The ladies of The Butterfly Effect, the original waterwomen movement, are in Tarifa Spain this weekend spreading the love, encouraging and empowering women to get out on the water.
The Butterfly Effect events create an environment that gives participants the confidence to achieve a goal in a supportive group setting. The events start with a nod to the community they are hosted in, with a beach clean up, clothing donation, free clinics and/ or other fundraising activities for a charity. Next, the ladies participate in a quick Hula lesson followed by a yoga class and warm up stretch before the main event. The girls then kite, paddle, windsurf, or kayak downwind to the chosen location where they are welcomed with an ending ceremony party.
I was fortunate to attend and shoot the annual dealer meeting and 2015 product presentation of Pryde Group Americas (PGA). It was held at Old Bahama Bay, a resort at the extreme northwest tip of Grand Bahama Island. Not only did we have a remarkable amount of gear to try, we even had some nice wind to use it in.
PGA presented products from the following brands are at the event:
There is a new day dawning to get into some hot new riding gear.
The venue for this great meeting, West End, GBI way in the upper left of this chart. A classic water color of Grand Bahama Island by Wm. Johnson, JR.
This post follows two life style posts that explore the event, the island and a bit of the history of the area. These interesting threads can be found at:
This post is devoted to exploring the 2015 kiteboarding gear offered by Cabrinha. There was an in depth product presentation provided by Pete Cabrinha himself with interjections from other key team members including Michael Raper out of Hong Kong, the International Division Manager at Cabrinha. We even heard from the design team via video. You will have a chance to view those comments in this article.
An overhead view of all the people who attended the dealer meeting and made it such a great success.
"Providing progressive kiteboading solutions for all areas of our unique sport is the driving force behind our 2015 program. Here is a little taste of what's to come in 2015. Filmed and produced in the Hawaiian Islands, the birth place of Cabrinha kites." The second film is here to help build the stoke, mood. As incredible as West End is in so many ways, this time of year there are typically few waves. Cabrinha has graciously served some up from Hawaii. Enjoy, then more from the sunny, flat over white sand blue water paradise of GBI.
So, let's start with an overview of the Cabrinha kites for 2015.
All the kites for 2015 shown here ripping offshore in Maui.
They have six kites for the model year as shown above. Some model names like the Switchblade have been out previously while others like the Radar are brand new this year. Cabrinha covers the spectrum of riding styles with these kites, each with both general and specific ranges of applicability.
The kites vary in the degree to which they are swept back, with the Velocity BOW kite on the left having the most, with a lessening gradation through the Hybrid kites, Radar through Drifter, ending with the least in the Chaos C-shape. Properties are described above for the various shapes.
The QuickLoop Bar with adjustable length on the fly
Cabrinha has rolled out for this year what may be the easiest and fastest quick release rearming system (with one hand), the QuickLoop quick release system.
Pete Cabrinha from the beach in the Bahamas, will show just how quick and easy the system works. Also, an overview of the Cabrinha Overdrive control bar from Kittyhawk Kites.
Cabrinha has also brought a good short leash to market. Guess how many riders actually ride unhooked? I understand it is about 20%. So the rest kiting with a suicide leash configuration aren't do themselves any favors whatsoever. It tangles more easily, gets in the way and if you use it, you might go for a ride, backwards!? Things just got better for that 80 % of riders out there. A short, functional leash that stays out of the way, in front of you.
Michael Raper shows off the system including the leash during the product presentation in the Bahamas.
The Race Quick Link bar developed for use with the Velocity kite. I understand the bar will work with all the 2015 Cabrinha kites however.
Jan Lucas Gianello walks out with the Quick Link.
Wait until you get to try some of this great new gear on the water, fun times!
Stay tuned, more to come on the 2015 Cabrinha Kiteboarding gear lineup in the next installment.
Let's move to the Switchblade, a personal favorite and a standard of excellence in kiting for ten years.
Waves, flat water, free riding, wakestyle, boosting big, light to nuking winds, this kite does it all. This shows the Switchblade color schemes for 2015.
It is well worth celebrating, the kite that launched thousands of hours of amazing sessions around the world.
Cabrinha rider Damo LeRoy helps out.
This is what Cabrinha says about the 2015 model: "After ten years of refinement, the Switchblade kite from Cabrinha is held as the benchmark for which all crossover/freeride kites must aspire to. Its success lies in its uncommon blend of high performance and ease of use. The Switchblade will easily crossover from freeriding to freestyle to surf on any given day. The common element in each of these riding styles is precise handling; and this is where the Switchblade shines. The Switchblade provides maximum control with a light bar touch. The SB’s high performance profiles deliver the power needed in light winds and the ability to dump the power in strong winds. This gives the SB the type of range needed to extend your sessions when the winds are up and down. The five strut design holds the canopy true to its shape regardless of the wind condition or angle of attack."
Steve Negen of MacKites who also attended the dealer meeting described things well: "The Switchblade is the ultimate freeride / crossover kite that all freeride kiteboarding kites aspire to. The Cabrinha Switchblade offers the best of both worlds – High performance and ease of use for all levels of riders. The ability to jump from one discipline to another makes it the perfect kite for almost any rider. Go kite surfing, boost big or throw down technical pro style moves – the Swithclbade will get you there. How does the Swithcblade do this? Precise handling – this is the key feature in the 2015 Cabrinha Switchblade that allows you to ride all styles of riding from freeride to free style to surf. The 2015 will give you maximum control with only a light touch of the bar. The Switchblades profile provides that low end grunt you want in light winds but still gives you incredible ability to release power when the winds increase. One Switchblade kite often has the wind range of 2 other kites because of it unique ability to get you going in light winds and still depower into the high winds. We love the five strut design for the rock solid stability of the canopy in all winds and whether the kite is powered up or not.
What we love
Largest wind range of any kite we carry Ease of use – from beginner to advanced – you just can’t miss Big hang time – boost it up and stay up Low end power – get going when everyone else is watching. Best new bar for 2015 – totally revamped chicken loop for ease of use"
When you go exploring, you want something you're both familiar and comfortable with, that can cover a wide range of conditions.
It is my favorite swamp-going kite.
A ten year look back at the amazing Switchblade kite followed by designer notes.
Life isn't all about wind, no seriously, someone told me that once?
… or gold coins, even shiny plastic ones. There are many things that go into a well rounded life. Still, fine kiting gear is near the top for some of us.
Moving on to an excellent kite for surfing and surf free style, the Drifter.
Pete Cabrinha shows what this kite can do in the waves.
This is what Cabrinha Kites has to say about the drifter: "The Drifter surf kite is a kite with a purpose. This kite is dead set on being there for you when you need it and getting out of the way when you don’t. You see, kite surfing is an act of taking power from the kite when you need it and dumping the power altogether when you don’t. This high depower kite allows the rider to drop in, accelerate, then dump the power completely to snap or carve their turns. It delivers a perfect blend of the best elements of surfing and kitesurfing. The Drifter’s special design allows it to drift downwind and stay aloft even when the lines are slackened. This phenomenon, first developed by Cabrinha is known as drift stability."
No waves off Old Bahama Bay but Pete makes it all look mighty fine anyway.
The Drifter allows this marvelous slack line drift, taking the kite force temporarily out of action nicely parked, until you need it again.
Pete pops a nice strapless jump off Maui in monochrome.
An overview of the Drifter followed by designer notes.
It was excellent to spend time with Pete Cabrinha, designers and staff in a great water setting to learn about the new kiting equipment.
Still more new things to come from Cabrinha for 2015 … (click twice!)
To celebrate the launch of the new 2015 Cabrinharange, Agent Eight is showing Cabrinha's World Premiere of Anders Kruger film 'The Value of Nowhere' at Poole's Light House Cinema on Wednesday 16th July starting from 7.30pm.
There are a limited number of tickets for this event so please visit your local kitesurf shop in the Poole area. The Lighthouse is an amazing venue where you can immerse yourself in the movie whilst drinking a cold beer, perfect!
In the Western Sahara desert, you'll find no shortage of fun in the water in the little village oasis Dakhla, Morocco. Dakhla Attitude comes alive as team Cabrinha arrives in full force for the PKRA events and all the good times surrounding them.
Riders: Alby Rondina, Annabel Van Westrop, Keahi de Aboitiz, Liam Whaley, Moona Whyte, and Tobias Hölter.
Film & Edit: Tobias Hölter
Music: Till Death- Black Halo released by Comorbid Records
The ultimate big air event in the Columbia River Gorge. Go as big as you can. Tricks are not required or judged. Some of the 50 participants were shooting for a personal best of 30' while others were gunning for 50', 60', ... the sky's the limit. Jump heights were measured using the latest technology, Xensr. The Xensr is worn by the kiter and can accurately measure the height of each jump. Organizer and Cabrinha rider, Ken Lucas, says "the event format of jumping big without any tricks allows weekend warriors to go head to head with big name pros". The format is working as the men's finals were filled with passionate non-professionals while 4 out of 5 attending big name pros were bumped off in earlier heats. Everybody loves to go big! The 2nd Annual Huck Fest was sponsored in part by Cabrinha and many of the biggest jumps of the event were on Cabrinha kites and boards.
Highlights from Cabrinha riders:
Chase Hasch won the junior division and was promptly bumped into the adult heats where he was a solid competitor.
Matt Elsasser had the highest jump of the event (53') using a SwitchBlade and narrowly missed the finals after having some equipment issues.
Jim Bison went big all day using a SwitchBlade 8 and ended with a spectacular 2nd place overall. Jim missed 1st place overall by 1 inch and conceded the victory to a winner that was 1/2 his age. Jim's highest jump was 48'.
Wally Gator Young held his own making it all the way through the Semi-Finals.
Jake Cook the Cabrinha Sales Rep represented on the water as well advancing to the quarter-finals.
Ken Lucas, Event Organizer and Cabrinha rider, also jumped in on the fun and Hucked his SwitchBlade.
Results: Men: 1st Reed Brady 2nd Jim Bison 3rd Mike Haase
Women: 1st Laura Meyer 2nd Colleen Carroll 3rd Tonia Farman
Juniors: 1st Chase Hasch 2nd Austin Keillor 3rd Marcus Catlett
The Outer Banks in North Carolina was the perfect venue to host the final stop of The College Kiteboarding Association Nationals. With 7500$ in prizes, 32 riders stepped their game up at this event.
The first day of the competition didn’t hold enough wind to host an event, but with a moderate NE breeze right around the corner it was a relaxing day for the riders.
Day 2 started with 16-18 mph winds and waist high swell. The CKA surf event was on. The true standouts of the day were Reider Decker of ECU, Brandon Cordina of CofC, Stan Yuhzhajov of UF, and our own Julien Verglas of Rollins College. With a tough final heat, the wind and waves dying, Reider Decker pulled out in first place.
Day 3 saw no wind so the riders had a chance to rest before the freestyle events.
Day 4 saw steady 20mph winds and perfect conditions to hold the advanced college freestyle nationals. The riders were off to the water with a format of 5 heats/ 3 riders qualifying for the CKA nationals. After the first 5 heats, 10 riders remained, and an intense semi-final left the top 5 Sean Buell, Bret Sullivan, Lewis Hunt, and Cabrinha riders Niklas Reymann and Julien Verglas. Niklas Reymann of Cabrinha Kites and NP took the win in the CKA Nationals advanced freestyle division. Second place was awarded to Julien Verglas, and third place went to Sean Buell.
Day 5 started with great conditions for a slider event at REAL watersports world-class slider park. With double elimination format some riders advanced straight to the Semi-Final for winning their heat while the others went to a losers heat to fight for a spot in the semi-final. The 4 man final consisted of Niklas Reymann, Sean Buell, Lewis Hunt, and Bret Sullivan. The final resulted in a win for Lewis Hunt, second place for Cabrinha team rider Niklas Reyman, and third place for Bret Sullivan.
As the CKA nationals finished up Cabrinha riders Niklas Reymann and Julien Verglas were stoked. Julien was able to take home 2nd place in the freestyle event and 4th place Surf, and Niklas won 1st place in this freestyle event putting him 1st overall freestyle for the tour. And 2nd place in the slider event, putting him in 3rd place for the overall CKA tour.
Synonymous worldwide with banking, tax havens and beach holidays, there's more to the tiny, proud Cayman Islands. It's the picture perfect kite destination. James Boulding, Damien LeRoy, Brandon Bowe and Kellen Hall, hook up with The Sweet Spot Cayman kite center and get busy building obstacles and coaching while taking in the magic of the Caribbean.
The Tarifa Masters of Kiteboard 2014 was a great success. Many Tarifa locals participated showing off their skills against some of the top riders of the world. Cabrinha riders Liam Whaley, Annabel van Westerop, and David Tonijuan represented well during the week! Liam took the win with David getting 2nd place while Annabel made it to 3rd place on the podium. The beaches were full of spectators and the event was super well organized. All together it was a great week in the world famous kitespot.
"The TMK was a super fun event with a really good vibe. Really happy to Win this event because it's the only Kiteboarding event in Tarifa in the whole year. Stoked to win in front of all my friends and family." says Whaley