Day 2 - Kite-Racing Greece 2009
Pounda, Paros, Greece, September 10th, 2009. The island of Paros, Greece is one of the most popular and touristy of all the Greek Islands. It is located in the heart of the Cyclades, in the Aegean Sea. It attracts thousands of visitors every year and the reasons are obvious: exquisite beaches in crystal clear, smooth flat water, perfect for anyone who shares a passion for any type of water sport, offering perfect wind conditions 365 days a year.
A picturesque scene was the setting for the second day here in Paros, Greece. The sun was shinning, the people were smiling, and everyone shared in on the energetic atmosphere surrounding the beach today. Beautiful people indulged in the 25° degree Celsius sunshine as they strolled along the shoreline watching the competitions. The wind was consistently blowing between 17 and 21 knots throughout the day and white caps danced on the ocean’s surface as the racers made there way to the start line.
Race director, Olaf Van Tol announced at the rider’s meeting this morning at 11:00 am that his crew set a more interesting and longer course today, in hopes of testing the rider’s performance, skill and endurance.
It was an unpredictable yet amusing day for French rider Bruno Sroka (Cabrinha). Sroka commenced the first race of the day on his 13m kite, making his run a successful one. However, he decided to fine tune things for the second race and switched to an 11m due to the increasing wind conditions. It proved to be a wise decision as his race time increased by 30 seconds than the previous race. The final race of the day was extremely amusing as Sroka rushes back to the shore because he absentmindedly forgot to put on his jersey. He managed to get back out on the water just in time, but started in last place. German female competitor Kristin Boese, (BEST) took advantage of Sroka’s mistake and eventually took the lead in the first half of the course. Sroka must have had some sort of rocket strapped to the back of his board because he ended up finish yet again in the number one position. German rider Dirk Hanel (North) finished yet again in second place followed by fellow North rider Pierre Romain (FRA).
Romanian rider Vlad Postelnicu (North) shares a “first” with the Professional Kiteboard Riders Association (PKRA). The PKRA has never had a Romanian competitor compete at a world event, making 16-year-old Postelnicu the first ever. Postelnicu first started kiting at the age of twelve in his native country and did most of his training there as well. He is proudly supported and encouraged by his parents. In a brief conversation with Postelnicu, he mentioned that he did not have a kite sponsor. Extreme Elements asked him why he chose to fly North kites and his response was, “I have tried many different brands of kites, and North was the only brand I felt comfortable with”- Postelnicu. Postelnicu had an awesome run for his first time competing in a world-class event, finishing in the 5th position during the first race of the day.
After the first two races of the day, near 1:00 pm there was a brief lunch break followed soon after by the local freestyle competition. The wind slowly diminished during this time so the competition was postponed until tomorrow morning.
Tomorrow’s mandatory meeting is scheduled for 10:00 am with the first possible start at 10:30am.
1. Bruno Sroka (FRA, Cabrinha)
2. Dirk Hanel (GER, North)
3. Pierre Romain (FRA, North)
1. Kristin Boese (GER, Best)
2. Felicia Constandopoulou (GRE, Best)
3. Maria Kampa (GRE, Naish)
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