The new look, newly invigorated Quays is emanating a great buzz about it for 2015. This is all due to Jack Hammersley, his better half, Faye, and a passionate collective of staff taking on the site this year and concurrently is why there is no better place to hold such a pivotal event on the UK wake calendar.
On to the event itself then; An allstar cast of 50+ riders across nine divisions, spanning two days of action with every rider getting to ride at least twice in the qualifying rounds and finals. Plenty had been down on the Friday to test out the large portion of 2015 X-Star wake provided by the good people at Mastercraft UK and with wake faces on come Saturday the game was afoot!
Masters 1 and 2 Men as well as Masters Women just gets more and more hotly contested year and year and will only continue to do so as our young sport matures. The youngsters like to go upside down as well as round and round more and more every year.The Junior Men’s final might as well be an Open Men’s final by the style, technicality and flow that was on display and the commentary duo of Nick Druce and Johnny Carne with a helping hand from Matt Crowhurst and Luca Kidd, could have been a soap opera in it’s own right. Lots of titles changed hands this year, which was probably the most notable and encouraging highlight. This simply means there is serious, healthy competition across multiple divisions. It also continues to give every rider an inspirational kick in the butt to keep on pushing.
It was the unmistakable style and intensity of Bryce Corrand that took the Junior Men’s title. In both the Open Men and Women the top spot decision came down to the wild card trick. This was a new addition to the Nationals finals format, replacing the Double Up. It consisted of one extra trick off the wake after the two passes had been completed. Charlotte Bryant had two awesome runs including a Tootsie Roll. One fall at the end of her second pass and the fall on her wild card left the door open, but only slightly, for Megan Barker who was off the dock last. A fall on her last trick, a skeezer, meant that she’d have to stick it or something equally technical to have a chance of retaining the title. The hattrick wasn’t to be and Charlotte Bryant is on top again as Open Ladies’s National Champ!
What only heightened the tension, besides the Wild Card trick, was the live scoring. Not pleasant for the judges, but seriously exciting for everyone else. It meant both crowd and riders waiting on the dock for their turn knew what was needed to make podium. So, a similar situation to the ladies ensued with the Men. Two clean passes from Dan but a fall on his Wild Card. This took the lead. Sam Carne fell at the end of his second pass, so it was all on the Wild Card but with pressure mounting the handle popped on a crowmobe 5. Slotting Sam into second after Dan. The 2014 Champ, Jorge Gill was left knowing exactly what to do but a fall right at the beginning of his second pass meant the only chance Jorge had of retaining his title lay with his Wild Card. We then see and witness an inaugural event in UK Boat contest history, the first 900 performed off the wake. What a time to pull this one out the bag from Jorge Gill. However, even with this big hitter, Dan’s run was still a tough one to beat and Jorge had to hand the crown back – all be it with a big old smile on his face after that 9.
Thanks to all the sponsors, the Quays crew, the pit crew of families, friends and so on. Bigger and better in 2016 for sure!!!
27 Jul 2015