It was announced today that Western Australia will play host to the inaugural IKA Kiteracing Oceanic Championships in 2013, and 2014.
The 2013 inaugural Oceanic Championships will be part of the International Kiteboarding Association's (IKA) annual course racing calendar, and will be run under the auspices of both the IKA and the International Sailing Federation (ISAF), the IKA being a subsidiary Federation to ISAF.
30000 AUD (app. 22000 EUR) prizemoney are up for grabs both in 2013 and 2014 and will, together with important world ranking points, attract the top kiteracers in the world from countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Canada, America, Great Britain, Brazil, Spain, Germany, Poland, France and Mexico.
Kiteracing is one of the fastest growing sailing disciplines in Western Australia and the world. The event will further strengthen the popularity of the sport and help to position the State as one of the world's best water sports destinations.
Western Australia has a strong tradition of hosting international sailing events. The Kiteracing Oceanic Championships will be overseen by the Warren Jones Foundation, who were instrumental in bringing the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championship event to Perth, and presenting it.
The Hon. Ian Campbell, who chaired Perth 2011, will also head up the kiteracing event.
"We have followed the European, the Asian and the other regional tours, and this event in Perth can only grow. The Championships will not only provide excellent exposure of Western Australia around the world through TV and social media, but will also feature a vibrant event village with great viewing opportunities at Leighton to witness the action", he said.
The event in Perth will be complemented by a festival featuring family entertainment, live music, street performers, kiting clinics and beach sports
A national category will be run in conjunction with the Championship events, giving local competitors the opportunity to compete, which will showcase spectacular air jumps synonymous with kiteboarding.
Perth sailing identity, John Longley has indicated his strong support for the event.
"The Kiteracing Oceanic Championship is a natural addition to Western Australia's rich sailing history. WA's ideal weather conditions and peerless beaches have long attracted sailing enthusiasts with the Fremantle Doctor making it the perfect location for wind-driven sports. Kiteracing is a new and exciting discipline, igniting interest in the sailing community and I look forward to welcoming a new breed of sailing athlete to Fremantle in December 2013"
The State Government, through Tourism WA, is proud to support the Kiteracing Oceanic Championships.
Eventscorp Executive Director Gwyn Dolphin said the agency had identified kiteboarding as a core sailing event with huge growth potential, presenting an opportunity for Western Australia to be positioned as a major kiteboarding destination around the world.
"With favourable wind conditions and great weather, Western Australia is an excellent location to host these growing championships," he said.
"The Kiteracing Oceanic Championships will also elevate the status of a rapidly-developing sport in WA, add vibrancy to the State, increase visitation and provide excellent media exposure of our extraordinary coastline."
The 2013 Kiteracing Oceanic Championships will be held at Leighton Beach from December 10-15.
Registration is open from now on at http://www.internationalkiteboarding.org/index.php/course-racing/events/details/79-Oceanic%20Championships
For more information visit www.kiteoceanics.com or Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/KiteOceanics
Media contact: Lauren Lofthouse, Bright Communications – (08) 6552 5261
Event contact: Event Director, Claire Parker, Project3 – (08) 9430 5395; Mob: 0417 914 405