FLYBOARD NORTH AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIP VIDEO
H2RO Magazine would like to thank everyone involved in bringing competitive Flyboarding to North America for the first time in our sports short history. The Championship was hosted by the Redpath Waterfront Festival and their staff were first class all the way. The Pro Flyboarders competing put on an incredible show and behind-the-scenes the Flyboard Family stepped up huge to tackle all of the challenges that always occur when you’re breaking new ground. Biggest thanks goes out to Daniel Kaufman of Flyboard Canada for investing in every way possible to bring this event to life and give us all a chance to do what we love in front of record crowds. There was even time for a little flag wavin’ and booty shakin’.
The difference on the water between the 2013 Flyboard World Cup in Doha, Qatar and the Flyboard North American Championship in Toronto, Ontario CANADA was significant. We saw top pros like Damone Rippy, Caleb Gavic, Aaron Gould, Cooper Riggs and Jordan Wayment take their games up multiple notches but also were introduced to incredible new talents like Scotty Knemeyer, Callon Burns and Jason Gauthier.
As we think about how far the flying has progressed the last seven months it’s fun to dream about where it will be by the time we take to the water for the 2014 Flyboard World Cup. At the time of this article it sounds like the hope is to garner maximum sponsorship and media support by holding it somewhere in the southern United States likely in November again. Costa Rica seemed to be an option for a short time but last we heard the idea was to bring it to the US sooner than later. No matter where it is held H2RO Magazine will be front and center excited to bring you all of the action and as we were cutting our Flyboard North American Championship Video together we were inspired by the many glimpses into the future we witnessed and wanted to share our hopes for a few of the trick progressions we expect to see at the next competition.
1) TRIPLE BACKFLIP
The obvious progression of Flyboarding’s signature trick the backflip is the Triple. The mechanics are in place with guys like Damone Rippy, Scotty Knemeyer and Jason Gauthier to begin landing doubles and then shortening any pause into a third flip to the point where all three occur seamlessly. Flyboard North American Champion Damone Rippy will likely be the first member of the Triple club due to the fact he has the tightest spin and by increasing the height of his first flip would have the time to get around again. Apparently he has come very close to flying out of it but is running out of hose on the landing. Who’s going to be first to call their shot and throw three fingers in the air?
2) 720 DOUBLE BACKFLIP
This potential hose destroying, ski flipping combo was landed by Ben Merrell at the end of his Round of 16 run in Toronto but his double backflip had a pause in it which is the only aspect he needs to address in order to have the sickest combo trick going. We expect a number of guys will begin consistently comboing into their doubles in the near future. Check it out at the end of Ben’s video here.
3) FRONT FLIP
Rush Bragg sent the rumor mill into overdrive as he floated a successful front flip claim around the hotel prior to the competition. It seemed to come with some credible back story of actually attempting the flip with an aggressive backwards flight prior to initiating the forward roll. I guess this backwards momentum has some potential for allowing the pilot to get the jet pressure going in a helpful direction but when speaking with Cooper Riggs about the front flip his thoughts were that really the only way to pull if off is to fly up as high as possible, throw yourself forward while killing the power and then reengaging the throttle to provide the thrust needed to bend that hose and send the pilot back into a wide loop hopefully without an incredibly hard back flop from 40+ feet. This potential trick is not for the timid.
4) The KNEMEYER FLIP: and other ‘Sidewinder variations’
Now that I believe the ‘sidewinder’ or ‘ misty-flip’ or ‘Bonzai’ whatever your calling the off axis backflip has been embraced as a legitimate variation and not a miss-executed backflip we should begin to see a lot of cool combos using this flip. The ‘Knemeyer Flip’ (yeah we called it the Scotty Flip in the video… it’s evolved) was the coolest new trick to come out of Toronto and involved a kick spin to backflip combination. The degrees at which you can be off axis vary allow for some pretty interesting angles going in to or out of the flip. Callon Burns owned the ‘sidewinder’ in Toronto and see if you can spot his ‘one and a half’ during our Flyboard North American Championship video. This trick is a sidewinder backflip into another half rotation turning into a dolphin dive. All in one seamless motion and done at high speed.
5) COMBOS, COMBOS, COMBOS
The 2014 Flyboard World Cup will be all about combos and putting longer sessions of tricks together. We started to see this with the dolphin sequences which in Qatar were either one or two dives together or if three were thrown they were simply straight forward dives with no variations. That progressed in Toronto where dive, to 36o dive to 720 dive flowed from Caleb Gavic in multiple runs. See the beginning of Ben Merrell’s Round of 16 run above where he executes a five dive opening sequence. I expect we’ll see some dolphin variations that include spinning as the pilot is diving and not just spins pre-dive. I’m sure Flyboarders around the world will be scanning our list of Flyboard Trick Names and looking at the cool combinations they can begin creating. 360 spin into one and a half… anyone, anyone…?
Be sure to continue to share your trick names and descriptions with us in the comments here or on our Facebook Page so we can continue to build out that list and hopefully make it a resource that accurately reflects the language and skills of our Flyboard Community.
Photo courtesy of Francois Rigaud Photography
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