

Are you unsure about which size to choose? Check out our<br />

handy kite harness size-chart.

The harness is one of the most overlooked<br />

gear items in the sport of kitesurfing.<br />

The truth is that it not only<br />

keeps you connected to the kite, but it<br />

can also save your life.<br />

The most popular type of kite harness<br />

is the waist harness. It is comfortable,<br />

safe, easier to swim with, and provides<br />

a freer riding experience comparing to<br />

seat harnesses and boardshorts harness.<br />

From a user's perspective, it's important<br />

that the harness feels snug and<br />

tight, adapting well to your body structure.<br />

To find out which model suits you<br />

best, all you need to do, it’s measure<br />

the narrowest part of your waist above<br />

your belly button.<br />

The kite harness size-chart is merely<br />

an indicative suggestion, not an absolute<br />

definition. But it should help you<br />

decide the best model for your body.<br />

The main kite harness manufacturers<br />

are Mystic, ION, RRD, Ride Engine,<br />

Manera, Dakine, NP, and Ozone.<br />

Remember to check whether your favorite<br />

kite harness meets the four basic<br />

criteria: comfort, safety, quality of<br />

materials, and fitting.<br />

The following charts will help you get<br />

the right model for your specific body<br />

measurements and represent the<br />

official sizes recommended by the<br />


142<br />



MYSTIC<br />

ION<br />

Men<br />

Men<br />

SIZE (US/EU)<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XXS / 36-38 26''-29'' / 66-71<br />

XS / 40-42 28''-30'' / 71-76<br />

S / 44-46 30''-32'' / 76-81<br />

M / 48-50 32''-34'' / 81-86<br />

L / 50-52 34''-36 / 86-91<br />

XL / 54-56 36''-38'' / 91-96<br />

XXL / 56-58 37''-39'' / 96-101<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS 25''-29'' / 63,5-<br />

73<br />

S 28''-31'' / 71-78<br />

M 30''-33'' / 76-<br />

83,8<br />

L 32''-35'' / 81-89<br />

XL 34''-37'' / 86-94<br />

Women<br />

Women<br />

SIZE (US/EU)<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS / 34-36 24''-26'' / 61-66<br />

S / 36-38 26''-28'' / 66-71<br />

M / 38-40 28''-30'' / 71-76<br />

L / 40+ 30''-32'' / 76-81<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS 24''-27'' / 60-68<br />

S 26''-29'' / 66-73<br />

M 28''-31'' / 71-78<br />

L 30''-33'' / 76-83

RRD<br />


Men<br />

Men/Women<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XXS / 36-38 26''-28'' / 66-71<br />

XS / 40-42 28''-30'' / 71-76<br />

S / 44-46 30''-32'' / 76-81<br />

M / 48-50 32''-34'' / 81-86<br />

L / 50-52 34''-36 / 86-91<br />

XL / 54-56 36''-38'' / 91-96<br />

XXL / 56-58 37''-39'' / 96-101<br />

Women<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS 24''-26'' / 60-66<br />

S 26''-30'' / 66-76<br />

S 31''-33'' / 78-84<br />

M 32''-34'' / 81-86<br />

M 33''-36 / 84-91<br />

L 35'-37'' / 89-94<br />

XL 37''-39'' / 94-99<br />

XL 39''-44'' / 99-<br />

112<br />

SIZE (US/EU)<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS / 36-38 26''-28'' / 66-71<br />

S / 40-42 28''-30'' / 71-76<br />

M / 44-46 30''-32'' / 76-81<br />

L / 32-34 32''-34'' / 81-86

144<br />



MANERA<br />

DAKINE<br />

Men/Women<br />

Men<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (CM)<br />

XS 68-72<br />

S 72-79<br />

M 79-86<br />

L 86-93<br />

XL 93-100<br />

XXL 100-108<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (CM)<br />

XS 71-76<br />

S 76-81<br />

M 81-86<br />

L 86-91<br />

XL 91-96<br />

XXL 96-101<br />

Women<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (CM)<br />

XS 66-71<br />

S 71-76<br />

M 76-81<br />

L 81-86

NP<br />

OZONE<br />

Men<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS 28''-30'' / 71-78<br />

S 30''-32'' / 76-83<br />

M 32''-34'' / 81-88<br />

L 34''-38''/ 86-96<br />

XL 38''-40'' / 91-98<br />

Women<br />

Men/Women<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST(IN/CM)<br />

XXS 26.7''-28.7''/ 68-73<br />

XS 28.3''-30.3'' / 72-77<br />

S 29.5''-31.5'' / 75-80<br />

M 31.1''-33.5'' / 79-85<br />

L 33.1''-35.4'' / 84-90<br />

XL 35.0''-37.8'' / 89-96<br />

XXL 37.4''-40.1'' / 95-102<br />

XXXL 39.4''-42.1'' / 100-107<br />

SIZE<br />

WAIST (IN/CM)<br />

XS 23''-25'' / 56-63<br />

S 25''-27'' / 63-70<br />

M 27''-29'' / 70-76<br />

L 28''-32'' / 76-82

S TAY<br />

SALTY.<br />

lucamarcis@hotmail.com<br />

S T A Y<br />


- S T A Y S A L T Y -

148<br />


Naish<br />

Product focus<br />

HOVER 112<br />

www.NAISHKITES.com<br />

Text and Photo: Naish Courtesy<br />

Expert Foiling<br />

Highly compact with minimal<br />

volume, the Hover 112 takes<br />

full advantage of minimalist<br />

design. Intended for experienced-to-expert<br />

foilers, this petite<br />

board delivers superior control<br />

in tight turns for a dynamic and<br />

responsive riding experience.<br />

When riding strapless, another<br />

key advantage of its size is the<br />

ability to sink the board and position<br />

it on its edge for easier<br />

take-offs. Its precise, CNC cut,<br />

closed cell core is wrapped in<br />

lightweight, high-tensile fiber-

SIZES:<br />

LENGTH<br />

112 cm<br />

WIDTH<br />

45.8 cm<br />


3.8 cm<br />


• Extreme Compact Design = Minimalist board<br />

• Rounded Edges = More forgiving ride<br />

• Double UD Deck Fiberglass Reinforcement = Increases stiffness & board feedback when launched<br />

• Lightweight = Responsive feel & minimal weight<br />

• Full 3D Double Density Deck Pad = Excellent comfort + cushioning + traction + flotation<br />

• CNC Shape = Absolute precision shaping<br />

• (2) 10” US Boxes = Convenient foil adjustment<br />

Construction:<br />

High Tensile Fiberglass<br />

35 kg EPS Closed Cell Core<br />

glass, which heightens durability<br />

without weighing it down.<br />

The dual track system allows<br />

riders to instantly adjust where<br />

the foil sits on the board, for a<br />

more customized riding experience.<br />

Once you master foiling,<br />

“less is more. . ." and these boards<br />

provide everything you<br />

want, with nothing you don’t!<br />

When pairing Naish Hover Foilboards<br />

with your Naish Foil, use<br />

the screws supplied with the<br />


150<br />


Core<br />

Product focus<br />

CORE GTS5 | GTS5 LW<br />

www.corekites.com<br />

Text and Photo: CORE KITE Courtesy<br />

SIZES:<br />

5.0 | 6.0 | 7.0 | 8.0 | 9.0 | 10.0 | 11.0 | 12.0 | 13.5 | LW 15.0 | LW 17.0<br />



The wait is over. After ten years<br />

of iterative development, CO-<br />

RE's Universal+ Series GTS5 is<br />

here. It succeeds but does not<br />

stray from the venerable GTS4<br />

which proved unbeatable at<br />

Holland's Megaloop Challenge.<br />

The GTS4's signature Future-C<br />

powered kiteloops, and unhooked<br />

confidence is legendary.<br />

Countless prototyping sessions<br />

were made to carefully preserve<br />

the GTS4's unique qualities<br />

while improving its flight stability<br />

especially when looping. Freestyle<br />

Ninja. Megaloop Machine.<br />

And more. The indomitable<br />

GTS5 is built with precision steering;<br />

a prodigious operating<br />

range; and CORE's legendary<br />

linear power.

Its fully adjustable handling lets<br />

riders throw the tightest loops<br />

(in waves) and the biggest Cape<br />

Town style megaloops in total<br />

control.<br />

Explosiveness defined: Future-C<br />

shape, three struts, and<br />

ultra short bridles.<br />

The GTS5 carries over its proven<br />

ExoTex powered 3 Strut Frame,<br />

Radical Reaction Tips, and<br />

Short Bridles from the fantastic<br />

GTS4. The GTS5 sports optimized<br />

leading edge diameters and<br />

tip geometry to improve flight<br />

stability. CORE's new CIT Modes<br />

customize the GTS5's handling<br />

characteristics. In Wave mode,<br />

riders can dial in compact turns<br />

and more depower. Whereas in<br />

Freestyle mode, the kite adds<br />

more grunt and bigger turns.<br />

As makers of the broadest lineup<br />

of lightwind kites, CORE<br />

naturally adds two GTS5 LW lightwind<br />

editions in 15 and 17m<br />

sizes. Mastering unhooked, and<br />

wakestyle tricks in less than<br />

perfect wind conditions is a<br />

blast with CORE's lightwind machines.<br />

CORE innovation at work.<br />

The GTS5 continues to benefit<br />

from CORE's relentless innovation.<br />

The canopy's durability is<br />

attributable to the triple ripstop<br />

CoreTex fabric developed<br />

in-house. And the kite's impro-

152<br />


Core<br />

ved aerodynamics is related to<br />

its zero-stretch, high-pressure<br />

ExoTex leading edge fabric.<br />

Sensor Bar optimized.<br />

The GTS5 performs at its best<br />

with CORE’s ultralight Sensor<br />

bar systems. They feature precise<br />

kite control, unmatched safety,<br />

and uncluttered simplicity.<br />

The titanium reinforced, carbon<br />

fiber Sensor 2S bar delivers unmatched<br />

‘between-the-fingers’<br />

single-handed comfort.<br />

In stores now.<br />

The GTS5 is available from 5m<br />

to 13.5m in size while the GTS<br />

LW edition is available as a 15m<br />

or 17m. All sizes are available for<br />

purchase at authorized CORE resellers.<br />

Test one soon.<br />

Innovazione CORE al lavoro.<br />

Il GTS5 continua a beneficiare

154<br />


Core<br />

Key feature snapshot:<br />

• 3 STRUT LIGHT FRAME: Super light yet amazingly rigid and durable.<br />

• FUTURE-C SHAPE: True C-kite feel. For snappy turns with a controlled and consistent pull.<br />

• RADICAL REACTION TIPS: C-style shaped wingtips for faster bar response.<br />

• CIT MODES (NEW): Fully adjustable kite handling characteristics.<br />

• EXOTEX® ULTRA RIGID DACRON: High pressure, zero stretch airframe.<br />

• CORETEX® TRIPLE RIPSTOP CANOPY: Extreme durability and UV protection.<br />

• ULTRASHORT BRIDLE SYSTEM: Improved kite feedback.<br />

• INSTANT RELAUNCH: Reliable waterstarts under challenging conditions.<br />

• SPEED VALVE 2: Quick, reduced effort inflation.<br />

• SENSOR BAR READY: Pair with a Sensor 2 or 2S bar for maximum kite feedback and control.<br />

• 6 YEAR PARTS GUARANTEE: Six-year parts availability guarantee.<br />

See more on the GTS5 and GTS5 LW at:<br />


156<br />


RRD<br />

Product focus<br />

THE VARIAL 5'1"<br />

www.robertoriccidesigns.com<br />

Text & Photos: RRD Courtesy<br />

Our dedicated, pure freestyle<br />

strapless kitesurf shape. The<br />

brand new RRD Varial was born<br />

out of a necessity for a board<br />

that is suited for those dedicated<br />

to the strapless freestyle discipline.<br />

RRD is no stranger to the<br />

C.O.T.A.N. (cut off nose and tail)<br />

shape. And now with the Varial,<br />

will have one of the most badass<br />

boards on the market. You<br />

can expect this board to be extremely<br />

light and thin, the thinnest<br />

in our range, with a very<br />

low profile. This razor-sharp<br />

design enhances handling, control,<br />

and sets the foundation for<br />

the highest level strapless freestyle<br />

riding.<br />

Going huge on a strapless board?<br />

The channels running down<br />

the deck allow for that hands<br />

on approach to adding stylish

Features:<br />

• Extremely lightweight and thin so it grips the water, sticks to the feet, and is easy to grab on the<br />

water or in the air.<br />

• Deep bottom channels running from tip to tail to increase air- and water flow for tracking and control<br />

at high speeds.<br />

• Thin rails from nose to tail<br />

• Super thin profile throughout<br />

• Deep concave throughout the entire board with a flat, kicked tail, released by a progressive rocker<br />

• Strictly thruster fin setup for sliding control and better for riding in reverse.<br />

• Insertless = no inserts on this dedicated strapless freestyle board.<br />

grabs. Turn it over to realize that<br />

the bottom shape of this board<br />

is in a league of its own. The<br />

steep, deep, bottom channels<br />

running from tip to tail increase<br />

air and water flow underneath<br />

the Varial which not only improves<br />

the tracking capacity for<br />

an impressive amount of speed<br />

and control, but also increases<br />

its upwind ability, which is crucial<br />

during competitions!<br />

These aggressive channels also<br />

disperse the water when landing,<br />

while also driving the board<br />

forward, making stomping<br />

those tricks much easier and<br />

more consistently. The Varial’s<br />

construction provides an essential<br />

balance of strength and<br />

weight. The top level strapless<br />

riders need a board that is light<br />

enough to glue to the feet and<br />

also have the strength to withstand<br />

some hard and fast landings.<br />

Because this board is for the dedicated<br />

strapless rider, we dedicated<br />

it as a strapless board. No<br />

inserts will be found on the deck<br />

of the Varial. You may ride with<br />

only the rear pad and wax the<br />

deck for the pure strapless feel<br />

or with both the tail pad and the<br />

deck pad, the choice is yours,<br />

the board comes with the deck<br />

pad unglued. We also decided<br />

on the Thruster set up to improve<br />

sliding and control when landing<br />

or riding in reverse.<br />

If riding strapless is your passion,<br />

then you will ‘flip’ once you<br />

get on board the new RRD Varial!

158<br />


RRD<br />

Product focus<br />


www.robertoriccidesigns.com<br />

Text & Photos: RRD Courtesy<br />

‘Read waves, not slogans’<br />

The first thing that comes to<br />

mind when this kite is mentioned<br />

is SURF.<br />

As the first kite manufacturer<br />

to make a kitesurf specific kite,<br />

RRD knows a thing or two about<br />

wave kites. There are not many<br />

kites out there that can drift like<br />

the new Religion MK9, allowing<br />

you to ride the wave instead of<br />

being pulled by your kite. The<br />

new Religion MK9 is the epitome<br />

of the perfect kitesurfing<br />

kite.<br />

The MK9 has undergone only<br />

minute changes compared to<br />

our most successful wave kite,<br />

the Religion MK8. The large sizes,<br />

9m up to 12m, remain virtually<br />

the same while the smaller<br />

sizes, 8m down to 4m, have<br />

a revised leading edge and

again the addition of a pulley.<br />

These changes on the smaller<br />

sizes allow the kite to self-regulate<br />

in stronger conditions, which<br />

makes you hold on comfortable<br />

in stronger winds. Next to<br />

that it increases the wind range<br />

and provides more hang time<br />

for those who still like to send it!<br />

If speed is what you need, the<br />

MK9 is our fastest version yet!<br />

This significant boost in speed<br />

and performance position this<br />

kite into a more specific and focused<br />

wave catching machine.<br />

Unlike most fast turning surf kites<br />

on the market, the Religion<br />

MK9 still maintains that signature<br />

pull and power which helps<br />

to get in a few extra turns down<br />

the line.<br />

With a new deep and long leading<br />

edge in the small sizes,<br />

the Religion MK9 now has more<br />

range and control in strong, gusty<br />

winds, more depower, and<br />

has also increased the kite’s<br />

upwind ability. The new shape<br />

not only improves the speed<br />

and reaction time but also<br />

allows you to kill the harness<br />

pressure when bottom turning<br />

and lining up for a big vertical<br />

turn on the wave or for more<br />

control during your strapless<br />

freestyle manoeuvres.<br />

An additional, notable feature<br />

added to the new MK9, per the<br />

request of our top performers<br />

in the strapless freestyle kitesurfing<br />

discipline, is the front<br />

line trim settings that can be<br />

found on the bridle. We have<br />

added a wave setting and a freestyle<br />

wave setting. The freestyle<br />

wave setting pulls less on<br />

the harness, has a more direct<br />

bar feeling, de-powers the kite<br />

more when needed and forces<br />

the kite to fly more towards the<br />

edge of the window which creates<br />

more lift! The wave setting<br />

is more suited towards purely<br />

riding in the surf with less bar<br />

pressure and a kite that sits deeper<br />

in the wind window, maximizing<br />

the drift for when riding<br />

down the line.<br />

We build our kites to be stronger<br />

than the rest! The graphics of<br />

the Religion have allowed us to<br />

create a web of Dacron reinforcements<br />

on the canopy that give<br />

the whole structure of the kite<br />

unmatched rigidity. Our wave<br />

proof construction is made up<br />

of 60% heavy duty Dacron fabrics<br />

and 40% of a lightweight<br />

double ripstop D2 Technoforce<br />

canopy for the sizes up to 8m.<br />

The bigger sizes (>8m) have the<br />

opposite; 40% heavy duty Dacron<br />

& 60% lightweight D2. This<br />

unique mix is used only in the<br />

Religion kites, thus with the right<br />

weight-strength ratio it creates<br />

superior crash resistance<br />

and extends the lifespan of the<br />

kite.<br />

To sum it up, the new Religion


MK9 allows for a wider range of<br />

RRD<br />

use both on the high and low<br />

end of the kite. Faster, better<br />

lift during jumps, outstanding<br />

drifting characteristics, easy<br />

relaunch and an enormous progressive<br />

de-power that will stop<br />

the kites’ power, or power ups,<br />

exactly when you need it.<br />

Since its first introduction, this<br />

kite has transformed together<br />

with the evolution of riding waves<br />

with a kite.<br />


• Front-line trim setting with two options; wave / freestyle-wave<br />

• Quick Air Flow Valve, with special moulded protection cap and reduced dimensions.<br />

• Bridle anti-tangle device<br />

• Wide tips for extra maneuverability<br />

• 4m, 5m, 6m, 7m & 8m have a pulley on the bridle, to handle the strong gusty conditions and improve<br />

the stability.<br />

• 8m, 9m, 10,5m & 12m have a higher aspect ratio to improve the speed, power and reaction time.


• Bullet proof construction that creates a strong structural frame with a mix of 195 grams. Polyant<br />

Dacron and light weight D2 Techno Force Double Ripstop.<br />

• Internal and external extra reinforcements on every leading edge panel to ensure long lasting stitching<br />

and a rigid connection.<br />

• Exclusive Strut/Leading edge reinforcement D2 Techno Force Double Ripstop panel sewn at 45<br />

degrees on the larger sizes. This spreads the impact loads over a wider area.<br />

• Radial Canopy reinforcements around the trailing edge of the kite, are positioned in a way that intersects<br />

the Techno Force Double Ripstop. This not only increases strength and durability on sensitive<br />

areas but also compliments the torsion placed on the kite, thus improving the overall flying characteristics.<br />

• All struts are reinforced with Kevlar stitched to the ends which reduce abrasion and the new design<br />

also prevents sand from getting into the kite. The middle strut includes Kevlar and an additional layer<br />

of Dacron because it suffers the most on impacts.<br />

• Our Bridle attachment points are reinforced with a soft PU external protection and an internal double<br />

adhesive Dacron patch, to increase durability.<br />

• Our ‘External Scuff Protectors’ are additional reinforcements on all scuff points strengthened with<br />

EVA reinforcements to extend the life and durability of the kite. This EVA is then encased in Insignia<br />

secured by a double stitch that adds to the durability of high stress points.


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