Fantastic racing and nuking conditions saw an incredibly tight battle for the podium positions at the second stop of the Hydrofoil Pro Tour. Hosted by St Francis Yacht Club in San Francisco with the iconic Golden Gate Bridge backdrop.
4 DAYS NECK AND NECK //
The racing spanned over 4 days and from day one it looked like the top three spots had already been carved in stone. Although the riders were neck to neck, not even a crash on day two could warble Nico Parlier from leading the pack. Hot on his heels was Ozone's Johnny Heineken, feeling comfortable at his home spot gave him the confidence to max out at 48mph!
“I knew I had no mistakes allowed,” said Parlier after he stood on the first-place podium during the awards ceremony at St. Francis Yacht Club. “I did the maximum I could do. It’s awesome [to compete neck and neck]. It’s what we’re all looking for. Kiting against Johnny is awesome and kiting against Johnny in San Francisco is even better.” At the top of their game, with near flawless racing, none of them said afterwards that they would have done anything differently. (HFPT Admin)
It was a DOUBLE WIN for Nico as he also scored first place in the long distance San Francisco Bay Challenge, another notch in his dominating belt.
Nico's results are all the more spectacular knowing that he is still recovering from a nasty hand injury. In a sport that is so full-on and intense, injuries are unfortunately a common occurance, Ozone's RIccardo Leccese had his races thwarted fairly early on by a heavy cut to the fingers, we hope they heal quickly.
In the Women's division, Erika Heineken raced very strong, having taken a step down from international racing due to family commitments, she came in an extremely admirable 2nd place. Proving that having kids hasn't zapped all her energy or skill level.
A WHALE HALTS PLAY //
From the first day the riders had to pull their small kites out the bag as winds grew to 30+ knots. The ripping winds barely wavered over the course of the days, creating testing conditions for the riders. The strong winds also meant the the races could commence smoothly each day with only one of the races being postponed due to a whale crossing the start line. An extraordinary occurrance for many of the visiting riders, but those fortunate enough to call Chrissy Fields their home spot knew all too well that the whales have the priority in the water.
A TRIBUTE TO THE FALLEN //
At the start of the event, racers held a tribute to the loss of a dear friend to many and a very talented professional. Racers joined for a rose ceremony to say their farewells to Michael Petrikov, who shot many previous Tour events and was well-known and loved in this community.
PURE RACING MACHINE //
The R1V2 is very much at the height of its game and in the hands of the pro riders it continues to win world titles and race trophies all over. The shear dominance of the kite shines through from the rider’s performance. Known for being an impeccable race Machine, it raises the standard of performance.
A MASSIVE congratulations to Nico, Johnny and Erica for making the team proud and for fighting strong!
TOP RESULTS //
1. Nico Parlier
2. Johnny Heineken
3. Guy Bridge
1. Daniela Moroz
2. Erika Heineken
3. Kirstyn O'Brien