Sabo’s List of Non-Delusional Kiters

Rich Sabo is infamous for telling it like it is. In our summer 2016 back issue, he smacked on delusional kiteboarders, calling them out and urging them back towards reality. But you want to know who’s not delusional? All of these fully professional riders below. Rich talks about his favorite non-delusional kiters and shows you their videos to prove it.
Brandon Scheid
Trying to put my personal bias aside as he is my best friend…Brandon has style for miles! A lot of his tricks are underrated because they don’t have the “double air swaps” as much, but Brandon can do every grab I can think of … and then some. Smooth, powerful, and goes huge — he makes kiteboarding look good!

Alex Fox
Alex is in the same boat as Brandon for me as Fox is all about the aesthetics of kiteboarding. Fox never takes himself too seriously when riding and always has fun. You will never have a bad session when you kite with Fox as he is always looking for a simple way to make kiteboarding more fun. Oh yeah, he also can do double grab 5s that are so steezy!

Eric Reinstra
What more can be said about the predator other than he has the most effortless kicker style out there. I don’t think he does a single kicker trick without grabbing his board (if you are catching on, I like grabs). A master of the tricktionary, Eric can do tricks you can’t even spell. He made the list because he makes some of the highest level of kiteboarding look ridiculously easy.

Aaron Hadlow  
If this guy doesn’t make everyone’s top rider list, I don’t know who would. While I personally think his success as a pro kiteboarder stems from his unusually long arms, Aaron is simply the best. He’s done every trick and he does them big. He also has learned the value of grabs mixed in with handle passes and is starting to get super creative with double flips and new tricks other people can’t even get close to.

Jesse Richman
Energy. If you want to see who is the most energetic and talented kiteboarder, it’s definatly Jesse. He always seems to have about 10 times more energy than anyone else out there and he goes huge! Jesse can impress everyone with his various styles of kiteboarding; mega loops, air swaps, grabs, spins — he can do it all and can make it look so good!

Billy Parker
Billy is the most underrated kiteboarder in the world, namely because he likes to stay under the radar. Anyone who knows him knows that his skills are not to be messed with. If you want to work on a trick but know you are going to take a lot of crashes, Billy will be the first to crash harder than you and stomp the trick better than you. He’s a cable crossover machine with tons of style.

Sam Light
When it comes to park riding, this guy is king; grabs, spins, flips, Sam can do it all! He is by far the guy to watch at every contest and has the deepest bag of tricks. He also has the best giggle on the water and can bring a smile to anyone’s session.
Drake Philsick
This is the dynamic duo of Jake Kelsick and Andre Phillip. For these two, smooth island style is the name of the game. These guys make me want to run away to the Caribbean and live that easy life. Just watch any of their GoPro edits and you’ll understand.

James Boulding
James is somewhat of a personal favorite as his original kiteboarding edits are what got me into thinking about kiteboarding style. Grabs, wrapped, blind, deep rail presses, James definitely was one of the first riders I saw with style and will forever be an OG.
Ewan Jaspan
God he’s good … and hilarious. Ewan is the most progressive and most encouraging rider on the water. If you want to learn a new trick, he will want to learn it with you! He also hates on bad kiteboarding as much as I do… so we have plenty to talk about. Despite being friends with my online nemesis, I don’t think I can ride enough with Ewan!

Noe Font
The future! This kid is younger than anyone out there and is pushing the style side of kiteboarding. Technical tricks with long grabs, awesome rail hits, big kicker hits  — this guy will be a Triple S Champion soon enough.

Bruna Kajiya
 A girl had to make my list and it had to be Bruna. Out of all the girls out there, Bruna goes for the grabs, goes big and is the most powerful and stylish chick out there

After all of this you know what we’ve decided? Rich Sabo is pretty non-delusional as well. Check out his 2018 edit from the Hood River Slider Park and you’ll see for yourself that the guy who calls it like it is is equally in his own right. 

Read Rich Sabo’s entire smack on delusional kiteboarders in our summer 2016 back issue, Vol. 13, No. 2. Available here:

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