Simon Gill - leads the Sprint 2-stroke class
Pro Enduro leader - Jordi Tomas
James Robert - 200 class contender
Maxime Benoit EU - Spark class leader
Next week more than 40 jet ski riders from seven countries will head to Minehead Bay on the West Somerset coast to compete for UK and European P1 AquaX titles. This will be the first visit to Minehead by P1 AquaX since the race series was launched in the UK in 2011, and it now stages events in the USA, Malaysia and mainland Europe.
The Minehead Summer Festival has come about through a partnership between the Minehead Events Group, Minehead Coastal Communities Team, ThunderCat powerboats and P1 AquaX. It is hoped that the weekend will become an annual event to entertain residents and attract visitors to the town to raise its profile and boost the local economy. The double bill of fast and furious jet ski and powerboat racing will be free to watch and Andy Hadley, chairman of the Minehead Events Group said: “As a fun weekend for all the family to enjoy we are hoping to attract visitors from far and wide to watch the top class jet ski and powerboat racing, and I want to thank local sponsors Amicus Law, Beaver Ford, CJ Lynch & Sons, Autohaus and Jewson for their support in making this event possible.”
Mayor of Minehead, Cllr. Norman Hercock is looking forward to the Summer Festival: “I’m sure all the sporting action that will take place on Minehead seafront will deliver a special and entertaining weekend for both local residents and holidaymakers alike.”
Former world champion jet skier and now Global Head of P1 AquaX, Lisa Barsby explains: “Our events take place on the sea with simple, wide-open race courses that give riders the chance to open up their throttles and enjoy the full performance of the craft. The racing includes both sprint and endurance classes, lasting about 10 minutes and 30 minutes respectively, with the racers reaching speeds of up to 80mph.
The four-venue P1 AquaX EuroTour series kicked off on France’s Mediterranean coast in May - following the announcement that Experience Kissimmee, the travel and tourism authority in central Florida that promotes the destination, had become the title sponsor of this season’s tour - and then visited Normandy last month. After Minehead the racers will travel to Port Balis near Barcelona for the final round in October. The UK Championship has raced in Torquay and Porthcawl this Summer and Minehead now hosts the finale.
One of the competitors with only a short journey next week will be Simon Gill, the experienced and successful jet skier from Bristol who is the reigning UK and European champion in 2-stroke sprint. “Minehead is just down the road” says Simon, “and I often ride that coastline. There’s a very fast rise and fall tide there, with a range of more than 12 metres in the Bristol Channel, so it could make for some exciting racing especially if there’s a bit of wind about to produce some interesting conditions.”
The jet ski action will start at 9.30am on Saturday (4 August) and 11.30am on Sunday (5 August), with the podium presentations to the winning riders taking place on The Esplanade at 4.00pm on Sunday. The racing will be filmed for television and shown internationally on leading sports channels and also on P1AquaX-YouTube.