Today the activities at the 2012 La Ventana Classic and KiteXpo were fully underway with the 11-mile island crossing completed on the first day of the event. Overcast skies greeted competitors, many of who arrived to the beach a little blurry-eyed for the 7:00 a.m. meeting time to head to the island in a fleet of local fishing boats known as pangas.
After unloading more than 100 kiteboarders, a few windsurfers, and their gear, a few hours were passed on the island while waiting for the wind to fill in all the way to La Ventana so competitors would have wind across the entire channel. There was also a scavenger hunt to give participants a chance to win prizes by collecting prize-winning balloons.
Around 1:30, competitors were given the word to rig up and shortly after 2:00 pm the race was on! 11-miles later was a photo finish between windsurfer Tyson Poor and kiteboarder Johnny Heineken with the windsurfer edging out less than a second in the lead for the finish!
Expo beach was also busy today with the many spectators and kiteboarders demoing the latest kiteboarding gear from 11 different manufacturers. Remember, the demos are happening every day of the event from 12 to 5!
La Ventana Classic Results:
- Tyson Poor (windsurfer)
- Johnny Heineken (kiteboarder)
- Bryan Lake (kiteboarder)
- Johnny Heineken
- Bryan Lake
- Damien LeRoy
- Erica Heineken
- Marie LeClerc
- Rachel Callahan
With all the competitors back on the beach and the wind still blowing, the organizers decided to begin running the Big Air Old School competition. Unfortunately, the wind began to shut off only one heat. As the sun was going down, the first day’s raffle winners were announced and the party moved to Ventanas Del Sol (AKA the Round House) for a rock and roll party.
See you on the beach tommow! Here’s the schedule:
FRIDAY’S RACE LINE-UP.
Royale Paddlers — Meet and load pangas. Expo Beach. 7 am sharp!
Wind Course Racers — Skipper’s mtg. at Expo Beach, 11:30 am, races to follow.
One-Mile SUPers — Skipper’s mtg. at Expo Beach, 1:30 pm, race to follow.
FRIDAY’S SOCIAL SCENE.
Place your bets for the Celebrity Skydive. Jumpers will arrive at Expo Beach tomorrow around 11:00 am. This is your last chance to place a bet. Sign-up under the Corona tents. 5 USD or 50 pesos per bet. Eat lunch at Expo Beach, then also plan to stay for dinner at Coya’s Beach Buffet. The Reggae Beach Party kicks off at 8 pm. No wind, no cry! Shoes optional. Beer purchase at Expo Beach encouraged! All proceeds benefit local schools.
FLY LIKE AN EAGLE. OR, PELICAN, AS IT WERE.
Ever dream of skydiving from 10,000 feet and landing like a superstar at Expo Beach during the La Ventana Classic? Of course you didn’t. But now you can! Find Neil Hutchinson this evening or inquire about this once in a lifetime opportunity at Baja Joe’s. All jumps are tandem with a qualified instructor. Flights leave from LaPaz. Tomorrow a.m. only. 350 USD.
ATTENTION SUP PADDLERS
There’s still time to join pro racers Candice Appleby and Anthony Vela in their Performance Paddling Clinic this Sunday, January 22! Support our local schools and sign-up by visiting the registration tent at Expo Beach (near Baja Joe’s) today! More information on the clinic can be found on our website.