Please select your home edition
Edition
Mackay Boats

Kiteboarders making history at Phuket King’s Cup

by Phuket King's Cup Media on 4 Dec 2011
Kiteboarding in Thailand Duncan Worthington
The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has decided to include kiteboarding course racing as an evaluation sport in the 2016 Olympics.

This year the 25th Phuket King’s Cup Regatta, the largest sailing event in Asia, is including a kiteboarding division, which will be run with the cooperation of Kiteboard Tour Asia (KTA).


Kevin Whitcraft, President of the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta Organising Committee said, 'We're delighted to welcome the kiteboarders. We are broadening the Regatta, and we hope this new element will have very strong appeal to kiteboarding enthusiasts and a younger sailing audience.’

Willy Kerr is the Phuket based KTA Tour Director. 'This year’s Phuket King’s Cup Regatta will feature a kiteboarding division. It’s a historic step for Asian sailing but quite a logical one as the sport has a strong following in Thailand with Hua Hin playing host to the Kiteboarding World Tour for the last two seasons and Pranburi being the Thailand stop on Kiteboard Tour Asia.

‘The KTA is an ISAF sanctioned continental tour. The current KTA champion is Thai sailor Narapichit ‘Yo’ Pudla, twice Asian champion in freestyle and course racing and in the Philippines last year he was close behind the World Champion, so we are expecting great things of him in the future.’

Kerr continued ‘We have been inundated with people wanting to join. We did invite 20 of the top riders to come and join the Phuket King’s Cup event this year but next year I probably see it being an Open division.

‘Amongst this year’s sailors we have Aya Oshima, two-time Asia Freestyle/ Race Champion and two-time Japanese Freestyle Champion and Ken Nacor who is the Philippines Champion and Asia number 2. Beijing Olympics windsurfing Silver medalist Ho Chi Ho will be competing, as will Turkish KTA Champion and Turkish Freestyle Champion Taner Aykurt and Kathryn Bogwardt, the 2010 and 2011 KTA Ladies Champion.

‘We really need eight knots to race. We will launch from the beach and ride out and we’re aiming for three races per day. We have a 45 minute time limit on our races which are very similar in format to traditional sailing, but there are some important differences.’

Neil Godbold, KTA founding Director and head of training explains. ‘Kiteboarders follow the same overall sailing rules. However, the kite adds a third dimension.

‘We have a set of rules for when an upwind kite and a downwind kite are passing each other and if boats are on closing tacks. Basically it is upwind- kite up, downwind- kite down.

‘It sounds easy when you say it but when there are 50 or 60 people around you on the start line starting on different tacks, then it becomes interesting.

‘The distance of the kite from the board can vary; in strong winds as little as 27 metres, in soft conditions up to 40 metres.

‘Some sailors are trying to run along the start line with their kite high because they are trying not to cross the line early and sailors who are on timed runs and coming from the back (of the fleet) will have their kites low.

‘As the start flag goes those from the back will come charging through, the guys in the front row will be trying to drop their kites down to power up quicker than those behind them.

‘If everyone is on starboard tack off the line its fine, but port tack starters have to deal with the priority rule on the water surface and the priority rules with the kites at the same time.

‘Kiteboarders sailed in a Cowes Week Round Island race this year and there has been San Francisco regatta racing and some mixed fleet racing with the RS:X windsurfers in France.

[Sorry, this content could not be displayed] ‘The Phuket King’s Cup will be one of the first major regattas with a kite board class. For us to be competing for King’s Cup awards is very exciting.’

Willy Kerr summed up saying ‘The King’s Cup organizing committee is certainly proving to be forward looking.

‘Up the track at Olympic level, there is a big opportunity for lightweight Asian sailors. Our Kite Board Tour Asia events are open to Europeans also, so we have found in the light wind spots the Asians are finishing on top quite a lot. Their lightness, their small bodies and agility - it really does help. They have an advantage there and just as has been happening in windsurfing, we expect to see Asian kiteboarders winning Olympic medals in the future.’

Speaking for the kiteboarders Narapichit ‘Yo’ Pudla said this afternoon ‘We are all pretty excited. It's great to be here at the Phuket King’s Cup with all the other sailors from around the world and we are looking forward to a great event.’

International Kiteboarding Association www.internationalkiteboarding.org
Kite Tour Asia - www.kiteboardtour.asia

Phuket King’s Cup www.kingscup.com

Sponsors of the 2011 Phuket King's Cup Regatta include Kata Group Resorts
Thailand, PTT Group, Siam Winery, Singha Corporation, AIA Thailand, PTT
Global Chemical, PTTEP, Thai Oil, Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket,
Boathouse and Sunsail. Media Partners include 91.5FM, Helm Superyacht Asia
Pacific, The Nation, Phuket Best Group, Phuket Gazette, Phuket Magazine,
Sail-World.com, SEA Yachting and YachtStyle Asia.

For more information, please visit www.kingscup.com.
High resolution images for media are available upon log-in.
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/phuketkingscupregatta.
Twitter: www.twitter.com/PhuketKingsCup
YouTube Channel: http://www.youtube.com/phuketkingscup

Protector - 660 x 82Zhik Isotak Ocean 660x82Bakewell-White Yacht Design

Related Articles

A Q&A with US Sailing’s Malcolm Page about the Sailing World Cup Miami
I spoke with Malcolm Page, US Sailing’s Olympic chief, about the team’s performance at the 2017 Sailing World Cup Miami I talked with Malcolm Page (AUS), a two-time Olympic gold medalist in the Men’s 470 class and the chief of Olympic sailing at US Sailing, to get his pulse on the team’s performance at the 2017 Sailing World Cup Miami and discuss some recent coaching changes within the Olympic-sailing program.
Posted on 20 Feb
America's Cup - Emirates Team NZ give first look at the pedaling AC50
Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. Emirates Team New Zealand formally christened their new AC50 America's Cup Challenger on a rainy Auckland afternoon. The team has been sailing for the previous two days making news headlines after it was revealed in Sail-World.com that the AC50 would become only the second yacht in America's Cup history to use pedal power.
Posted on 16 Feb
America's Cup - Kiwis sign Olympic Cyclist for the Tour de Bermuda
Ttop cyclist Simon van Velthooven, a 2012 Olympic Bronze cycling medallist had been signed by the America's Cup team Emirates Team New Zealand put in a second foiling display on Auckland's Waitemata harbour ahead of the official launching of their AC50 tomorrow. With brighter skies the cycling team took their places on the pedalstals and used leg power to provide the hydraulic pressure necessary to run the AC50's control systems for the foils and wingsail.
Posted on 15 Feb
A Q&A with Shawn Macking about the StPYC’s Sailing Center and OD fleet
I talked with Shawn Macking, the StPYC’s waterfront director, to learn how the club is getting more people out sailing. I caught up with Shawn Macking, waterfront director of the St. Petersburg Yacht Club, via email to learn more about the club’s Sailing Center, its hefty investment in a new fleet of ten J/70s, and how the StPYC is using this infrastructure to expose more people to the sport we all love.
Posted on 13 Feb
A Q&A with Karen Angle about the 2017 Conch Republic Cup race to Cuba
I caught up with Karen Angle, executive director of the Conch Republic Cup, to learn more about this exciting event. If you’re like me and have arrived at saturation with winter’s cold rain and snow, imagine racing to Cuba as part of a 13-day cross-cultural event that’s designed to lower barriers of entry at a time when some Americans see a need for taller walls. I caught up with Karen Angle, executive director of the Conch Republic Cup, to learn more about this exciting event and the adventures it affords.
Posted on 23 Jan
A Q&A with Anna Tunnicliffe about her return to competitive sailing
I talked with Anna Tunnicliffe before the Sailing World Cup Miami to learn about her return to Olympic-class sailing. Anna Tunnicliffe won gold at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in the Laser Radial before shifting her sights to the Women’s Match Racing event for the London 2012 Olympics. Here, she came up shy of expectation and left sailing for the CrossFit Games, but now she is returning to her roots. I talked with Tunnicliffe before the Sailing World Cup Miami to learn about her return to Olympic-class sailing.
Posted on 23 Jan
A Q&A with Dick Neville, Quantum Key West Race Week’s RC chairman
I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for the Quantum Key West Race Week, to learn more about the event. For the past 30 years, international sailors have gathered in Key West, Florida, each January for Key West Race Week, a regatta that has achieved legendary status due to its calendar dates, its location, and the impressive level of competition and racecourse management that this storied event offers. I caught up with Dick Neville, Race Committee chair for this year’s Quantum KWRW, to learn more.
Posted on 16 Jan
A Q&A with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Race’s new deputy race director
I talked with Daniel Smith, the Clipper Round The World Race’s new deputy race director, to learn more about his role. I was fortunate to sail with Daniel Smith [36, SCO], skipper of “Derry~Londonderry~Doire” for the 2015/2016 edition of the Clipper Round The World Race, when the fleet reached Seattle last spring. Now, Smith has been hired as the event’s deputy race director-a job that will test many of the skills that he polished as a skipper. I caught up with Smith via email to learn more about his new job.
Posted on 9 Jan
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Suck it up, sunshine!
The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour The 72nd start of the iconic blue water classic had 300,000 spectators lining the foreshores of Sydney Harbour, another two million watching on TV, and the constant buzz and whir of media helicopters overhead. 88 boats, from Australia, USA, UK, Germany, Sweden, Russia, Japan, Korea, China, oh and New Zealand, had lined up on three start lines.
Posted on 31 Dec 2016
Rolex Sydney Hobart Race - More merriment on the airwaves
Here are more examples of merriment on the airwaves between the boats and Hobart Race Control So on December 29, 2016, after the River Derwent had let just three boats home (Perpetual Loyal, Giacomo and Scallywag, all inside the old race record, she went to sleep for a lot of the day. This made it frustrating for the sailors, some of whom saw the lighter side. So after seeing some of those in Dark & Stormy, here are more examples of merriment on the airwaves between the boats and HRC
Posted on 29 Dec 2016