The qualifiers for the GKA SuperFoil 2020 were run today in Fortaleza, Brazil.
Day 1 of competitions started with heavy rain, which had cleared by midmorning, thankfully replaced by good wind and some moderate swell. Wind was averaging 15-20knots for most of the day.
Format for the day was 5 minute heats, with 3 minute transitions in between. Judges were looking for perfect execution and technique, freestyle tricks and plenty of variety. It’s the first competition of its kind for the GKA and riders have an open book in which to leave their mark.
Riders in today’s SuperFoil qualifiers really impressed the GKA judges with their diversity and individual skills, each rider having a distinctive style. Two of the stand out riders during the qualifiers were Charles Brodel and Fred Hope.
Charles rides with a foil kite, straps and boosts huge airs, with boardoffs and perfect landings. He shows a lot of commitment in this field of riding, but also squeezed in 360’s and smooth carves in to his 5 minutes heat. He took first position in the qualifiers with 25.60 points.
Coming in close on his heels was Fred Hope, who rides an inflatable kite, and uses strapless, with stylish and impressive technical skills. He’s a pleasure to watch on the water, especially when he’s landing strapless backrolls on a hydrofoil, it’s not a trick you see landed that frequently! Fred had been training all day to land an Around the World, by carving a 360 degree circle around the kite, but the wind was too strong. Unfortunately it didn’t work out this time, hopefully we will get a chance to see it later on during the competition. Fred placed a well earned second in the qualifiers.
Coming from twintip kitesurfing, Maxime Chabloz showed commitment to the foil with huge board offs, he took third position. His progression in this discipline has come rapidly, and he will certainly be a rider to watch in the coming days.
Another rider who really impressed the judges was veteran athlete Nicolas March Paniza. He gave the younger riders something to aspire to, with incredibly smooth board offs and landings. He placed an impressive 4th position.
We will be back with more action and Round One of competition heats tomorrow. Good night from Fortaleza!
- 1st Charles Brodel 25.60
- 2nd Fred Hope 24.50
- 3rd Maxime Chabloz 19.00
- 4th Nicolas March Paniza 16.91
- 5th Titouan Galea 16.16
- 6th Loic Brismontier 15.30
- 7th Pedro Vianna Silva 11.83
- 8th Nilson Costa 6.16
- 9th Dudu Mazzocato 0.00
Find out full event info here.
Image: Svetlana Romantsova