It’s all been going down this week in Hood River – Get caught up!
Hood Jam’s been going off this week with some consistent, although at times a little temperamental, Columbia River conditions.
Day two saw southerly winds all day with hometown shredders, Brandon Scheid and Rich Sabo, putting their marker down early in the first men’s heats. Brandon rode with his usual levels of power and commitment, hurling himself off the kickers, while Rich stuck a Heel Back 540, a Toe Front 720 and Heel Front 720.
Ewan Jaspan, currently tied in first on this year’s KPL tour, answered back with a Heel Back 720 and a Toe Front 720 before Annelous Lammerts made an early impression in the women’s division with a Toe Front 540 and a Heel Front 540!
Day three saw high temperatures and light wind so would become a lay day but on day four there was wind all day, building towards sunset, and this would be the day that the competitors pushed for a place in the finals The top six men and top four women would move straight on to the final while the nine men and five women who placed below them would compete in a dingle for one last shot at the finals.
Eric Rienstra, Craig Cunningham and Rich Sabo were the highest scoring men with Katie Potter impressing in the women’s division. Rich has been on fire throughout the comp and stomped three Backside 540s in a row on the Full Sail Session kicker and a Melon Grab Frontside 540 on the Slingshot kicker. Craig showed his style and ability over the obstacles with a Frontside 270 over the kink rail finished off with a nice Backside 180 out and Eric stomped the kickers with backside 540s in both directions, remaining consistent throughout. Katie stuck an Indy Grab Tantrum, Indy Grab Backroll and a Frontside 360 to seal the deal and secure her spot in the finals.
The finals on day five kicked off at noon in winds of 15 to 32 mph. The competitors had to regularly switch between kites with the women on 7-9 metres and the men changing up and down from 9-11. Riders were allowed three hits and one pass for each feature and the riders had to work hard in the gusty conditions. Brandon stuck a Backmobe 540 off the Slingshot kicker, Craig landed a Gap Backside 360 pass over the Cabrinha rail and Ewan Jaspan, buoyed perhaps at not having to compete against Sam Light at this event, stuck a Melon Grab Toeside Backside 720 and a Nose Grab Heelside Backside 540.
Sensi Graves overcame a sprained ankle to stick some solid 540s off the kicker and nearly landed a G-spot, a Toeside Backroll to blind, which saw her coming off the water fully stoked to round out the finals.
We’re now waiting on the results, which will be announced later on today, so stay tuned!