The lure of Olympic glory has drawn the largest fleet in years—studded with all the world’s fastest kiteboard racers—eager to do battle on northern Italy’s spectacular Lake Garda at the 2019 Formula Kite World Championships.
A full complement of 87 men and a remarkable roster of 30 women, many of them novices in the high-octane discipline of kitefoil racing, will take to the track at Campione del Garda in five days of competition.
Last year’s decision to include mixed kiteboard team racing in the line-up for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris has encouraged many young athletes from a total of 29 countries to join the fray to hone their skills and race-craft, with nations like Britain, Poland and France showing impressive commitment.
The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) Pascucci Formula Kite Worlds will be decided over four days of fleet racing action, with a clutch of reigning and former world title holders fighting it out at the top of the order.
The regatta—sponsored by Pascucci and supported by Regione Lombardia—will crown the world champions after the men do battle in qualifying and finals’ series, while the women fight it out separately in their series.
The stunning panorama of snow-capped mountains framing the lake’s crystal-clear waters will serve as a fitting tapestry to find the world champions at the event being hosted by Campione Univela.
France’s Nico Parlier, the current men’s champion, will be defending his crown against bitter rival and former titleholder, Monaco’s Maxime Nocher.
Reigning European Formula Kite champion, Britain’s Guy Bridge, will undoubtedly push the pair all the way, while his returning brother, Olly, can never be ruled out in the hunt for podium positions.
Fellow countryman Connor Bainbridge, who posted strong finishes in last year’s IKA KiteFoil World Series, has been training hard through the winter in Mexico in the hope of challenging for the coveted crown.
Frenchmen Théo de Ramecourt, Axel Mazella and Theo Lhostis will never be far off the pace in what is bound to be tight and enthralling action played out before the lake’s breath-taking splendour.
Defending three-time women’s Formula Kite title holder, the US’s Daniela Moroz, still just 18, will have to see off challenges from her new young rivals as well as seasoned former champions Russia’s Elena Kalinina, Britain’s Steph Bridge, and France’s Alexia Fancelli.
Towards mid-regatta, one day will be given over to testing the format for the mixed team Formula Kite relay racing in what will likely be an intriguing and challenging match-up for the world’s best men, and women kiteboard foil racers.
Check out the full results, right here!
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