Father, businessman, and athlete— With so many responsibilities, Beto still managed to be the first to cross 270km kiting on a longboard
“I want the waves of the ocean, the universe at the end of the afternoon.” A song by artist Natiruts [translated], but it could have been written by the kite-surfing fanatic Roberto Faria da Silva, known as Beto, expressing his love for the sea. This is a feeling that stretches across generations, after all, he is father and has custody of his three children, who are all divided between school, taking care of the house, and playing sports. His connection to the waters is so intense, that in order to not distance himself too much, he divides his time between surf and kitesurfing, the latter being his greatest passion. Amid so many responsibilities, Beto still managed to be the first to travel 270km kiting on a surfboard. The trip lasted six days, during which time he traveled between Taíba, in São Gonçalo do Amarante, to Praia do Preá. This happened through his participation in the project Surfin Sem Fim.
Kitesurfing is a sport practiced with a sail (or kite) floating over head. Beto takes the sport a bit further. He adapted a longboard, a type of board with bigger dimensions to venture on the coast. “Longboarding in kitesurfing is like putting together a board with a “handbrake”, being pulled by a kite, which is very fast.” One thing brought control to another, it was a perfect match to spend more time in the waves,” he says in an interview with Cnews.
The biggest difference, however, is for those with skill and experience. “Because it is a heavier board, it wears on the body a little,” he says. Despite the warning, he ensures that you only have to train to use the board. “When you take out a normal surfboard, it’s already tough. Surfboarding can be worse, it’s going to hurt more and it may be more dangerous, but it’s smoother if you look for a calmer water,” he explains.
Beto began kitesurfing in 2001. Years later, he married a surfer, with whom he learned to love the second sport. He separated from his partner, but the surf did not leave him. On how to divide his passions, the athlete explains: “When there is wind I use a kite, when there is no wind, I just surf” and completes: “I always had a fascination in mastering any kind of kite, surfboard, and wind conditions. But of course, with a lot of respect and safety.”
The kitesurfer says he is passionate about what he has done in the last 17 years, so much so that he has begun to work with what brings him the most pleasure. In Búzios, Rio de Janeiro, he lives and owns a store, kite school, and will soon open a lodge. “I live 100% of the sport. My whole life is focused on it,” he says.
Luke (16), Matthew (13) and John Gabriel (9) have already done their homework. Beto’s children live with their father, who has been taking care of them for the past six years. “It’s not easy, it’s a daily fight. I’ve dedicated my life to them,” he says. “The guys [kids] are athletes, and they help me at home. They are wonderful people in my life,” says the father, excited. “Everyone kitesurfs— everything I do, they do,” he adds, proud of his children.
Between taking care of the trio, the business, and the training, he still competes, although he does not like it that much. “I already competed in the standup category. Everything that I competed in, I earned a spot on the podium,” he explains. “I do not like to compete.. sometimes I have a crew that calls me to go play on our longboards, nothing too extreme,” he says.