The excitement around the build up for the Tarifa Strapless Pro, the first event of this year's GKA Kite-Surf World Tour, has been palpable since the end of the 2016 season in Dakhla.
Yesterday we witnessed the start of what's sure to be a hotly contested tour after the agreement was reached with World Sailing earlier this year to allow the GKA to crown an official 'wave' World Champion.
28 riders from around the world converged on Valdevaqueros beach in Tarifa on Wednesday morning to claim the official wave world champion. Of the 28 riders registered for the event, 12 had prequalified off the back of their ranking on last year's tour and would go straight to the main event, four local wildcards completed the 16 who automatically who would meet the riders that successfully battled it out in the trials.
(Photo: Ydwer van der Heide)
The 12 riders in the trials were divided up into four heats of three, and each rider, regardless of who they were riding in a heat against, would be given a ranking. The top eight would make it through to the main event. Four would be leaving the event.
Elvis Nunes “ I was very unlucky, in the days prior to the event I trained a lot, unfortunately I landed on a fin cutting up my foot. After 6 stitches in my right foot, crutches and a doctors advise to rest 2 days I was not sure if I could compete at all. “
The wind dipped a bit after the first two heats and riders in the third qualifier clearly struggled in the lighter winds, but things improved in the final heat.
Elvis decided to make the most of it as he shouts while entering the water: “Some bandage, ducktape and a shoe… a deep cut in my foot is not keeping me on the beach, I’m going out!”
His appearance was noticed as competition organiser and judges praise the mind set of Elvis as an example can be read in the official report of the organisation: Matt Pearce: “In heat seven Elvis Nunes (CV), who had been limping around the contest area on crutches in between heats due to an injury he picked up before the event, pushed through the pain with some classic 'Jesus walks' close into the beach
Elvis Nunes ”I was not able to make a full front roll, which I normally can. I’m a bit afraid that I again land on my injured foot but managed to boost out a “crazy horse / board rodeo” and a “jesus walk”. I always ride my board on my bare feet, now for the first time with a shoe on my injured an painful foot. I was not able to feel the board so well, it is like tying your shoelaces with boxing gloves on. Unfortunately I was not able to show my best here today but I’m still happy to be here.”
Nevertheless Elvis advanced to the main event battled it out today in heat #16 with local Gustavo Arrojo. Unfortunately Elvis was not able to proceed due to his injury. We wish Elvis a good recovery
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