De GKA komt met een reeks aanbevelingen/regels voor t komende jaar, onder andere zullen ze zelf een rider van het jaar uitroepen en zullen ze niet toestaan dat riders die meedoen met bepaalde events/tours uitgesloten worden van andere events.
The current state of affairs regarding professional kitesurfing has led the Global Kitesports
Association (GKA) to introduce key competition concepts for the 2016 Season.
General goal of GKA
One of the GKA’s declared goals is to develop professional kitesurfing. Together with all stake holders (athletes, sanctioning bodies, tour operators etc.) the GKA aims to bring the sport forward
The GKA members have a keen interest in professional competitions as they showcase the sport to a wide audience and create a platform for professional athletes. There’s no event without athletes. As one of the main contributors to professional sports all GKA members are aim for a positive
development in professional kiteboarding for athletes and all other stakeholders. Negative
developments for example could be the exclusion of athletes because of their participation in any
event or series of a different sanctioning body, delayed payments of price-money or lack of media
The GKA is not linked to any of the two existing tour bodies IKA or WKT. The GKA and its members
will generally support all events and will not hinder their athletes to participate on IKA events or WKT
Today it seems very likely that at least IKA and WKT will offer each its own tour. Therefore, the GKA
decided to start publishing its own GKA ranking based on the results from major events of both tours.
The GKA likes to reflect also results from events like King of the Air or Triple S in the new GKA
ranking. At the same time the GKA wants to create more attention for kitesurfing in Waves and new
developments in strapless Wave/Freestyle.
For the development of the sport and the recognition of professional kite surfing the GKA desires to
improve the spectator experience. A first step is to simplify the current of the various disciplines.
The GKA will run its own ranking in two disciplines. At the end of the contest-year the GKA will
crown the GKA-Riders of the Year in these two disciplines.
Freestyle / Big Air
Current Freestyle and Big Air Events count equally towards one GKA Rider of the Year award.
Wave and Wave/Freestyle
To improve the representation of Wave and Wave/Freestyle GKA will offer it’s other Rider of the Year
award in this new discipline.
As a guidance for our riders and for event organizers the GKA will position itself for the running year
Roles of the GKA within the current competition landscape
In the dispute between IKA and WKT the GKA keeps its neutral position. The GKA will support the
key-event organizers and ensure participation of the riders and the industry where appropriate.
GKA recognized events
GKA will recognize a limited amount of key events for the calendar year. The role of the recognition is to ensure that the GKA will support their riders to participate in the listed events.
The GKA recognized events will be promoted as GKA-Grand-Slam events. GKA requirements must be met.
Rider of the Year
Within the framework of an annual GKA Industry Awards ceremony the GKA will present the
GKA-Freestyle Rider of the Year and the GKA-Wave Rider of the Year (female and male).
GKA rider of the year will become who achieved the best results in the GKA recognized events.
Support for emerging events and broad participation
The GKA will actively campaign against any event organization or sanctioning body in case riders
being banned from participation. The GKA will stand in for the rights of the riders.
The GKA aims to act in the best interest of the sport and all it’s stakeholders. 2016 will be a transition
season for the professional sport and the GKA believes that its constructive solution will be for the
benefit of all.
En de reactie van de IKA:
The International Kiteboarding Association (IKA) welcomes the principles published in the statement of the GKA from 6 February 2016. IKA has been working hard with the GKA over the past few weeks to drive the competitive side of the sport forward.
The ideas outlined in yesterdays GKA press release ensure that the kite companies represented in the GKA will generally support all events and allow their riders to participate in whichever event they wish to compete in.
With this confirmation we are now looking forward to welcome all riders, from GKA member companies as well as from all other kite brands not represented in the GKA, to the first round of the 2016 IKA Kiteboarding World Championships to be held in El Gouna, Egypt, from 20 to 26 of March.
As there will be no discards for the 2016 season - a principle followed by all major world championship series like Formula 1, Ski World Cup etc - riders in contention for the official 2016 IKA Kiteboarding World Champion titles in all disciplines are advised to participate in all events.
Further rounds of the 2016 IKA World Championships are planned to be held in France, Morocco, Fuerteventura, Turkey, Germany, China and Brazil.