Men’s Health on the Shores of the Sea of Azov

On June 7, Russia’s best kiteboarders began competing for the Russia’s Cup on the shores of the Sea of Azov, on the Pavlo-Ochakovsky sand bank in the aquatorium of the Free Wind surf club. Men’s Health magazine is a regular partner to the Russian Kiteboarding Association – and continues its participation with this event.

The Azov Kite Cup 2009 – as it is officially called – is the second stage in the Russia’s Cup of Kiteboarding in the freestyle and long distance categories. The Azov Kite Cup 2009 hosts both “pro” and “amateur” categories of freestyle. When the four-stage competition finishes at the end of the season, the final results and the new 2009 Russian champion will be announced.

The first stage was held in February during the Russian Waves event in Egypt, but the whims of nature made it impossible to declare a winner. That adds intrigue to this competition, because there is neither a “pro” nor an “amateur” leader in the Russia’s Cup thus far. The “owner” of the aquatorium, Alexander Ishchenko (Rostov-on-Don) and Yevgeny Novozheyev of Moscow, have a good chance at winning this round.

The Pavlovo-Ochakovsky sand bank is unique place and ideal for kiteboarding. It is possible to ride and hold a competition with the wind blowing in any direction . And when the wind blows from the east, it becomes a kiteboarder’s paradise. The bank ends in a narrow point, striped by ridges three meters wide and 300 meters long, that together with the shoreline form a safe lagoon.

The August issue of Men’s Health will include more in-depth information on the Azov Kite Cup 2009 following the competition’s conclusion on July 14.