Thrill-seek­ers ready for big-race chal­lenge

Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - Sport -

MORE than 100 keen kite­board­ers are set to take the chal­lenge in the Southern Hemi­sphere’s largest race from Rot­tnest Is­land to Leighton Beach next month.

The Red Bull Light­house to Leighton race will see com­peti­tors chase Euro­pean cham­pion Olly Bridge’s record of around 22 min­utes set last year.

Among the ea­ger com­peti­tors for this year’s race is South Perth res­i­dent Gianni Ab­bon­danza.

An en­thu­si­as­tic kite-boarder for eight years and with a ca­reer in sub­sea engi­neer­ing, Ab­bon­danza is never too far from the wa­ter.

“Kite-board­ing is a great sport to clear your head and get in touch with na­ture,” he said.

“Down­wind runs from City Beach to Scar­bor­ough are my favourite.

“We are pretty lucky here in Perth to have amaz­ing con­di­tions.”

While he raced in the com­pe­ti­tion in 2013, Ab­bon­danza said he was ex­cited to take on the chal­lenge this year.

“It’s an amaz­ing event and quite a spec­ta­cle when all the kites take off from Bickley Bay,” he said.

The race on De­cem­ber 5 will fin­ish at Leighton Beach where spec­ta­tors are wel­come to watch and enjoy freestyle kite demon­stra­tions, in­tro­duc­tory ses­sions and a beach vol­ley­ball com­pe­ti­tion.

Gianni Ab­bon­danza is look­ing for­ward to this year’s Light­house to Leighton race.

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