With light winds at the PWA event here in Podersdorf today the event gods were kind to the organiser as we head into the EFPT Tow-In qualifying rounds. Glassy waters and warm temperatures attracted a massive crowd to the event site and as the beverages began to flow so too did the first ten riders in this opening round of tow-in.
With three qualifying rounds throughout today and tomorrow the first ten competitors took to the water for a 45 minute training session before the show began. With a huge amount of funnels being thrown down, it looked like it could be a bit of a double funnel fest in the actual competition. Nevertheless, everyone was pleasantly surprised as people upped their game for their two runs, the best of which was to count.
As an assortment of moves were thrown out, it was Kiri Thode who lead after the first round with an air funnel into burner, others who were sitting high up included Max Matissek and Rick Jendrusch. Jendrusch managed to hold onto his place in the final with his first run, a triple funnel. It was to be Jamie Howard who stopped the local hero, Matissek from making the final. Howard nailed a perfect air funnel into air funnel in his first round and backed this up with a smooth triple funnel, with the second of the three spins being a full blown air funnel. He certainly captured the attention of the judges and found himself in first place above Kiri Thode who kept his score from the first round.
"Haha yeah, I really don't know what to say, I didn't expect this but I'm so stoked, I was already happy to make the podium but to win. On the stage I was a bit speechless, this was kind of funny" - Howard.
Tomorrow we will see the second and third qualification rounds. Keep an eye on the EFPT facebook page for live updates.