Czech Charger Novotna Wins Women’s GKA Fuerte Singles!

Paula Novotna GKA Fuerteventura win
GKA Freestyle World Cup Fuerteventura poster

The Fuerteventura World Cup, now in its 34th year, hosts kiting this week, and windsurfing after the 24th!

Paula Novotna found herself dominating the women’s final after an inspired day of riding in difficult winds at Sotavento during Sunday’s Women’s single elimination at the GKA Freestyle World Cup Fuerteventura. 

The action continues until the 24th July, and coming up on Monday’s livestream, it’s the men’s semi-finals.


Read the highlights from the women’s event below: 

Paula Novotna Fuerteventura GKA win

Czech-ing into first place!

Sunday 21st July 2019
Report: Matt Pearce / All photos: Svetlana Romantsova

After a less than assured start from three of the top women in Bruna Kajiya, Pippa van Iersel and Mikaili Sol, they all fought their way into the four rider final against Paula Novotna who had looked strong throughout each of her heats. 

Bruna had cleaned up her act by the semi final stage, while Pippa just managed to edge out Francesca Bagnoli (event winner in Leucate) on the last trick to progress through alongside Brazilian Bruna. The conditions had really picked up by that point, though you wouldn’t know it looking at Mikaili Sol who had come through an early round one scare to be riding with great execution, despite the gusts, and claimed the highest heat score of the round with an 8.07 for a back mobe. Novotna took the second qualifying place in the semi, and although she finished behind Mikaili, she was still looking cool. 


The line-up featured two former World Champs in the forms of Mikaili and Bruna, Pippa the Dutch ripper and an absolutely firing Paula Novotna. This was going to be good!

Paula opened with a blind judge and Pippa hit back with a BS 313. The riders were on smaller kites, which are of course much quicker, so they were finding it hard at points to ride out of tricks without their kites overreacting to their steering input.

Paula Novotna competing at Fuerteventura

Paula Novotna was the standout rider from early in the day’s competition, combining high scores with ruthless efficiency

Bruna and Mikaili just couldn’t seem to nail their landings and Mikaili then took a heavy slam on her third trick and was clearly in pain, holding her ear as she spoke to her trainer Fabio on the beach.

She headed back out but wasn’t landing any tricks and, other than a tiny score for a very small raley, after six tricks she had next to no points on the board.

Mikaili Sol at GKA Freestyle World Cup Fuerteventura with coach Fabio Ingrosso

Mikaili gets calming words from coach Fabio Ingrosso

Pippa van Iersel had managed to land an s-bend to blind which added to her high score from her first trick to solidify her position in second, but Paula was absolutely running away with the heat.

She landed another 313, which would have been enough to win on its own, but she then added an ultra-powered blind judge 3 close to the shore to give herself a 12.33 point lead as the other riders came in for their last tricks.

She was now unbeatable, and Pippa was safe in second, so who would take third?

Pippa van Iersel GKA Freestyle World Cup Fuerteventura

Pippa claimed the highest podium finish of her young career so far

Bruna landed a blind judge on her sixth trick attempt and the odds were now in her favour. Mikaili looked as though she was starting to unravel, and was on the beach discussing with her coach whether or not she should even continue with the heat.

However, like the warrior she is, she wasn’t about to quit just yet. No safe scores would do, it had to be all or nothing, and nobody could have expected what was to come. She lined up, edged, and then only went and landed the highest score of the day – a MASSIVE heart attack for 9.1 points!


World Champion Mikaili Sol GKA Freestyle World Cup Fuerteventura

Mikaili had the mark of a champion, but too many slip ups during the day to take the win. Useful points amassed on the podium, though!

It was enough for third and, although it wouldn’t be enough to wrest second from Pippa, it still meant she’d made it to the podium.

A heroic effort in the face of substantial odds, and what a result for Paula who was on fire from the very start today and fully deserved her victory.


Womens podium GKA Freestyle World Cup Fuerteventura

1: Paula Novotna (CZE)
2: Pippa van Iersel (NLD)
3: Mikaili Sol (BRA)
4: Bruna Kajiya (BRA)

On Monday, it’s back to the men’s division with eight semi-finalists ready to roll.

Here’s who’ll be fighting for a place in the finals:

Valentin Rodriguez
Nico Delmas
Adeuri Corniel
Maxime Chabloz

Gianmaria Coccoluto
Louka Pitot
Liam Whaley
Carlos Mario

Visit the GKA Kite World Tour Fuerteventura event page, with livescores, heat ladders, the livestream and a liveticker of info edited by Kiteworld’s Matt Pearce. 



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