#kitesurfing – 2014 will see Jade O'Connor continue to campaign in the Formula Kiteboard class after the Dubliner represented Ireland last year at The Kiteboard Racing World Championships in China. She finished 12th overall, her best result to date.
"This is a big year for our class, in light of our exclusion from Rio 2016. The IKA and ISAF are in negotiation for the 2020 Olympics. To that end, kiting will be included in the new next month at the Delta Lloyd EUROSAF in the Netherlands, this will be an invitational event of only 20 sailors, so it's a big honour to be chosen, and have Ireland on the start line." O'Connor told Afloat.ie
Apart from ISAF's own events kiteboarding has a highly successful world tour that will see the Dubliner compete in Turkey, Poland, San Diego, Qatar, and finishing the year in Sydney Australia. "It's amazing to be part of the tour and compete at this level. The last month has been about loosening up and getting back into the groove, when racing with 30knots of board speed you have to rely more on muscle memory, and 'get your head out of the boat' so to speak. Now I'm dialling into new equipment and starting to look for improvements in board handling, chop management, upwind angle and speed. As one of the few amateurs at this level its difficult to compete at my best all season. I've picked the Worlds in August and Sydney in December to be my standout events, I'm really excited to get going, I can feel that coiled spring in my stomach starting to wind."