Formula Kite Youth Worlds 2024: Even Paradise Gets Bad Days

Formula Kite Youth Worlds

Calabria Straordinaria took a break today, with rain squals, shifty light winds and big swell, making it impossible to put any of the organization's vessels to the sea on the opening day of the Formula Kite Youth Worlds.

Perhaps the weather was matching the feelings of the fleet, mourning for the missing friend, JJ Rice from Tonga, who sadly passed away at a diving accident a few weeks ago. JJ was bound to take part in the event and to celebrate him, his co-competitors paddled out on the tyrquise waters and left some wild flowers to the sea. It was a beautiful moment, but it was the only water activity possible today.

Sailors from all corners of the globe will have to wait another day, to find out who of all will climb to the top, especially as the big names are training in Marseilles ahead of the Olympics will not be defending their titles. There are many new faces in Gizzeria but one of them is very well known in other communities within the sport.

Sahar Tibi represented Israel in the Tokyo Olympics sailing the 470 and following that she campaigned in the iQFoil, winning the 2023 iQFoil Worlds in The Hague. Such is the depth of the Israeli squad, that her title was not enough to get her selected for the Paris 2024 Olympics, but instead she is currently coaching Israel's youth team. “I live in Eilat, Israel's kiteboarding paradise, I have been a kiteboarder since I was 12. After Tokyo I considered the kites but at the end the iQFoil won”.

After she lost the trials for Paris, her federation offered her the opportunity to share her vast knowledge and experience with the young kiters. “We did some training in Israel and it was super fun, super fast, I come from a fast class but kites are crazy” she laughs, and she continues “I have done a lot of rescue, it is also exciting, the adrenaline runs high even on the coach boat. It is a new challenge for me, I hope to see and learn a lot more”. As for the next quad, Sahar leaves all options open.

Will we see her flying a kite? Time will tell. For now she joins everyone else hoping that the weather will return to ‘normal' tomorrow and the fleet will go sailing!

Text Credits: IKA Media
Photo Credits: IKA Media / Robert Hajduk
Video Credits: IKA Media