Newsletter issue 44 – Nov 2015
A message from the president
Well the season kicked off with a bit of a bang this year. We’re heading into one of the strongest El Nino periods on record which means a hot, dry summer with a pretty good chance of some solid sea breezes, the likes of which we probably haven’t seen in the last few years. So for those who’ve been in the game for 5 years or more, you might be thinking “oooh, we might be back to the good ol’ days of summer”. For newer kiters, you’ll likely get a good chance to dust off the smaller kites this year!
The downside to a hot, dry Summer, is that the beaches are likely to be packed with swimmers and general beach-goers. So obey the restrictions, always land and launch safely with help wherever possible and try and stay away from other beach users. The last thing we need to see is insurance premiums go up again because someone injures a swimmer! Boating rules actually apply, but rather than put yourself in a position where you need to do 4 knots within 50 metres (yes, that’s the rule!) of a swimmer, just steer well clear of them and downwind wherever practical. Common sense really does apply here.
The committee are pretty excited for summer and one of the biggest changes you’ll see this year is that SAKSA will be changing over to Kiteboarding South Australia. So I’m gonna get it out the way early and refer to it from here on in as KSA! The same people are involved, but this change begins to pave the way for KSA and KA (Kiteboarding Australia) to bring you better services, better value for you membership and of course, more events – yep, we heard you loud and clear in the membership survey… events YOU wanted!
With the start of the season, comes a whole host of great events organised by all of us here at KSA. We just had our Season Opener BBQ at Ozone Reserve, Henley Beach. That was a great success and we coupled it up with a “swap meet” to try and help you guys clear out a few older kites and help some newbies get their hands on some pre-loved goods. Hopefully that worked and we’ll try to give you guys more opportunities to do this in the future too.
From here, you’ll see a Season Opener BBQ up in Whyalla on the 21st November, followed by a safety demonstration and BBQ up at Largs Bay (just North of the Sailing Club) on the 22nd November. We’re trying something different and having a shorter format, hands-on demo for the safety afternoon this year. So you’ll get to see first hand how to do a water-packdown and self-rescue. Then we’ll smash snags and softies and talk smack ’til the sun goes down! As always, it’s an open format, so we encourage new-comers to ask questions and experienced kiters to share their knowledge.
Of course, the NKL is on it’s way, so if you haven’t signed up, get amongst it and throw your hat in the ring. It’s worth remembering, this isn’t so much about competing against others, but in fact, about competing against yourself. You’ll get a National Ranking this year that you’ll be able to strive to beat next year. It’s a great opportunity to ride some premier flat water or waves, down South, and hang with your mates as well as with former PKRA World Freestyle Champion, Andy Yates. Having spent a lot of time with Andy over the past year, I can honestly say, you’ll come away from the experience wanting to kite more. When someone as humble and down to Earth as Andy shows how much he still loves what he does, 10 years on, it really gives you a new lease on your favourite sport.
Finally, our Winter was marred by the tragic loss of a great man, Lindsay Lock. We don’t ever want to see this happen again but we want to pay tribute to the legend by recognising how dedicated to his kiting, stand up paddle and all out-door pursuits he was. You’ll see a lot of his gear still on the water as Matty, his nephew makes sure it gets put to good use, like Lindsay would have wanted. Of course our thoughts are with Lindsay’s family, friends and the two local lads who went to his rescue, Sam Langford and Tony Mitrovic – we’re always here for all of you.
So with that in mind, stay safe this Summer. Look out for each other, help each other out whenever you can and don’t wait to be asked. Sometimes people don’t have the confidence to ask for a land or a launch, so be beach-aware and ask the question. You might just save an injury, or worse. It’s this helpful nature that continually earns SA praise from interstate and overseas kiteboarders when they can’t believe how helpful and friendly everyone is on the beach. Let’s keep that up!
The KSA committee is here for all of you kite crew. So if you see us around, say g’day and enjoy a session with us!
Have a great silly season and see you all on the water!
KSA Season Opener BBQ/Swap Meet, Whyalla Foreshore: Saturday 21st November at 2pm
KSA BBQ and Safety Demonstration, Largs Bay (Carpark North of Largs Bay Sailing Club): Sunday 22nd BBQ from 3pm, Safety Demonstration from 4pm.
National Kiteboarding League (NKL), Goolwa: 3rd to 6th December 2015
Unofficial KSA Xmas Drinks, Grange Sailing Club: Sunday Session 20th December 15
Wave Downwinder and BBQ, Goolwa: Weekend of 16th or 17th January 16
KSA Freestyle State Titles, Venue TBA: Weekend of 30th and 31st January 16
Charity Downwinder, Brighton: Weekend of the 27th or 28th February 16
Robe Easter Classic: 25th to 28th March 16
Keep an eye out for more details of these and other impromptu events over the coming months on the SAKSA website (www.saksa.com.au) and the SAKSA Facebook page.