Big Air Training Days

Prize of Porsche Challenge #1

Over New Year we ran our first ever Porsche Challenge with the motto “Jump into the New Year” and were amazed by all the cool video footage that got uploaded to the ACADEMY APP.

Finally, we decided to give the prize – The Big Air Training Days – to Simonas, a very talented, enthusiastic, young kitesurfer from Lithuania, who is just as passionate about kiteboarding as we are. May finally came and so Simonas traveled to the kite mecca Tarifa to enjoy his prize - a big training weekend with Duotone International rider Liam Whaley. Here’s what the guys were up to during the Big Air Training Days:

Hi Simonas, thanks for taking the time to do this interview with us. You recently got back from the Big Air Training Days in Tarifa. We are very curious to hear more about your time there, about the experience that you made and your main takeaways from the weekend, but let’s start at the beginning. How did you feel when you heard that you won the first Porsche Challenge? What did you do to celebrate?

At first, I couldn’t believe it! It probably took me about a week to realize that it was going to happen for real. I celebrated it by sharing the news with my best kiteboarding friends.


How did you prepare for the Big Air Training Days?

I got very motivated, started working out at home every day due to the fact that it was still too cold in Lithuania to go out on the water for a kiteboarding session.


You went to Tarifa a bit earlier to go kiting. What were your favorite spots around Tarifa? How much time did you spend on the water?

I really enjoyed the Los Lances spot because of the flat water and also because you can have really fun and chill sessions there. Of course, Balneario is my favorite! It’s something different! It has this magical wave, more a kicker that I have been dreaming of going at full power, edging hard on and flying high for a long time. Thank you Tarifa for providing such great conditions, I spent 6 out of 7 days on water including two sessions a day!


What was your highlight of the Big Air Training Days?

My highlight was when Liam took me to his secret spot in Tarifa. We had ideal conditions for a loop session on 9m kites.


On one of the days, you flew the EVO SLS 2022 and were absolutely stoked on it. Why is it your

new favorite kite?

The Evo SLS has been my favorite kite since it was released. For me it’s the most FUN kite I’ve ever used.


Can you tell us about your best kite moment in Tarifa?

I’d have to say all the sunset sessions at Balneario spot. I will never forget these moments.


Did Liam let you drive his Porsche? ;-)

I’m more into old school cars hehe. Actually, Liam is as good a driver as a kiteboarder, so I let him show me how powerful a Porsche can be. It was a pleasure sitting in the passenger seat.


On Sunday you and Liam went kiting at Balneario where a lot of pros were already practicing for the “Full Power Tarifa” event. How was sharing the spot with the pros?

Everything went really well. We left enough space for each other to jump and kept that circle motion. I was shocked at how high in the air pros perform all their rotations and kite loops.


What were some new experiences for you during the Big Air Training Days?

I learned how to crash and understood that crashing is the key to unlocking new big air tricks.


What was your best moment the weekend?

Shredding with Liam and being filmed by Julien. I think it’s every kiteboarder’s dream.


What will you focus on next in your kiting?

Jumping higher, looping higher, riding in style and of course, sending it! :-)


A big THANK YOU goes out to Simonas for his great attitude and eagerness to learn and push himself, to Liam for sharing his knowledge and beautiful home spot with our winner as well as to Julien Leleu for capturing the highlights of the weekend! Keep up the motivation and stoke, Simonas! We’re looking forward to see more of you!