Please select your home edition
Edition
Mackay Boats

KTA Philippines Boracay Extreme overall

by Ian MacKinnon on 11 Mar 2014
Reynard Gajisan goes huge in freestyle action during final day - KTA Philippines Boracay Extreme 2014 Alexandru Baranescu
The finale of the thrilling Kiteboard Tour Asia (KTA) season in the Philippines wrapped up in a fitting climax with spell-binding action for the finals of the freestyle competitions, with cranking winds that pushed riders to their limits and beyond. But when the spray cleared and the judges votes were in the men’s and women’s crowns went – by common consent – to the pair who richly deserved their titles with displays of controlled, powerful riding even in the toughest conditions.

The Netherlands’ Dylan van der Meij, 19, clinched the top podium spot, confirming his win in the single elimination round with the stellar fluency of his tricks. Brazilian number two, Estefania Rosa dos Santos, 26, exactly matched the Dutchman’s feat with her smooth air passes, earning both riders the overall KTA tour freestyle titles.


For the fifth successive year Boracay’s kiting mecca, palm-fringed Bulabog Beach, served as the stage for the drama that unfolded over four days of intense Formula kite and Twin Tip racing, and pulsating freestyle battles. The wind that built throughout the contest was at first near-perfect for racing, but by the close the strong, squally conditions challenged the freestylers to throw down their biggest tricks on their smallest kites.

More than 100riders from 21 countries soaked up the idyllic atmosphere on the barely 7km-long island, which is fringed with talcum-powder white beaches that lend the sea a striking turquoise hue. Coral reefs shelter the waters that allowed both racers and freestylers to fine-tune their technique and master new tricks.


For those made the trip ahead of the competition there was also the chance to experience the island’s delights: whether it was the ultra-fresh seafood, the vibrant party scene or the chilled out charm of cool sunset hangouts, like the cliff-side Spider House Resort. As the sun goes down dragon boat crews in training take appear, paddling their craft at a frantic pace in synchronized unison among the ferries and fishing boats with their characteristic out-riggers.

Away from the frenetic freestyle kiting of Bulabog Beach and the - perhaps - even more raucous partying of White Beach on the opposite side of the island, some riders also took the opportunity to go for a gentle Stand Up Paddle tour on the Bugang River on nearby Panay Island, with its clear waters framed by dense unspoiled jungle.

But it was the Bay of Bulabog, bookended by lushly-wooded hillsides,which as always performed as a perfect venue for the 2014 KTA Philippines Borocay Extreme, with Blue Orange Ville as the presenting sponsor and Aqua Boracay by Yoo the host.

Twin Tip racers were first up as race officials waited for the tide to rise to give the course-board competitors sufficient water for their fins. With almost 60 entrants in the Twin Tip contest the scene was set for tight action as racers sped round two laps of the triangular course.

The first race on the first day could have descended into chaos when at least 15 of the racers opted for a pin end start on a port tack, putting them on collision course with those starting on a more conventional starboard tack, with the right of way in their favour. Miraculously, there were no tangles but Thailand’s Narapichit 'Yo'Pudla made what was, by his standards, a faltering start.

It was not to last.The 23-year-old reasserted his class dominance with bullets in the opening day’s two other races, with Doque De los Santos (PHI) and Louie 'Bong' Fernando (PHI) giving him a run for his money on the relatively short track. Germany’s Kathrin Borgwardt was even more dominant in the women’s scoring bullets in all three opening races.

Borgwardt initially stole a march, too, on Astrid Berz (SUI) in the first course-board race of the day when the Swiss rider was late to the line, but it was her only slip and she scored bullets in the five remaining races. Pudla, however, never skipped a beat and scored six bullets with training partner Chanon 'Jack' Phrakaew (THA) and Ken Nacor (PHI) hard on his heels in every race in the moderate conditions that saw most riders put up their 11m or 13m kites.

Throughout the races of the three closing days Pudla was virtually unstoppable, though in the stiffer winds of day three Nacor finally scored two bullets and left the Thai trailing in his wake. But on the podium ultimately Pudla took top spot, with Nacor second and Thailand’s Phrakaew third. In the KTA season standings Pudla finished first, with Phrakaew second and Passakorn 'Oh' Phaetraska third.

Borgwardt scored so many bullets in the women’s Twin Tip division that she chose to sit out the last race of the final day, having built an insurmountable lead to take the title and the overall KTA season class winner. Freestyler Kelly Schouten (NED) advanced up the order as the competition progressed to snatch the second podium spot and came third overall in the KTA season standing, with the absent Lisa Nikitina (UKR) second and Borgwardt top.

Yet Berz proved too consistently quick for Borgwardt in the course-board class, and though the German bagged several notable bullets on day three, they were not enough to knock the Swiss racer off the podium. South Korea’s Bitna Kim secured the third spot, and second in the KTA season standings, with Berz third, and Borgwardt top again.

The freestyle contests were equally absorbing with the winners from the last tour stop in Bintan, Indonesia, coming out on top in the single elimination rounds. It set up the prospect a mouth-watering final day’s competition to close out the KTA 2013-14 season with the double eliminations staged in winds that hit more than 26 knots and saw the leading women scrambling to borrow 6m and 7m kites.


In the tough conditions the slight Boracay-based rider, 12-year-old Christian Tio was in his element on his 5m kite. His march up the order was nothing short of remarkable as he duelled past riders more experienced and way more powerful, barely missing a beat as he cleanly landed Blind Judges, NISs and stunning Low Mobes.

Slovenia’s powerful Jaka Komocar, 17, put an end to Tio’s amazing run to leave him fifth. But the teenager also found his path blocked by Andrey Salnik (UKR), who then took out the single


Elimination runner-up Mike Blomvall (SWE), with both displaying huge speed and power in the tricky conditions.
As single elimination winner, Dutchman van der Meij had the luxury of waiting for the competition to come to him, which it did in the form of Salnik, 28. If the growing tension and building wind played on his nerves he did not show it, though on his unfamiliar 8m kite he suffered several uncharacteristic crashes. His other tricks, though, were fluid, powered and stomped in a way that were simply too much for Salnik, who gave it his all with his kite even ending in a palm tree at one point in the final. It gave van der Meij top spot in the KTA season, with Komocar second and Reynard 'Along' Gajisan (PHI) third and top Asian rider.

'I’m super-happy,' said van der Meij. 'It was a really tough heat. The wind was huge and the rain was in my eyes. I could see he was very powered and going big. So I wasn’t sure whether I’d won or not. I’m so happy.'

Brazil’s dos Santos found herself in a similarly comfortable position, able standby and watch the Netherlands’ Schouten battle with British champion Rosanna Jury, on 6m and 7m kites respectively. On this occasion the Dutchwoman was just too strong. But in the final she knew she had to gamble to have any hope of beating dos Santos’ silky precision.

It did not pay off for Schouten, who in her efforts to go for her biggest tricks even in the unnerving conditions, suffered several hard slams that unsettled her and left unable to establish a rhythm. Even dos Santos suffered a couple crashes, but was still able to make several air passes that gave her the edge in the judges’ eyes. The finishing order was also reflected in the KTA season standings.

'I feel very proud of myself,' said the perpetually sunny dos Santos, after hearing she had won. 'I’m not used to rain and strong, gusty winds. I only had two crashes, which is good for the conditions. I tried to relax and enjoy myself, and it worked.'


Rosanna Jury goes huge in freestyle action during final day - KTA Philippines Boracay Extreme 2014 © Alexandru Baranescu
Rosanna Jury goes huge in freestyle action during final day - KTA Philippines Boracay Extreme 2014 © Alexandru Baranescu
KTA Website
Protector - 660 x 82Phuket Raceweek 2017 660x82Ancasta Ker 33 660x82

Related Articles

Sanya awarded Youth Sailing World Championships
World Sailing, the world governing body of the sport is pleased to announce that Sanya, China will host the 2017 edition The 2017 selection process opened in November 2016 after the Israeli Sailing Association exercised the right to withdraw from hosting the 2017 edition as a final contract had not been concluded.
Posted on 22 Feb
Hong Kong Raceweek. Asia's biggest small boat regatta wraps in style
It was an awesome week with very challenging conditions for some of the sailors. It was an awesome week with very challenging conditions for some of the sailors.
Posted on 19 Feb
Hong Kong Race Week – Day 2
With limited breeze in the vicinity of Middle Island, the decision was made to move 100+ Optimist fleet to Tai Tam Bay With the limited breeze in the vicinity of Middle Island, the decision was made to move the 100+ Optimist fleet to Tai Tam Bay where there was likely to be more breeze. Multiple ribs took up the task to tow the fleet the 3.5nm to Tai Tam Bay.
Posted on 17 Feb
Richard Vs Barack; Foiler Vs Kiteboard at Necker Island, BVI
It was a huge honour to be able to invite President Barack and Michelle Obama down to the British Virgin Islands It was a huge honour to be able to invite President Barack and Michelle Obama down to the British Virgin Islands for a complete break after Barack finished his second term as President. It was tremendous to offer him the chance to learn to kitesurf. The sport has really taken off in the past decade and we have the perfect conditions and team to help anyone learn.
Posted on 8 Feb
Kiteboard Tour Asia 2017 season schedule released
The flood gates are open and revealing a very sexy looking 2017 KTA season ahead. The flood gates are open and revealing a very sexy looking 2017 KTA season ahead.
Posted on 5 Feb
World Cup Series - McNay and Hughes (USA) claim third Miami Gold
The final five medal races were held at World Cup Series Miami 2017, Presented by Sunbrella on Sunday The final five medal races were held at World Cup Series Miami 2017, Presented by Sunbrella (January 22-29, 2017) on Sunday, capping off a successful 28th year of North America’s premier Olympic classes regatta. U.S. Olympians Stu McNay (Providence, R.I.) and Dave Hughes (Miami, Fla.) won their fourth Miami medal in the last five years, with three of those medals being gold.
Posted on 30 Jan
Six Miami medals as first 2017 World Cup concludes
Britain’s sailors concluded their first World Cup regatta of the 2020 cycle with a six-medal haul Britain’s sailors concluded their first World Cup regatta of the 2020 cycle with a six-medal haul as the Sailing World Cup Miami drew to a close on Biscayne Bay on Sunday (29 January).
Posted on 30 Jan
World Series Cup - Hitting the right notes in Miami
Zegers and teammate Annaloes van Veen displayed incredible poise to grab the Women's 470 title. A classically trained concert pianist, Afrodite Zegers (NED) is no stranger to the big stage. So when the pressure was at fever pitch in the final race of the 2017 World Series Cup Miami presented by Sunbrella, and the proverbial lights of a live worldwide broadcast at its brightest, Zegers and teammate Annaloes van Veen displayed incredible poise to grab the Women's 470 title.
Posted on 30 Jan
American sailors ready to challenge for Medals on Sunday in Miami
Five of the ten scheduled medal races took place on Saturday at World Cup Series Miami 2017 Five of the ten scheduled medal races took place on Saturday at World Cup Series Miami 2017, Presented by Sunbrella (January 22-29, 2017), with US Sailing Team boats competing in the Men’s 49er and Nacra 17 classes as online audiences watched from around the world. On Sunday, multiple American boats will have a shot at the podium as the regatta comes to a close.
Posted on 29 Jan
World Cup Series - Shifty conditions make Medal Races a test of nerve
With World Cup Series secure going into Medal Race, 49er sailors sailed a clean race and largely stayed out of the fray. With the World Cup Series secure going into the Medal Race, 49er sailors Dylan Fletcher-Scott and Stuart Bithell (GBR) sailed a clean race and largely stayed out of the fray. They finished fifth, capping off an impressive start to the Tokyo 2020 quad for this new team.
Posted on 29 Jan