Windy days Ahead

“Winter” has been settling in over the last few weeks, throwing some rough conditions to the scheduled nature sport events. I don’t want to paint a very bleak picture for spectators because we do get beautiful sunny days but the regular winds, rain showers and muddy trails really make up the challenge! That’s on land, now imagine on the water where windsurfers, kiteboarders and surfers are just getting their dose of fun nearly every day!

As for me I had the pleasure of shooting the Mauritius MTB Tour by Beachcomber from May 19th, unfolding over three days and four stages. Starting in the South West of the island and crossing over to the South East, my mission began on a hill under the rain, with strong gusts repeatedly flipping my umbrella inside-out while I stuggled to keep my camera dry! Fortunately the weather cleared just enough for me to shoot the riders as they passed my position and the rest consisted of a constant game of catching them in the national parks, hunting reserves, beaches and sugarcane fields. The race was based at the Shandrani hotel from then on, passing through more stunning landscapes and even including a short but really fun stage by night. Thanks to Beachcomber and we could all take our hats off for an exciting multi-day event.


A week later Heritage Resorts hosted their UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale) MTB event at the Domaine de Bel Ombre, a beautiful place that was developed with excellent integration to the existing natural environment. There the Domaine provided me and film maker Xavier Lachkar with an all-terrain buggie to intercept the riders on the course, but we couldn’t anticipate how fast the leaders would be! For having helped to mark the course a few days earlier I knew the area was vast, tracks were rough and winding, so the speed at which they climbed to the highest point was astonishing. A shorter course was also there to cater for people of all levels, which overall made it a cordial day, ending by the turquoise waters of the C Beach Club. Well done to heritage resorts, thank you for the opportunity and I look forward to being there next year, placed in advance along the climb!


On the media side a great news is that I’m teaming up with the magazine Cote Nord, where you will find more details about both races and some of my photos in the next edition! I’m also excited about upcoming watersport events including the Surfski week by Lux* Sports at the end of the month, and the Malibu Classic: a yearly windsurfing and kitesurfing rendez-vous not to miss!

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Meanwhile training has been going strong with Otelair on two ascents of the Pieter Both mountain, a few hikes and canyoning outings to keep up the rope skills and develop some projects, so I will surely have more news on that very soon.

Till later, keep well and peace out!

Xavier

All images copyright Xavier Koenig / Blastoff Creative

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