As we now are heading into the cooler months, the QPWC held their final round of the Tropical Heat Tour for 2016 at Bells Beach, Redcliffe, AUS. The stakes were high and racers were battling down to the final points in order to come out on top. The second round presented racers with near-perfect conditions with low wind and fantastic sunshine and warm weather all morning. Jamie Eade, owner at Brisbane Kawasaki, was the official Race Director, giving the chance for points in the series up, to ensure racing in QLD keeps charging ahead. It was good to see our loyal race director Ross Moore attend the event as a spectator, always willing to lend our club a hand.
With well over 70 entrants in the two-part series, the excitement built between the fellow competitors, as well as onlookers! The QPWC attracted a noticeable increase in beginner riders to the tour, which excites us to think that jet ski racing is about to heat up again. The beginner classes filled up and were split into two, due to large numbers and to ensure safe racing. Thank you to the sponsors of the Tropical Heat tour: Liquid Industries, BRP, Brisbane Kawasaki and Talk Toyota, as well as the QPWC committee for holding a successful two-part series. Element Imagery was onboard to ensure riders were captured behind the lens for the series also.
The Open Runabout class is always a favorite. The high power and sheer noise tends to attract spectators to the track at Redcliffe from far and wide. Brett Douglas was unrivaled over the two-part series on his open Sea-Doo #71. Dan Fox came in second on the podium, with Brendan Boyd taking home third, also on a modified Sea-Doo #23.
The Pole Ski class had a fantastic line up and it was great to see so many on the start line giving it a shot. Jordi O’Keeffe was a clear stand out in round one taking home top spot, coming back to round two and taking home the podium first place. Thaine O’Keeffe, from Shoreline Yamaha came in a strong second, with Jason Barrett on their tails, but still taking home third place on the podium. Clyde Grant just missed out, but secured a fourth place. Congratulations to all the Pole Ski competitors. It was great to see an increase of interest in this class and we hope it continues to grow and be maintained within the club.
The Sports/Spark class had fantastic attendance at both rounds, with BRP generously donating $800 worth of vouchers for the series. The fast growing class is exciting to watch, and is a great class for attracting beginner racers to the sport. Joel Batt took home the goods on his Spark #28, showing a total domination over the two round series. Luke Hudson came in second and Brendan Mandzij followed, securing a third for the final podium.
The Beginner/Amateur Runabout classes were exciting to watch and held some fierce competition between the two rounds. The finals weekend saw Bailey Cunningham and Sebastian Birch head to head for final points to get that top spot on podium. Bailey #81 came out on top, showing some amazing endurance after also competing in the Sports/Spark motos throughout the day. Sebastian secured second, and third place became a tie for points between Anthony Batrouni and Brett Whittaker. Fortunately for Anthony, he took home the trophy after placing higher in lap score points than Brett.
The other Beginner/Amateur class showed similar heated competition with only a few points separating podium places. Paul Rubach took first place on his ever reliable Kawasaki 310R, closely followed by Sea-Doo rider Ryan Sponseller in second. With his own music cheering him home; Paul Bazely placed third on his Kawasaki 310LX blaring the on board stereo sound system as he rode.
The Vintage team racers had the weather on their side this time round. Normally they are faced with white caps and rain, making it rather difficult handling conditions on some of these well-loved older machines. There were some great close competitions between the crew with the smooth water conditions, being rare for Redcliffe.
The series consisted of two endurance rounds with an exciting Le Mans start. It seemed that Kawasaki skis dominated the podium once again, both rounds with Brett Douglas a clear stand out in each race meet on his #71 Kawasaki 310. Paul Rubach #26 was not too far behind, coming in second overall, followed by Jay Schull #330 keeping the competition exciting.
Thank you to everyone that attended the working bee for the QPWC prior to this series. We rely on volunteers to get racing underway in QLD and we thank everyone that lends a hand. A special thank you to Brett Douglas, Zac Humphries, Wayne Tauhore, Joanna Kristoffersen, Joel Batt, Jamie Eade, Tim O’Neill, David Marsh, Steve and the score tent helpers; Amanda Mitchell, Sandra, Taylor, and Sam; as well as everyone else who helps out on the day.
Congratulations to all our QPWC racers for the series. We have an exciting few months of PWC racing coming up! The QLD titles are coming! For many years, Queensland has produced some of the fastest PWC riders in the country. On May 8th QPWC presents the 2016 Queensland titles. Come and take a chance at putting your name alongside the legends of the sport. All skill levels catered for including beginners. May 8th, 2016 – Bells Beach, Redcliffe!
The Sunshine Coast Jet Sports Club is holding their annual Freeride event at Alexandra Headlands, attracting national and international competitors! The King of Freeride is being held on May 6th and 7th, targeted at beginner to pro level free riders on a range of stand-up and small run about jet skis. There is over $20,000 in cash and prizes to be won!
The AJSBA is also working towards an event, holding the Australian Endurance nationals in New South Wales on May 21st! An exciting month of May is in store for Jet ski racers and enthusiasts! All imagery provided by Element Imagery. Originals can be purchased HERE.