After many weeks of full on preparation and training the ultimate challenge has begun this morning. Six international kiteboarders started their attempt to be the first ever to cross the Atlantic Ocean with a kite. Accompanied by an experienced crew of sailors, camera crew and a medic, they boarded their catamaran this morning in front of the René Egli Centre on Fuertaventura (Canary Islands). In relay they will cover a distance of 5986 kilometres across the Atlantic Ocean. The team is scheduled to arrive in the Blue Haven Resort, on Turks and Caicos Islands (Caribbean).
Every kiter has two two-hour shifts a day – one in the daytime and one at night – so one of the team members will always be out there on the ocean going the distance. This approach enables the team to cover the entire distance in approximately 15 days, depending on wind speeds.
Participants of the HTC Atlantic Kite Challenge are Filippo van Hellenberg Hubar (Netherlands), Camilla Ringvold (Norway), Max Blom Jr. (Netherlands), Eric Pequeño (USA) , Dennis Gijsbers (Netherlands) and Ike Frans (Netherlands).
In order to guarantee the highest degree of safety possible during the challenge the crew is supported by an experienced crew led by Erik van Vuuren (Netherlands), he will be captain during the challenge. Arne Ostby, (Norway) is the owner of the catamaran. Sophie Cohen (Netherlands) is the doctor on board and Bram de Vos (Netherlands), is winner of the HTC Reporter Election and will join the team as cameraman.
The HTC Atlantic Kite Challenge will be the longest ‘downwind’ kite ride ever and will be supported by the Double-A, a 50-foot catamaran, to ensure the riders safety and comfort. “The idea for the Atlantic Kite Challenge came about from our passion for kitesurfing and business ventures. One day we felt inspired to combine the two,” explains one of the Enable Passion organizer’s Allard Janssen. “We wanted to find out whether something that initially looked so impossible could be achieved with the right motivation and dedication. The idea slowly took form and resulted in a team of committed people. All those involved are contributing in their own way to achieve this joint goal.”
Mystic is proud to be the official apparel and waterwear supplier of the HTC Atlantic Kite Challenge. With co-founder Max Blom jr. being one of the team members, Mystic felt that if the team is provided with the best gear there will be one less thing to worry about. Experience has taught us that you always need to be able to rely on your gear, in every possible circumstance. Therefor Mystic developed a customized wetsuits for each rider to fit perfectly. Also special life jackets were developed to make sure that all the equipment like radio’s and flairs are within reach of the riders at all times.
Besides waterwear Mystic supplied gear for on board of the catamaran to make sure that each rider and crew member will be comfortable and warm during the long days and possible cold nights on the ocean. Together with sister brand Magic Marine, Mystic provided the captain and his crew with excellent sailing gear.
Mystic wishes the entire team the best of luck and hope to welcome you all safe and sound on ‘the other side’.
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