thank you very much Europ2
I am sure that IKA will reconsider its position and will eventually allow custom shapers into competitions again. For custom board shapers it would be impossible and not economically viable to start mass producing race boards. How can a shaper compete with big companies? Let me give you an example: in Italy there are about 50 athletes who compete in board racing competitions, only 2 or 3 of them are semi-professionals. According to the new IKA rules a shaper has to produce at least 50 boards in order to compete, on top of this we would have to market the boards, sponsor our athletes and still share the market with North, Naish, RRD etc. This rule would cut us out completely from racing competitions and this in my opinion goes against fairtrade! I believe that everyone should be allowed to compete on an even footing.
There should be an open class where everyone could compete, no matter the size of board kite fins etc...this will continiue progress,
The reasons why IKA would restrict to the "brand" boards is sponsorship by the brands...which they cannot get from the shapers...
But still I believe there should be an open class open to everyone who wants to compete as long as it is with a kiteboard and kite!!!
Once there was an open class in windsurfing, then they started to put rules like the minimum weight of a boardn the maximum sail surface etc...this killed any progression, this is where another class came in, they came with course racing boards and slalom etc ...this saved the windsurfindustry from a progress stop.
I think Newind mad the right point, and the shapers should unite,get some peopel in who are open minded to build a open class where racers will come to race with all kinds of kites /boards...
The others can stay in their classes with restrictions, which is good for people who are not always sponsored and thus do not have to buy or get new equipment each saison or every two races..