The first day of the competition started early to make sure that we could finish the trials with 40 men battling for 14 spots and get started with the main event. The wind was full on right from the start, in the morning the wind was already a solid 25 to 30 knots for the first heats of the day, with gust in the upper 40’s by the afternoon. Men were riding between 4 to 7 meter kites. After 4 hours of trials, 14 men were selected and the main event was ready to start. The first round of men was completed and some great match ups like the Hadlow vs Zoon are ready for tomorrow.
The trials were extremely competitive, the field was filed with many top riders like Jaspan, Schitzhofer, Madson, Corniel, Hadlow and many more. The ladder was set up with 3 rounds, winners of the first round heats of 4 were automatically qualified for the main event and the remaining 30 riders had to go two rounds for the last 4 spots.
In the first two heats Nico Suriel and Mario Rodwald easily advanced, the 3rd heat was close between Patrick Blanc and Sam Light, but Sam landed many low technical tricks to get into the main event. In heat four Bakker landed some clean tricks to advance and in heat 5 Crathern went huge to win. In heat six Michael Schitzhofer defeated Madson to win with a last minute slim chance. Borisov had a solid performance landing a big blind judge and mobe. Hutter was landing his stylish S-1's and blind judges to win his heat. The final heat of the first round features five time world champion Aaron Hadlow who dominated by landing a BJ, Front Blind, massive kiteloop and a couple of mobes to easily win his heat.
The 2nd round saw the wind pick up and the conditions became more extreme for the competitors and landing the most basic handle passes became a challenge, but 10 riders advanced to go to the 3rd round for a chance to get into the main event. The first heat of round 3 Blanc was kiting extremely well on his 4 meter kite and secured a spot in the main event. The second heat Valentin Garat had a big loop and S-mobe to advance. The 3rd and 4th heats were dominated by the Brazilians Madson and Da Silva.
The women were released for the day and the first round of men started in the extreme conditions of Leucate. The wind was a bit more gusty making the execution of tricks more difficult. During the first heat Da Silva was more consistent and able to defeat Sam Light. The second heat Patrick Blanc kept his run going on is 4 meter kite and won his 3rd consecutive heat and the got the highest heat score of the day 26.26. Crathern put up a good fight against Mario Rodwald, but Mario’s competition experience paid off with a win. Hadlow came out in the next heat and executed some solid moves. The next two heats Hutter and Borisov kept on winning. The last heat of the day was won by the wildcard Paul Serin.
The competition will resume tomorrow at 10 AM. We will be running the men’s single and women's single elimination and possibly start the doubles as well. The live will be running all day so make sure you check out the Live Feed brought to you by Sosh. The wind is forecasted to keep blowing for the next two days and we should see some pretty massive tricks being landed by the top riders.
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Check the Heat scores of you favorite PKRA riders
Day 1 Photos