Press Release: All photos by Tristan Poyser
Stop one of the 2011 Relentless UK Pro Wakeboard Tour got underway in fine style on the 30th July at the cable wakeboarding’s home in the north, Sheffield Cable Waterski. As the starting point for the 2010 tour and Relentless’ most northerly wake base, Sheffield was the perfect setting for the launch of this much-anticipated 2011 series.
17 of the worlds best guys and 6 of the world’s best girls were in place for this open to all pro level contest. The idea behind the tour has always been to help propel British Wakeboarding in as progressive and an exciting a way as possible. This was in no doubt last year after some incredible action and the same became quickly apparent as soon as the riding kicked off in Sheffield.
Blazing sun, unbelievably calm waters, an ever growing crowd and a brand new transfer rail to sit opposite the long standing pier transfer box – making Sheffield the only park in the UK to have two such obstacles to play on – and away we went! Three heats of quail’s for the men saw the start of the contest, those not qualifying had to fight their way through the long way round in Last Chance Qualifiers. The women were battling for pole position moving into the final that would mean they’d be last off the dock and able to check out the competition adjusting their runs accordingly. LCQ’s for the men got broken down to Semi’s and some big names such as Will Manns felt the heat early on, not making it through to the grand finale. Newbie’s to the tour including youngsters Harry Eames and Alessio Cataldo alongside the likes of Jamie Smith and Kurt Graham rode strong and impressed many but still needing that bit more to keep up with the big boys.
The finals lined up with many that we expect to see there come the end of the day including first timers to the Pro Tour, wonder kid and World Champ, Daniel Grant and Singapore charger Alex Bennet-Leat. Before we could let them have at it in the Pro Men’s final the ladies had to do battle. Tor Young had been off the water and out of competition for longer than I’m sure she’d care to contemplate. It didn’t show and despite slick rail riding by Steph Caller and an almost stomped kicker 720 by Chloe Goudie it was Tor who took first blood on the tour with Steph and Chlo second and third respectively.
Riders on form in the men’s action apart form the afore mentioned were most definitely Lewis Cornwall and Connor Jones who always have the most relaxed of mindsets in competition seeming as though nothing can phase them. Less experience but no less talented Dean Warboys and Cain Hamilton were rustling feathers moving through the early rounds but just couldn’t pull it together in the final. Relentless’ own James Young was there in the thick of it with some of the most consistent riding of the day. This scored him a fourth behind Alex Bennet-Leat, leaving Connor Jones with a third that could have been improved upon if only he’d held the handle on the Con Air backside 313. This in turn left the real battle between Lewis Cornwall supporting the cause for tour sponsors O’Neill and the young ripper Dan Grant. Despite a big old KGB, backside 313, solid toeside backside 720, usual mobe and a generally extremely well put together run, Dan had that bit more in him to claim the first stop. What a final to watch though.
The action and hyped atmosphere soon relaxed as Pro Tour circus made the most of another Sheffield knees up.
For all info on the tour please join the official Relentless UK Pro Wakeboard Tour FB page and catch us at the next stop, West Midlands Waterski Centre on the 17th September.