Podium :
Johny Heineken

I grew up on and around the water. My dad is a windsurfer and sailor, and from a young age I began to follow in his footsteps. Racing high performance sailboats has always been a major part of my life and kite racing is the pinnacle of this–fast, exciting, and possible almost anywhere. I jumped on a raceboard for the 2009 World Championships and fell in love with the sport. Since then I’ve worked my way to the top of the fleet, with consecutive wins at the 2011 and 2012 Worlds. My goal is to continue to push this sport as it grows into one of the most competitive in the world. >
Johny's website
Riccardo Andrea Leccese

I was born on the small Colombian island of San Andres in the Caribbean sea to Italian parents.

Neither my two brothers or sister shared a passion for compettition as I always have, but I was involved in sports for as long as I can remember. I didn't have much time for homework with all the Tennis, Skate, BMX, Windsurding, Wakeboarding, and motor sports I was doing! …must be my crazy Italian genes!

I began Kiteboarding in 2002, and of course became totally hooked. I had my first international kiteracing competition at PKRA Argentina in 2010, after which my commitment to kite racing took a step above all other disciplines.

In 2012 I finally came into my own element winning the European Championship, European Tour Championship, South American Championship, and numerous top three finishes at all of the most important worldwide competitions.

My goal is to continue travelling the world, while being an ambassador of this amazing sport - and of course winning nothing but bullets!

Rikki's website
Erika Heineken

Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Erika spent her youth around the water. For as long as she can remember, capsizing lasers (a 14' sailboat) in the California river delta was her summer pastime. The rest of the year she spent in a gymnasium excelling at ball sports, which occupied much of her time until college. At the University of Vermont she thought it would be fun to put on a dry suit and sail FJs in the cold New England waters. Capsizing was no fun in 40 degrees, and she quickly learned how slow FJs were.

Summer of 2011 she was back in San Francisco and joined the kite race fleet. She left slow boats and never looked back. From the beginning she’s been riding hand-me-downs from Chip and Johnny, some of the early generation boards of what we ride today. Proud to be the 2012 World Champion, she is often found cruising from one kite spot to another in her big red van, packed with kite gear, but always with her MikesLab right on top!

Erika's website
Rob Douglas US-55

I grew up sailing with my father and worked with him in the family windjammer business. I started racing windsurfers in 1988 and kites in 2008. I pay Mike Zajick to build my boards because Mike builds the fastest, strongest, lightest and most consistent boards on earth!

Sponsors: Cabrinha, The Black Dog, Lynch Associates, Dakine Home Port: Martha's Vineyard USA Fastest sailor in American history - 7 times Fastest sailor and kitesurfer in world history - 2 times 2012 IKA World Speed Sailing Champion Best average speed 500 meters 55.65kts. Best Vmax 60.23kts

Rob's website
Chip Wasson

Born in Palo Alto, California, Chip has grown up with an active outdoor lifestyle. Chip found his true love in the ocean when he started windsurfing in 1981. After many years competing on the international windsurfing scene and completing liberal arts degree at UC Berkeley, he was always seeking the new emerging sports. In 1992, he started a multi-sport apparel company called UltraNectar, Inc. In 1997 Chip discovered the sport of kiteboarding and brought it from Hawaii to the Northern California coast where he helped to develop and popularize the sport, pioneering what are now the numerous kiteboarding locations on the West Coast. After many years competing on the international level, Chip was instrumental in developing kiteboard course racing.

Chip's website
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