Hi again, what a great month! The Virgin Kitesurfing Armada took place and it didn’t stop there, I’ve been all over the place…..
The Virgin Kitesurfing Armada Takes Place
I’ve been keeping you updated with The Virgin Kitesurfing Armada for a long time now, but it finally happened on the 15th of September. So many months of organising and meetings were all worth it as the event went off without any problems. People had a great day and of course Richard Branson was there to help break the World Record. In the end we managed to beat the previous record (250 people) by quite a bit as 318 participants formed the largest parade of kitesurfers to complete a one-mile course. In the process, together we all raised over £60,000!!!! This went to great causes SnowCamp, the RNLI and also Virgin Unite. Through my auctions of framed kite canopies (of the pier kite), a charity clinic I performed (see pics) and some other donations I raised £515.20.
I really feel that this event has done so much for Kitesurfing. It brought so many people together, the kitesurfing community, councils, yacht clubs, the RNLI, coast guard and so many others. We done it all safely and I hope that Kitesurfers are now respected as independent safe people. A big thanks to everybody involved and I can’t wait for the next time we do this, Virgin have backed it for 5 years!
There were some great videos released from the day and I think this one captures the event brilliantly http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BlEL36vCuC4 –
Great coverage from the event on BBC and all over the web….
ICENI Water Film Day
A few months back some of you might remember when I spoke about my trip up to the ICENI factory to see how everything works. Last week, Brett from ICENI came down and spent a day with me to see how things work in my world. The wind was good so I started the day with a kite flying introduction on the green in Worthing. Brett was a bit of a pro with the trainer kite so we moved on to the bigger kites after about twenty minutes! After a few hours went past flying the larger kites Brett looked really comfortable. When the time is right we will go out on the sea, I think he would take to the water in a few hours. I had something else in store for the afternoon though, so we packed up and headed to my old High School, St Andrews.
St Andrews had asked me to speak to the students in a full school Assembly about relationships. With the focus on my day being around bottled water and having Brett down I naturally wondered how I can theme the talk with a touch of health & wellbeing. I imagined that so far the students would have covered a lot on relationships with others so included a nice section on what I feel is the most important relationship, which is the one with yourself. I learnt this from my mother (Hi MUM 🙂 who is a great life coach. With this element added I could talk about the ways you can look after yourself and in-turn how much better your relationships can become.
The video will be out soon, some nice photos attached.
El Gouna Magazine & Worthing Journal
A few pieces to share with you here, starting with a nice feature from the Founders Kite Club trip in Egypt in El Gouna Magazine. Whilst the event was taking place I spoke to the mag who asked me all about the event and why we chose El Gouna as a location. I’ve been to Egypt over 6 times and it was my first time in El Gouna (not far from Hurghada). The conditions are ideal to work with groups of people who want to learn more, I will be back!
Paul from The Worthing Journal was on hand (as usual) to document the finishing line of the Virgin Kitesurfing Armada. There is a nice feature in this months issue where he explains the idea of the event and mentions that Worthing Coast Guard took part in the day. Worthing was a big part of the event in the end with over 70 people making it all the way to the end (Lancing just past worthing) and countless others volunteering there time at the stop off points.
Founders Kite Club 2014
The Founders Kite Club is back in 2014 starting off in Cape Town my second home. The FKC Cape Town event will be from 27th Jan- 2nd Feb 2014 at Dolphin Beach/Hotel and partly in Kiteworldwide Mansion. Sam Medysky also riding Best (and good friend of mine) will be involved with the event too, its going to be great. The week presents such amazing opportunities for networking and kitesurfing at the same time. Keynotes are performed each evening by some of the entrepreneurial people that attend the events, I really learn a lot through this. I love the format and Cape Town could not be a better place for it. This first event of the year in Cape Town will have more of a wave riding theme but of course I will introduce some big air into the mix as thats what the area is also famous for!
Kite Tour Europe Round 3- The Hague
My last trip in September took me to Holland for the 3rd Round of the Kite Tour Europe. It doesn’t take to long to get to so I chose to drive over (3 hours from Calais). The forecast wasn’t brilliant and the air temperature was freezing but things brightened up and the competition got underway in full flow. Racing was the main focus of the event, which is a disciple I’m becoming increasingly interested in. Even in light wind the format works so well which always gives spectators something interesting to look at. As the wind was blowing from an easterly direction the wind was so gusty, very difficult to compete in for freestyle but Sunday saw a full day of action. My job as the commentator is to provide the most accurate commentary as possible throwing in a bit of humour of course. Offshore winds make it a real challenge for me as competitors have to compete at least 100 meters out to sea for the cleaner wind, but I could deal with it as I’ve learnt there favourite moves over the year so far. I can tell what they are going to do before they do it (well most of the time).
Through out the 4 day event I also work with the media crew interviewing people and presenting for the daily show, action from day 1 can be seen here http://vimeo.com/75511406
At the end of the event I cover the prize giving, and it was great to congratulate fellow brit Steph Bridge on the podium who won the course racing. And lastly I had time to hang out and talk to people about all the new 2014 kites and boards from BEST with Dennis (BEST Holland)
Thanks to Mark and Eunice for Photos, Tomorrow (tues) I’m off to Barcelona for the last round of the Kite Tour Europe speak soon, Lew