Now there’s some solid subjectivity to who gets crowned the national freestyle champion. USA Freestyle Kayaking (USAFK) recently created a national point series tour for 2010, in partnership with six events across the U.S.
The series will begin with five events in which participants are awarded points based on their finishes: Bryson City, NC – April 17, 18: Lyons, CO – June 11-13; Salida, CO; and Gunnison, CO – June25-27. The final event will be the National Championships in Missoula, MT, June 30-July 2, which will also serve as U.S. Team Trials for the 2011 Freestyle Kayaking World Championships next spring.
“We’re excited about kicking this series off after years of discussion,” says Jeremy Laucks, reigning OC1 World Champion, USAFK Steering Committee member and architect of the point series. “USAFK has stepped up to provide trained judges and administrators to ensure consistency and credibility at each event; finally, scores from a variety of events will be relevant to one another.”
The point series events will encourage young paddlers by including a Cadet Class for 14-16 year olds, in addition to the Junior Class for ages 16-18. Competitors will also be invited to participate in community service projects at the host communities.
USA Freestyle Kayaking, one of nine paddling disciplines in the USA Canoe-Kayak family, will provide internationally sanctioned judges for each point series event to maintain scoring and reporting consistency, and will maintain cumulative point totals as events progress. Competitors wishing to collect points must be members of USA Canoe Kayak.
“To ease us all into this new requirement we are offering a promotional ‘point series’ membership rate that reflects a substantial discount vs. the standard rates,” says Risa Shimoda, USAFK Chair.
To join at the 2010 rate competitors must use the special 2010 USACK Freestyle Membership Form, downloadable at www.usfreestylkayak.com, available at participating events’ websites, and on site. Competitors wishing to skip earning points toward the National Championship do not need to be USACK members to compete in the individual events.