Cato Olsen from Norway has been with Wainman Hawaii for some time now, acting as our ambassador on the Scandinavian part of the globe. Always addicted to the Rabbit Gang, shredding with his Magnum Surf in one of a kind style: Viking Style! We would like to extend a warm welcome to Cato and congratulate him on extending his cooperation with us joining our International Team.
His wave skills are proven and well recognized in the strapless kitesurfing scene and his footage from gnarly cold Norwegian shores is an instant thrill for all our fans. His favorite Rabbit is Gypsy, Smoke and the Boss. Favorite boards, the only possible answer is the Magnum 5'7.
To welcome Cato to the team and for our fans to get to know him better, we interviewed the man who started on 2 line kites and share his passion for kitesurfing.
Wainman Hawaii: Aloha Cato! You have recently extended your cooperation with Wainman Hawaii and joined the International Rabbit Gang. How do you feel about it?
Cato Olsen: It`s a big honor! Wainman Hawaii has a great team with lots of talent, and dedicated people. I`m very happy and excited to be a part of it. It`s all about the fun and sharing the stoke!
W H: You remember the times of two lines kites - What is most important for you when choosing a gear now?
C O: Yeah, I rode with 2 lines for about one year before the 4 lines with de-power came on the market. That was a huge change! It`s really funny to think about how the gear has changed in the last 15 years.
To me it`s very important that I have gear I can trust, and that the performance is 100 %! If you’re in the waves, it`s important that your kite lets you focus on the wave and not too much on the kite. Quick turning and fast response is important, and you want to “feel” the kite in the bar. The Rabbit kites nails it! Also the drifting (down the line) in the Rabbits is insane!
One other thing you really need is very fast water launch, and the rabbits seem to be afraid of the water. They pop back up in air almost without any action from the rider. And of course the kite needs to be able to take a beating. Absolutely love the Rabbits!
W H: You are a family man and married (congratulations on that from all of the team!). Tell us what is the meaning of kitesurfing for you?
C O: Big thanks to all! I`m a very happy and lucky guy :-)
That`s a hard one to answer with words! The moment I bought my first kite my life changed, and it has never been the same after. Kitesurfing became one of my biggest passions in life. It`s just an amazing feeling to be able to use the power of nature in the way kitesurfing does. This sport has given me so much. It`s fun, calming, freedom, challenging, happiness, life, energy, stoke and you just feel really alive.
For me it`s mind blowing every time I go out, and it`s highly addictive!
W H: You already have latest RG3.0 kites by Wainman Hawaii. Did you have a chance to test them already can you tell us a little bit about RG 3.0?
C O: Yeah, I have had a couple of session on them so far, and they are amazing as always! I just love the new control bar, it just feels perfect! It`s like you can feel the kite even more!
They are fast, responsive and you always know what they are doing. For me they act just the way I want, and they fit perfect in waves! They also seem very strong and solid, which is really important. I am really looking forward to charging the wave season in Norway with the new Rabbit kites - can`t wait to get out there!
W H: What are your plans for the upcoming winter? Your Norwegian wave shots are awesome - what are your favorite spots in Norway and why?
C O: Thank you! I love taking pictures, and will continue my search for the perfect moment caught on camera. Winter time is wave time on the west coast of Norway, so I hope to get some epic session during the next months. There is a coast line outside Stavanger, called Jæren. There you can find some of the best wave spots in Norway. I now only live about 10 minutes away from the beach, so it`s perfect!
W H: Maybe you will do us a pleasure and record some freezing cold video footage from you sessions. We think the fans would love to see it in motion?
C O: For sure, I plan to do some shooting during the big winter storms, so hopefully it will turn out nice.
W H: Snow kiting is very popular during the long Norwegian winters and you have great spots for that, do you sometimes play with your rabbits in snow?
C O: Yes, snow kiting is very big and popular in Norway. We have some of the best location in the world, with lots of snow and wind! My family has a cabin just below the famous Hardanger plateau, so I usually get some epic session up there during the winter. It`s really amazing to just ride straight up big mountains and just explore the landscape. The nature and view up there is just breath taking! And if somebody is wondering, yes the Rabbit kites also love the snow. The new one pump system on the Rabbits will be really great on snow.
W H: Let’s go to some warmer place now! One of your well known spots is Fuerteventura where our other ambassador Fadi Issa shreds. You seem to like it out there. Tell us about your trip last summer?
C O: Yeah, we really love it there, great atmosphere and people! Me and my family have been there a lot, and enjoy it every time. We actually lived there for about 6 months once too, so we know the place well. This year we did two trips to the Island, one in March and one in July, and as always the conditions where great. The north shore offers a lot of different spots, and that is something I really like. And if no wind, there is always decent surf.
Fadi is the man, always fun to hook up with him and catch some waves! He also does kite/surf lessons and offers accommodation, so hook up with him if you’re planning a trip. Really great guy! (www.ksfuerte.com)
W H: What are your objectives for 2015 as kitesurfer? Any big wave trips in mind?
C O: Just to have as much fun as possible, that’s what it`s all about. We will do a trip to Fuerte during the winter, just to get the cold out of the body for a little while ;)
Also in the planning of a bigger wave trip later next year, not quite decided where to yet, but somewhere epic.
W H: We all know you more from wave side, but in 2010 you have won Norwegian Freestyle Championships, do you sometimes think about competing again?
C O: Yeah that was a really fun event and competition! Back then I lived another place in Norway, where there was no waves, just flats. So the first 11 years of my kiting, it was all about freestyle. 2010 was my first year on Wainman Hawaii gear, and everything just worked perfect. I remember there was really strong wind, about 20 ms. The Gypsy nailed it!
The year after we moved to Stavanger, and since then it`s been all about the waves for me. Just love it, so much fun!
During summer time in Norway the waves are no good, so I do enjoy taking the twin tip for a ride now and then…just to see if I still can pull off a couple of mobes ;)
There has not been a freestyle championship since I won back in 2010, so it would be fun to try again sometime, but I probably will have to compete in the senior class ;) But hopefully we will get the wave championship back on its feet soon, that would be fun!
W H: Few words for the Rabbit Gang fans worldwide?
C O: Never stop to play, and remember it`s all about having fun! Ride hard, and follow your dreams!