We took some time a few months back to speak to Paula Novotna from the Czech Republic, the 20 year old rider for North Kitboarding was busy making waves on the Kite Tour Europe, but unfortunately hurt her knee. After surgery she was back for 2012 and looking to compete on the PKRA in 2013, sadly she had an accident in Tarifa after the event in Dakhla and is off the water again with a wrist injury! We’re sending some healing vibes and thought we ought to get this published too!
Lives: All around the world, my home is in the Czech Republic
Loves: My family, my friends, summer and chocolate!
Hates: People that are big headed and arrogant, cold weather and aeroplanes
How long have you been kiting Paula?
I’ve been kiting for 6 years now, my mum and dad started first and then they taught my brother and I.
How did you get into it, did you do any other sports before hand?
My family has always been into extreme sports. Along with doing all the extreme sports with my family I was also into gymnastics and swimming. I think those sports were perfect before I started kitesurfing, I can see it helped me a lot to become a good kitesurfer. I am really happy that I have kite family and we can spend all our free time together doing the best sport on the earth
You’ve been competing at home, how have you been getting on?
I come from the Czech Republic, and we don´t have any coastline, just some lakes, in the summer it´s possible to kite, but in winter it´s really cold. Last year I won the Czech championship in freestyle and race. I hope this year we will have wind again and I can defend my title.
How has it been going on the International scene?
2 years ago I started with Kitesurf Tour Europe and I was 4th overall in 2011 in freestyle. Last winter I had to have ACL surgery, I couldn´t kite for 6 months! That was really hard for me. I was really happy when I got back on board after half a year!
In year 2012 I won the European Junior Championship in spring. I am sad I can´t defend my title this year, I am not a junior anymore! I also tried to compete on Kitesurf Tour Europe last year, but unfortunately wherever I went there was no wind. I decided to train in winter and start with the PKRA in 2013. I competeted at the PKRA in Dakhla and came 4th but since then I have broken my wrist so I am off the water again!
How long have you been riding with North, what do you like best about their gear?
I´ve been riding with North since I started and my second year of kiteboarding the Czech North distributor took me to the team and since then I am with them. It´s really nice, because my whole family has North gear, sometimes people call us the North family! ☺
I am really satisfied with my gear, I like to kite with the North Vegas, it has changed so much since they started with it, and now it´s one of the best freestyle kites on the market. The kite does exactly what I want, I feel very comfortable on the water. I am riding with the 22 meters bar, what is the best choice for freestyle. The board I have is the 134 Team Series, I ride it with boots, what I think is the best choice for freestyle. I also have the Jaime 133 with straps. This board is little bit softer, sometimes it´s good to change and try something different.
You recently spent the winter in Cape Town, how was that and how did you get on with the howling winds?
I was sure I wanted to visit Cape Town, but I didn´t know the conditions are so hardcore! I did some exams in my university and booked my ticket to Cape Town. I was certain it was going to be awesome as almost every pro rider goes there in winter to train. The first few weeks I was a bit disappointed because of the strong wind and waves, but I really like the atmosphere and the nature there. The social scene with all the pro riders and other kitesurfers was also really great!
After a while I got used to the challenging conditions and I was slowly doing all my tricks in the strong winds. We also discovered some nice flat-water spots, that was a good change and great for training. I realized if I want to compete I can´t just train on flat water, and those conditions in Cape Town are actually pretty ok once you get used to them ☺ I would definitely be into going there next winter again! One more thing I liked about Cape Town was the Blue Rock cable park. Whenever there was no wind we went there. Every single day we went, it was awesome and worth it, even when it was raining!
I think I will miss Cape Town during summer in Europe. Cape Town is one of the most beautiful places I´ve ever been to, if you haven´t been there yet, go for it!
Quick Fire Round:
McDonalds or salad?
I love the salads, I am definitely a salad person.
Flat water or waves?
Party or chill out?
I love to party when there are good friends around and I am in a mood for party, than the party is worth it. Also sometimes the best party comes unexpectedly. But what I also wanted to say I like to chill and relax and at that moment I really hate when somebody comes and drag me to the party! In the end it´s always good, so yes! I am a party girl!
Meat or vegetables?
Vegetables, the only meat I eat is fish and chicken.
Guitars or synths?
Thanks Paula for taking the time to talk to IKSURFMAG, we hope the recovery goes well and you are back on the water soon!
Check out here latest video from Cape Town 2013.