The beach of Las Burras in Gran Canaria has witnessed the high-flying finals of the Big Air category, especially with the spectacle of Tarifa’s Noah Nicolas and the Canarian Zoe Sosa, who have been proclaimed the aerial kings of the Gran Canaria Air Battle.
In its fifth edition, the largest kitesurf and wingfoil festival in Spain hosted the disciplines of Kitesurf Big Air and Strapless Freestyle in the Open category and as regional titles. Although Nicolas takes the Open category for Tarifa, it is the Ancor Sosa (Fuerteventura) who is proclaimed the champion of the Canary Islands in both disciplines.
The most exciting final took place in the men’s Big Air category between the riders from Tarifa, Noah Nicolas and Luca Lüdke (of German origin), whose specialty is high jumps. Despite Nicolas specializing in the Strapless category, he has managed to adapt his technique to jump high and has “dedicated himself to flying above the horizon,” as commented by the head judge, Javier Ippólito. Unai Florido kept the third place after defeating the Canary Islander Ancor Sosa.
The women’s final was a two-round competition between Zoe Sosa (Fuerteventura), the local rider from Gran Canaria, Daniela Moreno, and Diliana Ivanova, of Bulgarian origin but settled in Gran Canaria. Ivanova surprised by being the rider who flew the highest during the second round and even performing a board-off movement. However, Sosa was crowned the Big Air champion after winning the first face-off and finishing second in the last round due to the overall score. “It was incredible; everything went very well, and I’m very proud. I had a great time in the water,” said the kitesurfer. The third place goes to Daniela Moreno from Gran Canaria.
Noah Nicolas’s Tricks Take Him to the Top of the Strapless Freestyle Podium
After soaring to great heights during the Big Air heats, Noah Nicolas showcased his skills in his specialty: tricks with a board and a kite. In an exciting final against another rider from Tarifa, Domi Moreno, who could not surpass the freshness and naturalness with which Nicolas surprises with his innovative maneuvers in the air. Specifically, a triple frontroll board-off with a tic-tac (vertical board rotation in hand) was the highest-rated move of the day. The third place in the class is held by another rider from Tarifa, Fonsi Delgado.
Canary Islander Ancor Sosa, the Young Wingfoil Prodigy
In addition to the finals of Kitesurf Big Air and Strapless Freestyle, favorable conditions at Las Burras allowed for four more heats in the discipline of Wingfoil Freefly-Slalom (zigzag racing). The local rider Ancor Sosa (from Fuerteventura), who secured three first places and one second, continues to lead this category, adding to the five victories achieved the day before.
Furthermore, two heats of Wingfoil Surf-Freestyle were organized, in which Manuel Morillo (Lanzarote) and Walid Benhammou (of Moroccan origin) qualified, together with Sosa, who did it the previous day. This Saturday, the winners of the GWA wingfoil disciplines (Freefly-Slalom and Surf-Freestyle) will be announced. For the moment, Ancor Sosa is positioned as the favorite.
The Youngest Rider, Tommaso Caglini, vs. the Oldest, Klaus Fietz
One of the most eye-catching heats on Friday took place between the youngest festival rider, 10-year-old Tommaso Caglini, and the oldest, 81-year-old Klaus Fietz. During this Big Air round, it was the young Caglini, of Italian origin but based in El Médano, who advanced to the next round as the German kitesurfer residing in Gran Canaria had an issue with his equipment and could not compete. “I love the atmosphere of this festival; I’ve been participating since the first edition, although I could be the grandfather of everyone,” expressed Fietz.
Additional Activities for the Weekend at the Kitesurf and Wingfoil Festival
Simultaneously with the competition, Tarifa’s Noah Nicolas, the youth world champion in kitesurfing, will conduct a free workshop on Saturday, December 9, focusing on improving skills, especially in Strapless Freestyle. Additionally, beach cleanups are taking place during the event. Throughout the festival, materials from brands such as CORE, North Kiteboarding, and Duotone will be raffled, among others. Alongside these entities, Ahembo, with its brand 7up, and SPAR Gran Canaria stand out as private sponsors, among others.
The Gran Canaria Air Battle Festival, organized by the Canakite Experiences Sports Club with the collaboration of the Royal Canarian Sailing Federation and the institutional sponsorship of the Sports and Tourism departments of the Cabildo de Gran Canaria, continues to maintain its essence as an event open to all ages and skill levels. This fifth edition will be the final opportunity this year to qualify for the Global Wingsports Association (GWA) world circuit.