In a few short weeks, many of the world’s best kitesurfers will gather on the windy coast of Portugal for the first event of the KSP World Tour 2012.
If you are unfamiliar with the KSP, it is the kitesurf pro world tour for wave riding with a kite. Sanctioned by the IKA (International Kiteboarding Association), this exciting tour is entering its second year of existence.
The mission of the KSP is to plot an international field of the world’s premiere kitesurfers in the best waves, and after a great inaugural year, the KSP is building on its momentum.
Here’s what’s happening in 2012.
The KSP and IKA made a strong effort to make the field as international as possible, while maintaining the highest possible level of competition. When the dust settled, the 2012 KSP riders list features athletes from 18 countries. There are 22 full-time male spots. At each event, 2 local wildcards will be awarded. The women have 11 full-time spots, with 1 local wildcard per event.
The tour stops are insane! This year, another event has been added to the schedule for a total of 4 stops. They are:
June 1 – June 10 KSP Portugal
KSP Portugal will be held at Guincho Beach in the town of Cascais. Flights to Faro will drop you off way to far south, instead opt for Lisbon, which is nearer. This area is recognized as 1 of only 3 world surfing reserves in the entire world. As far as the wind is concerned, riders can expect a strong breeze.
Reigning KSP women’s champion, Inês Correia is from Portugal and knows the local conditions well. She said, “In June (we) have a strong thermal wind. 25/ 30kts.” This event is unique in that it will feature a cross-onshore wind direction, which is sure to showcase the progressive new school aspects of kitesurfing.
Look for some new maneuvers that have never been seen before in competition. The Brazilian contingent should do well in these conditions.
September 7 – September 16 KSP Mauritius
This is the only repeat event from last year’s schedule. After the most incredible event in competitive kitesurfing history, it was inevitable that the KSP World Tour would return to Mauritius for 2012.
Last year saw great wind and waves topping out in the 15-18 foot plus range.
With a mental backdrop, this spot could be one of the prettiest in the entire world. The wave itself breaks hard over a coral reef, so the consequences of a mistake can be significant.
October 19 – October 28 KSP Ireland
Welcome to the rugged west coast of Ireland during hurricane season. This event is unique in that it will feature a mobile format. Wherever the waves are best on the west coast, the competition will run. The waves could be solid at this event. KSP Ireland is sure to be a true gem stop on the dream tour for 2012. I’m excited for this stop, as it will be the most similar to the conditions from my home area of Nova Scotia, Canada.
November 29 – December 8 KSP Hawaii
Hawaii during the winter is iconic in the surfing world and a premiere destination for kiteboarding holidays. During this time, the North Pacific Ocean is alive and pumping swell. This event could also feature big surf in excess of 15-20 feet. This is sure to be a mental finish to an epic year of competition.
I’m going to be writing an article before and after each event this season. I’ll give you insight into what it was like to compete at each venue and I’ll have plenty of interviews with other riders. And of course, I’ll have some wicked pictures!
(I’d like to take a moment to thank my generous sponsors: Ocean Rodeo Kiteboarding, kiteboardingholidays.com, Lawrencetown Kitesurfing, DNA Energy Drink and Remedy Pain Solutions, Inc. Your help is critical in the pursuit of my dreams.)
If you have a sponsorship opportunity for me, please contact me at email@example.com
My personal website is www.windydream.com
More information and updates can be found on the KSP website (www.kspworldtour.com). You can also watch a live web broadcast of each event on the KSP website.
Airton Cozzolino (ITA)
Mitu Monteiro (CPV)
Guilly Brandao (BRA)
Mauricio Pedreira (BRA)
Sky Solbach (USA)
Jesse Richman (HI)
Juan Pablo Diban (CHI)
Patri McLaughlin (HI)
Grant “Twiggy” Baker (RSA)
Sebastian Ribeiro (BRA)
Keahi De Aboitiz (AUS)
Abel Lago (ESP)
Marciel “Matchu” Lopes Almeida (CPV)
Luke McGillewie (RSA)
Jakob Appel (DEN)
Etienne Lhote (FRA)
Lee Harvey (GBR)
Mark Moore (CAN)
Cameron Biehl (USA)
Filippe Ferreira (BRA)
Gonzalo Gomes (POR)
Pedro Henrique Menzes (BRA)
Ines Correia (POR)
Marie Gautron (FRA)
Kristin Boese (GER)
Ninja Bichler (GER)
Melissa Gil (USA)
Kari Schibevaag (NOR)
Kirsty Jones (GBR)
Jalou Langeree (NED)
Ainhoa Garcia (ESP)
Maria Celina Guardati (ARG)
Milla Knesse Ferreira (BRA)
For more kiteboarding holidays guides and blogs, check out: HD cameras for kitesurfing reviewed / Buying kitesurfing equipment: Best Twin Tip boards 2012 /5 pro kitesurfing tips to get you started / Kiteboarding: Top 10 Destinations in the United States
- KSP World Tour: Mauritius Preview
- Kitesurfing News: KSP announce 2012 Tour Dates
- Kitesurfing: a newbie on the world tour
2 Comments to “KSP World Tour 2012: Countdown to Portugal”
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