Speed on the water; Pro Watercross Tour dazzles at Sand Hollow

Competitors in the Pro Watercross Tour race across the waters of Sand Hollow Reservoir, Hurricane, Utah, June 25, 2016 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

HURRICANE – Professional and amateur watercraft racers from across the country and around the globe descended on the azure waters of Sand Hollow Reservoir at Sand Hollow State Park Friday and Saturday where round 4 of the Pro Watercross National Tour was held.

Watercross is akin to motocross racing except racers zip across the water with high-powered personal watercraft that can travel at speeds of up to 85 mph.

Competitors in the Pro Watercross Tour race across the waters of Sand Hollow Reservoir, Hurricane, Utah, June 25, 2016 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News
Competitors in the Pro Watercross Tour race across the waters of Sand Hollow Reservoir, Hurricane, Utah, June 25, 2016 | Photo by Hollie Reina, St. George News

Showcasing their strength, speed, balance and endurance, racers traversed a buoy-marked course, racing in a variety of watercraft classes — hoping to earn a spot in the National Championship and the World Championship races.

The tour started in May and has already taken racers to Panama City Beach, Florida; Pensacola, Florida; and Sparks, Nevada. The tour heads next to Atlantic City, New Jersey; then Hartwell, Georgia; Charleston, West Virginia where the National Championship will be held and ends in Naples, Florida where the World Championship will be held.

This year marks the second consecutive year that Sand Hollow has hosted round 4 of the Pro Watercross Tour. St. George Area Sports Commission Director Kevin Lewis hopes to continue the partnership into the future.

“We are just so lucky to live in a place where people like this want to come,” Lewis said. “We’ve got the best pros out here doing their thing on the lake and they’re raving about where we’re at … we’ve seen some fun stuff out there.”

Race organizers praised the area for its unique scenery and diverse recreation options.

It’s beautiful, you can’t ask for anything better than this, I mean, look what you have here,” Pro Watercross Tour CEO AJ Handler said.

Professional racers came from all across the country and around the world from as far as Japan, Lewis said. They came to compete but also to take in the desert landscape and enjoy recreation options such as hiking in nearby Zion National Park and enjoying Sand Hollow State Park’s ATV area.

“The racers enjoy it,” Handler said. “A lot of them are staying until Monday and checking the area out.”

Beachgoers were able to get front row seats to the fast-paced professional racing action as well as cheer on their own hometown favorites who entered into the amateur races.

“It’s just a really unique event,” Lewis said. “You’ve got the top riders in the world coming here to do it … although the locals can do it too. That’s the other fun thing is you can come on in and enter.”

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Email: hreina@stgnews.com

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

 

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