Sunday, 10 October 2021 18:52

Frenchman Axel Mazella clinched victory at the third stop of the KiteFoil World Series in tricky offshore breezes that faded towards the close of the regatta’s dramatic final fourth day in Cagliari on the Italian resort island of Sardinia.

The faltering breeze that dropped to 6-8kts in the last race, left Mazella swimming when his kite collapsed after not managing to clear the top mark, despite pumping his foil furiously, though he was able to recover and finish down the order.

But by then he had already carved out an insurmountable lead with clinical performances in the previous 16 races on the Gulf of Angels track, off Cagliari’s Poetto Beach. He had fought off testing challenges from countryman Théo de Ramecourt, Britain’s Connor Bainbridge and Russia’s Denis Taradin, who finished just behind on the leaderboard.

Mazella’s win earned him a share of the €25,000 purse and cements his overall lead in the tour following his triumph at the second act last month in Traunsee, Austria. It keeps him firmly in the hunt for a coveted third International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) KiteFoil world championship title.

Saturday, 09 October 2021 20:31

By the time Britain’s Connor Bainbridge dons his competition shirt on the final day of racing at the KiteFoil World Series Cagliari, he will have had the dubious honour of having worn all three of the leaders’ coloured jerseys, such is the intensity of the battles on the water.

On the penultimate of four days of spectacular racing on the strikingly-beautiful Gulf of Angels track on the Italian resort island of Sardinia, the Briton’s performance in the day's four races was enough to move him up to second place overall.

Bainbridge began the day on his 21m kite, in the 10kts sea-breeze blowing over the Devil’s Saddle headland, to the right of the course. But by the third race in keenly fought contests with the French duo of Axel Mazella and Théo de Ramercourt, the Briton went down to his 15m kite as the breeze picked up to 12kts.

“To be honest it’s been a bit of a mixed bag for me,” said Bainbridge. “My aim was to stay consistent. But so far I’ve been through the yellow shirt of the leader and the red of the third placed rider. Tomorrow I’ll be in blue that signals second place.”

Friday, 08 October 2021 23:15

France’s Axel Mazella and Russia’s Denis Taradin engaged in an absorbing battle full of drama, on day two of the KiteFoil World Series Cagliari, on the Italian resort island of Sardinia.

With one victory each at the tour’s previous two stops, both Ozone riders traded bullets in the day’s five races, being fought out on the Gulf of Angels, off Cagliari’s Poetto beach, in onshore breezes that climbed to about 13kts.

No race better illustrated the intensity of the duels between the pair, than the day’s final, climactic race. Taradin’s better angle and speed upwind saw him lead around the weather mark on both laps of the windward-leeward course, only for Mazella to overhaul his rival on the downwind legs with his superior pace.

The intense pressure on Taradin, forced him into an error when he gybed too early on the final downwind leg, almost collapsing his kite as he struggled for power. It was a costly mistake that enabled the Frenchman to scythe past his rival to land another bullet.

Thursday, 07 October 2021 20:19

Only the finest margins separated the top men and women in the opening salvos at the 2021 KiteFoil World Series Cagliari, as tough conditions tested the mettle of the elite athletes to the limit.

In the gusty and shifty Mistral breezes that hit 33kts off Cagliari’s Poetto beach on the Italian resort island of Sardinia, the leading men and women racing in one fleet traded bullets and the overall leads.

But on his birthday, Britain’s Connor Bainbridge did enough in searingly-quick racing, to take the lead with two bullets and a second place in the opening day’s five races on the stunning Gulf of Angels, as the breeze built from 17kts.

Bainbridge, riding a 10m F-one Diablo 5 that he had a hand in designing, saw off challenges from the French trio of Axel Mazella, Théo de Ramecourt, and Benoît Gomez. Each scored their own bullets, but lie just behind the Briton.

Wednesday, 06 October 2021 21:10

The world’s fastest kiteboard racers are set for a dramatic showdown, as they go head-to-head in the third act of the KiteFoil World Series, which is to be fought-out off the magnificent Italian resort island of Sardinia.

With the prospect of mouthwatering duels over four days’ high-octane racing at the 2021 KiteFoil World Series Cagliari, the event has again won the highest-level support from Sardinian authorities eager to project the island on the world stage.

It is the globe-trotting tour’s fourth edition to be staged off Cagliari’s Poetto beach on the peerless Gulf of Angels. Key sponsors, Sardinia Region and City of Cagliari, seized on international kitefoil racing on the iconic waters, as a perfect vehicle to showcase the Mediterranean island.

But for the Sardinia Region, backing the World Series Cagliari stop to the tune of €400,000, the motivation goes beyond sport. It regards the support to the event as an investment which will reap a healthy dividend for the region’s economy.

Sunday, 19 September 2021 19:19

Frenchman Axel Mazella clinched victory in specularly close racing, in tricky conditions, on the final day of the KiteFoil World Series Traunsee, in Austria, fought out against a dramatic mountain backdrop.

But to take the trophy, Mazella had to see off stiff challenges from rivals that ensured he had to share the bullets from closing day’s eight races with four other competitors who pushed him all the way.

Just a week after Mazella seized the Formula Kite European championships crown, the 24-year-old took the podium’s top step and a share of the €15,000 prize money in the globe-trotting tour’s second act hosted by the UPPER AUSTRIA KiteFoil Grand Prix.

Saturday, 18 September 2021 20:04

The ranks of elite kiteboard racers at the KiteFoil World Series Traunsee in Austria have been swollen by aspiring young athletes who have already tasted success.

But for those scaled the highest levels of Twin-Tip: Racing (TT:R) at the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) in Buenos Aires in 2018, the transition to top-level kitefoil racing was a rude awakening.

For some competing at the UPPER AUSTRIA KiteFoil Grand Prix, which is hosting the World Series’ second Act in the spectacular setting of Ebensee, the challenges and unexpected difficulties forced a dramatic reappraisal of themselves.

Friday, 17 September 2021 20:55

The KiteFoil World Series Traunsee, the tour’s second stop, being fought out on a breathtaking mountain lake in Austria, has won the backing of key sponsors eager to deploy the top-level event to project the region on the world stage.

International focus on the globe-trotting World Series tour, with its cutting-edge kitefoil racing contested by the world’s best, is being harnessed by key sponsors Upper Austria Tourism and the major Raiffeisenbank.

In different ways, both backers see the attention-grabbing event, being hosted by the UPPER AUSTRIA KiteFoil Grand Prix, as an ideal vehicle to bring the strikingly beautiful region, filled with culture, to a wider audience.

Thursday, 16 September 2021 18:12

The opening round of the KiteFoil World Series Traunsee stop got off to a dramatic, if stuttering beginning, amid the splendour of striking Austrian mountains that offer a glorious backcloth to the lake’s racetrack.

With a challenging weather forecast for the first day of racing in the UPPER AUSTRIA KiteFoil Grand Prix, which is hosting the World Series tour stop, the race committee was eager to get racing under way.

But as the race started with the kiteboarders on their biggest 21m and 23m kites, the fickle 7kts to 8kts breezes were fading at the top mark of the course, which is sandwiched by mountains.

Wednesday, 15 September 2021 22:58

The fastest kite racers in the world are ready for four days of intense race action at the UPPER AUSTRIA KiteFoil Grand Prix Traunsee which is hosting the highly-anticipated second stop of the IKA KiteFoil World Series.

The high-octane event sponsored by Upper Austria Tourism will play out at Rindbach, Ebensee, on the southern end of Traunsee, a breathtakingly-beautiful lake framed by striking mountains and picture postcard villages.

The dramatic backdrop and the lake’s flat waters will offer a fitting racetrack for the World Series’ second stop of a scheduled five, with the leading kitefoil racers fighting for a slice of the €15,000 prize pot that will be shared equally between the men and the women.

Traunsee has long been a watersports mecca, with sailors, windsurfers, kiteboarders and most-recently wingfoilers attracted by its reliable breezes. It is no stranger to hosting the international kite racing elite, staging the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) Formula Kite Mixed Relay European Championships a year ago.

The UPPER AUSTRIA Kitefoil Grand Prix, that counts Raiffeisen Bank among the sponsors, will also include the national kitefoil championships. Austrian riders will compete among the world’s best racers on the final two days at the weekend, their finishing positions in the fleet defining the podium for local riders.

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