Jenny Flops-A-Lot: Confessions of a Squirtboater

Me getting ready for the comp
Photo: Jeremy Laucks

The squirt competition that was supposed to be on Thursday so I was excited to have 3 more days to train and learn some new moves before the competition. Due to unexpected water level issues, the comp date was changed at the last minute to Monday! I was a bit bummed because I wanted those extra days, but I was ready to go out there, fire it up and do my best.
Jeremy and I headed out around 10:30 as the competition would be starting around noon, and Jeremy went ahead, towing my Star full of gear, snacks and warm blankets (I bought a package of hot dog weiners, hoping there would be a fire on shore). I soon realized that I had forgotten my back block at home, but luckily there was another one in my car that didn’t quite fit properly but would have to do.
It was super windy today, and getting across to the island proved to be a chore in my squirtboat. I went to get out at the shore and ended up taking some water and had to stand up in knee deep water! I hadn’t even started competing and was already wet.

Mark Richard (CAN), Jeremy Laucks (USA), Coyo Morito (JPN) getting ready to throw down
Photo: Me!
Val Bertrand and Bronze winner Emma Runciman discussing strategy
Photo: Me!

I decided to watch the people doing their practice rides to get a feel for the competition, and sat on a tree jutting out into the water for a little while, just watching people’s rides. There were a lot of people there! Great Britain it seemed, had their entire freestyle team and friends and family there to cheer on their fellow competitors! The atmosphere was a fun and full of energy!

582 Local Lars Romeskie photographs well!

Photo: Me!

Billy and Carly enjoying the show

Photo: Me!

This was my first competition ever, and the pressure was on since it WAS the World Championships. I was in the second heat, and when it was my time to go, I had seen some pretty awesome rides! I decided to just go out and have a blast, not worrying about my score or placement since the majority of the girls had been doing this for 10 years (vice my 2 weeks). We each got three rides, best two counted. I decided due to my short repetoire and lack of skills that I would attempt a mystery move first, and if I didn’t get it, I could have a second go at it once I heard the 10 second buzzer. My rides were as good as I could have hoped, considering my experience. I plugged one deep mystery move up to my neck which I was pretty psyched about. I worked my cartwheels, got one awesome stern stall, but wasn’t able to stick my bow screw. It was all good though, I had a great time, and really enjoyed the experience!

Yes I can Squirt

Photo: Jeremy Laucks

Jenny Down-Time

Photo: Colin Moneypenny

In the end, Valerie Bertrand from Canada won the women’s gold in a nailbiting showdown between her and UK’s Claire O’Hara (who missed her mystery move at the end and finished with silver).

Jeremy and Brent were my two other squirting buddies, who had great rides. Jeremy in his homemade Maelstrom and Brent in a brand-new Ed-designed boat that he happened to show up with first thing this morning.

Jeremy in his comp ride

Photo: Me!

Ben White from the UK took the men’s gold by getting some awesome mystery moves that managed to beat out Coyo, the bouncing boater from Japan who was dominating just by his flatwater moves alone in a plastic boat!

I finished 9th out of the women’s class, Coop finished 11th in the men’s and Jeremy finished 7th, pretty close to the scores that made the cut! What a great competition. The energy on shore and on the water was incredible! At one point while I was out there I heard Dave Nieuwenhuis yell something like “Jenny Right-Side you Rock!” It was so much fun!

Devon Barker from the US Team (who finished 5th in the world) had a post-squirt party at Little Picky, a cute little cabin on the shore of the river. We spent some time around the bonfire, chatting and having a great time. Then Jeremy and I headed over to WT to check on scores and practice times for Jeremy’s OC-1 competition.

I have decided that in less than two years for the next Canadian Team Trials I want to have a new regime of moves and possibly a chance at medalling. It was so much fun, the people were great and supportive, and hey, there’s a chance it will be in Switzerland!

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