Olympic blow for kite boarders

21:21 12 November 2012


Exmouth's champions kite boarder Oliver Bridge in action


Exmouth’s champion kite surfers the Bridge family have been dealt a huge Olympic blow with the news that their sport will not now after all be contested at the 2016 Brazil Olympics.

Windsurfing will remain in the Olympic programme after the International Sailing Federation reversed a decision to replace it with kiteboarding.

Both men’s and women’s windsurfing will be retained after a vote at the governing body’s annual general meeting in Dun Laoghaire, Ireland.

The reversal comes after a surprise decision in May to drop windsurfing for kiteboarding at the 2016 Olympics.

The ISAF at the time described the move as a “fantastic addition” but windsurfing federations vowed to pressure sailing chiefs to reinstate their sport.

British windsurfer Nick Dempsey, who won silver at last summer’s London Olympics, condemned the decision as “bizarre” back in May.

Israel’s sailing chief Yehuda Maayan later revealed that, in voting for kiteboarding, delegates had probably been confused or did not understand the motion because of ambiguous language translations.

Among those, the Spanish Sailing Federation has since acknowledged that its representative voted for kiteboarding by mistake.

The Royal Yachting Association has been among those campaigning for windsurfing and its performance director, John Derbyshire, said: “This is what the membership of the RYA asked for. We have a very strong youth pathway and some 10,000 windsurfing members of the RYA, so on their behalf we are delighted with the decision. We obviously have great compassion towards the kiteboarding community, with whom we have been working very closely, and I am sure that they will continue to work very closely with both the RYA and ISAF families with a view to gaining inclusion for the discipline in future Olympic Games. We can now look forward to preparing for Rio 2016 with the clarity that this decision brings.”

For kite boarders though it is a big blow, Exmouth’s Steph Bridge says; “I am really gutted, as myself and Oliver (the eldest of the three Bridge boys at 15-years-of-age), clearly had a really great chance to represent GB for the men’s and women’s events at Rio 2016. Oliver will still have a huge chance when kiteboarding makes it back in 2020, but for me this will probably be four years too late. What I know is that each day I wake up and want to go kiteboarding. The passion is huge and will continue. Every athlete wants to win a gold medal but if this is too late for me, I hope I can help someone else to make this dream come true.”


Other Sport Stories

Yesterday, 21:45
2015 World Endurance Championship.

Round 2. 

Spa Francorchamps, Belgium. 

30th April - 2nd May 2015. 

Photo: Drew Gibson.

Harry Tincknell goes in search of his first sportscar championship title in Portugal on Sunday (October 18).

Read more
Yesterday, 12:26
Withycombe Under-10s action,Jack Macdonald-Brown runs at the gap

Withycombe Under-12s powered their way to a 60-5 success over Exeter Saracens.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:10
Somerset Rebels versus Edinburgh Monarchs. The Somerset duo of Brady Kurtz and Rasmus Jensen battle it out with Edinburgh's Robert Branford and Erik Riss. Picture: COLIN BURNETT

The ‘Cases’ Somerset Rebels hopes of an unprecedented fourth successive Premier League Championship Grand Final came to an end on Sunday afternoon when they were defeated by the Glasgow Tigers 91-89 on aggregate, the Rebels taking the tie into a last heat decider at the Peugeot Ashfield Stadium before they finally lost out to the Tigers, writes Ian Belcher.

Read more
Sunday, October 11, 2015
Axminster Town action at Budleigh Salterton Picture: ANDREW GRAHAM

Budleigh Salterton moved into the next round of the Throgmorton Devon Premier Cup with a 3-2 extra-time victory over Axminster Town.

Read more
Saturday, October 10, 2015
Action from Somerset Rebels versus Glasgow Tigers

A week ago the ‘Cases’ Somerset Rebels had pulled of a stunning victory when they produced a brave and gritty second leg performance to lift the Premier League Knock Out Cup at the home of the defending Champions, Edinburgh, writes Dave Thompson.

Read more
Saturday, October 10, 2015
N1 Tri Club members were in action in Barcelona

Ten members of the East Devon N1 Tri Club travelled to Spain to compete in The Ironman Barcelona Triathlon 2015, writes Dennis Elliot.

Read more
Friday, October 9, 2015
Exmouth V Bournmouth. Ref exsp 0224-40-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

Exmouth head to Brixham on Saturday (October 10) for their latest National League Three (SW) fixture.

Read more
Friday, October 9, 2015
Lester Willmington (chairman of Sidmouth Rugby Club), with Bill and Hilary Beaumont and John Barnard, (captain of Sidmouth Golf Club).

Sidmouth Golf Club was delighted to play host to Bill Beaumont, the Rugby Football Union (RFU) chairman and his wife Hilary last week.

Read more
Friday, October 9, 2015
Withy rugby action

‘Everyone loves a cup run’, as the old adage goes, and that never rang truer at Stafford Park on Saturday as the undefeated Withies took on Western Counties West basement boys Cullompton in the Devon Intermediate Cup, writes Dave Richards.

Read more
Friday, October 9, 2015
Exmouth Under-16 action vLlaunceston

A fixture gap for Exmouth Under-16s was filled last Sunday when Somerset side Taunton agreed to come and play a friendly match at the Imperial Ground.

Read more

Local Weather



max temp: 10°C

min temp: 6°C

Most Read Sport

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the Paper
Submit a Story
Subscriptions Order
Photo Orders
Family notices
Google Plus
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the Exmouth Journal e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Exmouth

Local business directory

Exmouth's trusted business finder

Find planning applications