FONE KITES: INTERVIEW WITH LUCA MARCIS
4 chat on kitesurf and foiling
Hi Luca, let's start by making the presentations: do you want to talk a little about yourself and your role in F.one?
My role in f.one is that of the representative, or the contact person for all the shops and schools in Italy. Then in reality having been an athlete my role is halfway between the representative in front of the PC and the rider on the beach who is also the test day at the fairs and can best advise customers.
When did you approach the kite? Best successes?
I approached the kite back in 1999. At that time I was 17 but for a long time I was windsurfing and surfing at a good level.
The best successes are the ones that have made me enjoy more, or the various wave championships and then the race and why not even before the various kite missions made around Italy.
F-one is the brand of Raphael Salles, waterman and pioneer of kitesurfing. Do you want to briefly retrace the history of the brand for us, remembering which products have left their mark?
Yes exactly Raph is one who has made history in both windsurfing and kite. A great windsurfing champion who, when he started developing this new sport, was already ready with the company that remembers his sail number in ws.
The products that have left their mark, and still do so, are the Bandit and the Mitu, two musts in our sector. Two products that when you buy them you know you're never wrong!
What was the most successful product or which are you most proud of? and why?
The kite bandit is certainly the product that most of all has been so successful as to be the best-selling model in the world, in fact we have reached the twelfth edition and any bandit you buy 12 is still good!
Has there been at least one that just didn't convince you?
No, really, a product that didn't convince me hasn't been there yet.
How are the new F One sails and boards born? Where are they developed, tested and where is the production?
In F-one there is a great organization that involves tests and research and development, the
company is organized in different sectors (foil, twintip, surf, kite, sup etc.) followed by engineers.
As for kitesurf sails, the bulk of the work is done by Raph and Mika Fernandez, between France and Mauritius.
The boards are instead developed more by the various riders in the sector: Mitu and Camille develop the surf; Set, Liam and Paul focus on twintip.
The Diablo and Halo sails are developed by Robert and tested by Connor and Tituan.
In short, we have a really organized team that never stops and tests materials all year round.
What are the most interesting news that we will see in the water next season ??
Generally we are not a brand that tends to turn things around so we will continue to make good products that we have done so far and will try to make them even better for what is possible. Surely the focus at the moment is in the world of foil where we are well established, with many excellent products in the catalog.
One of the most awaited novelties is perhaps the new Halo. A kite foil suitable for all conditions from freeriding to snowkiting.
It seems that lightness is the new trend ... why is it so important that a wing is light?
Now with new technologies it is possible to have super light products in almost all areas, in kite it is especially important for light wind where weight obviously makes the difference.
And the hydrofoil: how do you see the future of this discipline?
Cgliari is my city, where Luna Rossa has decided to base itself for the next few years. There you can see many boats flying on the gulf on foils, catamarans, moths, windsurfers and of course kitesurfing.
I believe that within a few years the foil will be used like today a surfino is used, yet some find it hard to believe it but the kitefoil is one of the most performing boats ever at the moment and regardless of the performances at high levels, it allows anyone to navigate with winds well below those with which he sailed normally, so the chances of going on the water increase, just a simple freeride to have fun like our IC6.
F One also offers no-pump kites. Are kites only for racers or will we see them more and more often in the water?
The Foil kite is recovering a lot especially for the hydrofoil and for the snow kite.
We have the Diablo, a pure race kite, currently one of the top 3 kite races in the world, and in these days we have presented the new Halo, a freeride kite designed for pure fun and not for performance, ideal for hydrofoil and snowkite , and yes I think we will see more and more often of foil kites.
Let's talk about security. Despite the giant steps made since the dawn of kitesurfing to date, in recent months in Italy we have witnessed too many serious accidents. Do you think there is still something that producers can do to make this sport safer?
Well, honestly, I don't think it's a problem with unsafe materials, if by any means, even the safest, one wants to hurt us today, it would be possible, so I think maybe it would be more appropriate to act locally, even regulating some situations, and then surely improving the schools from which the kiters then come, in all cases we do not forget that the past years the accidents were far greater and the materials were actually much more dangerous, steps were taken regarding safety very important in the last 10 years .