GREAT WAKEBOARD PERFORMANCES FOLLOW OUTSTANDING WORLD CUP OPENING CEREMONY
IN LINY CHINA TODAY
Everything worked like clockwork here in Linyi today for both the great World Cup Opening Ceremony and the first stages of the Wakeboard Eliminations Rounds. Waterski Jump will feature tomorrow. The flawless organisation of the complex water based Opening Ceremony got us all off to a really great start. Present in the specially constructed World Cup Grandstand were Linyi’s Mayor, Mr Zhang Wufeng, the Secretary of the CPC Standing Committee of Linyi Municipality Mr Zhang Ahaojun, Mr Wang Jun VP of the Chinese Olympic Committee and Mr Huang Sheng, Vice Governor of Shandong Provincial People’s Government. IWWF President Kuno Ritshard made presentations of gratitude to our very generous hosts.
The Opening Ceremony started with our World Cup Riders and Jump Skiers bringing the flags of 22 Nations to the wonderful arena in the gleaming red and white MasterCraft World Cup competition boats. Then Zack Worden USA gave a great Jump demonstration. This was followed by Freestyle skiing and Jet Ski demonstrations, Wakeboard, Freestyle Jumps and a very impressive Pyramid performed perfectly by China’s Show Skiers.
In 24C sunshine and excellent water conditions, the Pro Women’s Wakeboard Semi Finals began. All were delighted to see China’s Duan Zhenkdun put in a great performance and take the first Finals place. Amber Wing AUS outperformed all to take the second Heat 1 Finals place. In Heat 2, China’s Chen LiLi was unlucky today and will have to wait for an LCQ opportunity tomorrow. However, Singapore’s Sasha Christian was back in form after a disappointing performance in Kuching Sarawak last weekend and she joined Raimi Merrit USA in the Finals.
The Men’s Quarter Finals had four Heats – with some surprises. Nikita Martyanov RUS got outperformed in the first Heat to allow Sam Carne GBR and young Daniel Powers USA through to the Semi Finals. In Heat 2, the very popular Padiwat Jaemjan THA got a rousing cheer as he took the first place in the next round ahead of Dan Nott GBR who took the second slot. In Heat 3, Marcelo Giardi BRZ was thrilled to outperform all but past World Champion Andrew Adkison USA. Both now advance to the next Round. Heat 4 had World Champion Harley Clifford USA included and so many saw this as a challenge for the second place ! That is exactly as it turned out. Ireland’s new World Cup Star, David O’Caoimh came very close but just got pipped by his pal, Massimilliano Piffaretti ITA. The LCQ battle tomorrow will be fun.