GWA SuperFoil 2020

Duotone riders at the GWA SuperFoil Brasil

Paula Novotna

Hi Paula! Congratulations on your second place at the very first GWA Wing Foil event! We are thrilled to watch this brand-new sport grow and we are eager to continue to watch your progression with it on a professional level as you have been doing for years at the highest level with kiteboarding. Tell us a little bit about your background with wing foiling; when did you first start?

I started wing foiling with Jeremie Tronet in Union Island during lockdown just in April. I was on the stand up paddleboard at first learning in 15kts with a 4m wing, which  actually made it really easy to get started and I was having fun from the very beginning. I also really like that it was a great good full body workout!

Duotone Unit Paula Novotna

What do you see for the future of wing foiling?

I think this sport is going to continue to get bigger as it looks very attractive to a lot of different people.

 

Why did you want to do this event, the very first of its kind?

I really enjoy wing foiling and I was stoked to join this competition as one of the female riders, because I would love to inspire other women to try wing foiling – It’s not just a sport for the men!

Where you able to train as much as you’d like to for this?

I saw there was a wing foiling competition and I’ve been really into it for the past couple weeks, so I decided to join and was very happy to find out that we had enough women sign up to have our own division, so that we were able to compete alongside the men. I haven’t been training as much as I normally do for my other competitions, because I only got my gear for this trip to Brazil, but when I finally got my gear from Fanatic and Duotone, I started to ride more consistently and get comfortable on my wing. 

What is your setup?

Sky Wing 4’8” with 1500 HA & 4m Echo and 5m Unit.

Any advice for the ladies / other riders you’d like to inspire to give it a try for themselves?

This sport is accessible for anyone out there and if you are a woman, you shouldn’t be scared of it because it’s great exercise and is something that you will enjoy as much as you are enjoying kiteboarding!

Leysa Perotti

Hi Leysa, congrats on your huge win!! You are the first official GWA WingFoil champion! How does it feel?

Thanks!! I feel super happy to be part of this first international event! It was a great time to be sailing with all the best riders, I improved a lot this week… it was very inspiring and intense learning for me, a great experience! 

Introduce yourself for us, what is your background and how did you come to be a champion wingfoiler? 

I’m from Argentina, living half of the year in Brazil and half of the year in France; I’m a windsurfer waverider. 

Winging is a real passion for me, I made everything in my life to have free time to be able to sail as much as I can. I’m always winging with my husband Yann and he pushed me a lot to improve! My windsurfing background helped me as well.

Did the event go as you imagined?

I wasn’t thinking too much, I just wanted to have fun ... so to take the win was super good!

What has your training been like leading up to the event?

I started to wingfoil this year, going out when the conditions were not enough for windsurfing. I really like to be flying over the water in silence; it’s a great sport. It gives me a great feeling when I’m riding.

What do you expect for the future of this new and exciting sport?

I hope more girls will start to do it, it is easy to learn and super fun!

Duotone Foil Wing Leysa Perotti
Duotone Foil Wing Leysa Perotti

Fabian Muhmenthaler

Hello Fabian, congratulations on your result from the recent GWA Wing Foil Event!  Please introduce yourself for us and tell us how you got started in wing foiling?

Hello there, my name is Fabian Muhmenthaler Villaluenga (Fabi). I am from Tarifa, and since I was a kid, I have always done watersports. I have been surfing windsurfing and kiting for some years already. I started kiting at age 15 and trained freestyle for a couple of years, then switched to strapless and I have been training that discipline quite hard.

This year, a couple of weeks before our quarantine I tried wingfoiling with my good friend Jaime Herraiz. Since the first moment I was hooked. After our quarantine (May) I just wanted to wing and since then I have been training quite a lot wingfoiling and it is sooooo much fun. I love the feeling it gives me.

What was your overall impression from the event?

The event has been a great experience. I am so happy I could be there with some of my wingfoiling idols and I learned a lot from them. I am also very thankful to the event organizers for inviting me and for making this event possible with the difficult situation we are living in right now. The vibe between the riders was very friendly and we spent a couple of very nice days together.

Duotone Foil Wing Fabian Muhmenthaler
Duotone Foil Wing Fabian Muhmenthaler

Are you happy with your result?  Tell us about what went well for you…

I am not really happy with my result as I lost in round 2 and then went out of the event. But I have not so much experience competing, and the conditions were also very gusty. Anyway, I am happy because I learned a lot of things and I think that the more I compete, the better I will do in the future. I was training with the boys and they gave me some tips to do better at the contests.

This is a pretty major deal being the first event of its kind; what do you think the future of wing foiling events looks like?

I really think wing foiling is going to be a very big sport in the future with lots of people doing it. And I really see a huge potential of the sport looking at its competitive site, I think freestyle and wave contests are going to be very popular in the upcoming years and racing is going to be there also, maybe it takes a bit more time to have proper racing contests, but it will come.

What’s next for you in the world of wing foiling?

Right now, for me I want to train very hard to improve my riding for future contests. I want to focus on freestyle tricks and also on wave riding, but I really want to start doing downwinders. I’ve just done my first one here in Brazil and really discovered a new universe. The potential wing foiling has to do down winders is huge, and I think it is one of the purest ways to enjoy the ocean and surf endless waves.

What gear did you use in the competition?

I was competing on my Duotone UNIT 4m, my favorite wing. I have the Fanatic Sky Wing 4’8”, which works very good for me and the Fanatic High Aspect 1250 foil. The gear works very good. Looking forward to have carbon masts and fuselages in the future.

Anything else to add?

I am a student, so my main goal is to train and have fun in the water and use it as my way to escape the daily routine. I love to spend as much time as possible at the beach, as I think it is a very healthy hobby and it brings me a lot of good things to my life. I love to work with some very close friends at home that are very talented photographers and videographers, you can see more about what I do at my Instagram and YouTube channel.

Yann Rifflet

Hello Yann, congratulations on your result from the recent GWA Wing Foil Event!  Please introduce yourself for us and tell us how you got started in wing foiling?

Hi! I'm Yann Rifflet, French windsurfer on the Duotone team for a long time now! I used to compete a lot when I was younger, and even got the French windsurfing youth Title in 2004. For a few years now, I'm more focused on producing nice images, both for social networks and magazines, mainly in the waves.

What was your overall impression from the event?

I started wing foiling in July 2019 during a DUOTONE TEST in my home spot in France, St. Colomban. As I was already surf foiling, it came quite fast and in 5 minutes I was already flying...

When I heard about the event, I just arrived in Brazil, we are living with Leysa 6 months/year in France and 6 months in Brasil. I thought it would be a good opportunity to go there, to see the level of the best riders in the world, the equipment they used, etc... And finally, the event was really cool! I learned a lot, and it was super interesting to be there at the beginning of this new sport. Riders from different background were there, like surfers, kiters, windsurfers and the vibes were really cool with everybody!

Are you happy with your result?  Tell us about how the event went for you…

I'm happy with my result, because I didn't really know the level of the others, only viewing some clips on youtube, but in real life it's always different... Now I know I have to do a backflip, if I want to do better next time, and spend more time on the waves as well! The organization was really good, professional, and I think that next year, there will be some really interesting spots with nice waves and a lot more riders will come.

Duotone Foil Wing Yann Rifflet
Duotone Foil Wing Yann Rifflet

What do you think the future of wing foiling events looks like?

I think in the future we're going to be able to go in real wave spots like Maui, Cabo Verde or South Africa... And I also think that really soon hundreds of riders will participate! I hope that the racing part of the wing will not be too extreme like in windsurfing. It has to be accessible by everyone, I think we should use the same equipment for freestyle and racing.

What’s next for you in the world of wing foiling?

The next step for me is for sure the backflip!! I start to feel it, I'm just waiting on the perfect conditions now to throw my first ones.

I will also go winging more in the waves... I used to wing more in the lagoon just in front of my home in Brazil when the conditions were too light for windsurfing, but now I want to go winging more and more in the waves as well.

What gear did you use in the competition?

I compete with the 4m and 5m ECHO, the conditions were really gusty. For the board, I used the 5'0 Fanatic Sky Wing, mainly with the 1250 HA foil. Now I'm looking forward to trying the new UNIT that looks amazing, I just received the 4m.