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Elite Asian FLOW Riders turn up the heat at WaveHouse Sentosa


Local Ripper, Sham Jamal got the home crowd roaring in amazement after executing a high flying Flowboard stunt. (Photo: SSC/Prasad)

Kick-Flips, Ollie 180, Big Spin, 360 Shuvit and many more trick names were booming across the WaveHouse at Siloso Beach, Sentosa Island on Saturday afternoon.

Host of the inaugural Asian Flow Series finals, the Wave House welcomed expert riders from all over Asia to battle for the opportunity to compete at the 2011 FLOW Championships in Durban, South Africa, and it was quite a show.

For those who are unfamiliar, flowriding is a discipline of water board sports that combine moves from skateboarding, surfing, snowboarding, wakeboarding and skimboarding.

The finals drew more than 100 spectators by the time the finals kicked off at about 5pm.

The first to take the stage was the Women’s Expert Flowboard where Singaporean Gillian Tay faced off Saipan’s Park Kwaeon. Despite a smooth performance by Kwaeon, it was Gillian who came out on top with her variety of tricks to earn a spot Asia’s FlowRider Team.

When asked how she feels about the victory, Gillian replied, “I felt nervous and excited at the same time. I did not expect to win because I thought my fellow competitor was really good.” She also shared that she would learn new tricks to better prepare herself for the FLOW Championships.

“Despite flowboarding being a male domineering sport, I would really like to encourage all girls out there to give it a shot,” added the women’s flowboard champion.

Next up was the Men’s Expert Bodyboard. It was a battle between Singapore’s Zach Li, Malaysia’s David Cheng Chan Tong, Saipan’s Kimiyuki Suzuki and Australia’s Nick Edmunds. The quartet put up a fine display of drop knees and prone and crowd favourite Kimiyuki Suzuki was edged out by Nick Edmunds who came out on top off the back of landing his tricks with clean precision.

Zach, who was not able to clinch any prize finishing fourth shared after games that he was happy to compete in front of the home crowd as it gave him full support to do his best. He added: “I need more experience to improve. I am planning to make my way to Malaysia to get exposed to different styles of bodyboarding.”

The final division was the Men’s Expert Flowboard. The grand final was a stage for the three finalist, Australia’s Nick Edmunds, Saipan’s Song Chi Su and local ripper Sham Jamal. Song Chi Su, who was dancing with the music just before his run, took home a spot on the Asia’s team by bringing dance steps to the waves and burning the wave floor with a variety of dazzling tricks and mesmerizing stunts.

Nick Edmunds, who had two podiums finish, shared his views about the whole tournament, “I am startled to win and have no idea how did I win in both categories.”

When asked his opinions about competitions being held in Singapore, he swiftly replied, “I feel more humid here compared to Australia. I felt like I was on fire when riding the waves," he chuckled to himself.

The final three who will make up Asia’s team to compete in Durban is Singaporean heroine Gillian Tay, crowd favourite Nick Edmunds and Saipan’s Song Chi Su.

For more information on the FLOW series, visit http://www.wavehouse.com/