Interview with German kitesurf pro Mario Rodwald
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From the 26th August to the 4th September the Kitesurf World Cup is going to take place on the island of Fehmarn. Steven of the KSWC Publishing Team had the chance to meet Mario Rodwald – one of the best German professional kiteboarders – and raised a couple of questions.
IBS TEAM: Hi Mario, our first and probably most important question. Will you participate at the upcoming Pringles Kitesurf World Cup?
Mario Rodwald: I will be there, but I won’t join the Freestyle competition.
IBS TEAM: Why not?
Mario Rodwald: After my knee injury, I am still not 100% back on track – and for a competition like that, this is definately needed. I still don’t feel like pushing towards my limits. My injury was too serious, that I could just ignore the pain I had and compete at the Kitesurf World Cup. Anyhow, I am not the person who joins a contest with less than 100% capability.
IBS TEAM: That is a pitty – especially from the german perspective. But however you are going to be on site during the world cup. What are your plans for these 10 days?
Mario Rodwald: I haven’t made too many plans so far. But I am looking forward to meet all my kitesurf collegues again. It’s always like a graduate class reunion and I haven’t seen some of the guys in a long time! On top of that, I am there to enjoy the sports and the tricks delivered by the experts. Furthermore, I might work together with the NDR to produce a short TV-Report.
IBS TEAM: How are your personal experiences with Fehmarn as a kitesurfing spot?
Mario Rodwald: The special thing about Fehmarn is the variety of different spots that you can choose from, depending on wind and weather conditions. Spots like the “green brink” for example contain of premium shallow water zones. Overall, Fehmarn belongs to one of my personal hotspots for kite surfing.
IBS TEAM: What do you expect of the world cup?
Mario Rodwald : I hope that the KSWC is going to be a great success just like in the past years. And of course, I hope for a huge audience coming to Fehmarn for the world cup. Eventually, you need to leave yourself open to surprises. But I am quite optimistic.
IBS TEAM: On the sports level, this event is surely going to be a highlight. Who is your personal favourite? For the mens as well as for the womens category ?
Mario Rodwald: I believe we are going to see a head-to-head race between Liam Whaley and Carlos Mario – both competing for the golden trophy. Followed by former world champions like Youri Zoon, Alex Pastor and Aaron Hadlow. If Karolina Winkowska is not joining the WC, my top favourite for the women is definately Bruna Kajiya.
IBS TEAM: How about german kitesurfers? For example Linus Erdmann.
Mario Rodwald: Linus is doing very well at the moment and I assume he has the potential to get high ranked. Currently, we are both part of the Budget Kitesurf Experience.
IBS TEAM: Kitesurf Experience?
Mario Rodwald: Jana Schader, Linus and me took a Budget rental car and drove to different surf spots all around Germany to go for a few kite sessions and to get well prepared for the season. During our tour I was able to check out Linus skills and gave him further advices and tipps. We had an amazing time, getting prepared for the KSWC together. Oh and by the way, Budget has a special offer for visitors during the world cup.
IBS TEAM: The Kiteboarding Riders United has been established in the beginning of the year, coming along with the world kiteboarding league of which the Pringles Kitesurf World Cup is now part of. What is your personal opinion to this development?
Mario Rodwald: I like the idea, that a few rider formed this community. This makes sure that watersport events clearly Focus on the sport action itself and less on advertisements to create financial advantages for sponsors, firms and private persons.
IBS TEAM: Another modification for the WC is the new discipline that had been added to our agenda. Besides Freestyle and Slalom, we have also enclosed Foil as a new discipline for this years event. Have you ever tried out riding with a foil?
Mario Rodwald: Yes, and I really enjoyed it. It is a completely new way of kite surfing. Riding a foil is more complex and more three dimensional than with normal kites. I promise, it is a lot of fun!
IBS TEAM: Sounds like we have a new expert for this discipline?
Mario Rodwald: *laugh*… well for those purposes there is still quite a lot of training and practise needed. At the moment I go foiling to relax and to get some distance from freestyling.
IBS TEAM: Florian Gruber is going to take part in it, Linus is also thinking about it. You would fit in just right.
Mario Rodwald: Let’s see what happens.
IBS TEAM: We are definetely going to remind you again. See you next week!
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