A way forward for competitive freestyle has been found
The Global Kitesports Association (GKA) and Kiteboarding Riders United (KRU) are pleased to announce that they have signed an agreement confirming that professional freestyle kiteboarding at World Tour level will fall under the responsibility of the KRU for the next two years.
As a group of concerned, elite and experienced riders, the KRU and its board have long been at the heart of the competitive kiteboarding scene, striving for a legitimate, clean and fair World Championship tour. Their aim is to help freestyle riding evolve and to ensure that there is a stable platform for the next generation of riders to progress onto.
The top freestyle riders pictured together at the end of the 2017 WKL tour
Although the Global Kitesports Association wasn’t founded as an organisation to run competitive world tours, the GKA is an alliance that consists of most of kiteboarding’s main brands, so it is naturally in their interest to ensure that a healthy, ambitious and aspirational, professional competitive scene continues to flourish in all kiteboarding’s disciplines.
Today’s agreement is the last cornerstone in the foundation for a clear, coordinated and reliable structure for professional kitesurfing.
“I am very glad that professional kitesport now has a clear and transparent structure, which leaves no questions open to athletes, media, event organizers, brands and the public. In recent years the jurisdiction of professional freestyle was not always easy to understand. Now it is crystal clear. Professional kitesport now has a solid ground to prosper in all its disciplines and raise the awareness that these admirable athletes deserve.” said Dr. Jörgen Vogt, Secretary General of the GKA.
The trilateral agreement between World Sailing, the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) and GKA continues to see the GKA appointed as the holder of rights to run kitesports World Tours in all expression-disciplines. As such the GKA continues with sole control to run the Kite-Surf World Tour (wave and strapless-freestyle) and will complete the triumvirate by running a new Big-AIR-World Tour, with KRU running the Freestyle World Tour. The IKA remain responsible for the racing classes.
Youri Zoon of the Kiteboarding Riders United added:
“I have been competing for a long time and I am delighted with these developments. The sport is finally united and has a clear vision of where it is headed. We have made great progress over the last few years and are now ready to take the sport to the next level. I feel very satisfied to have created a successful and sustainable tour for the younger generation.”
Youri riding at the WKL New Caledonia in 2016
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