POSTED: Friday May 25th 2012
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Olympic Impact For The KTA China Asia Kiteboard Tour Finals
Up to 10,000 people a day crowded the beaches on Pingtan Island in China to watch the season finals of the KTA Asia Kiteboard Tour following the inclusion of the sport in the 2016 Olympics
HONG KONG: UNESCO World Heritage site Pingtan Island China May 16-20 played host to its first ever international sporting event when it hosted the 11/12 KTA Kiteboard Championship Tour Finals and in a week packed full of action, mass crowd attendance and intensive media coverage the tours best riders battled for the top slots not only in the KTA China event itself but for the overall KTA Tour crowns in course racing and freestyle. In the background of all this was the announcement a few days earlier from the world sailing governing body ISAF that it had chosen kiteboarding course racing to be become an Olympic class for the 2016 Games to be held in Rio. All eyes not only in China but the wider world were upon the competition which the KTA is pleased to report returned one of the best overall events of the season.
Neil Godbold, Founding Director KTA, said: "Every event in each country on the KTA tour is unique and has its own personality that reflects its people, culture and location, Pingtan for certain was all that but one a scale we have never seen before in the KTA. A sign of things to come we hope as it seems kiteboarding has been opened to the mainstream and everyone wants to see what it is all about."
Pingtan is perhaps China's windiest location, where regular wind speeds of over 30kts are recorded over the winter monsoon season. The island is being trusted forward as one of China's economic development zones, which in the case of Pingtan due to its location has its focus on being the gateway into China for Taiwan which means for this quite somewhat forgotten part of the country it is now at full speed in its rebirth with construction taking place at every corner that will turn Pingtan into a slick hi-tech business and commerce location over the next five years.
From the outset Pingtan wanted to make its mark with the KTA and boost kiteboarding into the forefront of its new watersports developments by offering the highest level of prize money the KTA has ever been able to give some US$30,000, which combined with our tour sponsor equipment prize package gave us an overall prize value of US$40,000 for the finals. In addition to this Pingtan also offered a free hotel and food package to all the riders, the icing on the cake which has seen the KTA China break all previous registration records with 116 entries taken over the four disciplines.
If the background support was good then the on water event was even better with all disciplines completing with full results in the bag. The course racers, freestylers and Old Skool riders performed in up to 30kt winds throughout the competition showing the best of their respective disciplines to the daily beach crowds of around 10,000 people, who off the water treated the KTA riders like stars, chasing them for autographs and photo's at every opportunity. For the KTA this has certainly been a tour finals to remember.
For full completion results from the KTA China - http://www.kiteboardtour.asia/results/201112/1112-china-round-4.html
For daily event video reports - http://vimeo.com/kiteboardtourasia
For more information contact:
Willy Kerr - KTA Tour and Media Director
The KTA was formed to give an international platform to the skills and talents of kiteboarders throughout Asia, and to bring professional level competition and training to the region. The KTA launched the first international tour of its kind in Asia in September 2009 visiting five countries over the 2009/2010 season.
Following the success of its first tour the KTA is back for the 2010/11 season with a further five stop Asian Tour and a new range of national level, stand alone, Open Events.
The KTA is open to everyone from anywhere, amateur and pro riders alike. It is the one and only officially Asian continental tour sanctioned by the International Kiteboarding Association (IKA), the kitesurfing world governing body, which in turn is the class representative to the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) sanctioning international sailing competitions from world championship to Olympic levels.
KTA's philosophy is to start slow and grow steadily. They are focused on giving homegrown riders the opportunity to experience the fun and excitement of being part of an international competition scene. The KTA hopes to provide a stepping-stone for the region's best riders onto the World tour scene by giving them the full experience of high level competition at a more local level, and who knows, maybe in the process discover a future world champion!
The KTA Asian Tour will result in tour stop event champions, the eventual overall KTA open tour champions, and the Asian champions and world rankings in the IKA and ISAF sanctioned classes of freestyle and kite racing.
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Name: Neil Godbold
Organization: Kiteboard Tour Asia
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