Grayland Open Jet Ski action starts Friday

Some of the top riders in the world partake in the Grayland Open Pro/Am Freeride Jet Ski Competition, Aug. 12-14.

The eighth annual Grayland Open Pro/Am Freeride Jet Ski Competition will be staged on the Grayland beach Friday through Sunday, Aug. 12-14, with a freeride clinic conducted today.

This year’s event will take place in the surf at the end of the Grayland Beach approach road and is consistently bigger and better each year.

The Grayland Open is for competitors riding stand-up and sit-down watercraft in the surf in a flagged section of ocean. Some of the top riders in the world will perform amazing aerial maneuvers, including back flips, barrel rolls, precision surf riding and motosurf racing.

tandup classes: Masters for riders 40 and older, Rookie for beginners, along with Amateur and Pro classes.

Runabout Classes: Sport Class/Sit-down, x2, Waveblaster, Spark

Pro Jam: Top Open eight riders in a 15-minute head to head heat

Each rider will be judged for his/her display of skills in the surf and in the air. Staying on the jet ski, riding waves, jump height, variation and difficulty of jumps are all factored into a cumulative total for each heat, with top placers moving on in the tournament.

All spectators are welcome free of charge. Bring your lawn chairs and blankets. Turn west onto the Grayland Beach Approach Road at the old red schoolhouse building. Bring your family, lawn chairs and cameras and enjoy all the high-flying action.

There will be food available for purchase. Custom-designed event t-shirts and sweatshirts, as well as posters, will also be for sale at the main booth while supplies last. There will be a raffle for various goodies.

Thursday will be devoted to a freeride clinic conducted by top freeriders from around the county. Following instruction on the beach that starts at 10:30 a.m., on-the-water training will give spectators an opportunity to watch jet-skiers perfect their moves in preparation for Saturday’s main competition.

The competition starts at 10:30 a.m. on Friday with qualifying heats with the exception of Pro class. Heats will run all day until late afternoon with a mid-day break. Estimated last heats will be around 5 or 6 p.m. depending on how the weather and surf is throughout the day.

Saturday is the main competition day, featuring the surf and aerial competition from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Riders will compete tournament style, with two riders at a time in the surf. Each heat will last six minutes with riders completing as many tricks as they can.

Riders will be judged separately in sit-down and stand-up classes, based on maneuvers in the surf and tricks.

The best score of each competitor’s minimum of two runs will be the score used to determine placements.

Surf and aerial finals will be held on Sunday, again starting at 10 a.m. Following the finals, the top eight riders are invited to participate in the Pro Jam, a single 15-minute heat for the ultimate honor of being crowned King of the 2016 Grayland Open.

Following the Pro Jam, awards will be presented to 1st through 4th place in both sit-down and standup classes. Additional special awards will be given for the Sickest Trick, Gnarliest Wipeout, Broken Ski and the King of the Pro Jam.