2005 World Sport Kite Championships – Day 2

Morning broke with light overcast, and we discovered Team Atemoc right outside our window. The actual comp field is a couple of miles from our hotel, so after moring coffee we hopped in the van and arrived at the flying field about 15 minutes before the 10:00 am starting time. Everyone was decidedly up-beat and looking forward to the day, even though the weather was overcast with light breezes of 2-4 mph.

The first Precision events went off right on schedule, with Tatoueurs du Ciel (FR) up first. By about 11:15 we’d completed the first four teams, and Elément’Air (FR) was on their third figure when the first discussions about “Wind Rule” occurred. All told, we experienced about about 5 minutes of discussion and decision time, and 25 minutes of “called” wind delay due to light winds.

Following our little “wind recess,” the remainder of the teams went on to complete their Precision flights… For more information, please check the scores shown further down in this report.

For the afternoon’s Ballet events, the morning sequence was simply reversed – meaning the last team to fly Precision would start the afternoon’s Ballet schedule.  Even thouth we were running at least a half hour late, we broke for a 45 minute lunch hour so judges, staff personnel, and Team K3P (MY), who had just finished Precision, could eat before their next scheduled Ballet flight.

As the afternoon progressed, it was quickly evident that the wind was rapidly picking up. It eventually hit the low to mid-teens – which presented it’s own problem. Since the field is separated from the beach by a 40′ bluff, wind off the Pacific would produce medium-big wind at a 40-50′ altitude, but would produce very little wind near the ground.  Indeed, landing on the field was a difficult task that bothered the majority of the team for the rest of the day.

Still, teams flew – and flew well, in spite of some teams being “landing-challenged.” Many teams flew with scores considerably better than scores they’d achieved 24 hours earlier.  As might be expected, some teams moved up in position, some moved down, and a few maintained their ranking.

One of the more interesting contests began to form between Team Cutting Edge (US) and Tame Bird (FR).  Both teams are extremely competitive, with excellent Precision and Ballet skills, lots of experience, and plenty of determination.  Today’s events saw these two teams both working hard to best the other, with appearances that the battle might very well continue for the remainder of the competition.

Another interesting note concerned the Scratch Bunnies (UK), which always seems to live by a different set of rules, somehow. Today’s Ballet routine would not be very notable, nor would their quite respectable score – except for the fact that the routine was choreographed during the last four days, and had never been flown before – either in practice or competition!

Overall, the weather continued to improve throughout the day, with sun shining and winds moderating and smoothing a bit throughout the afternoon.  And for perhaps the first time so far this week, the crowd of spectators grew to the point where they were evident.

Our hats off to the five international judges who have been dutifully scoring through 15 to 30 routines each day… We’re fortunate to have such a dedicated and experienced panel.

Precision Competition – Round 1 of 3

Place
Country
Team Name
Score
1
France
Tame Bird
81.840
2
USA
Team Cutting Edge
80.780
3
Germany
Watnu
74.960
4
France
Elément’Air
74.400
5
Japan
Kamikaze
72.800
6
USA
AirZone Flight Team
68.080
7
USA
6th Sense
65.300
8
Japan
Air-Rex
64.480
9
United Kingdom
Flame
64.280
10
Germany
Team Garuda
63.300
11
Japan
Neo
62.000
12
France
Tatoueurs du Ciel
61.080
13
United Kingdom
Scratch Bunnies
59.700
14
Colombia
Atemoc
37.000
15
Malaysia
K3P
34.760

Ballet Competition – Round 2 of 3

Place
Country
Team Name
Score
1
USA
Team Cutting Edge
88.320
2
France
Tame Bird
88.120
3
Japan
Air-Rex
79.400
4
USA
6th Sense
75.880
5
Germany
Watnu
74.360
6
USA
AirZone Flight Team
73.880
7
France
Elément’Air
70.920
8
Japan
Kamikaze
68.720
9
Germany
Team Garuda
68.680
10
United Kingdom
Flame
59.480
11
United Kingdom
Scratch Bunnies
59.400
12
France
Tatoueurs du Ciel
55.640
13
Colombia
Atemoc
54.080
14
Japan
Neo
50.960
15
Malaysia
K3P
40.000

We have been very impressed with the overall delivery of this event so far, with Bob Wendt doing a truly outstanding job of announcing… He tag teamed with David Gomberg to educate the spectators about what was happening, made it feel like a real sporting event, and provided excellent exposure for event sponsors (including Kitelife).

Bob also deserves a great deal of appreciation for having pronounced almost everyone’s name correctly, having gone around with a video camera to capture each person saying their name before the event started… This kind of dedication and seriousness is rare, and greatly appreciated by both the pilots and event staff.

After the day’s competition came to a close, a bunch of fliers gathered on the field for a Fury mega-fly including AirZone Flight Team, some of the Scratch Bunnies, Carl Robertshaw and a couple others… There were not many spectators left by this point, but they put on one heck of a show for those who were still watching.

With no official activities this evening, some people left for a whale watching tour around 5:30pm, and others gathered in various groups for a night on the town or discussion in the local pub.

Thank you for reading, we can’t wait until tomorrow when we bring you the latest news on this fierce WSKC competition!

Fair winds and good friends,

Dave “Geezer” Shattuck

(Editorial assistance by John Barresi)

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Author:Dave Shattuck

As one of our regular and most prolific contributors, Dave "Geezer" Shattuck is a driving force here at Kitelife and a regular at many NW events as well as other locations throughout the year.

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