Page 7 - 2013 P-CAT_EN

TEAM RIDER
INTERVIEWWITH
PEDRO HENRIQUE
Q. Pedro you’re well known as a pro-surfer when did you start kiting?
I’ve not been kiting that long. I started 2 summers ago during some down time at
a surf competition in NE Brazil. I have a friend with a kiteschool and he invited me
and a couple of the other competitors over to try it out. I picked it up fast, once you
can fly the kite you can start using its power to drive the board- it seemed pretty
natural to me.
Q. How does it differ from surfing?
When you surf you have to take your power from the wave, there is only the driving
force of the wave and the bigger it is the faster you move. When you add a kite into
the equation it becomes more difficult; you have drive from the wave and also the
ability to use the kite. With a kite you can take power from a situation where you
might not have it usually. I always feel like I could do more with a kite, the riding
becomes more aggressive, more powerful. I still think we have a long way to go
until we have fully exploited the possibilities on a wave.
Q.You look different on a wave to a lot of the other kiters out there is that just
your style or is it your surfing experience?
I guess it’s a little bit of both. I’m a compact guy so I’ll always look different on a
wave. Probably the biggest difference is how I read a wave.There’s no substitute for
time on the water in learning how to read a wave, to find the best spot, to know how
to position yourself on the wave and on the board, being a pro-surfer has helped
define my style and now I bring that to my kiting.
Q. How are you finding the KSPTour?
I love it. It’s such an opportunity to be part of it when it’s still so fresh and new.
People will look back at these times in future years like they do now at 60’s surfing
films. We are setting the standard for years to come.
At the first event in Guincho the wind was so light sometimes I had to let my kite
just drift and hope it came back at the end of a maneuver that was very different to
the conditions I am used to in Rio where it is always constant left to right. It’s going
to be interesting as we tour the globe seeing how the riders perform in different
breaks that favour natural and goofy riders.
Q. Have we seen your best yet?
I don’t think so, not even 50% of what I’m capable of. I’m still a relative
newbie to surfing with a kite, some of the other competitors have 5-10
years more kiting experience than me, but I’m catching up fast.
Q.What are your plans for this season?
Naturally I want to get on the podium at one of the KSP events. I’ll have
to work hard to make that happen, but if I can do it on the ASP I can do
it here for sure. Hard work is the same whatever sport you take part in.
Ultimately I’d like to bring the sports together, that would be the real
prize, to see riders crossing over between both surfing and kite surfing-
that would be amazing.
At first my surfing sponsor didn’t see the value in being able to bridge
both sports, BEST however saw the potential straight away. I’m still train-
ing and competing in surf events, to keep my skills and reputation intact
while I work on conquering the KSP. So for now I’m more focused on
the kiting side, but I’m still keeping in the loop with the surfing as well.
Q. How does being a pro-surfer differ from being a pro-kiter?
It’s not so different. I think the competition in surfing is harder because
more people want to win; the sport is more developed and receives
more publicity so there are most people trying to be at the top. To be
good at either sport you have to be focused, you need the physical skills
to compete, strength, agility and stamina.You also need the mental skills
to deal with success and failure; you need fortitude and resolve to keep
on going. Then there’s all the time you spend living out of a suitcase,
being away from your family, it’s not an easy choice. You have to be
serious about it, you represent not just yourself but your sponsors also,
you have to act accordingly, there’s kids out there who look up to you,
you have to be worthy of that.
Q.Who are your favourite surfer and kiter?
With a kite it has to be Keahi de Aboitiz, he’s polished and professional.
In surfing then I’d chose Dane Reynolds, he’s a great all rounder and a
true athlete.
Q.What are you riding at the minute?
I’m riding the Cabo every day. It suits my style, it’s stable on slack lines
and punchy when you need the power. It can also take a beating which
is important when you travel all the time.
Q.What are you doing tomorrow?
I’m going surfing and kiting, do you want to come?