Posts Tagged ‘Mikaili SOL’

Mikaili Sol and Adeuri Corniel claimed the Mauritius freestyle event win. Watch the highlight video of the women’s and men’s finals.

RESULT MEN’S FINAL:

1 Adeuri Corniel (DR) 36.2 points
2 Valentin Rodriguez (COL) 36.19
3 Liam Whaley (ESP) 32.56
4 Nicolas Delmas (FRA) 24.46

RESULT WOMEN’S FINAL:

1 Mikaili Sol (BRA) 33.99
2 Rita Arnaus (ESP) 27.01
3 Bruna Kajiya (BRA) 25.03
4 Claudia Leon (ESP) 18.23

Mikaili Sol wins at Playa de Vargas, in Gran Canaria. Check it all here!

GKA Report:

Mikaili Sol wins the GKA Gran Canaria!

Saturday 15th June

Report: Matt Pearce / All photos: Svetlana Romantsova / Video: Mint Grigas

The riders battled their way through to the semi-finals yesterday on the second day of the GKA Gran Canaria in super challenging conditions. By the end of the day, round three was complete, so the eight male riders who’d made it to the semis were guaranteed a joint first place if no further heats were able to run.

For the women however, they still needed to complete the semi-finals to get a result so the pressure is on today!

Recap on the action from day 2 in the highlight video below and stay tuned for updates when the heats start rolling!

CONDITIONS: 15+ knots. Riders on 11-12 metres
HEATS BEGIN AT 19:00

WOMEN’S SEMI-FINALS 1
B. Kajiya / M. Sol / T/. Taabbel
Event picks up where the riders left off yesterday and each competitor has two tricks on the board.

Mika sticks a KGB for 7.97 – the highest women’s score so far. Bruna not far behind with a B2B (6.67) and Therese consistently landing in the high fives.

Mika sticks another high score with a 7.93 for a heart attack. Two highest scores of the event – and in the same heat! Her coach is on the beach talking her through the heat.

Mika absolutely insane in this heat. She just landed an 8.07 for a back mobe which means she’s now landed the three highest tricks of the event almost consecutively.

Mika wins with an insane performance and combined score of 31.04. The three highest scoring tricks and the biggest combo score of the event in one heat. No biggie..

WOMEN’S SEMI FINALS HEAT 2
P. Van Iersel / R. Arnaus / M. Lambrecht / H. Whiteley
Riders out on 12-13 metre kites and all landing opening tricks in the high fours (three raleys to blind and a blind judge). Hannah looking underpowered on a 12 but making it work.

Rita Arnaus doing well in this heat on a 12 metre RPM and she sticks a back to blind for 5.87. Leading well after two tricks but then Pippa van Iersel comes back from fourth with an s-bend to blind into second and she’s now closing on Rita.

Taller riders having to run back upwind in between tricks due to light conditions but Rita Arnaus is absolutely crushing it and she lands a slim chance scoring 7.67 but Van Iersel pulls ahead with some consistent scores including a 313.

Whitely then gets a solid gust of wind late in the heat and lands a double back to wrapped (second highest trick of the heat) but Van Iersel now has the momentum and keeps consistently sticking landings.

The dual between Arnaus and Van Iersel continues and with two tricks still to run, Rita pulls ahead again with an s-bend to blind. Van Iersel needs 7.95 to win this now. Unfortunately, her last trick was a BS 313 which only scored her 5.83. Rita wins the heat!

MEN’S SEMI FINALS HEAT 1
L. Cruz / S. Teixeira / V. Rodriguez / M. Chabloz
Conditions: Riders on 12-13 metres
Cruz strikes first with a 317 (7.07). Teixeira and Rodriguez then both land front blind mobes but Rodriguez’ is cleaner and bigger and he moves into second.

WIND DROPS – HEAT ABANDONED – ON TO THE WOMEN’S FINAL

WOMEN’S FINAL
B. Kajiya / P. Van Iersel / R. Arnaus / M. Sol
Bruna is looking strong from the off with an s-bend to blind for 5.87 points and she then stomps a front to blind and a B2B, two high scores.

Mika Sol’s riding super consistently though with a slim chance followed by back to blind and then a super clean heart attack for 7.7 to pull into the lead ahead of Bruna. This is now becoming a proper battle between the old guard and the new school!

Bruna’s not having it though, and she then lands a double back to wrapped to pull into the lead with a substantial combined score of 28.24. She’s still got three trick attempts in hand, and is comfortably leading this heat.

Rita Arnaus is close behind Mika in second with consistent scores averaging around 6 points and Pippa Van Iersel is only a couple of points behind.

Mika Sol then retakes the lead with a blind mobe and she now has a combined score of 29.47.

Each rider now has one trick to go, but Bruna’s gone for an s-bend to blind and that won’t score her highly enough to beat Mika.

MIKA WINS WITH ONE TRICK ATTEMPT STILL IN HAND!

WOMEN’S FINAL RESULTS

1: Mikaili Sol (BRA)
2: Bruna Kajiya (BRA)
3: Pippa van Iersel (NL)
4: Rita Arnaus (ESP)

Source: gkakiteworldtour.com

The new episode of MaxWorld is out! Watch Maxime Chabloz training in Sicily and check how it went the Backmobe 5 challenge with Gianmaria Coccoluto. Who won?

Edit by Maxime Chabloz
Video by Gianmaria Coccoluto, Fabio Ingrosso, Aron Rosslee and Maxime Chabloz
Special Guests: Mikaili Sol, Gianmaria Coccoluto, Aron Rosslee and Fabio Ingrosso

Liam Whaley training on the blue waters of the Caribbean! Take a look at episode 2 of World Of Whaley, shot in Bonaire!

Riders:
Liam Whaley
Gianmaria Cocoluto
Maxime Chabloz
Mikaili Sol
Valentin Rodriguez

Film Credits:
Fabio Ingrosso
Gianmaria Cocoluto
Maxime Chabloz

“MaxWorld” is Maxime Chabloz’s new series. The first episode is out and was shot in Bonaire. Watch the young shredder training in the Caribbean! Stay tuned for more action and trips.

Special Guests: Mikaili Sol, Valentin Rodrigues, Gianmaria Coccoluto, Liam Waley, Aron Rosslee and Fabio Ingrosso

Edit by Maxime Chabloz
Video by Gianmaria Coccoluto, Fabio Ingrosso, Aron Rosslee and Maxime Chabloz

“The Sum of 5” is out, starring Hannah Whiteley, Mikaili Sol, Francesca Bagnoli, Paula Novotna and Colleen Carroll. A must watch for today!

Passion and persistence are unrelenting forces that drive athletes Hannah Whiteley, Mikaili Sol, Francesca Bagnoli, Paula Novotna and Colleen Carroll to push past their existing limitations. Despite their differences in background, discipline, personality or style, these five women come together as a single unit to create something that is more than the sum of their parts. We present to you, The Sum of 5.

Credits:
Presented by – Duotone Kiteboarding
Video by – Vincent Bergeron
Additional footage by – Toby Bromwich & Nicolas Zimmermann
Production Manager – Colleen Carroll

Produced by – Boards & More
Music:
C Funk – Funkorama Persued – Niska Wahl ( CNOIR – 891567)
Harsh Reality – Shaw (KT190 – 320555)
Put it Down – Tokimonsta (Feat Anderson Paak)
Roses Thorn – Tokimonsta
Sore – Tokimonsta
Le Coeur Au Bout Des Doigts – Jacqueline Taieb

The small final and main finals took place today at Duro Beach, Cumbuco, with ideal conditions and a beach packed with hundreds of spectators. The Men’s Small Final was first in sequence, followed by the Women’s final and concluding with the Men’s Final.

Men’s Small Final

The small final was a battle between 4 strong athletes to place themselves from 4th to 8th position for this final event of the year. Set Teixeira entered the small final riding with confidence and power. He landed a good Backside 317 and a KGB 5, finishing in 1st place for the small final and giving him the 5th position for this event. Anthar Racca remained extremely close behind and landed an incredible Slim 7 amongst his attempts. Local rider Kalu de Sousa has had a fantastic event, making it to the small final on only his second Elite Championship event and finished the small final in 2nd place. Gianmaria Coccoluto from Italy did not manage his best heat, but he did land an impressive KGB5 amongst his attempts, and finished in 4th.

Women’s Final

We witnessed an incredibly high level of riding from our four female finalists in Cumbuco today.

Our World Champion, 14 year old Mikaili Sol from Brazil was on fire from the start, landing three tricks that scored in the 9´s. It was the first ever final for Pippa van Iersel on only her second WKC Elite event, and what a performance she gave! She clearly proved that she is a new big player in female kiteboarding, and once again landed a massive Heart Attack scoring 8.17 points on her second trick attempt. Francesca Bagnoli has been in every WKC final this year, and she once again rode incredibly well. Her Hinterberger mobe was beautifully executed and scored her 8.07 points. Our local wildcard Estefania Rosa has also had a positive event, coming all the way up through winning the qualifiers. She landed a a good array of tricks but struggled with several crashed attempts towards the end of the heat. Mikaili Sol sealed the deal with her exceptional performance today in Cumbuco, and is now our 2018 World Champion, an incredible accomplishment for this 14 year old athlete. Francesca Bagnoli finished 2nd, and Pippa Van Iersel came in third, her first podium position on the WKC.

Men’s Final

Our final WKC event of the year saw an absolutely outstanding level of performance from all 4 male finalists, each of them hungry for the top podium spot. Erick Anderson maybe the most unknown name in the final, but his riding level was up there with the very best. He landed tricks with incredible power and height, and rode one of his best heats. Liam Whaley, our Former World Champion seemed to feel the pressure at the start, but came back with a massive 8.53 points for his Backside 317 on his 4th trick attempt. Adeuri Corniel just went massive and fully powered, in his typical style, landing solid high scores throughout the heat. His KGB7 was spectacular and scored him 9 points. But it was our current Champion Carlos Mario who once again proved to the World that he is at the very top of his game. He landed a Heart Attack 7 and a Backside 319, and came back to the beach to his hundreds of supporters to share and celebrate his victory. It was an emotional final that saw such incredible drive and performance from all participants, and once again Carlos Mario was crowned as 2018 World Champion.

Cumbuco, Brazil has been an incredible location to host this final stop of the year, and the perfect conditions we saw each day allowed all athletes to truly push themselves to the limit. 2018 has been a fantastic year, and today’s action was the icing on the cake. Congratulations to all of our athletes for the passion and determination they all showed during this competition!

Source: worldkiteboardingchampionships.com

Brazilians Mikaili Sol and Carlos Mario are the GKA Kiteboarding World Tour Germany 2018 champions!

DELIVERANCE AT DAWN

The first order of today’s dawn raid was to take care of the remaining women’s single elimination semi-final between Champion-elect Mikaili Sol and Pauline Valesa; Sol needing just this heat win to be assured of the Championship (on better count-backs than her closest rival Hannah Whiteley), come what may in the final and then the double elimination.

It’s a challenge in itself to ride at your best at 6.30am, let alone when your first World Championship counts on it. Managing the mind of a 13 year-old can be a challenge on many levels, but the Swiss ex-snowkiting world champion and youth coach of excellence Fabio Ingrosso said that this morning Mika was already up and came to wake him; a change from the distracted talent he was trying to keep focused in yesterday’s stop / start heats with up and down winds.


Mikaili, primed for success

Credits due, the strong forecast held true for today and delivered nature’s payback after bizzarrely robbing us of what really should have been the highest wind event of the year at round one in Leucate. Inexplicably, for the first time in 20 years, the Mondial du Vent festival somehow delivered absolutely no wind! Today riders could fully let loose and fly.

After she’d calmly tested the waters and her gear for a few minutes, coach Fabio’s final words to his young student were, “Show me the real Mika Sol.” She nodded, swang her kite towards the horizon and got down to business, setting the tone for what would be seven hours of back-to-back heats in which the full men’s and women’s double elimination ladders ran to completion and closed the season out.


It’s more than a solo effort to become World Champion at just 13… though raw talent of is course the primary ingredient. Coach Fabio and Mika’s dad supporting from the sidelines this morning

Pauline and Mika are two of the slightest athletes on tour and French rider Pauline took the longest to adjust to the strong conditions, having the bar ripped roughly out of her hands early on while trying to build handle-pass scores. Mika meanwhile landed a slim early on before safely compiling a couple of solid kite loop scores. On Fabio’s signal Mika was in for a slick pit-stop, upping her kite size to a nine metre and grabbing her foot-strapped board. Nailing the double front board-off on her first attempt she was safely ahead with five good tricks to two. Red flag up: she was a 13 year-old World Champion, but there was little fanfare. If she went on to win the final against Hannah she’d be guaranteed a clear points gap with no count-backs necessary.


Mika’s double front board-off was hard to beat… alongside her slim 5s, kite loop bar spins and more!


The top four through the singles and doubles: Pauline Valesa, Pippa van Iersel, Mika Sol and Hannah Whiteley

Hannah Whiteley has found that this mixed Air Games format perfectly suits her robust style of riding. The northwest of England is blustery and cold and can deliver every imaginable wind condition. Hers is therefore a committed style and she’s risen to the challenge to become the most complete twin-tip rider.

Hannah will have to wait until next season to “beat that little grom” from Brazil (as she affectionately called the rider who is half her own age) as Mika went on to maintain a 100% heat victory record this season – eventually beating Hannah once again in the double elimination final later in the day. That gallant second position has been Hannah’s all year though and she walks away from this tour with a strong training goal.

“I’ve realised that this is my dream tour that pulls all aspects together. I will be fully focused to be as ready as I can be for 2019. Bring on the Cape Town training!”


Hannah hustling for the win

MEN’S DOUBLE ELIMINATION:

Chomping at the bit to get into action, the men’s first double elimination heats started with those riders who took the earliest exits from the single elimination in vastly different conditions. The second elimination offers the chance for a rider to heroically march their way back up the ladder.

In the midst of men lurked a couple of King of the Air specialists and it was time to shine for Lewis Crathern. Gaining fortune, his first heat opponent retired through injury and then both riders in heat #22B (Joselito and Marius) somehow failed to show up for their heat, so he was given another bye.


Lewis sending one of his many kite loop variations that saw him strongly advance

Lewis found himself projected up the ladder to face Dominican shredder Luis Alberto Cruz in heat #28A. Luis V Lewis was a fantastic heat and at 33 years-of-age Lewis is the oldest rider on the tour and showed that in high wind experience counts. Stacking each of his heats, he loaded the judge’s tablets with technical but flowing boogie loops (mega loops with a front roll) kite loop late back rolls, super controlled double front roll board-offs (not using the handle), high kung-fu passes and a couple of super powered back mobes. He progressed through five heats back-to-back and found himself suddenly having a potential say in the World Championship, lining up against Jesse Richman.


Playing to the conditions, Crathern had a killer series of heats

At this point the focus of the story switches from Lewis to Jesse as the Hawaiian hit the water fully charged to launch his assault on a third world title. The conditions were exactly why riders of his ability were motivated to enter the ‘Air Games’ and as he launched his kite on the beach he hooted characteristically, seemingly without a care in the world. (Jesse operates in a state of permanent excitement and has blessed this tour with his open personality all season and the genuine personal interest that he shows everyone, from young up-and-coming competitors to new fans of the sport). His enthusiasm is infectious and spread wildly as we closed in on the moment that the first ‘Air Games’ World Champion would be crowned; and with it the claim of being the first ‘world’s most complete twin-tip freestyle rider’.


Always sending, Jesse

Jesse opened up his account with a huge boogie loop followed by a massive triple front roll off a kicker with each body rotation totally inverted. Within seconds he’d also landed a kung fu high handle-pass and had completed a high scoring trick in each of the three categories. Lewis was also registering good scores in each category but clearly a little more worn. After three tricks each there was already a sizeable eight point gap. Jesse looked ultra fresh and stomped a huge kite loop board-off; a relatively new move that’s handsomely rewarded and richly deserved.

After the heat Lewis said, “I thought I had an advantage as I was well warmed up but Jesse did everything and I didn’t know he literally had the kite loop board-off in the bag like that!”

Jesse faced Aaron Hadlow next in a huge heat of few mistakes. Quality and size evidently mattered over quantity and there was no margin for error with both riders getting the highest heat scores of the contest so far. Jesse prevailed with a whopping 27.64 to Aaron’s 25.93. Jesse’s overall impression score of 4.7 out of 5 was second only to his previous heat score of 4.8. He was nearing Air Games perfection.


The beauty of the double elimination is that the tension builds and builds as the higher placed riders enter the competition heat by heat towards the final stages. Jesse was was itching to get going

One competitor remained and we were gifted a winner-takes-all showdown. If Carlos won another final he and Jesse would finish the tour on equal points but Carlos would win on countbacks having won more times than Jesse. If Jesse won, he would have an overall points lead.

It was interesting to note that Carlos was the only rider who didn’t warm up on the water at all today. His first heat was the final and he went straight from launching his kite to the competition area and was tricking with dry hair. He was born ready to kite…

Very different in their styles, experience and preferred conditions, Jesse on paper was more at home; a King of the Air winner and already comfortable in foot straps without the need to switch gear during his heat to register a high scoring big board-off. So he decided to hit Carlos where it hurt early on with a massive kite loop board-off, a move that as yet we’ve not seen the Brazilian attempt. Jesse looked good all the way into landing but caught an edge in the white water and drifted away from his board.


Having landed two super clean kite loop board-offs, Jesse was unlucky to suffer two rough landings in chop. In smoother waters, could the story have ended differently? Jesse believes he was ‘just one butt check away’ at the start

Carlos pounced, returning the favour and showing that he’s about more than just new school technicality launching a solid kite loop with a late back roll. Jesse was up and riding and tried the same again, failed again catching a nasty bit of chop and no doubt expended energy and flow in his mind.


Carlos Mario engages kite loop mode

The Hawaiian did get back on track and gained momentum towards the end of the heat but by then Carlos had landed an assured world class 317 – a flat spin wakestyle trick with two handle-passes. In normal freestyle conditions it’s a world class heat trick. In these conditions he knew the handle-pass category was his.

Having only learnt board-offs for this World Tour, Carlos put down two fine examples, including a triple back roll variation.


Carlos and Jesse took each other all the way this season and have started this new Air Games world tour with an enourmous bang. The best of the best have lots of respect

The final wasn’t as epic as the semis and in truth the damage was done in the first few minutes. Jesse himself said, “I felt good going into the heat and just gave it everything that I had right out of the gates. I didn’t get the scores I needed at the start of the heat and sometimes it goes like that, but Carlos is one of the most all round kiteboarders in the world and in technical freestyle I think he’s untouchable.”

Adding to his two pure freestyle world titles, Carlos said that he had to train hard for the board-off but is super stoked to be crowned the most all-round twin-tip rider in the world.

GERMANY RESULT:

MEN:
1 Carlos Mario (BRA)
2 Jesse Richman (USA)
3 Aaron Hadlow (UK)
4 Lewis Crathern (UK

WOMEN:
1 Mikaili Sol (BRA)
2 Hannah Whiteley (UK)
3 Pippa van Iersel (NED)
4 Pauline Valesa (FRA)

2018 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP

MEN:
1 Carlos Mario (BRA) 6,234 (Wins on countbacks with more wins)
2 Jesse Richman (USA) 6,234
3 Maxime Chabloz (SWI) 5,871

WOMEN:
1 Mikaili Sol (BRA) 6,300
2 Hannah Whiteley (UK) 6,201
3 Pippa van Iersel (NED) 6,102

Report: Jim Gaunt

Photos: Ydwer van der Heide
Source: global-kitesports.org

Mika and Mario take on all comers to retain their podium positions in final day.

At the end of four non-stop days of competition the Brazilians finished today atop the podium with the unstoppable Mikaili Sol taking her second event win of the season to make it ‘two from two’ before Carlos Mario topped his first GKA Air Games event podium.

It’s been an incredible week here in Cabarete with perfect conditions everyday but one since the riders arrived in town and this afternoon was a fitting finale to the main event in pumping conditions on Cabarete Beach.


The finalists on day five

THE MEN HIT THE WATER AND JESSE LETS LOOSE

By the end of play yesterday, the field had been narrowed down to just nine men and Robinson Hilario and Adeuri Corniel were first up. Hilario’s riding style suits the Air Games format. He’s very comfy with the old-school / big-air side of things, but Adeuri was matching him trick for trick on a bigger kite than anyone else and he stuck some huge board-off rotations which he trucked into at full speed.


Adeuri on the advance

Adeuri recently became the twintip racing Youth World Champion and will be representing the DR this October at the Youth Olympic Games so he knows a thing or two about going flat-out and he was taking a similar approach in his heats today. He had the momentum, and he kept the charge to beat Louka Pitot in his next heat before taking out yesterday’s top performing local rider Luis Alberto Cruz. It looked like he might go all the way as he prepared for his heat against Jesse Richman.

When he hit the water against Jesse he looked a little flustered though, maybe the occasion was getting to him or maybe it was the non-stop barrage of heats he’d just battled through, but he soon regained his composure and was pretty quickly matching Jesse for height and beginning to look like a real contender for the podium positions with the home crowd fully behind him on the beach.


Jesse Richman – on the edge as per

After a huge triple frontroll and a massive board-off frontroll he was looking pretty dominant but then Jesse hit back with a series of massive half cabs, board-offs and a kiteloop double half cab and he sealed the deal with a board-off double front roll to beat Adeuri and progress to the next round.


Half cab hero

Jesse then went up against Paul Serin who’d beaten him on day three in the single elimination mini-final. Paul was smooth, clean and playing a tactical game but Jesse’s calculated (and maybe sometimes not-so calculated) ‘all-in’ approach was bearing fruit and, while he took some heavy crashes, he only needed three high scoring tricks to take the win. He did it – but only by 0.5 points! #tight


Paul Serin sending!

With a guaranteed podium position in the bag, Jesse’s relentless march up the table continued and next he beat Posito Martinez in what, from the beach, looked like one of the tightest heats of the entire event. Posito struck first with a massive boogie loop before Jesse stuck a huge board-off rotation and another double half cab. In the dying seconds, it looked like Posito might have been in with a serious when he stuck a lofty backside board-off handlepass to toeside but Jesse had already done enough by this stage and he would be taking on Carlos Mario in a bid for his second event win of the season.


Posito sprints up the beach for an equipment change – a key tactic that all of the competitors have employed this week to make sure they’re riding the right board or kite when going for big air or focusing on wakestyle tricks

Jesse began on his bigger kite and was putting it all on the line from the start, but Carlos opened with a faultless double heart attack before following up with a clean kiteloop nine scoring himself two tens in the process. Then he grabbed his strapped board and stuck a massive board-off triple front roll in the last minute, and before he and Jesse even left the water, it was pretty clear who’d clinched it.


Carlos ‘The Machine’ Mario living up to his name!

Carlos was on fire today and this win underlines the point that he’s not just a new school freestyle fanatic. He went from landing cutting edge wakestyle moves to doing board-off triple frontrolls. He’s the full package!

PODIUM POSITIONS REMAIN IMPENETRABLE IN WOMEN’S DIVISION


Rita Arnaus airs

The women’s division was down to six riders by the start of today and Valesa drew first blood by taking out Rita Arnaus in a closely contested heat (Rita went straight to the judges tower to check her scores – she knew it’d been close). Valesa then fell to single-eliminations third placer Pippa van Iersel, who’s consistently thrown some of the most powered passes we’ve seen in the women’s division at this event, but then Hannah Whiteley stopped her climbing any higher up the ladder with some huge tweaked nosegrab frontrolls backed up with super stylish big-air moves.

So, this meant it would be Hannah and Mikaili meeting once again in their third final of the year (including the single elimination from earlier this week).


Hannah Whiteley pulls out all the stops against Mikaili in the final

Hannah kicked things off with a sizeable ‘superwoman’ board-off, some massive grabbed rotations and a super-clean blind judge but Mikaili was ready to respond and she stuck a big triple front roll which she followed up with a double frontroll board off to toeside and then a STOMPED slim chance to take the win.


Mikaili Sol soars to glory

Hannah and Mikaili have distinguished themselves at the top of the women’s division so far this season but Mikaili seems to have an ability to find another gear when it comes to crucial heats like this one. She didn’t have a massive lead over Hannah today, but she was smooth, consistent and she wasn’t making many mistakes. At this level that’s what it takes!

The main event is now complete but there’s still action coming up tomorrow in the Expression Session!

Report: Matt Pearce / Photos: Carlos Gonzales, Oli Dadswell and Genesis Reyes
Source: global-kitesports.org

Carlos Mario and Mikaili Sol seize the Single Elimination.

Another jam-packed day of competition today at the Air Games Cabarete 2018 as the single eliminations wrapped up and the riders pitched into the doubles.


Mikaili Sol – triple front roll

Yesterday’s closing heats left the event site wrapped in suspense with just the final single elimination rounds to complete in both the men’s and women’s division and today kicked off with a huge final in the women’s division with experienced freestyle competitor Hannah Whiteley taking on the 13 year-old rising star Mikaili Sol. Parallels are already being drawn between Mikaili and Gisela Pulido at the start of her career and today she showed that the hype may well be justified. Hannah is a seriously tough opponent and more than belonged in the final but Mika’s methodical approach to her heat gave her the edge and she stuck a huge triple front roll, a massive front roll board-off and a clean slim chance on her way to victory.


Hannah Whiteley gave no quarter in the finals

In the battle for third, young Dutch charger Pippa van Iersel took on Osaia Comaille Reding and Osaia was pushing her all the way but when she over-sent a kiteloop and came down hard, injuring her hip in the process, she was out of the fight. Pippa immediately rushed to help her (legend!) and Osaia was quickly plucked from the water and is thankfully expected to make a full recovery but the heat had to be finished early as a result. Pippa had still done enough to win by that point though so she clinched her podium position fair and square and she deserved to be up there alongside Hannah and Mikaili.


Pippa – powered and passing

Then it was on to the men’s finals after a truly standout heat in the semis that saw Jesse succumb to local legend Posito Martinez. Nobody’s been going bigger than Jesse and Posito at this event but Posito pulled ahead and earned his place in the final against Carlos Mario who’d already booked his spot after beating Frenchman Paul Serin.


Posito smiling on the job. The man enjoys his work!


Jesse rode hard today, but this time poise defeated power

This was a true clash of the titans. The home crowd was going wild for Posito and it looked at point like he might have had the edge on the amplitude, landing a particularly clean (and big) triple backroll with a handlepass, but Carlos was way ahead on technicality with a front blind mobe, a kiteloop seven and then a huge double half cab to seal the deal!


Carlos has been near faultless so far at the Air Games Cabarete

It was then down to Paul Serin and Jesse to duke it out for third place and Jesse was breaking out his customary massive half cabs, he stuck a kiteloop front to blind and then came crucially close on a kiteloop seven (just losing the bar as he touched down). Jesse’s a risk taker, and sometimes that strategy pays off for him, but today Paul’s cleaner and perhaps slightly more tactical approach had done the job and he pushed past current tour leader Jesse to third.


Old school French flair

Paul’s been on fire at this event, riding well and working with the judging criteria like a true competitor. He knows when to switch between his boots and straps boards and alternate between powered wakestyle moves and big-air tricks and his boogie loop attempt today was one of the best we’ve seen so far here in Cabarete. He’d changed down to a ten metre to go for it and, with a couple more knots, he’d no doubt have stomped it clean!

Once the single elimination results were announced it was on the to the doubles and the riders who’d exited the event early in the singles were gunning hard for retribution in this, their last chance to stay in the competition.


A solid start for Rita Arnaus

Rita Arnaus, who’d missed the singles due to an injured foot, pushed through the pain to knock Gina Binh out in her first heat of the event and then Paula Valesa beat Suami Cavallo to continue on to her next heat which’ll be tomorrow when she faces her friend and fellow Frenchwoman Maureen Castelle.


Set gets back in the game

In the men’s division, freestyle charger Set Teixeira overcame his surprise early exit in the singles and he’ll take on Cabarete-raised ripper Robinson Hilario next. Local rider Andri Ramirez also rekindled his chances by beating Esteban Hernandez from Colombia but it may be a case of being ‘out of the frying pan and into the fire’ for him now as he has to take on Luis Alberto Cruz, a past winner of this event, in his next heat! Easier said than done…

Check the highlights below!

SINGLE ELIMINATION RESULTS

MEN
1: Carlos Mario (BRA)
2: Posito Martinez (DOM)
3: Paul Serin (FRA)
4: Jesse Richman (USA)

WOMEN

1: Mikaili Sol (BRA)
2: Hannah Whiteley (UK)
3: Pippa van Iersel (NL)
4: Osaia Reding (FRA)

The double eliminations continue today. Stay tuned to our socials for updates as the action unfolds and we progress towards the final stages of the competition.

Report: Matt Pearce
Source: global-kitesports.org