Hurley Classic 2019
For those of you who have never been to The Hurley Classic it is a multi sport Whitewater event that’s been running for the past 30 years. Way back then it was dubbed the Hurley Rodeo and was a kayaking event to show off the latest tricks in kayaks, the champion being the one who could do the most tricks in 45 seconds. Over the years it’s diversified to a kayak jam session and several other races in boats and on boards.
Friday evening couldn’t have gone better. The dream has always been a smooth setup of the stand. This year we had it dialled, everything came out of the van and in to the tent. In under an hour we had a Dewerstone shop with a complimentary coffee stand. After sorting the stand we joined many of the other exhibitors and competitors at the Rising Sun pub in Hurley village. A good chance to catch up with old friends and get some well deserved grub.
Saturday is all about the roots of kayaking. Jacko the organiser runs an impressive program for young kids to get the chance to paddle with some of the big names in kayaking. The idea is to get them stoked on paddling and learn something new from the day.
Back at the stand we were busy showing off our new line of products and serving hot coffee.
The Dewerstone stand had become a utopia of laid back kayaking chat and the aroma of freshly roasted beans brought people over. Rory set up a charity collection for the Hurley Foundation trust. “Come grab a free coffee and if you fancy contributing to keeping this event running, feel free to make a contribution”.
Saturday was going great, the stand looked awesome, so many people were stoked on the brand and the Meet the Stars program had wrapped up just in time for the Boater Cross and Old School sessions to kick off.
The Boater Cross is a race with a series of obstacles to go around, a mandatory portage and then race to the finish line. It’s always been a hot event and this year was no different. It kicked off in heats of 4 racers slowly whittling down to the top four to compete in the finals at 7pm.
Finally before the big sit down feast the Old School jam kicked off. Any kayak and kit pre Y2K were eligible to compete. It was a big showdown of kayaks taken from the bottom of the garden and dusted off. A few guys wore old helmets and had wooden paddles. Defiantly a crowd pleaser as they span and performed crossovers. I think I eve saw a few retendos (a trick of the 70s).
Saturday night feast was epic. Grab a pint of locally brewed ale, in an eco friendly
biodegradable cup and a plate of steaming hot lasagne. Then settle down to good
conversation with friends and watch the TVF awards.
Sunday morning dawned the big day, the Hurley classic. The Classic is a jam session format held on the main wave, aimed to promote new kayakers to a friendly competition format. If you’ve never been to Hurley, the setup is two friendly holes either side of the main wave, which promotes tricks across the whole board.
It runs in heats of ten people at a time. 20 minuets on the wave, every trick you do is scored once. For the novice category they have a special lighter scoring format rewarding people who try tricks even if they fail to retain or complete the move.
The heats went on throughout the whole day whittling down to the top five who got to compete in the finals. The top eight men were all but a few points apart. But when it came down to it, Gav Barker pulled it out of the hat with some hectic tricks in the finals. A well deserved win.
The ladies finals were just as tight, it looked like Lowery Davies was taking home the win, but in her last ride Ottie Robinson-Shaw pulled together a few extra points in the whole gate.
What a weekend. Huge thanks to all the organization from Jako and support from the local community. Hurley 30 was a blast. See you all next year for coffee and Kayaking
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