Equipment problems at Kiteboard Europeans
Published on July 30th, 2013
Reigning Kiteboard Men’s and Women’s World Champions, the brother-sister team of Johnny and Erika Heineken, are in agreement that their sport still has growing pains, and that it was likely a blessing for kiteboarding to be passed over for the 2016 Olympics.
“Our gear needs some more time to develop and for the class rules to establish themselves within all the manufacturers for all of our equipment, kites, boards, everything. So I’m okay with that,” she said.
Johnny believes that with the Olympic spotlight now off the sport temporarily, this would allow it to grow further. “I think for the sport it means that we’re just going to have more time to develop and grow and kind of go in the direction that’s right for the competitors.”
While the Heinekens were in British Columbia this week winning the Canadian Nationals, an incident this week at the European Kite Racing Championships confirms there is still some work to be done.
After equipment inspection on the evening of the first day of the championship in Gizzeria, Italy, the Race Committee filed a protest against three sailors using 2013 Temavento Racing Boards.
The class rules require all equipment used in course racing events to be “series production”, and after further investigation, there were 19 boards found to be shaped differently than the production specification.
The International Jury disqualified all sailors using the non-compliant boards from all races on day one and two, and to ban them from further use.
According to the manufacturer, the rules violation was a result of a production mistake.