The final day of the Ho’okipa Kite Surf Pro delivered classic Ho’okipa conditions and saw major upsets in the world title race. Event winners and overall KSP World Champions were crowned on Maui’s north shore today.
The final day of the Ho’okipa Kite Surf Pro got underway in building surf and returning trade winds. The first major upset of the day came early this morning in the final heat of men’s round 2 between points leader Patri McLaughlin (HI, North) and world number 4 Luke McGillewie (RSA, RRD). McGillewie crushed McLaughlin’s world title hopes with a narrow defeat in their early morning clash at Ho’okipa.
The upsets continued in the men’s elimination when world number 2 Airton Cozzolino (ITA, North), world number 3 Sebastian Ribeiro (BRA) and world number 4 Luke McGillewie (RSA, RRD) all failed to advance to the semi-finals, effectively opening up the title race to riders Guilly Brandao (BRA), Keahi De Aboititz (AUS, Cabrinha) and Mitu Monteiro (CPV, F-One), all tied for 5th place in the world ranking.
In the men’s semi-finals, Monteiro advanced in a high-scoring affair over Brandao and De Aboitiz defeated Ferreira, setting the stage for a riveting final showdown. With the Ho’okpa Kite Surf Pro event title and the world championship crown on the line, Monteiro and De Aboitiz had the crowd on the edge of their seats, exchanging the lead several times throughout the final in exceptional conditions. De Aboitiz emerged victorious, taking home his first ever KSP World Championship title in an emotional victory.
In the women’s bracket, round 2 saw fierce matchups in world-class conditions. Milla Ferreira (BRA, F-One), Moona Whyte (HI, Cabrinha), Kari Schibevaag (NOR, Ozone) and Jalou Langerees (NED, Naish) all advanced through to the semi-final round with stellar performances in the building northwest swell and increasing winds.
The womens’ semi-final saw Whyte post the highest two wave total of the entire event, a 17.67, against Brazillian powerhouse Ferreira. Ferreira’s defeat effectively secured the title for Langeree, putting her competitors out of points’ reach. Elated after winning her first ever KSP World Championship title, Langeree went on to advance in semi-final number 2 in a narrow victory over Schibevaag.
The women’s final hit the water in pulsing northwest swell and finely groomed over-head waves. Whyte, in her first ever KSP World Championship tour event, continued her charge to victory, posting big scores, displaying fluid style, and defeating points leader Langeree.
To see the pictures of the day click here!
The Ho’okipa Kite Surf Pro is supported by the County Of Maui, Best Kiteboarding, Cabrinha Kites, Naish Kites, North Kiteboarding, Maui Kitesurfing Community, Eternal Riders, Second Wind, NeilPryde Maui, Maui Beach Hotel, Mana Foods, Whole Foods Maui, Pacific Millworks, Mama’s Fish House, and KSP Tour Outfitter ION.