IJSBA Is Asking Racers to Comment on 2nd Set of Kawasaki SX-R Sponsons


When launched at the public in late 2017, the new 2018 Kawasaki SX-R 1500 was polarizing to say the very least. Between that time and now, it’s safe to say that the SX-R 1500 has made its place within the world of professional jet ski racing, and to whit, requires some serious consideration when it comes to fitting the 4-stroke standup within the existing class structure and rule book.

For this very cause, IJSBA Director Scott Frazier the following press release:
Where did the time go? Kawasaki released the 1500cc based SX-R in 2017. Now in 2022, IJSBA is receiving a considerable amount of questions on whether there will be an additional sponson allowance for this unit.This bulletin begins formal public discussion on this topic.

Previously, IJSBA allowed a second set of sponsons to be added to a homologated Ski type watercraft when the particular hull reached the age of five years. The intention was that older Ski could be kept competitive with newer Ski that enjoyed a more modern hull. This provision was added to Ski classes, some of which are no longer offered in the mainstream (Limited) and no new units have been homologated where this provision remained (Lites).

The following language can be found in the Ski Lites section of IJSBA Rules: “Models homologated in quantities of 500 shall be allowed an additional set of sponsons for a total of four sponsons. The total sponson length shall be limited to 1,524 mm (60 in) in a single or two sponson configuration. The decision of the Technical Director and/or Race Director regarding modifications will be final. Any question regarding the legality of modifications should be directed to the IJSBA or IJSBA affiliate prior to use in competition.”

The provision above does not appear in the Ski Stock nor Ski Superstock. These competition categories were created exclusively for the Kawasaki SX-R watercraft and since the creation of these classes there have been no new homologations for watercraft in these categories. However, IJSBA notes that the 1500cc based SX-R is required to maintain an OEM hull when utilizing OEM dimensions in Ski GP categories.

For this reason, it may be appropriate to allow a second set of sponsons based on the five year age of the SX-R competing against more modern hulls. If this provision is extended to the SX-R, IJSBA believes it would best serve the community if the allowance was extended to the unit in all categories to provide for the uniformed use of the product throughout competition.

Please send all questions or comments regarding this discussion to info@ijsba.com. IJSBA will provide an update on this matter on February 15 announcing some sort of notice of direction.

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Kevin Shaw

Editor-in-Chief – kevin.shaw@shawgroupmedia.com Kevin Shaw is a decade-long powersports and automotive journalist whose love for things that go too fast has led him to launching The Watercraft Journal. Almost always found with stained hands and dirt under his fingernails, Kevin has an eye for the technical while keeping a eye out for beautiful photography and a great story.

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