As any wakeboarder and anyone related to a wakeboarder will tell you, we are superstitious to the point that we won’t even mention the “W” word (wind) for fear of jinxing proceedings. But someone must’ve let it slip at some point because soon the breeze had developed into something of a gale.
Nevertheless, the Malibu Wakesetter sat in the water like it was built for the nastiest of “W’s” and the fun kicked off unhindered.
Friday practice ran smoothly and Saturday morning got going with the Novice division. The Wakeskaters followed and that turned out to be quite the spectacle yet again. One rider stood out a bit and perhaps it was because of her different riding style or conceivably it could have been that she was the only lady in the division! Deidre van Niekerk got bumped into LCQ’s with Stuart Gutridge and a few others but they were resolute to make it to fi nals and their determination paid off in the end.
The Ladies took the water on next and it was great to see Courtney Scholtz on the water again in her hometown. Melissa Colborne proved that she can hold her own in rough water and gale force “W’s”, and not only that, she made it look easy!
Straight up after Ladies, it was the Masters’ turn on the water and we had an entire local division that was pushing hard and which was made even tougher by the fact that they knew exactly what tricks their opponents were bagging for their runs. Nevertheless, they got on the water and laid down some clean inverted tricks on the lake which looked like the ocean on a bad day. They were followed by Junior Men, a division that’s starting to get interesting as the new blood are landing new tricks every weekend, so with every competition that comes around none of the riders on the dock really know what the others are going to bring to the table. This is why Qualifying is really nice for some as they get to see what the other riders have and what they’ve added to their range.
Open Men with Dylan Mitchell back on the water was truly spectacular. To see Dylan back in action was a reminder of how far some of us have to climb to get to his level. He showed the rest that they do not stand a chance over this weekend and will need to raise their game if they’re going to topple him off the top spot in future competitions.
After the gnarly weather we had on the Saturday, we were expecting the worst for Sunday fi nals and some more edging through what seemed like massive ocean swells. However, we were pleasantly surprised by what Sunday delivered. PE had saved the brilliant weather for the Finals, and when I say good weather I’m talking about phenomenal, scorching, sundrenched goodness. It was pure bliss.
To kick the day off, the Novice division produced a young man, Marc Andrews, who seems like he was born with a wakeboard strapped to his feet, so comfortable was he on the water. Floating beautiful wake-towake jumps with grabs mixed in, he wiped out the competition. Although, to be fair, Wesley Scheepers gave it a good go with quite a technical run but just didn’t have enough.