Riot Curv Harness from ION

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Riot Curv Harness from ION

Francesca Maini is a young woman with a passion for kiteboarding that is taking her to new heights –literally.

North Brand Director Mike Raper says: “Francesca’s speciality is Big Air, but she is also a talented wave-rider and wingfoiler. We are thrilled to welcome her onboard as a Pro Team Rider. It’s so great to have another woman kicking ass on the International Circuits.”

At just 22 years old, the half-Italian, half-English kiter has already made a name for herself in the world of competitive kiteboarding, with a string of impressive titles to her name.

“With the level of Big Air progressing so quickly, I knew North had the perfect kite to fit my riding and allow me to push my limits to the next level,” says Francesca, who has a special talent for pushing herself out of her comfort zone. “I am very determined and won’t come off the water until I’ve landed the trick I wanted! I love the feeling of adrenaline and feeling alive and free. The feeling of a late-back is one of my favourites for sure, and just getting yanked on a massive straight kite loop in crazy winds is a feeling that never gets old!

Francesca grew up in Herne Bay, a small town on the North coast of Kent in the Southeast of the UK, where she spent countless hours playing in the sea with her brother. “My dad is a passionate kitesurfer.

and taught me how to kite right out front of our house. I first tried kitesurfing when I was about 10 and then started doing it more consistently after school when I was about 14. It wasn’t until I had a year off before university in 2020 that I started kitesurfing way more, as I had more free time.”

Her favourite conditions for Big Air are In Cape Town, where she loves the Intensity and extremity of the sessions. “It depends on what discipline I am doing – I just love kiting with kickers and strong wind. Mauritius is one of my favourites for winging and wave riding, with good wind and super clean waves.

The UK also has great wind and some of the best spots ever. “I think some of the gnarliest conditions must be in the UK during storms. At one of my home spots in Weymouth, UK, last year, we were kiting in gusts up to 70 knots – it was so windy you could barely ride along, and it was so hard to keep an edge. I had some pretty gnarly jumps, kiting in squalls with 70-knot gusts and full-on rain, which really got the adrenaline going.

Francesca’s Gear:

Orbit Pro Performance Big Air Kite
Carve Surf / Strapless Freestyle Kite
Navigator Control System
Atmos Pro Carbon Big Air/Freeride TwinTip (136cm)
Charge 5’5 Performance Surfboardd
Mode / Nova Pro Wing Foiling
Swell 4’10 Surf Foilboard
MAv2 700 / 850 Front Wings
S185 / S208 Stabs

Find out more here!

Wed 21st Feb, 2024 @ 3:00 am

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