My personal guide to compete at the TRIPLE S
Triple S Invitation is one in a kind kiteboarding event,
This year it was my first event of the season because of my shoulder injury that I struggled with in the off season. Nevertheless I was fully recovered for the event and ready to compete. I've been competing for many years but I am always a bit nervous when competition begins. For me this event was mainly about getting into the final and perform as good as possible. It is important to have little goals like performing certain tricks or getting into the finals. Having such a strategy makes me concentrate on these tasks rather than the result. The result is dependant on judges and how they see your tricks. Very often we think we performed an amazing trick, but when we see our score we might get a little bit surprised. Judges see the trick from a distance, from a certain perspective and we never know what exactly they are seeing. In my sport everything is dependant on those numbers that very often are subjective.
During the elimination heats I am always more stressed out than in the final. Missing out on the final in such a big event, is literary like being last. Being excluded means you don't get credits, photos and extra prize money that always comes handy when travelling across the world for the event. I am always ready for such a scenario, as I always know there are always circumstances that might affect my placing. Changing wind, broken gear, bad day or other that always appear during the competition. My experience in professional competing and stress management come handy when everything is falling down. My life mantra to 'be happy' and do everything that makes me happy also encourages me during hard times.
As I write this I evoke my memories from the event when I was so happy to compete and be able to show my best tricks. My performance in the qualification was incredible, as I managed to land one of the hardest tricks in the women division and place myself on the second spot to qualify into the finals. Getting into the finals made me even more happy because I fulfilled my little goals I set up at the beginning of the event.
The finals happened literally 10min after qualifications because of the good wind. It is hard for the riders to relax and prepare for the next battle in such a short time. Kiteboarders are always ready for riding. One moment it’s windy and sunny the other there is little wind with rain and lightnings. Our competition can only run when conditions are suitable for the riders to compete. This said, we all are prepared for the action in all different kinds of conditions. In the morning we pump all our kites (3-4 kites), have spare gear, bring food and drinks to the beach and are ready all day long. We can usually predict when we are going to compete as there are multiple websites that predict wind strength and direction.
During the finals the wind started to shift and became more gusty as it got more cloudy. You can always change your gear in between heats which can help you to perform better. The stronger the wind, the smaller kite you need. However when winds turns off shore and gets very gusty, it is preferable to take bigger kite to go through the gaps.
The final finished in no time, which is always the matter at the competition. As we finished the battle, I wasn’t that happy about my performance as I was in the eliminations. Competition is about winning and loosing, which you always need to have in mind.
Waiting for the award ceremony was great because during the Triple S week there is a lot going on in the area. Not mentioning that all the best riders are in town and are hanging out together and riding the sliders park. But also there are live concerts happening every night. This year the line up was incredible with Kymani Marley, Mixmastermike and Methodman and Redmen to finish up the week.
Awesome event, awesome atmosphere, can’t wait for the next year edition !