Last weekend, Quayside Wakeboard and Waterski, hosted the 2014 UK National Wakeboard Nationals. I, along with fellow Irishman David Coates made the trip to compete as guests against not only the best riders in the UK but also in Europe with a line up of names including Dan Nott, Sam Carne, Jorge Gill, Jack Hammersley, Edd Blundell and Jonty Green.
With changeable conditions in the qualifying rounds I went for a fairly safe run which didn’t go to plan when I fell on a skeezer and with a fall in heats with such high standard I thought I’d be lucky to make it though. I was just edged out by Jonty Green so I had to go the long way round through the LCQ.
The LCQ consisted of 5 riders with 3 going through to join those already qualified to the semi finals. DC, Jack and I took those 3 spots.
Unfortunately, DC and I were drawn in the same semi along with Jorge Gill and Dan Nott. With 3 riders going to the finals from 4 it was to be a hard fought heat. I went out first off the dock and made my pass stick this time, trying to put the pressure on the rest of the guys. DC was next up and after a sick first pass he then fell on a whirly 5. Getting up only to stick the whirly 5 straight away but broke his board in the process. With Jorge and Dan also having clean and technical stand up passes, they progressed to the finals along with myself.
I followed Jack Hammersley off the dock and watched as he stuck 2 great passes only falling on a toeside 720 last trick.
My run was going to plan until the end of my first pass when I over-rotated a 720 to my toe edge!! But I managed to compose myself and my second pass went without hitch and I landed a big heelside 540 off the double up too.
The guys that ran next all had variations of 720s in their runs, Dan had a toe 7, Jorge had a heel 7, Edd had a backside 7 and Sam had both toe and heel 7s back to back!! Along with Jorge’s skeezer 540, Dan’s whirly 540, KGBs and Dumdums it was definitely the highest standard UK Nationals yet!!
I was really stoked to come out in 5th place, just behind Dan in 4th, Edd in 3rd, Sam 2nd and Jorge taking the top spot!!
Congrats to all involved, competing and organising, it was a great weekend!!