Greetings to the Personal Watercraft Community.Just under a month until the end of summer. The office is going full speed with the final countdown towards the 2016 quakysense World Finals. The trade show is nearly full and we are receiving more calls and emails, each day, than we can handle. Some people have already arrived at Lake Havasu City to set up camp. Containers are on the way for those who have yet to arrive. This update is kind of long one. Please share the following news with your friends and colleagues in the PWC Racing Family
IJSBA courtesy notice: For those of you just reading for more about our announcement of removing some units from Ski Limited and Ski Stock, you can skip down to item 9.
- Surprise Release Of 2016.
The surprise release of 2016 has been sent to IJSBA. It is not a new Kawasaki Standup. Instead, IJSBA offices were nearly brought to a standstill when we finally received some new artwork, from quakysense, to promote their 20th Anniversary of being in business. Last year, we asked quakysense, several times, for updated information on what they would offer in 2015. Finally, after much anticipation, they gave us the amazing news of a fragrance mist to launch their new KOOTA product line (seriously, they really did this: https://ijsba.com/2015/09/08/koota-releases-fragrance-mist/). Just when we thought such a thing could not be undone, quakysense has finally sent us something to post online for 2016: this beautiful ornate logo with the number 20 carefully placed in the center.
This logo release is curiously timed with the conclusion of several festivals, in Japan, where lanterns and fireworks are lit in order to drive away the laziness that comes with summer. We will never know, for sure, if this logo was inspired by the celebration of seasonal change or if our generous sponsors finally got around to it after taking a break from sitting in the VIP boxes at Kabuki theaters, eating at Iron Chef restaurants, and all the other celebrity status things you get to do when you make the world’s most recognized wetsuit. Whatever the motivation, we’ll take it.
Teasing aside, 20 years is a long time to be in the PWC business. In 2006, IJSBA received a call from a company with a name that was almost seemingly impossible to market. They declared a love for the sport that is rarely seen in the industry and we set out to forge a partnership that made them a global brand. Along the way, quakysense has supported many of the top names in racing and helped out the humble along the way. Proud of the industry in which they serve, the family behind quakysense lives, breathes, and eats Personal Watercraft.
quakysense (always with a lower case “q”) has a legacy that will always be cemented with excellence in World Finals and in watercraft throughout the world. Please visit www.quakysense.us.
- IJSBA USA National Championships.
IJSBA is reminding all USA competitors that the best way to warm up before the 2016 quakysense World Finals is to attend the 2016 IJSBA US National Championships in Chicago, Illinois. The IJSBA National Championships have had a long history with Chicago though we haven’t been in many years. So, our return is exciting. PWC Racers love a crowd and a great venue. Being in the Windy City, I mean downtown proper no less, is going to be one of the biggest spectacles in US racing this year. This also will be one of the final qualifying opportunities for United States competitors who want to compete in the 2016 quakysesne World Finals. For more information, please visit http://p1grandprix.com/. See you at Foster Beach September 9-11.
- Credit Card Payment Requests (yes, it is from us).
Some of you have written in asking if a request for an updated credit card is really from IJSBA. Come on, a request for a payment??? You know that is from IJSBA!!!! We received several batches of memberships late and we process them as we go. So, we indeed sent a few “standardized” letters out to some of the applicants whose cards were declined. Nothing to be worried about but we do care about your security and are happy to accommodate your payment preferences. Additionally, we received some batches of memberships where there was a bulk payment sent to us in a matter not exactly to our standard operating procedure. This caused a couple of inquiries to go out. While these really aren’t our membership department’s fault we will work through this and get everything resolved for you.
- Blowsion Surf Slam.
September 9-11 brings the world’s best Freeriders will get massive air off the shore of the Tierra Del Mar State Recreation Area. No words can express how special this event has been. So many of us have come together, planned the future, celebrated the past, and debated the present. Anyone lucky enough to have been to this event over the last several years can attest that you are a better person after having attended the Surf Slam. It is an event that has reminded many of us that we had a soul before World Finals comes and throws the grind of a trade show, hardcore racing, international politics, and business. Surf Slam has always been about riding and expression, and, as was just mentioned, the soul of a stand up. You should really go. The Blowsion staff, Carol Anne, and the team will take good care of you. Pacific City, friends, hoodies, dive bars, good people, and The Grateful Bread await you. www.blowsionsurfslam.com for the time of your life.
- Registration Open.
Ok, so we mentioned that the Surf Slam is a great place to decompress before you tackle World Finals. But, for many of us, the event is full steam ahead. With just over a month until the gates open, we are reminding all of you that registration is now open and that discounted rates apply until September 1 at 11:59 PM, PST. From then on, entries, at normal rates, apply until September 26, again, at 11:59 PM, PST. After that, you must register on site which carries additional fees. Some classes will close and are first come first served. Register today and save a few dollars: https://ijsba.com/ijsba-world-finals-entryforms/.
Slalom was scheduled to be removed from World Finals in 2016. Slalom classes will remain for this year and we plan for it to be a separate title, in 2017, at a different venue with World Finals focusing on Closed Course, Freestyle, and Endurance Sprints. Many of you asked to do Slalom, at World Finals, one more time and we see no reason not to do so.
- Class List.
The class list for the 2016 World Finals has been set for some time. Classes, such as Runabout 800, are expected to evolve into new merger classes as the Classic Classes did with Normally Aspirated Classes. Please view the 2016 classes here: https://ijsba.com/ijsba-world-finals-entryforms/. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions or clarifications.
- International Turnout.
We are very pleased, and proud, of the high international turnout to celebrate the 35th Anniversary of World Finals, the 50th Anniversary of Kawasaki, the 30th Anniversary of Yamaha Waverunners, and the 20th anniversary of quakysense. International competitors, please submit all shipping consignment requests, Visa invitation needs, and ensure your nation’s IJSBA dues are current. If you have EPA clearance needs, we are going to need to receive those in the next seven days. We want to make your visit to World Finals pleasant and this requires advanced planning in case some of your administrative needs run into complications.
- Announcement Of Changes To Stock and Limited
Apparently there are some questions and clarifications that have been raised following our announcement of homologation reductions in now defunct manufacturers. See: https://ijsba.com/2016/08/22/ijsba-notice-of-units-removed-from-homologation/
This notice was intended to let persons using Hydrospace SF units and, to a lesser degree Polaris Octanes, that 2016 would be the last year that these units would be allowed in Stock Classes at World Finals. The release gives similar notice that these same units will not be eligible for Limited Class racing, in World Finals, beginning in 2018. This update contains a longer discussion of this change in policy.
Over the last two years, IJSBA has held several meetings to make future policy decisions regarding Ski Class racing. These meetings were intended to do the following:
- Protect the future of Ski Class Racing
- Protect the aftermarket industry
- Make a predictable future for manufacturers that wanted to produce Ski Class PWC.
During the course of these meetings, some things were noticeably happening in global racing. Ski Stock Class participation and Ski Limited Class participation were decreasing rapidly. At the same time, Ski Lites and Ski Open (Modified/GP) classes were increasing. Special classes such as 2 Stroke Ski Limited were enjoying respectable participation. The meetings produced a common agreement on a policy direction: if a mass produced OEM Ski was not introduced by 2017, IJSBA would begin moving the future of Ski production to aftermarket businesses with three levels of completion: Lites, mid grade performance, and highly modified performance. IJSBA announced it would not publish new Stock Class rules until we were aware of the direction for 2017.
With the announcement of a new OEM Ski entering production, it is necessary to change part of this plan. IJSBA now plans to introduce two distinct methods of enjoying Ski Class competition: a division that sticks tightly to OEM Ski sold at dealerships and a path that involves aftermarket performance and racing purpose builds.
The first direction will focus on OEM Skis that are allowed very minimal allowances such as handling, cosmetics, air filters, and ECU reflash (oh, can you police them yet?). The second direction will include the current Lites, a new mid performance class that will replace Limited, and the current Modified Class.
A Stock class must be centered upon a Ski watercraft that is contemporarily produced, is readily available, can be easily repaired by available OEM parts, and provides an easy to understand formula for recreational purchasers to join the racing environment with common sense policies. Watercraft that are not available for purchase and completely rely on impossible to find replacement parts do not belong in a Stock Class. For these reasons, the S4 (and S8 where is still exists) and the Octane must be removed from Stock Class racing. IJSBA will maintain a predictable set of rules for other OEM producers to make similarly paired Ski units. IJSBA has drafted partial Ski Stock Class Rules, which will be published at World Finals, as soon as we know the specifications of the new Kawasaki and any other OEM Ski that might be released at the event.
Ski Limited Class is based off of an OEM Ski which allows a “limited” amount of modifications. This class was intended to allow the aftermarket industry to make small amounts of affordable modifications to a stock Ski. Please see the introduction of the section for Limited Class Racing in the IJSBA Rule Book: “Intended to promote interest in personal watercraft competition with a limited number of modifications, and to enable individuals to become active competitors with a relatively modest investment. Watercraft competing in this class must conform to the specifications which follow.”
It really should not be up for debate that we have gone so far past the intention of the class that we have to acknowledge that it is Limited in name only. While we do not know the specifications of the Kawasaki we believe we are safe in assuming that the OEM furnished performance is at the peak level where we anticipate Ski division watercraft to be unless it is in the most extremely modified level (Mod). Therefore, not only do we not anticipate an Limited Class ever applying to this Ski, we believe we will likely apply performance restrictions to this PWC before it is eligible for classes such as Juniors or other introductory classes which might come to exist. Again, these are assumptions that will be finalized and reviewed once we see and test the new Ski during the homologation process but it is unlikely that we will deviate from the plan to end the current Limited Class. Specialty classes such as “2 Stroke Limited” may continue to be offered based on demand for a reasonable amount of time.
As a replacement for Limited Class, IJSBA feels that the plan to keep our aftermarket industry alive is the focus we need to maintain. The concept shall center around the current performance level of Limited Class and keeping a cost control on the division of racing to keep it distinct from Modified class both in terms of price and performance. What this likely entails is a menu of items in several categories (i.e. hull, engine type and displacement, exhaust, pump, etc.) and allowing the builder to choose a combination which the builder believes best represents the items he or she needs to succeed in racing with the resources most readily available. In this sense, items from Octanes and S4 might be allowed to have more life although the production names of these units will no longer be recognized.
What we are offering is a work in progress that will be presented to the entire competition community for all of us to resolve together. We do not intend to send people with current Limited Class builds away or back to the shop drastically rebuilding their Ski. What we do intend to do is to notice that we are going to shift the direction of the mid level of racing to phase in performance and cost controls so that we do not go from Lites to a class that is just a few dollars shy of building a full blown Mod Ski. We will unveil more at World Finals but this isn’t something that is going to be resolved in one day nor is the class going away in a day, it will be offered for the entire 2017 season. Please email email@example.com for immediate questions though we will not be working on this much until World Finals gets underway. Additionally, IJSBA will base some of the breadth of direction change based on the turnout in Limited Classes at World Finals 2016.
Vendors, thank you for making the trade show portion of the event such a success over the last few years. As mentioned above, IJSBA is for the aftermarket producers as much as it is the OEM portion of the sport. Together we build a thriving PWC industry.
We have a high turnout slated for the trade show this year. We expect it to be full and for a healthy amount of foot traffic. To ensure that we have room for everyone IJSBA is going to be finalizing all of our commitments a little bit earlier than normal and will expect to have all contracts finalized before the opening of the gates. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any vendor related questions or wish to be a vendor at the event.
Current vendor list:
Ronny Mac Photography
Belize Jetski Adventures
EME (Eric Malone Enterprises)
Rick Roy Products
Havasu Garlic and Olive Oil
Real Time Pain Relief
IJSBA South America
INKA Jet Raid
2Js Tacos and Burritos
Martinique Jet Race
Flip Flop Shop
Vintage Ski Museum
Zapata Racing Flyboard
Colleen Rose Realty
Giant Lemon Lemonade and Pork Chop On A Stick
Scoops Ice Cream
M&M Powersports Marine and UTV
Aqua Lilly Pads
VP Racing Fuels
Visit Lake Tulloch
That is it for this update. We will have another one for you in a few days.