Racers from all over the world converged on the historic site of Daytona Beach, Florida for the second round of the P1 Aqua X Tour. The first round was held in Tavares, Florida but it was strictly a stop for the Amateur class jet ski racers. This round in Daytona was going to include the Professional racers into the mix. Some of these professional racers had multiple world titles under their belts and it included the likes of Mike Klippenstein, Cyrille Lemoine, Chris Macclugage, Craig Warner and Dustin Farthing to name a few.
Saturday was the first day of racing and the forecast was perfect. The riders all descended onto the beach and the air had a lot of adrenaline swirling around. The day started of with the mandatory rider’s briefing where the racers got their instructions from head marshal Laitham Kellum. Then it was time to get the show on the road.
First up was the Junior Ski class; these are the youngest riders allowed to race. They included Haden Skellett, Taylor Skellett, Sammy Nehme and newcomer to surf racing, Deven Farthing. Deven was starting off where his father Dustin Farthing started racing in the exact same location twenty-three years ago.
The next race was the Spark and Sport GP class. This is one of the fan favorites. Johnnie Smith had spent the late night hours getting his ski ready and got it working just in time to make the trip to Daytona. The surf was constant during the day and it made for some exciting racing and it would have no mercy on the riders as some got to feel the water throughout the day. The Spark class had a name that has been rising up in the racing circuit through closed course: Preston Clark made his Aqua X debut and he showed that he could hang on with the best of them.
The Pro Sprint GP bought the big names such as Chris MacClugage, Dustin Motzouris, Jimmy Wilson and returning racer Broc Harris. The surf gave the class a challenging course and they were pure fun to watch as they tackled the course. The Daytona round of AquaX has always been a crowd favorite, and this year was no different. But what surprised many was the influx of top tier racers who (for many) came out of retirement to compete.
The Amateur Enduro started there second round of racing after the previous location of Tavares, Florida. As with previous years the 300 Class along with the 250 and 200 classes all raced together. Chris Saxon would take the top spot in the 300 class. Tommy Olswang would take the top position in the 250 class and Chris Saxon’s brother, Chad held down the top spot in the 200 class.
The Pro Enduro racers then took to the water and it was a huge crowd draw for this race as some of the best jet ski racers from all over the world looked to battle it out. This was there first race this season and you could feel the excitement in the air before the green flag dropped. The racers battled it out but due to an unforeseen stoppage, the race was called so close to the end. After calculations of positions, Chris Macclugage received the top spot for the race and showed why he has 19 world titles. This concluded the first day of racing.
Sunday, the second day of racing, proved to be another fantastic weather day with not a single cloud in the sky. The day started off with the Amateur Enduro race and was then followed by the Pro Enduro race. These two races were supposed to take place on Saturday but due to time restraints were made up on Sunday. Around midday the Junior racers took to the course and were followed by the Sport GP, Spark and Pro Sprint classes. Then the Amateur Enduro took to the course again and was immediately followed by the Pro Enduro racers. Finally the Juniors got one last race along with the Sport GP, Spark and Pro Sprint respectively.
The weekend was capped off with the podium presentation where the top three riders in each race were awarded trophies. In the Pro Enduro the top three riders were Chris MacClugage, Aero Aswar and Brian Baldwin. The Amateur Enduro saw Chris Saxon take home the top spot in the 300 class, Tommy Olswang in the 250 class and Chad Saxon took top honors in the 200 class.
In the Sport class Sam Nehme took home the win. In the Pro Sprint GP James Wilson had the top spot. The Spark Class saw Eric Gabryel grab top honors. The Juniors had Haden Skellett taking home the top spot. The weekend was filled with a lot of thrills and some of the greatest racing ever. As everyone was packing up they were already thinking ahead to the next rounds. Next stop is St. Cloud, Florida for the Amateur Enduro race on the 21st of May.