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Found 113 results

  1. 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 6

    Polish Teenager Grabs Her First Title While Russian Veteran Cruises to Victory 29 May 2019 1). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Poland’s Magda Woyciechowska landed her first international title when she sealed victory in the 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships “open” division with a steely performance in fickle breezes in China. The 14-year-old was able to see off a strong challenge from her training partner and fellow countrywoman, Julia Damasiewicz, also 14, over four intense days of competition and 16 hard-fought races off Guangxi province’s Beihai city. Both finished ahead of China’s Jingle Chen who racked up a formidable haul of bullets and looked as if she could storm to victory at one point. But she stumbled in the light airs, failing to finish some races. It proved costly and she ended fourth, though it was enough to secure the Formula Kite Asian crown. By contrast Russian veteran racer Denis Taradin barely put a foot wrong. He seized a remarkable 12 bullets that gave a commanding points lead by the finish that landed him the 2019 International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) Formula Kite Asians “open” title. 2). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Italy’s Mario Calbucci pushed Taradin and pounced on any error by the Russian, snatching three bullets to add to his haul of high-placed finishes that saw him cruise to the podium’s second spot. Ejder Ginyol (TUR) traded blows with Calbucci in an enthralling battle on the water in breezes that varied between 6kts and 10kts. Ginyol’s gritty performance earned him the third podium spot. The regatta’s youngest racer, Max Maeder (SNG), 12, found a turn of pace and tactical assurance to challenge and occasionally beat the leading trio, finishing sixth overall and securing the Formula Kite Asian crown. But on the final day of the scheduled six, unsettled tropical conditions over the track off Beihai city beach meant the wind failed to build, preventing any racing. 3). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China By then, however, with 16 races each for the men and women on the rhomboid windward-leeward course, the victors had done enough to prove worthy winners in the sometimes marginal conditions. Still, on the regatta’s second and fourth days race officials managed to get six races away each for the men and women. The ideal foiling conditions of 8kts to 10kts for the competitors’ 19m and 21m kites sparked breath-takingly quick action. For women’s champion Woyciechowska, who revels in the lighter airs, the conditions were perfect. She was a model of consistency, racking up four bullets and a raft of seconds with few of the costly errors that undid her rivals. “I’m really, really happy,” said a delighted Woyciechowska. “But it hasn’t really sunk in yet. This is the first international competition where I’ve won. I had many second places and Jingle Chen was good, but unlucky when her kite went down. It’s so important to be consistent.” 4). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Chen was slightly subdued despite lifting the Asian championship title, realising that her Achilles heal had been the lighter airs. In slightly stronger breezes she had looked unbeatable. “I’m a little bit disappointed,” said Chen. “But now I know I have to do a lot of practice in the lighter winds. I got eight bullets, but also many poor scores when I didn’t finish the races.” Taradin used his experience to the full grinding out wins in all conditions, but acknowledged that his ability to make the most of the lighter breezes gave him the edge. “It was a great regatta,” said Taradin. “I can’t remember the last time we had 16 races, so it was nice. It was good racing. I felt for me it was extreme because of the light wind. But with my experience I could make it work even in 5kts or 6kts when it was difficult for the others. I’m pleased with the result.” 2019 IKA Formula Kite Asian Championships Men (Open) 1 Denis Taradin (RUS) 14pts 2 Mario Calbucci (ITA) 30pts 3 Ejder Ginyol (TUR) 39pts Women (Open) 1 Magdalena Woyciechowska (POL) 22pts 2 Julia Damasiewicz (POL) 32pts 3 Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) 41pts Men (Asia) 1 Max Maeder (SNG) 57pts 2 Qibin Huang (CHN) 86pts 3 Zhang Hao Ran (CHN) 95pts Women (Asia) 1 Jingle Chen (CHN) 44pts 2 Benyapa Jantawan (THA) 55pts formulakite.com/results
  2. 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 5

    KiteFoil Athletes Grapple with Fresh Challenges of Mixed Team Racing 28 May 2019 1). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Ambitious kitefoil athletes have had to reset their approach to top-level competition in the face of a new set of challenges since national mixed team racing was chosen as an Olympic discipline for the Paris 2024 Games. In what has until now been an essentially-individual sport, Formula Kite relay racing that will feature when kiteboarding makes its historic debut at the XXXII Olympiad’s Marseille sailing venue demands a fresh mindset. For Formula Kite veterans and ingenues alike, the mixed discipline is an exciting and intriguing breath of fresh air that adds an unexpected layer of complexity to already tricky windward-leeward racing on stratospherically-quick hydrofoils. 2). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China But as elite racers at the 2019 Formula Kite Asians in Beihai, China, gathered to trial the new format—whereby the teams of one man and woman each complete one lap of a “short-track” course, with a “flying” handover—the wind refused to play ball and racing was cancelled. One day of the six scheduled for the regatta had been set aside to give athletes a chance to practise and International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) officials an opportunity to refine the format. It was to have been only the second international outing after the first test at the World Championships in Lake Garda, Italy, last month. Still, Formula Kite Asians’ leader Denis Taradin (RUS) remains completely sold on the mixed team relay format after his experience in Garda, taking the third podium spot when he teamed with former world champion Elena Kalinina. 3). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China “It’s so different from the racing we usually do,” said Taradin. “It brings veterans like me fresh energy, fresh juice. I’ve been competing for years and the top ten are always the same. Now it’s a whole new field. When either the man or woman’s in front, it changes everything and brings lots of emotion. It’s so much fun. What changes is that you can share secrets.” For the Beihai trial, Taradin had by coincidence teamed with the women’s fleet leader, Poland’s Magda Woyciechowska, 14. She was thrilled by her experience in Garda when the level of teamwork needed and the importance of a seamless, split-second handover became obvious. “All the guys were finishing at nearly the same time and there were many orange Ozone kites, so it was tricky to spot my partner Blazej Ozog coming so we could make a quick changeover,” said Woyciechowska. “We only had about one day to practise, but still we got 10th overall, which was OK.” 4). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Her training partner, Julia Damasiewicz, also 14, took part in the first tests in Poland and teamed with Jakub Jurkowksi in Garda. She was delighted to win one race, beating a German team led by veteran former world champion, Florian Gruber. “In one race we won against Florian Gruber, one of the best in the world,” said Damasiewicz. “In individual races we’re not as fast as we are when we’re together as a team. It’s hard to explain it. Perhaps he shares things that I don’t know, and vice versa.” But beyond pure motivation and shared knowledge Sam Bullock (AUS), sitting fourth overall in the Asians, sees the potential for tactical match racing to assist a weaker team-mate. “I think there might be an opportunity to match race in the pre-start phase to help your team-mate,” said Bullock. “It certainly adds another element. But I think the most important bit of the teamwork might be working with your partner to get them up to speed. The gaps between the women in Garda was far larger than the men and had big bearing on the outcome.” Top five men after 16 races (three discards) 1 Denis Taradin (RUS) 14pts 2 Mario Calbucci (ITA) 30pts 3 Ejder Ginyol (TUR) 37.6pts 4 Sam Bullock (NZL) 45pts 5 Lukas Walton-Keim (NZL) 55pts Top five women after 16 races (three discards) 1 Magdalena Woyciechowska (POL) 22pts 2 Julia Damasiewicz (POL) 32pts 3 Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) 41pts 4 Jingle Chen (CHN) 44pts 5 Benyapa Jantawan (THA) 57pts 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 5 Recap kitefoilgoldcup.com
  3. 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 4

    Flying Polish Teenager Cements Her Position at Head of Order 27 May 2019 China’s Chen Goes From Hero to Zero and Slips Down Standings Youngest Athlete Maeder Takes Bullet from Experienced Racers 1). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Poland’s Magda Woyciechowska stretched her lead at the 2019 Formula Kite Asians, just besting her countrywoman and training partner Julia Damasiewicz in a day of scintillating racing in perfect foiling conditions in China. Local favourite and key rival, Jingle Chen (CHN), threatened to unseat the Pole when she exploded out of the blocks on the regatta’s fourth day at Guangxi province’s Beihai city—taking three bullets, two in the opening races. But even after pipping Woyciechowksa in a photo finish after audaciously stealing the lead on the final downwind leg in the day’s race four, Chen suffered disaster when she twice dropped her kite before the start and failed to start the final two contests. 2). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China The catastrophe put her down the order to leave in her fourth overall, leaving the door open for Natalie Flintrop-Clarke who moved up to third after she scooped up a bullet and three third places in ideal 9 to 10 kts tropical breezes on the Gulf of Beibu’s flat waters. Russia’s Denis Taradin also made hay in the sunshine, continuing his winning ways in the men’s fleet's six races, taking four bullets that gave him a lock on the top on the leaderboard, despite a disastrous first race when he crashed and could only manage eleventh. The championship’s youngest racer, 12-year-old Max Maeder (SNG), looks ever faster and landed a bullet, a second and third-placed finishes that left him just adrift of the top five, comfortable in sixth overall. 3). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China The fourth of the scheduled six-day regatta offered the best of the so-far slightly stuttering conditions that enabled International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) race officers to get six races away each for the men’s and women’s fleets. Many of the athletes are going not only for glory in the Asians championships, but are trying to accrue enough ranking points to allow themselves a tilt at the Formula Kite kite medals at the inaugural ANOC World Beach Games in San Diego in October. In the men’s fleet New Zealanders Sam Bullock and Lukas Walton-Keim are battling near the top of the order, hoping to land a Games’ spot. Bullock finished the day strongly in fourth overall after earning two thirds at the death, though he had seen Walton-Keim ahead take the early honours with a second and a third. 4). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China “That’s much better today,” said Walton-Keim. “I’m starting much better. A little bit of match racing there. That helped. When I’m clear I have good speed and good angles. In the last few days I was punished when I was behind a little. I’m a lot happier.” Maeder was happy, too, with his breakthrough success on the rhomboid windward-leeward track, though his joy was tempered by the knowledge consistency is the name of the game and that the regatta still has some way to run. “I got lucky in a few races,” he said, downplaying his finishes. “But I’m really happy. I feel I’ve been riding my new foil, so it was a process of getting used to it. I don’t want to let this carry me away. A lot can still happen and everything could change.” 5). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Woyciechowska, 14, was similarly grounded despite finishing the day with a bullet after being a model of consistency with five successive seconds that gave her a comfortable lead at the top of the order. “It’s OK, but I can do better,” said Woyciechowska, ruing one loss to Chen after misjudging the final, vital gybe. “That race was very sad. I just went too far and gybed too late to make the finish line. So many seconds is not so good.” But Australia’s Natalie Flintrop-Clarke, sitting in third spot overall just behind Damasiewicz, 14, was elated with her first bullet and a trio of thirds that lifted her closer to her somewhat younger rivals. She was even able to shrug off her costly misfortune in one race when she crashed tacking while leading. “Finally, a bullet,” said Flintrop-Clarke. “I was lucky to finish in one race. I tacked in a ‘hole’. I had real difficulty getting going again. I was lucky to finish at all. I think after finishing first in the previous race my confidence got the better of me.” Top five men after 16 races (three discards) 1 Denis Taradin (RUS) 14pts 2 Mario Calbucci (ITA) 30pts 3 Ejder Ginyol (TUR) 37.6pts 4 Sam Bullock (NZL) 45pts 5 Lukas Walton-Keim (NZL) 55pts Top five women after 16 races (three discards) 1 Magdalena Woyciechowska (POL) 22pts 2 Julia Damasiewicz (POL) 32pts 3 Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) 41pts 4 Jingle Chen (CHN) 44pts 5 Benyapa Jantawan (THA) 57pts formulakite.com
  4. 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 3

    Polish Teenagers Surge to Top of Order in Tough Conditions at Formula Kite Asians 26 May 2019 1). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Polish training partners Magda Woyciechowska and Julia Damasiewicz grabbed the top spots in the standings in the women’s fleet at the Formula Kite World Championships in China in fickle breezes that got the best of most of their rivals. The duo, both just 14, leap-frogged overnight leader, local favourite Jingle Chen (CHN), to secure the leaderboard’s first and second spots respectively in finely judged racing. In breezes that toyed with race officials, often dipping below 6kts and rarely getting above 8kts, Woyciechowska scored two bullets from the only two races possible in the start-stop racing off Guangxi province’s Beihai city. 2). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China On day three of the scheduled six at the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) Formula Kite Asians, the men’s fleet racing separately also only managed to get in two races, with a third abandoned when the already light breeze completely died on parts of the course. Still, Russia’s Denis Taradin had used the opening two contests to extend his points lead. Rivals in 17-strong fleet had few answers to his pace and tactical awareness that gave him healthy leads and earned him two bullets. Many of the athletes in the 26-strong roster from 11 nations, including the Polish teenagers, hope to post sufficiently-strong performances to win enough ranking points to secure themselves a spot at the inaugural World Beach Games in San Diego where kiting will make its debut. 3). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China But first Woyciechowska and Damasiewicz had to make up for lost ground after they were obliged to retire for mistakenly sailing the wrong course on day one. Woyceichowska did that in style on day three taking wins as others failed to complete the course, finishing long before rivals alternately Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) and Damasiewicz. In her day’s second race she was harried by Chen and Damasiewicz all the way round the rhomboid track just off the beach. But Chen failed to ley the final top mark and put her kite down in a lull, never to recover. “It was really really light, but it was OK,” said Woyciechowska, who revels in the light airs. “I was fighting with Jingle Chen all the way round in the second race, but then she couldn’t make the mark. I’m really happy. It’s my first international competition where I’m in the top three.” 4). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Even though Damasiewicz stumbled in the day’s first race and failed to finish, eking out a second spot in the day’s final race earned her valuable position that kept her just ahead of Chen on the leaderboard. “That was cool,” said Damasiewicz. “The wind is tricky here and you don’t know where it’s going. I was second in the last race and I was happy to finish. Magda’s my friend and we’re always fighting on the water. If one of us makes a mistake, the other wins. I prefer strong wind, but when it’s light she’s the hero.” The youngest competitor Max Maeder (SNG), just 12, was equally happy. He had been second in the day’s last race, before it was abandoned. “I was second and I wanted it to go on so that I could finish it,” he said. “I was really happy I made it back to the beach without swimming. I’m certainly learning a lot in every race.” Top five men after ten races (two discards) 1 Denis Taradin (RUS) 8pts 2 Mario Calbucci (ITA) 18pts 3 Ejder Ginyol (TUR) 21pts 4 Sam Bullock (NZL) 25pts 5 Lukas Walton-Keim (NZL) 33pts Top five women after ten races (two discards) 1 Magdalena Woyciechowska (POL) 14pts 2 Julia Damasiewicz (POL) 26pts 3 Jingle Chen (CHN) 27pts 4 Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) 28pts 5 Benyapa Jantawan (THA) 39pts 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 3 Recap formulakite.com
  5. 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 2

    Chen Thrills Home Fans with Near Flawless Outing at Formula Kite Asians in China 25 May 2019 1). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China China’s Jingle Chen shrugged off her forgettable first foray at the 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships and threw down the gauntlet to rivals with an almost perfect performance on the regatta’s second day to surge convincingly to the head of the order. The 18-year-old scooped five bullets and a second spot in her day’s six races in ideal foiling conditions of breezes that varied from 8kts to 11kts on the flat waters off Guangxi province’s Beihai city, south-west China. Her stellar racing when she barely put a foot wrong and had enough speed to leave the others in the women’s fleet trailing was the mirror opposite of her first day’s efforts after she was forced to retire from both races, once for following the leaders’ wrong track. 2). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China “I’m at the front today, so I have to follow my own course and that’s good for me,” she said. “The wind is much better today, perfect for my 21m kite. I’m getting good starts, which I think has helped a lot." Day two of the scheduled six at the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) Formula Kite Asians—sponsored by Beihai City—offered the 26 athletes from 11 nations the ideal opportunity to advance their positions in the high-octane foiling discipline. Russia’s Denis Taradin was among those who rose to the challenge. Like Chen, after some slight misfortune on the championships’ opening day, Taradin hit his stride with four bullets in the men’s fleet’s five races. 3). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Taradin’s superior pace on his 21m foil kite around the rhomboid windward-leeward track helped him leap up the standings as the others just behind him traded places in the scrap for the top places. “I feel I have good speed today,” said Taradin. “In the races I won I had 10 or 15 seconds' lead on the others. But when I came in fourth I’d rounded the top mark first, but Mario Calbucci was very close. I crashed a gybe downwind and just couldn’t get back up on terms.” Calbucci (ITA) scooped a bullet when Taradin faltered in one race and was able to add a clutch of high-placed finishes that were enough to keep him touch with the Russian in second spot on the leaderboard with all still to play for. “It’s good racing today,” said Calbucci. “The wind’s not too light and I had good speed. I made mistakes but got some good results, though I hit a jelly fish just before the finish in the day’s third race. I ended up fifth, but that’s how it goes.” 4). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Overnight leader, Turkey’s Ejder Ginyol had a slightly more mixed outing and slipped to third overall. But his performance was still good enough to notch up a second and third that kept him in the hunt. Just behind him New Zealand’s Sam Bullock, hunting points to earn a slot at the World Beach Games in San Diego in October, also found his groove and earned two seconds and a third-placed finish. “I got behind my countryman Lukas [Walton-Kiem] in one race,” said Bullock. “I'm not used to that and I pushed really hard. I think I was able to carry that speed into the next races. I definitely went better today". Top five men after eight races (two discards) 1 Denis Taradin (RUS) 6pts 2 Mario Calbucci (ITA) 13pts 3 Ejder Ginyol (TUR) 16pts 4 Sam Bullock (NZL) 17pts 5 Lukas Walton-Keim (NZL) 23pts Top five women after eight races (two discards) 1 Jingle Chen (CHN) 7pts 2 Magdalena Woyciechowska (POL) 12pts 3 Julia Damasiewicz (POL) 14pts 4 Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) 21pts 5 Benyapa Jantawan (THA) 24pts 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 2 Recap formulakite.com
  6. 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 1

    Drama at Formula Kite Asians as Leading Women Demoted for Errors 24 May 2019 1). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China The four women who topped the standings at the 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships found themselves dramatically pushed down the order when they were forced to retire from one race after discovering they failed to sail the proper course. For the young Polish pair—Julia Damasiewicz and Magdalen Woyciechowska, both 14—the mistake was a rude awakening to the complexity of top-level racing. Until their withdrawal for missing a mark and failing to complete a lap in the opening day’s second race, they stood first and second with respectively. Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) and China’s Jingle Chen conceded that they had suffered crashes on the track off south-western China’s Beihai city beach and had followed the leaders, failing to realise they too had made their own mistakes and shortened the course. 2). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China The errors handed Benyapa “Fon” Jantawan (THA) the lead, with a bemused Bilge Ozturk (TUR) close behind in second after two races in the opening skirmishes of the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) Formula Kite Asians. But with a further five days of the Beihai City-sponsored competition and many races in the offing, any of the leading athletes should have more than enough opportunity to claw back any deficit and reassert their dominance. The Polish duo in particular had a near perfect record of two bullets and two seconds until their demotion and looked quick around the rhomboid track in the tropical breezes of around 12kts, that dropped to around just 7kts before racing was halted in early afternoon. 3). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Damasiewicz and Woyciechowska, like many of the men racing in a separate fleet, are hoping their placings at the regatta’s end will earn them enough points to secure a place in kiteboarding’s appearance at the inaugural World Beach Games in San Diego in October. The men’s fleet fared slightly better, squeezing in three races. But some suffered their own misfortunes. Russia’s Denis Taradin notched up two wins, but his opening foray came to grief when he struck a large jelly fish with his hydrofoil, crashed and finished down the order, leaving him poised in fourth overall. Turkey’s Ejder Ginyol put in a good shift, taking three second spots that were enough to give him pole position just ahead of Italy’s Mario Calbucci, who opened his campaign with a bullet. 4). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China “It’s pretty good,” said Calbucci, riding his 21m foil kite. “In the first race the wind wasn’t so gusty. The other two were very technical. The wind was shifty, left and right by as much as 25 degrees and I missed the layline two times. But I’m quite happy.” New Zealand’s Sam Bullock sits third overall with two third-placed finishes, but accepted that Taradin’s ill-luck had given him a leg up in the day’s opening race. “I got lucky in the first when Denis Taradin hit something,” said Bullock. “In the third race I was struggling a bit for power on my 19m. But I still managed to hang in there. To be honest I’m still suffering from jet lag a bit. But I’m looking forward to better breezes that are forecast.” 5). 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Beihai, China Ozturk was similarly pleased to find herself second overall, thanks to some good fortune of her own. “I had bad starts for both races. But in the second race I hit something and fell off badly. The girls ahead me just got further away really quickly. I didn’t understand why. It turned out they hadn’t sailed the proper course. You have to sail your own race sometimes and experience comes in handy. Top five men after three races (no discards) 1 Ejder Ginyol (TUR) 6pts 2 Mario Calbucci (ITA) 8pts 3 Sam Bullock (NZL) 10pts 4 Denis Taradin (RUS) 13pts 5 Lukas Walton-Keim (NZL) 14pts Top five women after two races (no discards) 1 Benyapa Jantawan (THA) 6pts 2 Bilge Ozturk (TUR) 6pts 3 Julia Damasiewicz (POL) 11pts 4 Magdalena Woyciechowska (POL) 12pts 5 Natalie Flintrop-Clarke (AUS) 13pts 2019 Formula Kite Asian Championships - Day 1 Recap kitefoilgoldcup.com
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