Text by Lee Debuse
Photos by James McKeown
AOD – All Other Divisions Tour Stop 1 – LDB Wakeschool 30th May 2011
With the UK wakeboarding scene growing at a rapid pace, one way to push the up-and-coming riders is to make sure they have competitions that push them in the right direction. This is where the A.O.D. tour comes in to place; an amateur contest which provides a platform for the young riders to showcase their riding, giving them something to push themselves towards and aspire to be involved in.
This was the first competition that I had organized and let me tell you I really enjoyed it. Seeing some of the younger rider’s faces throughout the day really reminded me of when I started competing. With over 30 entries we had a lot of riders to get through, yet with plenty of help on hand the day ran smoothly and swiftly. With the youngest competitor being just 6 years old it really does show that out sport is growing.
The under 10’s ripped it up; Kieran Owens taking a well deserved 1st place with Josh Lyon in 2nd and Max Humphreys in 3rd. The girls battled it out all showing they had some real stylish grabs; Laura Christian taking the top spot with Katie Batchelor taking a very close second.
The boys aged 11-14 was by far the biggest and highest standard group. The riding was insanely good from all of the boys, and with entries from all over the county it was great to see them all pushing each other. It was so close between the top three but it was Harry Eames who took the top spot closely followed by Jeff Haddon and Tom De Cruz.
The Junior Women killed it! First place went to Megan Barker, with Charlotte Millward coming 2nd; both these girls are names to watch out for in the future. The Junior Men were the same, with first place going to Max Woodward, 2nd to Scott Arthur, and 3rd to Charlie Dye. It was great to see the cable rippers transferring their skills across to the boat and making podium.
In the Open divisions there was lots at stake, with some awesome prizes thrown in from Relentless Energy Drinks; tickets to Boardmasters and Nass festivals! In the Women’s category cable rider Steph Caller proved she could also rip it up on the boat and took 1st place, with local JBSki rider Rachel Simmonds also riding awesome and landing 2nd place. The Open Men didn’t fail to impress either, as Jack Hillier sealed 1st place with an unbelievably big raley, followed by Will Plummer in 2nd and Anthony Smith taking 3rd.
Overall it was an amazing day a big shout out must go to all the sponsors, Relentless Energy, Fox clothing, Oshea, JB Ski, New Era and LDBwakeschool. Keep your eyes peeled for updates on the next stop of the tour, which is taking place at Quayside Wakeboard & Ski on 28th May.