It’s a sad fact that often the professionals overshadow the amateurs both in spectator appeal and media attention. But thankfully, when there’s a bright-enough shining star, the world turns its gaze beyond the norm. One such shining star is Dean’s Team/Yamaha WaveRunner Amateur racer Gary Shrigley. Late last month, Shrigley captured his first P1 AquaX Amateur career win this weekend!
Cody Tetreault also made the podium again for the second time this season in what is shaping up to be the most competitive P1 Amateur Series ever. Besting a field of 30 fellow Amateur racers for the second round of the AquaX USA Florida Series in St Cloud, FL, Shrigley’s 300 Class Yamaha FZS made quick work of the calm conditions on East Lake Tohopekaliga.
But it wasn’t Shrigley who was expected to win; Carlito Del Valle had already claimed two wins ahead of Cody Tetreault and Enrique Chia at Round One’s Daytona Beach race. Del Valle feared his 6-point was in danger as Chia grabbed the lead early in race one, who was followed by Shrigley and an enclosing Tetreault. In Moto 1, Chia had claimed the checkered but with Shrigley close behind.
Many expected more of the same for Moto 2, but as Shrigley retained pressure on a leading Chia throughout the 30-minute heat, Chia inadvertently tugged his lanyard free, letting Shrigley pass by to take home his very first AquaX race win. And where was Del Valle and Tetreault this whole time? Downed with mechanical issues, Tetreault managed to limp to a 12th place finish, but a snapped driveshaft sidelined Del Valle, permitting 2013’s 300 class champion Kevin Wassum to finish third.
“Took my first ever win in my jet ski racing career last weekend during the P1 Aqua X event in Kissimmee,” Shrigley announced. Sporting a Dean’s Team-tuned SVHO, Shrigley’s FZS looked slightly out of place among the new GP1800s and FX SVHOs. “I know that most people made the switch to the new Yamaha GP1800, but I’m pretty happy with my 2016 Yamaha FZS.” With a promising start to his 2017 season, Shrigley concluded, “I am thankful for all the people who have helped get me to this point in my career.”