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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

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Mauritian Allan Ricaud Wins The Mahé-Praslin Race In Kitesurfing

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About thirty Seychelles windsurfers and kitesurfers participated on Saturday in the 40th edition of the Mahe-Praslin crossing, which welcomed for the first time international participants.

The 44km crossing saw the participation of six surfers from the neighbouring islands of Reunion, a French overseas department, and Mauritius.

Mauritian Allan Ricaud won the kitesurfing event. A good performance of the Mauritian representatives in the Seychelles waters on Saturday. Allan Ricaud won the kitesurfing event with a performance of 1:22:39 (40 km) ahead of his teammate Jean Leopold (1:22:39). Marcus Gappy from New Zealand finished third (1:23:09).

This year, the surfers left Mahé at 10am from the Seychelles Yachting Association’s facility in Roche Caiman to arrive at Grand Anse Praslin.

With such races where surfers are sailing on large open water areas, safety is always essential and Alcindor said they will be assisted by a number of boats as well as a ZilAir helicopter.


“A new safety feature will be introduced this year: a GPS bracelet, which every surfer will wear and which will allow us to know their location at all times,” Alcindor said.

The SIM cards that will be used in the bracelets have been sponsored by local telecommunications company Airtel, which is one of the sponsors of the event, along with Cable and Wireless Seychelles and Hunt Deltel.

The event began in 1982 when a group of six windsurfers, Patrick Lablache, Gérard Lafortune, Evans Calva, Bernard Sanders, Jimmy Mein and Marc Magnan, decided to attempt the crossing.

Since then, the crossing has become a highlight of local surfing, and many surfers have taken up the challenge since. The fastest time to make the crossing was achieved in 2002 when ten-time winner Stephen Stravens reached Praslin in 57 minutes and 51.62 seconds.

Stravens was also present at the press conference and said he was delighted that his record still stands, but he hopes it will be broken soon.

“I really hope that this year my record can finally be broken, so that it will give me some motivation to come back next year and try to put my name back on top and break the new record, whatever it is,” said Stravens.

After the Mahe-Praslin event, all the surfers are expected to stay in Praslin, where they will compete in the four-day Airtel Slalom Cup.

“This will be the first ever international sailing event held entirely on Praslin. The event will be sponsored by Airtel, after which we will have the prize giving for the Mahe-Praslin race and the Slalom Cup,” Alcindor said.

The top six surfers in the crossing will be awarded at the ceremony.

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