I think it can be presumed that the newly established Kite Surf Pro World Tour had a hugely successful inaugural year. Designed to give undiscovered talent a chance to compete with the wave riding elite, all KSP tour stops featured and will feature a Wild Card system, where, through a local competition, two men and one woman win wild cards (guaranteed entry) to ride at the stop.
Their MISSION STATEMENT is to “supply the world’s top kitesurfers with a professional World Championship Tour consisting of prime events in prime locations to promote the surfing aspect of the sport and kiting as such to mainstream media and the public.
Through it’s World Championship Tour the KSP aims to provide a professional platform for both established and aspiring kitesurfers to showcase the pinnacle of high-performance kitesurfing in some of the world’s best waves, enabling them to set the performance standard for competitive kitesurfing for years to come.”
And in this they have abundantly succeeded.
In a fairy-tale like season, Mauritian Ninja Bichler, who earned a One Eye Wild Card, advanced all the way to the finals to compete for the One Eye Pro title in her first ever pro-level contest. And she won. “Ninja is hands down the best female rider I have ever seen,” said KSP Head judge, Brad Price.
On the men’s side, 17-year old Airton Cozzolino from Italy, another relatively unheard of rider, took home the men’s One Eye title. “Airton is off the charts,” said Price. “As far as surf style goes, I haven’t seen anybody as good as he is. He’s ripping in the pocket, off-the-lip, just right where he needs to be – gorgeous execution.”
These are obviously going to be two names to keep our eye on…
The dates for the 2012 KSP World Tour will be released on the 1st February.
A limited edition KSP calendar 2012 has been printed with photographs by John Bilderback – if you’re lucky there might still be some left, but you’ll have to go to the KSP site or their Facebook site to find out how…
The road to world class kitesurfer is not necessarily an easy one. There are bound to be many of these along the route…
… but perseverance is the name of the game!