Red Bull’s Christian Tio bested Ken Nacor in a tight duel to repeat as men’s Freestyle champion while Doque delos Santos and Ming Juan ruled the men’s TwinTip Race and the Novice class, respectively, for the second straight time in the ICTSI Philippine Kiteboarding Association Tour’s second leg in Bantayan, Cebu recently.
The 17-year-old Tio, who also foiled Nacor in the kickoff leg of the four-stage circuit sponsored by ICTSI in Cuyo, Palawan late last year, sustained his form and flaunted his world-class skills and tricks despite stormy weather to earn the nods of the judges at Marlin’s Beach Resort.
Slovak pro-rider Bibiana Magaji also shared the spotlight by racking up two victories, foiling German Franziska Limmer for the women’s Freestyle crown with Dutch Mariska Wildenberg and Jane Gajisan from Tablas ending up third and fourth, respectively.
Magaji, last year’s Big Air world champion, also bagged the Hangtime plum with 3.93 seconds with Kara Leongson placing second with 3.38 seconds and Limmer and Gajisan taking the next two spots with 2.97 seconds and 2.41 seconds, respectively.
Delos Santos placed third in the Freestyle while Philippine Kiteboarding Association juniors Remel Rentillo, Warner Janoya, Frean Yetyet and Mark Prevot took the next four spots in the featured event which drew riders from Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, Slovakia and the Philippines.
The four young riders are actually priming up for next year’s Youth Olympic Games as the PKA stepped up its effort to discover and tap potential talents, the sport being part of the 2018 World Youth Olympics in Argentina with a possibility of being calendared in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
Meanwhile, Delos Santos duplicated his victory in Palawan, bucking the tricky wind and edging Julius Non and Nacor for the men’s Twintip title while Juan rallied from fourth to repeat as Novice champion, thwarting Swiss Miguel Gubler, who nipped Toti Reformado for runner-up honors.
Luigi Abava finished fourth while Jack Alvarez and Tony Baysa placed fifth and sixth, respectively, in the event hosted by the LGU of Sta. Fe and Mayor Jose Esgana with Cabrinha, Greenyard, Solar Sports, Strong Media Solutions, My Life on Board, Bayan ng Sta Fe, Tourism Office, Marlin’s Beach Resort, Sky Dive Cebu, Hoyohoy Beah Villas, Sun Zapper, SUP Tours Philippines, Amihan Beach Cabanas and Monkey Co Coffee Roasters as backers.
Other winners were Bong Fernando (Masters), Sassan Moscoso (men’s Hangtime), Janoya (kids TwinTip) and Maebelle Gajisan (Novice women’s TwinTip).
Meanwhile, the tour heads to Boracay Island for the third leg on Feb. 18-20 before winding up in Cagbalete Island in Quezon on March 3 to 5.