The terms kiteboarding and kitesurfing are interchangeable, and there are different styles of kiteboarding, including freestyle, freeride, downwinders, speed, course racing, wakestyle, jumping and wave-riding. In 2012, the number of kitesurfers has been estimated by the ISAF and IKA at 1.5 million persons worldwide (pending review). Kitesurfing Brazil has been a frontrunner in the growth of this explosive sport since the beginning.
The 2016 Summer Olympics hosted in Rio de Janiero, will for the first time include Kitesurfing as an event. In early May, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced the inclusion of kiteboarding course racing as an Olympic sport for both men and women! As of early 2012, The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has confirmed the final event, race boards, kites, and other equipment for the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition.
The best of Kitesurfing Brazil is in the Northeast, however there are excellent conditions for every type and style of kitesurfing, in hundreds of locations around the country.
Kitesurfing Speed records
French kitesurfer Sébastien Cattelan became the first sailor to break the 50 knots barrier by reaching 50.26 knots on 3 October 2008 at the Lüderitz Speed Challenge in Namibia. On 4 October, Alex Caizergues (also of France) broke this record with a 50.57 knots run. Similar speeds are reached by windsurfers in the same location by Anders Bringdal and Antoine Albeau, respectively 50.46 and 50.59 knots. These speeds are verified, but are still subject to ratification by the World Sailing Speed Record Council. Earlier in the event, on 19 September, American Rob Douglas reached 49.84 knots (92.30 km/h), becoming the first kitesurfer to establish an outright world record in speed sailing. Previously the record was held only by sailboats or windsurfers. Douglas also became the world’s third over-50 knots sailor, when on 8 September he made a 50.54 knots (93.60 km/h) run.
On the 14th of November 2009, Alex Caizergues completed another run of 50.98 knots in Namibia.
October 2010, Rob Douglas became the outright record holder for the short distance 500 meters with 55.65 knots. Sébastien Cattelan became the record holder of France and Europe with 55.49 and was the first rider to reach 55 knots.
Kitesurf Distance records and notable journeys
Francisco Lufinha is the distance record holder with a 537 km travel from Gaia (Portugal) to Algarve (Portugal) set on September 18, 2013.
Kirsty Jones set a distance record for a kiteboard when she travelled 225 km (140 mi), crossing solo from Lanzarote in the Canary Islands to Tarfaya, Morocco, in about nine hours on 13 May 2006