The lone rider on 62m lines, Jordan Girdis.
The forecast looked good, but a last minute change in the weather put a real dampener on the week long Australian Kiteboarding nationals in Townsville, QLD.
After the small setback of the KTA dropping their endorsement of the event, the Australian Kiteboarding nationals was back to basics. A local event with Aussie riders, Aussie bands and entertainment and Aussie judges. It had all the makings of an awesome event, but then the wind just didn't come to the party.
For most of the event, riders sat on the beach and enjoyed the warmer weather up in Townsville. Even the racers couldn't really get going with winds in the 5-7 knot bracket at most. Lightweight rider Jordan Girdis (19) from Sydney made the most of the uncrowded conditions, riding 4 out of the 6 days, but that was on a 17m kite, race board and 62m (yes, sixty two) lines. Not many others got out, although after the event finished, Saturday proved to be windy enough for a couple of riders to get out in 12m kites before they headed home.
Organisers In the Loop Kiteboarding were still pleased with the turnout, stating the following on the Seabeeze.com.au forums earlier in the week:
"We would like to thank all the amazing people that came to the nationals in Townsville. Even we could not compete due to lack of wind we had a lot of fun and learnt a lot of things, especially the racers. It was great to see everybody being so cool and relaxed and the party times were good.
Much love to the sponsors and supporters- Cabrinha, North, Airush, Ozone, AIMS (amazing weather station), Sports Med, RA Industries, the judges, Yachting Australia, ABC, Townsville Bulletin, Channel 10, THE VOLUNTEERS, the boat crews, TCC, Molly Malones, Martin in Bowen, the Intheloop and Arsa crew, The Island crew, Seabreeze, KBM & Kitemag and Kiteworld, the WA crews, Newcastle Crew, Sydney Suck crew, Sunshine Coast crew, Brisi crew."
Check out the Seabreeze.com.au thread for some first hand reports, plus over 400 photo's by Sean Carew here on his website.