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Kite Foil International Open Cup 1200 x 800 - Fuerteventura Kite Foil International Open Cup

Fuerteventura Kite Foil International Open Cup

Catch up on the action from the recently concluded Kite Foil International Open Cup, held in Corralejo, from February 15th to 18th…

Maximilian Maeder and Ellie Aldridge, champions of the Fuerteventura KiteFoil International Open Cup

After an exhilarating weekend of competition held from the 15th to the 18th of February in Corralejo, Singaporean Maximilian Maeder, the current champion of the KiteFoil World Series 2023, emerged undefeated and claimed the title of champion of the Fuerteventura KiteFoil International Open Cup alongside British competitor Ellie Aldridge. Aldridge dominated the final rounds over French competitor Lauriane Nolot, the reigning world champion and second in theFormula Kite world rankings.

“I am very happy to have competed here in the first event of the year; it’s an incredible place to train, especially if you want consistency due to the constant wind conditions,” Maeder stated. For the Singaporean rider, Fuerteventura has become an ideal training ground. Many athletes from around the world, along with their teams, have moved to the island during the winter months, sharing the same sentiment.

Following closely behind Maeder, the second position in the men’s podium was secured by Brazilian Bruno Lobo, followed by German Jannis Maus and Italian Riccardo Pianosi, the current
European champion.

In the women’s category, riders demonstrated a high level of skill. Alongside Englishwoman Aldridge, French competitor Jessie Kampman and Italian Maggie Pescetto claimed their spots on the podium.

Ten-time freestyle kiteboarding world champion Gisela Pulido finished in fifth place. The Spanish athlete has already been selected to represent her nation at the 2024 Paris Olympics: “I am very excited; the day is approaching, and I can’t wait to fulfill my dream.”

Good wind and wave conditions allowed for a total of 9 races. However, the race director, Mirco Babini, announced that the large waves posed a high risk to the safety of the athletes, leading to the decision to suspend the races on the third day of competition. “Safety is paramount, especially considering that many participants have significant commitments in the coming months, and it is necessary to preserve their physical well-being,” Babini commented.

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From the Fuerteventura KiteFoil International Open Cup to Paris 2024

The Fuerteventura KiteFoil International Open Cup saw 62 athletes from 21 different countries competing for the podium. For three days, the renowned Flag Beach turned into the prelude to the 2024 Paris Olympic Games, where, for the first time in history, Formula Kite will be included asa discipline.

The sports calendar for 2024 promises a series of significant events, including the European Championship in Murcia in March and the prestigious Trofeo Princesa Sofía in Palma di Maiorca in April. Subsequently, the Olympics in Paris will take place in July, with the sailing competition being held in Marseille.

“This event marks the conclusion of a long winter training cycle on the island, which provided the opportunity to test the athletes’ skills, measure speed, select suitable equipment, and evaluate the level of preparation for the Olympic Games,” expressed Babini, who will also serve as the kitefoil and iQFOiL race director during the Olympics.

“The event was a success, and we want to repeat it next year. The institutions have shown their support, which is crucial to position the island globally as one of the preferred location for kitefoil practice,” argued organizer Manuel Martínez during the award ceremony held at the Nautical School of Corralejo, attended by representatives of the main institutions involved.

The Fuerteventura KiteFoil International Open Cup, organized by the Canakite Experiences Sports Club in collaboration with the Real Federación Canaria de Vela and the Federación Canaria de Vela Latina, is sponsored by the Tourism Department of the Cabildo de Fuerteventura and Promotur Islas Canarias, as well as funded by the Government of the Canary Islands. The event also receives unconditional support from the La Oliva City Council, through various means.

Photo credits © Sailing Energy

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