On Saturday 3rd September Cardiff International White Water hosted the Welsh Open Flowboarding Championship. With Cardiff’s FlowRider® being one of the best venues in the UK, competitors traveled from across the land to compete. Local riders of all ages also showed up to defend their home wave. With a turnout of 35 competitors, a total of 9 divisions were formed. Participants showcased their flowboarding skills to not only friends, family, spectators and judges but also Cardiff City Council Officials who were in attendance.
We setup our first “Pop-up” trade stand in the flow room, showcasing our products along with showing our continual support for the sport. We also took on a new ‘Tafia’ ambassador, investing in young Iwan Lewis, from the Vale of Glamorgan. At the age of 15, Iwan is one of the most technical and consistent riders from the CIWW. We will soon have a feature introducing you to this talented young man.
Along with Iwan, we also had the local legend Mike Norman entering the competition. Mike really is pushing the level of bodyboarding here in Wales, both on the FlowRider® and in the sea. It’s great to see Mike giving guidance and support to other riders including Iwan, helping the standard of riding progress. You never know, we may see Iwan taking his talents from the FlowRider® into the ocean. With both the boys getting great results at the recent UK Championship’s in Kernow, the odd’s were looking pretty good for medals at their home wave.
As in the UK Champs’ the riders were scored on their style, variety of tricks, the difficulty of their manoeuvres and the use of the whole wave. Also losing points if wiping out, a harsh blow to your tally no matter how well you’re riding. The bottom line is fluidity, consistency, technicality and style. It’s a difficult one to judge, as tricks performed on the FlowRider® aren’t necessarily derived from the Ocean. A big manoeuvre may not be as pleasing to the eye, as a smaller execution but with a style from the sea, in the eyes of a real surfer or bodyboarder. But then it is a different sport…. kind of. Guess what we’re saying is, we wouldn’t like to judge it, but in fairness the judges there on the day done a great job!
We’re not going to go into detail about the heats, but the standard of riding was very good. The injection of the traveling riders pushing the standards even more. Event organisers created another quality event, with a noticeable effort and contribution from Simon Crew. Simon absolutely froths over the sport, travelling across Europe to ride the various artificial waves. He deserves credit for his running round sorting out sponsors, organising medals and other prizes, generally making sure the event went smooth.
After a smooth day of operations, City Council was impressed with event and Cardiff International White Waters FlowRider is already looking forward to their next competition. They have already sent in their official request to host an event (or two!) during the 2017 European FLOW Tour.
If you’re yet to experience riding the FlowRider®, its certainly worth a go! If there’s anything you’d like to know head over to CIWW Flowriders Facebook page. They’re a nice bunch of guys and will out you out! ;)
Official Event Results:
1 Iwan Lewis 2 Hannah Brown 3 Jenny Hunt
1 Davie Forsake 2 Blaze L’Enfant 3 Iwan Lewis
OPEN Am Bodyboard
1 Steve McDonald 2 Olly Bealin 3 Mathew Brown
OPEN Am Flowboard
1 Blaze L’Enfant 2 Tom Abelovszki 3 Krisztina Balogh
1 Michael Norman 2 Nathan Brown 3 Steve McDonald
1 Phillip Richards 2 Grippa Brown 3 Simon Crew
1 Millie Clark 2 Jenny Hunt 3 Katie Simmons
1 Sam Powel 2 Michael Norman 3 Davie Forsdike
1 Sam Curl 2 Chris Forsake 3 Phillip Richards