Hi everyone, update a bit later then usual but I have been so busy! In April I spent a lot of time on the road- 2000 Miles through France and around Europe with SnowKiting, Snowboarding, Wakeboarding and Kiteboarding. When I returned I flew to Egypt for a coaching clinic, then came back home and now back to Egypt in the Morning to El Gouna for the BEST http://founderskiteclub.com/ meeting! So here is what I have been up to…
SnowKiting In The Alps
I have always wanted to give Snow Kiting a proper try in real mountains (not just half a foot of snow in the UK) so was over the moon when local Weather Man Gavin Baylis (who runs the Another hard day @ The Office Weather Station) invited me out to his Chalet in Serre Chevalier. It is one of the best places for Snow Kiting and was very good for snowboarding to. Snow Kiting is a whole different ball game then being on the water, to start with you have to wear a lot more so you can’t move so much, also the wind is quite strange in the mountains as it passes over all sorts of terrain. One of the things I like about it most though is the ability to fly off the side of hills, we don’t have this luxury on the water but in the mountains you can literally climb up with the kites pulling you and then float back down! When it wasn’t windy I spent some time at the local park Snowboarding, which is reasonably similar to Wakeboarding when it comes to the the rails and obstacles.
Thanks Gavin and Elaine for having us.
Mondial Du Vent World Tour Event Lecaute
After the stop off in the snow I carried on down to Leucate for the PKRA World Tour Event. This would be the first freestyle World Tour event that I have entered in 4 years as my focus has been on Big Air Riding. Amazing things have happened regarding the judging and what they are looking for which is now more about Quality rather then quantity. 60 Riders attended which was quite a big fleet and everyone wants to make it to the main event where there are only 24 places!! Leucate is well known for its strong gusty winds which is one of the reasons I went, I really like the strong stuff! I was really happy to make it through the trails to earn my spot in the main event. After a few days competing a finished 17th. So overall a Top 20 finish but I really feel I can finish within the top 10. There are still some more PKRA events I will attend this year so I am confident I can do it.
Signing @ Chinook KiteShop
On the last few days of my trip round France I stopped off at Chinook KiteShop, it’s always nice to stop in at a local shop that supports BEST my main Kitesurfing Sponsor. Through the duration of the event other BEST riders stopped off there to leave a message in the shop. I chose “I love the Crazy Leucate Winds” as I generally do. I don’t think I have kitesurfed anywhere as crazy as Leucate, the wind is blowing straight from the cold mountains out to the Mediterranean sea. The place really delivers such unique weather and the strength of the wind is incredible, 50 to 60mph is not unusual on some days, then on others it can be a perfect summers day down in the med with no wind. This makes for a really interesting competition. After the shop visit I got a quick session in at the local cable park which was great, I had achieved over 5 board sports on my trip to France.
Egypt Coaching Trip
Not to long after being back from France I set off again to Egypt on a coaching clinic with 4 local guys, Steve, Stan, Simon and Dan. We went to Hurghada which was a new location for me in Egypt. All the guys were really keen to progress with there air tricks which is one of my favourite things to teach. The really nice thing about teaching intermediates is they are up and kitesurfing already. This allows me to get out on the water with them, showing them examples and providing instant feedback after they have tried something new. During the evenings we take a look back at the days footage and discuss how it went. I also like to prepare a presentation on a specific subject to discuss with the clients to keep things fresh in there heads for the next day.
My next coaching trip takes place in Egypt 18th – 23rd of August with Fly Kitesurfing further information on there website. If you really fancy a week of progression with me I would love to see you there…..
The Big Charity Downwinder
The Big Charity downwinder started as a small idea to use Kitesurfing to raise some money for Charity. It has now snowballed into something massive and I am overwhelmed by the support from the kitesurfing industry and the kitesurfing public. The Big Charity Downwinder is an amazing idea where we are hoping to break the World Record for the largest parade of Kitesurfers on the water for one mile (250) as well as complete the challenging downwinder from Hayling Island to Lancing (around 40 miles). There are tons of sponsors already involved in this event and I’m proud to say BEST and ICENI Water my own sponsors are heavily backing it. For plenty more information on the event please visit the event page here http://www.snow-camp.org.uk/events/big-charity-kitesurfing-downwinder where there is also a video explaining the concept. The 2 charities we will be raising money for are, The RNLI and SnowCamp.
And if you would like to donate anything I would be so greatful- my fund raiser page is here http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/LewisCrathern I am hoping to reach £1000!
Thanks also to Event Magazine for included my latest news in there recent editions (attached)….
Take it easy, Lew