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Zach Goepel

Q. Name the college kiteboarding club you were a part of and tell us about your involvement?

  1.   University of California Santa Barbara (UCSB) Co-founder and President of Isla Vista Kite Club (IVKC). David Benaron, Chris Herbert, Kurt Miller and I started the club in 2007 as the 1st University Affiliated Kite Club on the West Coast.

Q. Where were your local spots?

  1.  UCSB – Depressions and Deveroux Point.  We were fortunate enough to have a kiting playground full of nuking winds and decent waves a stone’s throw from our college party homes.

Q. What school did you attend, the program you were enrolled in and your top achievements?

A. UCSB – Graduated with BA in Psychology and Environmental Science.  Some of my bigger achievements were setting up the club as well some of the local contests.  We had over 40 paying members after our 2nd year and had a good group of people with good vibes.  Threw a few sick contests as well as some unforgettable (or wait, I don’t remember much from them…) parties.

Q. What are you doing now?

  1.  Working, in something similar to the corporate world, and kiting / surfing all I can.  Travelling a lot for work as well as for fun.  Travelling is one of my passions and something that I’ve been fortunate enough to experience from a young age and I hope to continue to do thru my old years.  Mixing it up a bit on the water with some strapless hydro foiling and alaia riding.

Q. What were your best times in the CKA?

  1.   Definitely the movie events, contents, etc. where all the hoimes from within schools and across schools got together to have a good time.  A close second was teaching a select group of people over the years from their 1st trainer kite experience to doing powered loops and barrel riding in the surf.  It’s epic to be able to share the passion and adrenaline that kiting is with other like-minded people.  Lifelong friendships have been made in the process that have improved the person that I am and the life that I live.

Q. Where do you see the CKA going in the future?

  1.   I hope to see the organization and the sport more recognized and popular in the University setting.  The sport is run by old farts, largely due to the overwhelming cost to get started.  This was one of our initial reasons for founding the club and getting sponsors, university affiliation, etc…was to get younger kids in the sport to push it to the next level.  Industry-sanctioned competitions amongst “local” universities leading to coast-to-coast competitions leading to a university world circuit would be epic.  Hoping that a legit strapless, wave riding discipline lives on and stays true!