The first competition day of the KTE France started early in the morning with the skippers meeting set at 7am. It was still dark and the waves crashed loudly on the promenade of St Gilles Croix de Vie when the riders gathered to start the final stage of the Kitesurf Tour Europe 2011.
The forecast promised 16-22 knots until early afternoon. Combined with the tide, this left the organisers a competition window of only a few hours to carry out the single eliminations in the men and women division. As soon as the first light kissed the beach, the wind started to turn and came in at around 16knots - the kick-off for the single eliminations!
Dutch rider Bram Bast opened the comp and made his way right into the quarter finals demonstrating an impressive performance. In the first semi, Polish freestyler Tomek Daktera faced French local and KTE #2 Seb Garat. It was a close heat with the French proceeding into the final keeping all chances alive to become European Champion 2011. In the second semi final, German KTE leader Mario Rodwald met Erik Volpe beating the top Italian rider to advance into the final against Seb. Although feeling a bit sick, Seb showed an impressive trick repertoire and seemed like the French local wanted to demonstrate his strength to his French fellows. In the end, he took the win in the single elimination leaving Mario in second and Tomek Daktera in third place. This means, the rider winning the double - Mario or Seb - will be European Champion 2011!
In the women division, Polish rider Michalina Laskowska faced Holly Kennedy in the semi final with a better ending for the English proceeding into the final. In the second semi, current KTE leader Joanna Asia Litwin from Poland defeated Annie de Jong from the Netherlands. In a close final with strong currents and the tide already splashing against the promenade, Joanna Asia Litwin won the single eliminations in challenging conditions underlining her goal to become European Champion.
It was a spectacular start into the final of the Kitesurf Tour Europe 2011. For the next days, the wind is going to drop a bit with the racers entering the competition at the skippers meeting at 10am.
Day 3 - KTE riders enjoy the surf at St. Gilles Croix de Vie
The second competition day of the KTE France welcomed the riders with nice surf conditions but a lack of wind that did not change during the day. Therefore, the local surf school was the place to be for the riders to get a board in their hands and enjoy the waves instead of the wind.
After a tough first day of competition with the single eliminations of the men and women with the lucky winners Seb Garat and Joanna Litwin, the second day was calm. However, instead of just chillin at the beach, the most important question to answer was "where can I get a surfboard and rip these waves?". Fortunately, the local surf school "Ecole de Surf De St Gilles" was more than happy to provide all riders with gear and made the day for the riders.
For tomorrow, the wind forecast looks to remain unchanged with more wind and waves to come on sunday.