May 25, 2017 / 3:49 PM / 6 months ago

Kitesurfers descend on Mediterranean for Defi Kite race

REUTERS - More than 250 kiteboarders raced their colourful spectrum of sails over the Mediterranean at speeds of up to 30 km per hour in a bid to land the prestigious Defi Kite title this week.

In a thrilling finale in Gruissan, on the French coast, Nicolas Parlier of France edged compatriot Alex Mazella to win the title in the fifth and final race on Tuesday when the latter crashed as he attempted to overtake.

”It was hard, it was very physical, Parlier said after his third Defi Kite title. “During the last kilometre we were really neck and neck with just a few metres between us.”

Elsa Bories of France led throughout to take the women’s title ahead of compatriot Ariane Imbert.

More than 1,000 windsurfers, including legend Bjorn Dunkerbeck of Spain, will take part in the Defi Wind competition, which runs for four days from Thursday.

Reporting by Reuters TV; writing by Patrick Johnston; editing by Mark Heinrich

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