The 2015 P1 AquaX season got their third season underway on April 25th in Daytona Beach, Florida. With a record number of riders of 90 compared to seven riders in its inaugural season, this one was a season opener to go down in history. Riders came from as far as Great Britain, Canada, Indonesia, and Peru to do battle with the riders from the USA.
This year also included the addition of the Sport class to go along with the Ski class, which was introduced last year. The classes and format stayed the same as the previous two years for the runabouts; the 300, 250, and 200 classes running 30 minutes plus one lap to determine the winner and climb up the leader board to determine this year’s AquaX champs.
Saturday, the beach in front of the Plaza Resort and Spa was abuzz with movement of skis and the sounds of racing in the air. P1 AquaX is known for it’s racing in the surf and Daytona this day and Mother Nature didn’t disappoint. There was plenty of waves just the way many riders like it and it would prove to be a challenge, as Daytona is known to be a brutal venue for racing.
The races officially started with the 300 class. Last year’s 300 and world champion Eric Francis had a target on his back by many of the other racers looking to take his crown. With a rough and bumpy start, the race was on. Team Yamaha had the Aswar brothers Aero and Aqsa along with teammate Troy Snyder were looking to get the win for their team.
There was a lot of spills making a lot of the riders go for a swim, while several others suffered injuries, including plenty of twists and sprangs, one broken kneecap and even a hard knock on the head for Mike Klippenstien and Claude Clayton breaking his ankle.
Next came the 250 and 200 class racing together. Last year’s champion Eric Lagopoulos was looking to continue his winning ways as he had won his class in both the previous years at Daytona. He too also had a target on his back. David Gorie looked to dethrone the King of Daytona.
The Ski class, which was introduced last season, was going to be a battle by Johnny Smith, Broc Harris, Kirk Britto and Jeremy Schandelmayer who have all raced each other many times in closed course racing. They too felt right at home in the Daytona surf.
The Sport Spec class, which was introduced for the first time this year brought closed course racers Glen Jung, Ray Quintana, and Ken Waddle amongst others to see how they would fair racing Aqua X style. Due to time restraints and the broadcasting schedule for Fox Sports on Sunday, the organizers decided to run only the 300 class one more time before calling it a first day.
Sunday, the second and final day of racing had the racers returning to the beach after trying to recuperate their bodies from the pounding they took the day before. Their spirits were high and they were ready to get the show going. The day started off where it left off the day before with the ski class racing first and then was followed by the Sport Spec class. Glen Jung cruised and he made it look like there was no difference between closed course racing and AquaX, proving him as one of the best racers around.
The 300 class was ready to race in front of all the spectators on hand as well as many viewers who were on hand, thanks to Fox Sports. It was the first time that AquaX was being broadcast live to millions of viewers. Unfortunately, Mother Nature was not going to cooperate as the race had to be postponed due to incoming lightning. Finally after the severe weather passed we were given the all clear and racing resumed with an unbelievably fast Asqa Aswar lapping even 4th place Craig Warner for the win, closing out the 300 class for the weekend.
The 250 and 200 classes were up next. David Gorie was awarded the win as Brian Baldwin was disqualified after taking the checkered flag in the 250 class, thereby dethroning the reigning King of Daytona, Eric Lagopoulos. Travis Zielasko took first in the 200 class. Glen Jung dominated the Sport Spec class and showed that the class fits right into the P1 AquaX series of racing. Finally Johnny Smith closed out the weekend winning the Ski class.
The event was closed out with the award podiums where the winners of first second and third received their trophies. All the racers and spectators couldn’t have had a better race weekend. P1 AquaX once again proved that it is one of the premier racing events in the world.
For all of the results from this past weekend’s AquaX Series in Daytona Beach, click the hyperlinks for the 300 class, 250 class and 200 classes. The Ski class and Sport Spec class are also available by clicking the respective hyperlinks.