Oliver Bridge (GBR, North/North) and Elena Kalinina (RUS, Elf/TMV) have defended their last years European Championship titles with a virtually flawless performance.
Kalinina went into the medal series on the final day of competition with a comfortable 18 point lead, however, with 4 races scheduled in rather light winds everything could happen. But the young russian rider made it clear from the first moment that she would not give the 2015 title away anymore, and showed a dominant performance with 4 out of 4 race wins.
All the drama was then about the remaining two podium places, with Aga Grzymska (POL, Ozone/ML) and Anastasia Akopva (RUS, Ozone/ML) going into the final day tied in points. Akopova scored a 2-3-3-2 while Grzymska scored a 3-2-2-3, meaning that after another 4 races both were still tied at the same points. The tiebreak rules finally decided in favour of Akopova: with 2 second and 2 third races each the tie remained and had to be broken by the result of the last race, where Akopova beat Grzymska in a tight race.
In the mens fleet, Bridge was even further ahead with a solid 27 point lead, and also here it was all about the battle for the remaining two podium places, with Florian Gruber (GER, Ozone/UC) only three points behind Alejandro Climent (ESP, Elf/ML) Climent. Would the 2013 World Champion be able to match race Climent down into third place ?
The first medal race went off, and Gruber was on fire. The light conditions favoured him and Blazej Ozog (POL, North/North), both beating Bridge for first and second place. Climent only came into 8th place after an incident at the start line. Gruber then managed to stay ahead of the Spaniard in another 2 out of 3 places, finally earning him second place.
OVERALL STANDINGS AFTER 16 OPENING SERIES RACES AND 4 MEDAL RACES
Formula Kite Men:
1. Oliver Bridge (GBR, North/North) 20 Points
2. Florian Gruber (GER, Ozone/UC) 55 Points
3. Alejandro Climent (ESP, Elf/ML) 65 Points
4. Blazej Ozog (POL, North/North) 68 Points
5. Alexander BAchev (BUL, Elf/ML) 87.7 Points
Formula Kite Women:
1. Elena Kalinina (RUS, Elf/TMV) 19 pts
2. Anastasia Akopova (RUS, Ozone/ML) 43 pts
3. Aga Grzymka (POL, Ozone/ML) 43 pts
4. Catherine Dufour (CAN, Ozone/ML) 65 pts
5. Bilge Ozturk (TUR, Ozone/ML) 93 pts
Full results can be seen at http://internationalkiteboarding.org/images/documents/events/2015FKEuropeansResults.pdf
Picture Gallery: Flickr
The Video Highlights of Registration and Racing Day 1 can be found here: https://vimeo.com/131763520
The Video Highlights of Day 2 can be found here: https://vimeo.com/131949236
The Video Highlights of Day 3 can be found here: https://vimeo.com/131965072
The Video Highlights of Day 4 can be found here: https://vimeo.com/132009858
The Video Highlights of Day 5 can be found here: https://vimeo.com/132348424
Live event updates during racing: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ika.events/