From the 26th to the 28th January 2018, Lake Reschen in Italy proved a perfect spot as conditions held strong for 2018 IKA SnowKite WorldCup, where more than 80 Snowkiters from all over Europe attended this year's first ever IKA sponsored event.
After a week of fresh snowfall, the event opened with the all awaited Long Distance Racing, where Snowkiters fought to finish the course around the lake as fast as possible. After four laps and approximately 60 km in 1hrs and 39 minutes Florian Gruber (GER) finished first on skis, in the snowboarding division Ozone team rider Ronny Bollhalder (SUI) was leading the first two rounds and had the victory almost secured until painful cramps in his legs stopped him from maintaining his lead and forced him to end up a respectable third. The girls also showed strength on the racing track with Aija Ambrasa from Latvia swapping her kites to Ozone Chronos and winning every single race (snowboard) thus securing the well-deserved first position.
The weekend was all about Freestyle and Course Racing. Although Saturday the wind was a no show, the riders were able to recover and prepare for Sunday while enjoying the beautiful weather and great atmosphere. When the time came for them to compete, Ronny was well rested and the cramps had gone, enabling him to clinch pole position in the course racing and win in the Snowboard category.
Words from Ronny:
"To the black friday follows a golden sunday! Thx a lot to my friends and family who build me up again after I had my personal grounding in the long distance... After a clear lead I got big problems with my muscles and nearly had to give up! I was lucky and as saturday there was no wind.. perfect for my recovery! So I started with a first place into the 6 races on Sunday. The fights vs Fly Fisch and Kolja were tight but very fair! Thx for that! Special Thx to my "Manager" Jonas Lengwiler for his perfect support! Was a big advantage to have such a great support! But one of the greatest things this weekend was the incredible performance from the 11 years old Max Mäder! With all the top Riders he got overall 14th and 4th in one race just behind Florian Gruber"
The tour's next Italian stop will be in Roccaraso (15-18 Feb), where the Formula GPS discipline will debute and reward the best Ski and Snowkite Freeriders for best use of the terrain. As a second discipline, Cross Country Racing is scheduled, long distance races similar to the one on Lake Reschen but including ascends and descends.
More information, registration and Notice of Race can be found at www.snowkiteworldcup.com.