Interview with Marek Murphy Zach
Questa nuova notizia non è stata ancora tradotta ma lo sarà presto, Grazie per la vostra pazienza
After a killer snowkiting weekend at the SnowKiteMasters, Skyline Utah, my friend Monica and I were trying to keep the buzz alive and get a day in at Strawberry Reservoir. We were also on a mission to pick up two Czech competitors for a few days of kiting and then airport drop-off. I was excited to meet “Mad Murphy” as I had followed his moves on video and I wanted to know more about this specific anomaly, the quiet and mad, Marek ‘Murphy’ Zach.
Monica offers organic animal crackers to our bemused but disappointed Czech friends as we drive away from Strawberry Reservoir defeated after nuking conditions. The hippy crackers aren’t helping as the short haired and mostly quiet one speaks to the blond dreads in Czech which is then translated into English, mostly indicating their desire for burgers and booze. Martin and Murphy are down-to-earth kiting friends, no, kiting comrades. Although they come as a package deal when it comes to transport and accommodation, it is Marek ‘Murphy’ Zach that I am here to interview.
Ozone team rider, kite addict and extreme athlete, Murphy gets results. It all started with his love of skating. Murphy now has four screws in his knees due to thirteen years skating. However luck was with him even then as he was able to rehab on a wake-boarding cable. This introduced him to the idea of kiting and he quickly got a friend to take him to Poland to learn kitesurfing. He had ten minutes of ‘instruction’ and then two hours of fighting with the kite until he had to go home, exhausted. Three days later he mastered the kite.
Murphy is about as understated as Martin is in your face. However, both are lively men who enjoy life, a bottle of tequila and kiting to the max! While Martin uses his off-time to make money cleaning high-rise windows, Murphy teaches kiting in some very envious spots. Aside from the Czech area, Murphy has been a regular in El Gouna Egypt and at the Peninsula Hel in Poland. He alternates about every six months back and forth from Czech and Poland onto Egypt going home every year for Christmas. He surfs the Canary Islands and also frequents Hawaii, Brazil and Mauritius. He has a very tough life.
Murphy is a single child and has a dog named Ben that also surfs. Murphy’s girlfriend, Zuzi, works in the kitesurf office, but doesn’t kite herself…yet. Martin boasts that “now I am the girlfriend!” Murphy breaks out laughing revealing his understanding. I suss out the subterfuge and continue the interview directly with Murphy who does his best to respond. They both come from a town called Ostrava, the third biggest city in Czech. Three years ago Murphy switched to riding Ozone. He flies a 12 m Manta and 9 m Frenzy. On the water he uses the entire range of Ozone Sport+. He is very pleased with the kites and feels solid going big and ballsy with Ozone.
His style is expansive including flying, exploring, rails and photo sessions, especially those. Some of this favorite spots to kite include Mala Fatra in the Slovacia Mountains only two hours from Ostrava. “Just a quick weather check and off we go!” Martin is quick to protest that it is he who is the early riser, who susses the conditions and then picks up Murphy for the day. “We can count on it to work at least twice a week otherwise we usually go to a consistent local spots,” Murphy smiles, “…but we have many spots just as big as Skyline.”
Murphy’s impressions of the recent SKM event in Utah were, “Nice place, (we are) very happy from the friendly people here, a surprise for us, good organization, no stress, easy. But the race was difficult for us as we had just traveled over 30 hours and we were racing in the middle of our night. That first upwind downwinder was really hard to get through (Winduro). In fact that was the hardest race ever.” Strong words for a seasoned competitor.
Asked about the party “Perfect, was really good. Kite beer was the best idea of the event (see Ska Brewery Interview -coming soon), esp for the Czech people, we are drinking 6 liters a day!” When I asked about the second race,the Boarder Cross, Murphy was the victim of a three kite cross crash. Martin faced other challenges when he forgot to wax his board and explains that “on the way down the hill everyone was going down and I ask myself, why I don’t go down, it was my big mistake. I am happy to have made 8th place on my first comp in the US.” Murphy placed 3rd on an Ozone Manta. He has recently won gold repeatedly at the European Kite Comps. See his results below:
- Snow Kite Masters France; 3rd place race; 5th place freestyle
- US Open Snow Kite Masters Utah; 3rd place race
- Cortina Snowkite Contest Italy; 1st place best trick; 1st place race; 1st big air freestyle; 2nd freestyle
- Red Bull Golden Jump; 1st place
- Billabong Playground; 1st place
- Ford Kite Cup – 3rd Polish Cup eliminations ; 1st place wakeboard
- Snowkite Masters, World Cup, France; Snowkite master 2008
- Snowkite Masters, World Cup, Switzerland; 5th place freestyle; 3rd place bestline; 1st place best trick
- Kite Park, Czech Republic; 1st place freestyle; 1st place race
- Sea & Sky Festiwal, Międzyzdroje, Poland; 2nd place
- Coalition Loosers Contest, Chałupy, Poland; 1st place
- KITE TOUR- contestant of season 2007
- Polish Cup – Żywiec Kite Cup; 4th place
- World Cup – PKRA Brazil; 17th place
- Polish Cup; 1st place
- World Cup – Corona Extra Winter Tour; 5th place
- Winner of Coalition Cup; 1st place
- Siemens Cup; 2nd place wakeboard
- Warriors of the wind; 3rd place, slide park; 4th place, freestyle
- Polish Cup; 3rd place; 1st place, Best trick (Contest referee, Mark Shinn UK, world champion)
- Red Bull King of the Air – Maui Hawaii; winner of Czech eliminations of Red Bull King of the Air
- Polish Kiteboarding Cup, Hel; taken part in all renditions of the Polish Cup. Results: freestyle – 2nd place, speed – 1st place.
- Polish Cup Hel peninsula, Poland, Europa; 11th place
When I asked about any specific kitemares, he told a story about flying over an airport at Peninsula Hel, landing on the dirt and getting dragged! Then he smiled and looked back at me and told me a stranger kitemare. He was having a very solitary no wind Red Sea experience one day until he saw the fins. It took a while to correctly identify them as dolphins. Suddenly he was surrounded and stayed that way for a long time until shore came in sight and the dolphins left him. An amazing experience for most, his was clouded by fear of retribution due to his many fishing voyages where usually dolphins scare fish requiring some rather strict means of keeping them away…he thought they would recognize him and deliver paybacks!
By the time we arrived home full on burgers and with a full bottle of tequila I knew a little bit more about this amazing kiter and way too much about his pseudo ‘wife’, but the charms of this dynamic duo shone brightly and no matter how good or bad that day’s kiting, it was always time to celebrate!