Well we are almost there as next week will see the KTA back in Thailand for its third season for the deciding round and finals of the Asian titles, both freestyle and course racing – so head for Pranburi 13-18 March if you are not already on your way.
The Asian course racing titles are for the first time this season being run as a championship event rather than as a cumulative title scored throughout the tour. This brings the KTA into line with the IKA direction to structure kite racing along the same lines as sailing competition as we hopefully move towards Olympic status. The Olympic Trials as in happens will be taking place more or less directly after the KTA Thailand finishes over in Santander in Spain and we are very pleased to see our current Asian Champions Yo Naraprachit Pudla and Aya Oshima amongst the nominated riders going to show the ISAF and IOC selectors what our sport is all about.
Alongside the Asia course race championship the KTA Thailand will also be the deciding round for this seasons Asian Freestyle Championship also. This follows the decision at the start of the season to base the Asian title on three rounds only to make the title more competitive and affordable to Asian riders , as of course for now not so many have a great deal of sponsor support to be able to fund a longer tour package.
For the remaining KTA tour titles both the freestyle and race (in both RB and TT) we hope there will be good news before Thailand kicks-off for a final tour event in China at the start of May. We have been promised a decision in time to make a final decision on this by registration day next week, so fingers crossed. If this does not come through as we hope then Thailand will then become the overall final for the KTA this season which means the KTA Tour titles will also be awarded in Pranburi also.
This slight uncertainty about the seasons close once again sums up just what a tricky year it has been with several countries on the list dropping out at the last minute. We had hoped in the early days of the KTA that we would set a schedule for the season and that would be that, but this season has shown us it’s not always going be nice and straightforward as we would like. Certainly also world economics has played its part as 100% certain sponsors suddenly disappear, which sadly again has been the case for us with Thailand at the 11th hour. But fear not all the essentials for a top competition and fun event will still be fully in place in true KTA style, we just might not have posh napkins at the table this time so please forgive us for anything that we have to miss out on, but we will do our best.
Thankfully as ever though our tour co-sponsor Cabrinha is solidly behind as it has been from the beginning and we are all looking forwarded to the Cabrinha Full Moon Party which will be closing the event big style. Brand sponsor Maelstorm also another stalwart of the KTA is also once again giving us its full support along with Underground who have been backing us all the way as our newest brand sponsor this season. So thank you guys once again for providing this round with a total equipment prize value of over US$ 10,000.
To clarify on this –
Asian Freestyle Championship
First to third place equipment prizes + Asian title trophies
IKA ranking points
Asian Course Race Championship
Overall event first to third place equipment prizes for both RB and TT classes
Asian title trophies to RB class
IKA ranking points RB class
*please note that TT is not yet a sanctioned class so Asian titles or ranking points cannot yet be awarded KTA Tour titles will be awarded for this class
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