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Unregistered 29th September 2010 12:25 AM

Credit where credit due !!! Kiters.
Sailed at Leucate last weekend. Gusts at times were to (and occasionaly over) 40 knots.In years gone by kiters would have beenn grounded; but not now.They were out mixing up with WS;and in lulls going better than us.
I`ve got utmost respect for anyone who can handle any kite in those types of winds.Dont even know what sizes they were on.
To be fair I still think we had edge in speed in gusts and we were probvably out pointing them but think they had better range. They seemed to cope beter in lulls.

I was impressed.

kennatt 29th September 2010 02:21 PM

it's not the kiters it's the new range of kites. Over the last 8 years kites have been developed,to the point that most can be powered up or depowered at will.with a modern kite push the bar away and even in very strong winds the kite will fall out of the sky so the range is far greater that a windsurf rig, So congratulate yourself and other windsurfers,for being on the water.I kite very little these days its too easy,not demanding enough on skill or endurance. I friend of mine has kited since the very begining but has come back to windsurfing for this same reason.

Unregistered 29th September 2010 05:29 PM

My 5 metre depowers when I sheet out; doesn`t need launching; works at a level where wind is less but I couldn`t use it in 35+knots.
Might well be easier than sailing ;I`m not sure ; but even so it needs some guts to launch a kite in 35 k + .
Probably time we saw merits of kiters rather than deriding ???

They are impressive .

viking 29th September 2010 06:45 PM

If you are impressed by kites, I suggest you to have a look on jet-skis: they handle the gust better, they are more fast, they point better... Impressive :)

Ken 29th September 2010 10:26 PM

At the last "US Open" in Corpus Christi a year and a half ago, the Formula fleet raced in the mornings in winds up to 25 knots, the kites raced in the afternoon on the SAME course (upwind and downwind) in 25 knot + winds.

The top few kiters got around in roughly the same time as the formula boards, but what was interesting was the downwind run. While the formula sailors were holding on for dear life with 9.0 sails, the kites simply de-powered (kept them high) and ran dead downwind with ease, but slower than the formula boards. The 4' chop in the bay makes downwind runs challenging to say the least. A formula sailor can't sheet out on a fully powered downwind run to de-power, it's all or nothing. One could head off 90 degrees from the wind and luff the sail, but you won't get to the finish line on a beam reach.

A good kiter can choose full power or no power with the same rig. I guess a sailor can luff the sail completely and de-power too, but it's a much smoother transition for a kite. I have never sailed a kite, just my observations.

davide 30th September 2010 12:41 PM

I sail regularly in the Bay Area, in very challenging conditions, and I noticed that any time the wind gets in 4.2 and below most Kites simply disappear. It might be simply because it is too hard and dangerous (the list of fatal or near fatal Bay Area accidents is quite staggering). Kites are bigger and bulkier, try to lift a Kite in 30 knots, after you dump it, and you are probably in for some real trouble. Try the same with a 3.7 sail and it is not such a big deal ...

Formula? the Bay Area fleet regularly beats Kites in some of the hardest conditions you can race Formula in.

Range? a lot of windsurfers around here seem to be obsessed with sailing only 5.5 or smaller ... get some modern large sail and a 100-120L board and you will discover that a windsurfer has a much wider range than a Kite ... and it floats.

Impressive? I don't know, I find the disregard for safety in the Kite community too big of an issue to leave space for much admiration ...

Unregistered 30th September 2010 01:32 PM

@ Davide :Quote "Impressive? I don't know, I find the disregard for safety in the Kite community too big of an issue to leave space for much admiration ... "

I agree with you 100%...


Farlo 30th September 2010 04:34 PM

At the beginning many boat sailors may have considered windsurf not very safe, notably in high wind. I'm not a kite fan at all but this sounds like "those guys are going faster, jump higher, they must be crazy" (probably some really are). Kitesurf is still in early stages and there is much room for innovation. Depowering is a good example. Hopefully these crazy kiters will become more conscious getting older, as many windsurfers did. Given a few recent posts about windsurf vs. cats, moths, longboard vs. formula, etc... I guess the topic is here to stay.

Unregistered 30th September 2010 06:48 PM

Farlo, itīs not so much the jumping it self.
- but why do the jumping in 20cm of water? If you screw up the jump in 20cm water you will get hurt.
- Why jump over brigdes/boats ect.? if anything goes wrong you will get hurt (a lot).

- Why launch and land you kite where there is no space? screw up and you will get dragged along, hitting what ever is in you way. (this one is a classic)

This is stuff I picked up on the beach as a windsurfer - from just looling a kiters. Itīs amazing how many kiters forget that Natures and Newtons laws apply to everyone.


Unregistered 30th September 2010 08:29 PM

Kiters near us must be much more skilled (Leucate) as they were more than coping in the gusts (to 40knts) and there were no problems at all sharing water;and its quite restricted being inland (a massive Etang)

Didnt start thread for it to become the normal slanging match towards kiters. Quite the reverse. The kiters are friendly ;skilled and share water with us with respect.
And they are out enjoying conditions which once would have been survival for them.(And us)
They jump more than us;thats what all the envy is about. !!!

Like I said

Credit were credit due !!!!

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