CURRENT GKA Kitesurf World Tour World Champion Airton Cozzolino-Lopes busted some of his signature airborne moves at Pelican Point, Nedlands a day after competing in the Lighthouse to Leighton kitesurfing race on Sunday.
The 25-year-old from the north African island of Cape Verde marvels kiters and non-kiters by getting a surfboard without straps for his feet up to 5m in the air, and then doing multiple tricks before landing at speed on the water.
“I like doing strapless airs because I was a surfer before and for me do it with straps was quite boring,” Cozzolino-Lopes said.
He was 15th overall in the 19.4km race from Rottnest Island to North Fremantle, with a time of 28m 58s.
Cozzolino-Lopes has been kiting since aged nine, and has seen the water sport progress from a outlying fringe activity to Olympic kite-powered hydrofoil racing.
However, despite his the fancy foot, kite and board work, the simplicity of a strong wind and good waves keeps his interest in the sport.
“When I see really good conditions it still gets me excited, like waves to 2m and 20-knot winds in a cross-offshore direction,” Cozzolino-Lopes said.
And where had he found such conditions during his only second visit to Perth?
“I liked City Beach when I was here last year, and had fun on the waves on the beach break,” he said.