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Early morning riders meeting

On the final day of the Triple-S Invitational Cape Hatteras delivered the much needed wind to run the event. For the first time all week the wind started early from the north and event organizers quickly scheduled the riders meeting at 9am with the first heats starting an hour later. The slider park was divided up into three locations giving riders the opportunity to jib each feature three times from which their best score was counted.

Riders were split into two groups and each heat started with the North rooftop and KOA kicker on northwest side of the course.

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Once both groups of riders completed the upper section, the entire contest moved to the southern section which included the Best kicker, Liquid Force reverse rainbow and the John Wayne slider.

When the contest resumed on the southern end of the course, riders jibbed the LF reverse rainbow and the Best kicker. As the winds intensified, the level of riding elevated with technical tricks including toe-back 5’s and 7’s off the Best kicker by Billy Parker and Sam Light.

After both sets of riders completed three hits on both features, they all moved to the final feature of the day, the John Wayne Cancer Foundation slider. The wind had shifted over the course of the afternoon and by the time the heats were hitting the John Wayne slider, the approach was a tighter angle of reach across the wind. As a result, the rider’s kites often pulled them off of the slider before they could reach the end of the feature. A few of the riders had suggested to organizers that they let the tail-end drift down wind, but with some heats already completed, the general policy was to leave the features set for the sake of fairness. Brandon Scheid pointed out that Davey Blair and Jason Slezak had managed to slide the full length of the John Wayne, so a successful full length hit wasn’t impossible, it just required the correct technique in terms of speed, angle and kite placement. Despite the angle, many of the riders were hitting the John Wayne with speed and intensity while throwing highly technical tricks.

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Billy Parker on the John Wayne slider

Running short on daylight, the judges made the call not to hold a finals heat and made their final judging decisions based on the day’s action. This year’s Triple-S Invitational saw the biggest purse in US kiteboarding history with a total of $40,000 up for grabs. Congratulations to this year’s Venyu Triple-S winners, Sam Light, Colleen Carroll and Andre Phillip. Full results below.

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Triple-S Head Judge, Brian Wheeler, working hard on the judges boat

INTERVIEW WITH MEN’S WINNER, SAM LIGHT (Click here)
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Final Results

Men

1st Sam Light – $12,000

2nd Billy Parker – $7,500

3rd Brandon Scheid – $5,000

4th James Boulding – $3,000

5th Christophe Tack – $2,000

Women

1st Colleen Carroll – $4,000

2nd Sensi Graves – $2,500

3rd Victoria Victoria Soloveykina – $1,000

Masters

1st Andre Phillip – $1,000

2nd Jason Slezak

3nd Davey Blair

Best Session

Billy Parker – $1,000

Rookie of the Year

Christophe Tack – $1,000

Slickstyle Attitude

Artem Garashchenko

Best Wipeout

Craig Cunningham