U.S. FLOW Tour’s Exciting End at the Westin Kierland

U.S. FLOW Tour’s Exciting End at the Westin Kierland

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by: Anne-Marie Pritchett

Eat. Sleep. Flow. The 2013 U.S. FLOW Tour came to an exciting end at Scottsdale’s Westin Kierland on Oct. 13. The competitive tour kicked off at the resort on May 31st this year then traveled through FlowRiding destinations in Vermont, Canada, New Jersey, Florida, Utah and California. The finals featured the best of the best with teams competing from USA, Asia, Europe and Canada. With over 50 FlowRider locations across America, it’s no wonder people of all ages are catching on to this unique sport and joining in the fun.

What does it take to win the FLOW Tour competition? Riders’ scores are based on trick and run execution, difficulty and overall impression. Each rider competes against three other riders per heat. Each competitor takes three 45-second runs and the best two scores count. Two riders move on to the semi-final heats and then from there, the finals are within grasp.

The scene at the FLOW finals was lighthearted. Wives cheered on their competing husbands and sons. Brothers hollered for their little sisters as they body-boarded their way to the finals. It’s a family affair as moms/daughters and fathers/sons share in the delight as they dominated their respective division. At one point I heard over the loud speaker, “There’s poison in Haley’s riding style.”

The 2013 championship, sponsored by Fiji Water and World Class Bodyboards, showcased over 60 competitors and their individual riding styles. As surfers kicked around a hacky sack and announcers explained a rider to be “droppin’ in from the corner pocket” over the loud speaker, Aussie accents filled the space, right along with cheering and laughter.

FlowRider is a sheet wave attraction that allows people to body board or surf on a simulated wave where water propels upwards on an engineered wave surface much like a trampoline. Wiping out has never been so much fun. Anyone can ride. The only restrictions? You must be 42” tall. You’ll learn what a ‘360 spinner’ is as you perfect that exclusive FlowRider move. Start practicing for the 2014 competition or visit Westin Keirland just to have the experience of surfing the FlowRider. The ride is open to resort guests year round (they even heat it when it gets chilly outside). Hours are 11 p.m.-4 p.m. based on reservations and lessons are $30/hr. There is a happy hour special from 3 p.m.-4 p.m. for $20/hr. Boards and wet suits can be provided.

Leave it to the Westin Kierland to show visitors a grand time at one of their many family-friendly events. You can look forward to holiday events hosted by the resort including a holiday ‘paintscaping’ night where you can kick back, eat some smores, cozy-up and marvel at a 3D holiday-themed presentation set to music. Stay tuned for more information.

Results from the event, thanks to FlowMaster Steve:Jr Bodyboard

Overall

1st Damien Rivera
2nd Jake Chipman
3rd Nathan Matthews Boykin…
4th Halley Turtle Chapa

Jr Stand up

1st Xana Nash
2nd Hayden Jaussi
3rd Tate Freeman
4th Logan Lindeman

Women Bodyboard

1st Morgan Seabert
2nd Hayley Balderrama
3rd Gabby Fiszman
4th Erica Citron

Women Stand up

1st Xana Nash
2nd Dee Daniels
3rd Jade Lauzon
4th Leanna Crowley

Pro Bodyboard

1st Nick Nguyen
2nd Daniel Tarapchak
3rd Nick Sanchez
4th Andrew Shelton

Pro Stand up

1st Sean Silvera
2nd Brad Spencer
3rd Quincy Vlitjtig
4th Chuck

Best Trick Bodyboard

Nick Sanchez=finger flip off the big wall

Best Trick Flowboard

Brad Spencer=assisted finger flip from Eric Silverman

Follow Ann-Marie on Twitter @Annmarieiswrite

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