In Poland for a long time we had only one freestyle kayak competition in the hole. Last year we organised the Beaver River Games which was a first event of the International Polish Cup. It took place in Jelenia Góra, our homespot. This year Thanks to Umpa-Umpa Eskimoska Team we had another freestyle competition, the Strawberry Kayak Games. The name of that competition is a little bit funny, but it was a huge event which took place during Strawberry Festival in Złota Góra (in North part of Poland) since 1975. Ten-thousand people come this place on this weekend to eat the best strawberries in Poland, listen to well known Polish pop stars and have fun 'til the morning.
The Strawberry Kayak Games was the first edition of Polish Cup in 2015 season. Besides a standard freestyle in really nice hole there was also flatwater freestyle competition, kayak cross and big air contest. During every category the place was full of spectators, but during the big air there were the most emotions!
Adam Olesiński, Big Air Contest – photo Sebastian Mechliński
Huge moves and big crashes from the big air ramp made a big impression on the audience. While kayakers prepared to slide down the ramp everyone was silent and waiting. After landing applause began. Sometimes when somebody landed his move over rotated on his face, the audience was worried, but after an eskimo roll when competitor showed that everything was fine, the applause started again.
Michał Kaiński, Big Air Contest – photo Anna Rudnicka
On Saturday there were preliminaries in all categories. DJ TUSE was warming up spectators before, during and after the competition. The finals took place the next day and we were listening DJ ROSS. All the time Sony Xperia chill-out zone was open and everyone could try the new smartphones and accessories or play the newest PlayStation.
Photo Anna Rudnicka
Every category was a hard and spectacular fight for the first place. Michał Bulczak won in big air. He overtook Michał Kamiński in the last jump with one point difference. Third was Krzysztof Gajewski – who had been leader after the prelims.
Tomasz Czaplicki, freestyle flat water – photo Anna Rudnicka
Tomasz Czaplicki - my Palm team mate and my second half won in freestyle kayaking in the hole and on the flatwater, but that wasn't suprise ;P Second was Adam Olesiński (Dziku) and third was Michał Kamiński (Misiek). In the flat water freestyle event, second was Michał Kamiński and third was Mariusz Stefaniak (Super Mario).
Tomasz Czaplicki – photo, Sebastian Mechliński
He also won in kayak cross. Three big guys started with him in the final, but Tomek had more luck. They all started to fight right after the start and blocked eachother, but Tomasz paddled infront at the right moment. Dariusz Ebertowski almost caught him and he took second place. Third was Adrian Angowski. The fourth place in the big final of kayak cross took Przemysław Siudem.
Kayak Cross – photo Anna Rudnicka
I won in freestyle kayaking in the women's division, Izabela Fidzińska was second and Anna Rudnicka was third.
Zofia Tuła, freestyle kayaking – photo Sebastian Mechliński
The best paddlers won Sony Xperia smartphones and accessories ;) Big thanks for Team Umpa Umpa – tribe of Polish freestyle paddlers. They (with our small help) organized this event ;) I can say only that it was a huge event! And I would like to invite you to Jelenia Góra for the Beaver River Games which are The Euro Cup and Polish Cup finals for the 2015 season. More information soon at www.kayakgames.blogspot.com and www.facebook.com/kayakgames
Big Air winners – photo Anna Rudnicka