Recap: Cable Wakeboard Europe & Africa Championships
Ariano Blanik and Julia Rick crowned as E&A Cable Wakeboard Champions 2017 at Sliders Cablepark El Gouna (Nov. 25 – Dec. 2 201&)
During the past week, Sliders cablepark in El Gouna / Egypt hosted the 19th Wakeboard & Wakeskate Europe and Africa Championships. For the first time in history, this event was held on African continent. While the first part was dedicated to the junior and senior competitors, it was time for the open categories to hit the water. And it couldn´t have been more exciting for the passionate audience, as the level of riding was just insane. Also Poseidon showed mercy, as it was less windy than the days before, making it easier for the rider to perform on the highest level of tricks.
The current European champion in Open Women, Julia Rick (GER) made a clear statement with a well-balanced and clean first lap. Her run consisted a Mobius, the Raley FS 360 in both directions, her signature Frontflip to blind with tail grab, different 540s over the kickers and some solid tricks on the rails. None of her opponents could quite catch up to, even not Sanne Meijer from the Netherlands, although she was riding awesome too. Sensationally 14-years old Marina Kacheeva (RUS) repeated her winning run from the Junior Ladies competition, performing Toeside Raley, Mobe and solid feature hits. That was enough for third position and her second medal during the championships.
The Open Men Wakeboard finals put on a show, that reflects the next-level progression the sport is undergoing. Almost every rider had a stand-up run. As expected, Ariano Blanik (GER) and Timo Kapl (AUT) made it really though for the judges to decide, who deserves the E&A title most. Timo impressed with a backside 900 on the kicker, followed by an unbelievable S-Mobe with grab and KGBs in both directions. But in the end it was Ariano Blanik’s run the judges voted for gold, including Raley Frontside 540, Pete Rose 540 and some unbelievable feature hits. The battle for 3rd place wasn’t less spectacular. Florian Weiherer from Germany, who already won the Junior Men category, bet the Netherland’s Sam de Haan by 0,8 points to gather the bronze medal.
In the Open Ladies Wakeskate division the young, amazingly talented Telma Cester (ESP) missed the title, as this time it was Zuzana Vrablova (SVK) showing more intensity on her flat-tricks, which put her on top spot of the podium. Elisa Constanzo (ITA) had a clean stand-up run too and made it on third position.
Among the Open Men Wakeskaters it was current E&A and World Champion Clément De Prémonville (FRA) earning the gold medal, performing an insanely intense and technical run including Frontside-Flip and Kickflip combined with great feature hits, always branded with his unique style. Julius Lang from Slovakia did the same two flip-tricks and a Shuvit over the last Kicker but couldn’t impress the judges as much as Clement, which made him ending up on second place. David Lang (AUT) finished on third place, showing constantly high level of riding throughout the whole competition.
Unfortunately, France’s Wakeboard Seated rider Jerome Elbrycht (FRA) suffered an injury during the official training and wasn’t able to compete in finals. Kevin Lindner (GER) and the current E&A and World Champion Emanuele Meme Pagnini from Italy made an awesome show. Meme successfully defended his title with a crazy run doing a transfer towards the rainbow box, spinning over the complete A-Frame of the funbox and blasting a 540 over the kicker. Kevin unluckily crashed on his Backroll over the kicker, but was more then happy with his silver medal.
The 19th E&A Cable Wakeboard Championships in El Gouna ended up with an insane after party as it belongs to. It was a great event on a super nice location with perfect hosting and organization, more than great hospitality and a super friendly cable staff.