KSWT Sotavento Begins

Published 20th July 2018 by dannykater



Report: Jim Gaunt

The pumping thermals that this southern corner of Fuerteventura island in the Canaries is famous for were in effect from early this morning. By the afternoon, the 24 registered riders (including two women) for this fifth event in what is now a seven event 2018 World Tour season, hit the water for a demonstration to show the Hotel Melia Gorriones / Rene Egli Kitesurfing Centre crowds, a little of what’s to come over the next five days.

Grandstand Sotavento at Rene Egli

Mini grandstand for the best seat in the house at the Fuerteventura Kitesurfing and Windsurfing World Cup! / Photo: Jim Gaunt

This is the third year that the GKA Kite-Surf World Tour has visited Sotavento and is part of the Fuerteventura Windsurfing and Kitesurfing World Cup – a two week extravaganza run by Rene Egli and the Hotel Meliá Fuerteventura.



Airton Cozzolino is undefeated here and shooting for his hat trick in Sotavento, which would give him four wins from five events this season, and a dominant lead heading into the last two events, which have recently been announced as Prea in Brazil in November, and Torquay in Australia in December. Both of those will be mixed events though, and as we’ve seen in the past Airton is ‘beatable’ in waves, so he’ll be determined to claim maximum points here.

Check out the 24 registered riders here

Find the full 2018 GKA KSWT World Tour rankings here.

Matchu Lopes GKA Sotavento warm-up

Matchu Lopes floats by Tom Brendt’s lens during the warm-up / Photo: Tom Brendt / Tillmanns

All the riders put on a superb afternoon warm-up show as they really enjoy riding here because the Sotavento crowds love to get involved and cheer their heroes on to go higher and higher.

We expect many more people to the beach tomorrow and the performances to shift up a gear as the main event begins.

Click the images below to flick through an gallery from today:

Image for Big Air riders under Starters Orders

Big Air riders under Starters Orders

Leading Big Air kiteboarders ready to fight with first GKA World Cup stop at Lords of Tram due to kick-off any day

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Image for Winners stake world title claims

Winners stake world title claims

Podium lockout for Cape Verdeans at close of stellar contest on Ponta Preta waves that saw Moona Whyte back on top spot

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Image for Shock exit of reigning world champion

Shock exit of reigning world champion

Cape Verdeans riding high as fight for title glory intensifies on stellar waves in Ponta Preta with battles going down to the wire

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Image for Legends battle in kite-surf opener in Cape Verde

Legends battle in kite-surf opener in Cape Verde

Ponta Preta waves deliver as world’s best athletes fight for glory in epic duels on Cape Verde island of Sal

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