Update: Kate Chandler / GWA All photos: Svetlana Romantsova Athletes from nine countries gathered for Tuesday’s registration of the GWA’s Superfoil 2020 event. This is the first Global Wingsport Association event in Ceara’s capital city and so far they have been blown away by the location and conditions. The colourful skyscrapers make a diverse change from palm fringed lagoons, barracas, and beach buggies.
The bright and colourful theme continued into the first ever SuperFoil Fortaleza opening ceremony. Traditional dancers welcomed the team and athletes to their city with swirling dances, glittering outfits and pounding drums.
Extra precautions are in place to ensure our crew and athletes are safe during the event, with each person taking a COVID-19 test before being granted entry to the competition zone and GWA bubble. Thankfully everyone has been given a clean bill of health and the event is off to a very smooth start. Sadly of course, the event is closed to the public and only the team and riders can enter.
GWA CEO Jörgen Vogt congratulated the riders and team members for their efforts to help make the event possible during the pandemic. During a speech at the opening ceremony, he praised their commitment to follow safety guidelines, and their dedication to the sport and believes this is a positive example for sporting communities worldwide.
After the registration and opening ceremony athletes hit the water to get an understanding of the conditions and put on a show with the spectacular sunset and backdrop. The atmosphere is electric and every one of them is pumped to be riding in a competition for the first time, especially after so many months of lockdown!
Three ladies have registered for this first event in a very new sport, including professional kitesurfer Paula Novotna from Czech Republic, Leysa Perotti from Argentina and Liana Maia from Brazil. This trio will lead the way for women in this new sport!
Wingfoil competitors have come from varied sporting backgrounds, including kitesurfing, hydrofoiling and windsurfing. Balz Müller is a professional windsurfer, also competing this week is windsurfing World Champion, Kauli Seadi, while Maxime Chabloz is a junior freeski and kitesurfing professional who is showing huge promise in the sport. New Caledonian Titouan Galea is another competitor to keep a close eye on throughout the coming days.
The event site is in a fantastic location, right on the shore-line in Iracema and the forecast for the next week is promising. Conditions are side on-shore winds, with a nice rolling wave perfect for the hydrofoil riders. Wind can be anywhere between 15-25 knots in Fortaleza, it’s predicted to be in the upper portion of this forecast over the next week.
The competition will begin Wednesday. Due to logistical limitations for events this year there won’t be a livestream, but the liveticker on the GWA Live Event Page will be updated with results, format news and more as and when it happens.
WSW is a hub of useful equipment and technique features / videos for wingsurf and other hydrofoil related board sports.