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This past weekend was the Reno River Festival, and as you can tell by all the stories on the JK site it was a great time. We were stoaked with the high water and great events. Team JK did super well all across the board. The team got more podium spots than you can shake a stick at and, EJ won the Slalom race as well. Last year I managed a third place finish in the boatercross, which I was very happy with considering the competition; however, this year I wanted to do better and to have a blast doing it. The morning of the race the organizers told us that there would be an upstream gate as part of the course. I like the sounds of that. It was placed just below a small pour over that you needed to boof on your way into the gate. The potential to get bumped into the hole while you were fighting for the gate was high! This combination of the gate and pour over was a great equalizer. It allowed a boater that was trailing after the first sprint to get involved and affect the outcome of the race. My fist heat went poorly. As we came into the upstream gate I ended up boofing on top of a boater that was flipped in the eddy. If I had stuck that move on the upstream side of his boat I would have been set, but I did not accomplish that and I was way back in the pack. This forced me to have to work my way through the loser’s brackets. Both of those races went really well for my, but by the time I got to the semi’s I was starting to get tired. I was now 3 heats into it and the boaters who did well in their preliminary heats had only raced once. That is the price you pay for not performing out of the gate. The top two boaters in each semifinal heat get to advance to the finals. I was in a solid second place in my semi final heat, so I was on my way to finals. Just like the year before I was in finals with EJ and two other boaters. Now it was time to step it up. At this point everyone was getting good at timing the floating start, so no one got a really huge jump on the other boaters. As we sprinted across the pool I was wedged between EJ and Dave fusilli. We were all reaching for water anywhere we could find it, which was tough considering that all of our boats were touching. EJ had the lead as we dropped over the pour over, and then all hell broke loose. I managed to turn a bit sharper of a turn, just river left and upstream of EJ while Dave was hitting my stern. I managed to get through the gate and peel out back into the main flow before everyone else. At that point it was just a matter of staying ahead while I was getting chased down to the finish. At the end of the day I was super excited to get the win, and I know that having my Villain there to back me up was a huge help in the race. The bow stays nice and high when the going gets rough. The edge is forgiving, when you are sliding on other people’s boats that are upside down, and when you need to carve quickly you can engage it and carve like you are on rails. I even managed to get the cover of the sports section on the Reno news paper. Make sure you look under my boat in the first photo, and see if you can find another green villain. I also included a great photo from the womens race. It is a great photo of EM driving her bow up ontop of another boat. Never dsoubt that the ladies race will be rougher than the mens!
Mens Results Women’s Results
1.Colin Kemp                                        1.Amnada
2.David Fusilli                                      2.Emily Jackson
3.Michael Tavares                              3.Elaine Campbell
4.Eric Jackson                                      4.Devon Barker