Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

Cagliari, Italy
08 October 2017

France’s Nico Parlier put on an imperious display to seize the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) KiteFoil World Championship on the final day of racing on the Italian resort island of Sardinia.

Even before the last race of the Sardinia Kiteboard Grand Slam, Parlier’s haul of bullets during the four days of competition meant he had the championship in the bag because of his vastly superior score.

7d99e049 a599 4806 94cb c536edc3efd6 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

But after adding two more bullets to his tally in the opening two races on the flat waters of the Gulf of Angels off Cagliari’s Poetto Beach, Parlier looked like he would make it a perfect hat-trick in the day’s final race after rounding the first top mark in the lead once again.

Uncharacteristically, he fell when he missed a gybe in the light, shifty breezes and had to watch much of the head of the fleet ride past as he tried to restart. Yet by the bottom mark Parlier was back up to sixth position and with his raw pace and finesse he managed to claw his way back to finish second, just behind countryman Axel Mazella.

“I could have stayed on the beach for that last race because I knew I had it won already,” said Parlier. “Still, I had to stay concentrated for the whole regatta. As I expected, the level of competition was very high. So I’m really delighted to  win.”

Mazella’s stellar performance earned him the second spot on the podium for the World title, but as the regatta doubled as the fourth stop of the 2017 IKA KiteFoil GoldCup series it was also enough to secure him the overall World Series title.

c6bdc466 590b 4c73 9af1 6b06f3f9f303 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

The 20-year-old Frenchman had been peerless at the GoldCup’s previous back-to-back stops at Weifang and Pingtan, China, last month, when he won race after race in light conditions that left rivals awed by his speed and precision.

“I’m really, really happy to win the tour title,” said a beaming Mazella. “But it’s slightly bitter-sweet. I’d loved to have taken the World Championship title too. We’ve had all the top guys here, so it was very tight and very interesting. I hope it will be the same at the Formula Kite Worlds in Oman next month.”

The intense competition at the top of the fleet left reigning IKA Formula Kite world champion and KiteFoil GoldCup title holder, Maxime Nocher (MON), in an unfamiliar third spot on the podium.

But after a four-month layoff and little training for the event, Nocher was pleased with his showing after a consistent series of top place finishes in the regatta’s 12 races that have left him hungry to get back on top in the increasingly competitive environment.

0d28175d dcc5 4bae bb23 707b0fd5f63d - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

“It was very tight and I’m quite happy for my comeback,” said Nocher. “For sure I will go to Oman now. The level in foiling is really going up. Before, I was just leading. Now there’s very little between the top 10 guys. The technology is advancing like crazy and I’m working on my own foil. So let’s see.”

With virtually all the leading men among the 39-strong fleet from 14 nations at the Sardinia Kiteboard Grand Slam—sponsored by the City of Cagliari and Tourism Sardinia, supported by Yacht Club Cagliari—the five-day event produced some of the fastest, tightest racing of the year.

But straight out of the gate, Team Enata’s Mazella racked up two bullets on the first day of racing in light conditions that upset the form books that saw Parlier as the firm favourite after he had won nearly every race this year.

3be62983 f337 4c56 b956 5005814f5c0d - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

True to form, though, the wheels of the Parlier machine began to grind on the second day when the gusty Mistral winds hit 40kts. On his Mike’s Lab foil and board, and Ozone R1V2 kites, he began racking up bullets and continued to do so right to close of racing, only faltering occasionally when he placed second, a record that made him untouchable.

For a time Britain’s Guy Bridge, 18, on his Levitaz Bionic foil and Flysurfer Sonic Race kites, looked as if he could challenge for a podium spot. But despite his searing pace, a chequered last two days left him in fourth spot overall.

His mother, multiple world champion, Steph Bridge, among the three women racing in the competitive mixed fleet, won the women’s title, but was nonetheless dismayed with her final day’s outing that took the gloss off things a little.

bc1464f5 a4a5 47b8 b677 e0d2f111c28f - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

“I had a bit of a disaster,” said Bridge. “I don’t think I’ve ever in my life been out in such tricky, gusty conditions. But it’s the same for everyone. It’s just that it’s just not good to end a great event on a sad note. I felt I should have done better.”

cc8ea3af 2725 4a29 9aa6 fa2ad35092ab - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

French 16-year-old Anaïs Mai Desjardins, undoubtedly a rising star, took the second podium spot behind Bridge. But her win at the KiteFoil GoldCup in Korea and a third in Weifang, China, were enough for her to take the overall tour crown.

IKA KiteFoil World Championship (Men)
1 Nico Parlier (FRA)                         
2 Axel Mazella (FRA)
3 Maxime Nocher (MON)

IKA KiteFoil World Championship (Women)
1 Steph Bridge (GBR)
2 Anaïs Mai Desjardins (FRA)
3 Sabrina Schlossnikel (GER)

IKA KiteFoil World Championship (U21)
1 Axel Mazella (FRA)
2 Guy Bridge (GBR)
3 Theo de Ramecourt (FRA)

IKA KiteFoil World Championship Masters
1 Ivan Doronin (RUS)
2 Benjamin Petit (FRA)
3 Pier Luigi Capozzi (ITA)

IKA KiteFoil GoldCup Men
1 Axel Mazella (FRA)
2 Theo de Ramecourt (FRA)
3 Theo Lhostis (FRA)

IKA KiteFoil GoldCup Women
1 Anaïs Mai Desjardins (FRA)
2 Alexia Fancelli (FRA)
3 Elena Kalinina (RUS)

IKA KiteFoil GoldCup Masters
1 Benjamin Petit (FRA)
2 Ivan Doronin (RUS)
3 Amil Kabil (USA)

IKA KiteFoil GoldCup (U18)
1 Martin Dolenc (CRO)
2 Anaïs Mai Desjardins (FRA)
3 Toni Vodisek (SLO)

Full results, LIVE video streaming and live results: www.kitefoilgoldcup.com

025039e3 4b2b 47f1 b7dc 74a71441d2e6 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

4d9de983 c43d 483b 8aa3 037e56a1ce55 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

227c6527 90fa 4303 85a7 46656e934421 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

d8c6f3c9 7c69 4807 befb ae9bed96280c - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

1346a5bd 5750 4797 bd9e 3e6ae9aaf5b8 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

5cb6b08d 7427 4d20 90e9 3c2c3cdd1c80 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

9c9c0efd 1818 482c 8be0 8d6022152ac2 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

f932609c 6aba 45c5 98c1 6931d5eb164d - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

39931ffa 3823 4f5e b967 3c98c7478862 - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

8e62d957 6504 48e5 a5d0 92b0ec501d2c - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

68a53092 d542 4c13 bed6 99801f937b0d - Final day of racing at KiteFoil World Championships

Just In...

The GKA Distance Battle – Aluula All-Time Big Air | Strapless big air

Welcome to the first episode of the Aluula All-Time Big Air GKA Distance Battle

READ MORE

The Great Escape

What would you do if you had to balance the heaven of kiting perfect uncrowded beaches, with the hell of having to quarantine for 14 days?

READ MORE

Gin Kiteboarding- Roadshow

Join Gin Kiteboarding on their Roadshow demo to test all the latest products

READ MORE