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PKRA St. Peter Ording, Germany, Day 5: Racing in the Fog

Foggy weather welcomed the racers to this fifth day in St Peter Ording. Rolf Van Der Vlugt (NED, Airush) commented that he could barely see the buoys on the water while racing, “I had to really focus in order to maintain balance on my board instead of looking for the buoys!”

The first race started with an impressive crash when Dirk Hanel (GER, North) came too close to the starting line before the flag was raised which forced him to fall close to the boat committee. The rest of the riders quickly got away from the compressed fleet and the leaders quickly pushed to the front of the pack.

The American riders have continued to lead the group today. John Heineken (USA, Ozone) and Adam Koch (USA, Ozone) have lead most of the races. The French team however is following very close behind.

Results Race 9:

Men:

1. Adam Koch (USA, Ozone)

2. John Heineken (USA, Ozone)

3. Julien Kerneur (FRA, Takoon)

Women:

1. Katja Roose (NED, Airush)

2. Caroline Adrien (FRA, Cabrinha)

3. Christine Boenniger (GER, Flysurfer)

Julien Kerneur (FRA, Takoon) is happy to have finished most of the races in third place in front of his friend Olivier Dansin (FRA, North). He now beats Dansin in the overall ranking of the PKRA 2011. This is now the third event in which we have witnessed the French team go head to head with the Americans, they still lag behind a little but the gap is getting smaller at every event.

The wind actually died during the second race. Theo Sicallac (FRA, North) said: “When the wind dropped I thought about my friend Olivier Dansin who is actually 15 kg heavier than me but was on the same equipment, he must have been struggling but in the end he came seventh.”

Results Race 10:

Men:

1. John Heineken (USA, Ozone)

2. Adam Koch (USA, Ozone)

3. Julien Kerneur (FRA, Takoon)

Women:

1. Katja Roose (NED, Airush)

2. Steph Bridge (GBR, North)

3. Caroline Adrien (FRA, Cabrinha)

After 10 races, 0.2 of a point is all that separates Adam Koch (10.8) and John Heineken (11) from each other. Meanwhile Julien Kerneur has secured his third place well with 19 points, holding the gap between himself and fourth place Dansin who currently holds 30 points.

Katja Roose (NED, Airush) who won both races reckoned that in the first race she was looking around trying to spot Steph Bridge (GBR, North) behind her. In fact Bridge had actually broken her lines in the middle of the race and was already waiting on the beach. She did however come back strong in race 10 finishing second place.

After these two races the wind completely died and the PKRA decided to stop action and hold two meetings: the first one about the Media and the second one about the IKA.

The Media Director explained to the crowd of riders how the interaction between the press and the PKRA works. There are three main platforms who bring coverage to the PKRA: magazines, the web, and television. A photo database is available for use in magazines and they are invited to publish articles about the events and riders. The online press receives a constant feed of photos, videos, and press releases that get published daily for their use. Finally a 26 minute television show is created at the end of each event and a news feed is updated throughout the week which aims to display the best aspects of kiteboarding to the world.

The IKA meeting was about the creation of the KSP (Wave World Tour) and the role of the association in the industry. The PKRA riders had questions about the way the IKA is currently ruling the kiteboarding world. It turns out that there are a few conflicts being discussed at the minute concerning where we are taking the competitive aspects of the sport in the future.

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