Skip to main content Skip to footer

Kite Euros bronze for Bainbridge


Paris 2024 hopeful scores confidence-boosting result


Connor Bainbridge bounced back from a disappointing 2023 to win bronze at the 2024 Formula Kite European Championships.

Bainbridge, Britain's top kitefoil racer, came an uncharacteristic 12th at the World Championships last year, and was then fifth on home waters as Portsmouth hosted the 2023 Europeans.

After a solid block of winter training Bainbridge headed into the 2024 Euros with renewed vigor, and, while his attention is firmly on securing a spot at Paris 2024 at the Last Chance Regatta, Bainbridge admitted being disappointed at not coming home with a better colour medal.

"No matter how many times you tell yourself it’s a process regatta and the main goal is later in the year it still sucks to not finish where you want to," he said.

"I am super happy with my week of racing and just a little disappointed with my performance in finals, but overall it showed that my winter training has gone well and I’m ready for the 2024 season."

Bainbridge was fifth in the overall standings, but third European athlete. The top spot in the men's fleet went to Singaporean Max Maeder, while Axel Mazella was top European.

Lil Young in action in Mar Menor. © Robert Hadjuk

Lil Young in action in Mar Menor. © Robert Hadjuk

In the women's fleet three GB kiters finished in the top ten. Already selected by Team GB for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, Ellie Aldridge led the way with a fifth place of her own.

Lily Young came home sixth and Katie Dabson was ninth. Maddy Anderson finished just outside of the top 10 in 13th.

“I was super happy to make it into the semi-finals,” said Dabson. “My start wasn’t as good as it could have been and I wasn’t kiting as well as I could have done.

“But it was great to get into the semi-finals and get some experience doing those. You really can’t replicate that in training, the pressure and the other riders. That was one of the most valuable parts of it, using it for experience.

“We came in with some specific goals and trying to learn some stuff from other riders and it’s been super successful in that respect.”

137 kiters from 39 nations descended on the largest salt-water lagoon in Europe for the first major event of Olympic year in the boat class.

The British Sailing Team now turn their attention to the prestigious Princesa Sofia Regatta, running from 29 March to 6 April. Our kiters then face one of their biggest events of the year with the World Championships set for Hyeres from 11-19 May.

Full results from the Formula Kite European Championships can be found here.

About the author

Will Carson