I apologize for my writing ahead of time as I just had knee surgery Yesterday and I am still a bit groggy. As I was resting I started to reminisce about the amazing event I was fortunate enough to ride in last week , The 2008 Triple S Invitational held by Real Kiteboarding. This year there was a lot of excitement about the event as a host of amazing riders were lined up to attend.
After wrapping up some school and work issues in Miami I made the 16 hour drive from Florida to the Outerbanks of North Carolina. If you have not been to the Outerbanks they are pretty much a kiter paradise with consistent wind in summer and flat water or wave options for any direction of wind. The day I arrived I was blown away by Real's new facility, the new shop and property is truly an amazing spectacle and surely a new standard for a kiteboarding and water sports outfitter. After arriving all the riders settled into their houses, Outer Banks Reality did an amazing job of providing us with top notch accommodations including a sound view, hot-tubs, and TVs. The first evening riders and spectators were greeted with an opening party with amazing food by Atlantic Coast Cafe, killer live music from Chucktown, and drinks.. All of this was on Real's massive new porch overlooking the slick!! Everyone claimed some drinks and had an insane time.
The days of riding and wind that followed were truly epic. I was a bit off my game due to my upcoming knee surgery but I rode hard as I could. Dre was killing it with ease and style he is known for. Billy Parker, and Andy Hurdman were going for it with style and power, clearly two very underrated riders. Ruben, Arron, Alvero, and Sebastian showed why they are world tour riders with all around consistency and yes they rode bindings. These guys were also super cool and laid back. Sam Bell, Jason Slezak, Tommy Kogut, and Brandon Schied showed amazing riding and sportsmanship. These guys deserve an insane amount of credit , especially Jason, for putting on such an incredible event. Not only did they ride extra hard but they put a ton of hard work in to make sure the event went off without a hitch so thank you. The girls killed it and it was awesome to see every single girl ride bindings. Denver Coon, Davey Blair, and Jon Modica showed amazing style and creativity on the sliders and in the surf. Jon Modica is definitely someone to watch out for in the surf, as he has style, power, and well that extra Modica element of comedy that makes him so fun to watch. Joby Cook showed why he kills it in the gorge with power and true wakestyle in all conditions. I was stoked to see Marc Ramsier and Bertrand riding in the event and going for it with there signature style that they have worked so hard to establish. Sean Reyngoudt showed up and was killing it for the florida crew along with Hiro O, and Alex B. Evan Netsch and Gregg Waller showed local knowledge and style throwing down in all the events. Dimitri Maramenides rode with well that Dimitri style he is known for.
All in all it was an amazing week with great people. Kiteboarding is progressing for sure. It was sick to see everyone in all the conditions from light wind sliders and waves to 30 + knot downwinders. All the riders were pushing each other and cheering one another on during the event. Real has done an amazing job of putting on an event that all the riders can enjoy. The no pressure attitude that allows the contest to go off in the best conditions and venues that the Outer Banks provides on any given day. Undoubtedly, some amazing footage will come from this event. Kiteboarding needs events such as the Triple S to ensure the most progression in the sport can occur. Thanks to everyone at real especially; Trip, Matt, Jason, Bryan, Brittany, Lucie, Sam, Brandon, Big Ted, and everyone else who put there time and effort to make sure this event could go off. I cannot wait to see what happens next year and all the riding that will come from it. Oh ya thanks to Dairy Queen in waves the owner kites and he hooked up the riders with Blizzards, that was huge after long slick sessions!!
The triple S is a top notch event as it is about the core riding kiteboarding needs to focus on to truly progress as a sport. All the competitors threw down in this one huge jam session of power, style, and speed.
I know Toby from Core, Elliot, Tracy, and the other photo and video people got some amazing footage so stay on the look out.
Rock on to Real and keep up the amazing work..!!!
- Ian McKeown