TOP 4 IFWA 2015 WORLD TOUR PILOT RETURNS HOME TO MORNINGTON, VICTORIA,AU EARLY WITH INJURY
Story & Photo: IFWA International FreeRide WaterCraft Association
It is with sadness and regret we say goodbye to Mitch Young for the end of the European portion of the world tour.
Mitch was well poised to compete for the 2015 title challenging best friend 2014 World Champion Mick Anthony for his title.
Famous globally for some epic photo captures of tube rides and an iconic shot of the first ever Freeride at Nazare’ Portugal, the Australian pilot well recognized by his smile, is out with an injury sustained while competing for the semi final at Jet Jump Extreme in Lacanau, France.
Mitch had a stand alone Barrel roll re-entry in the surf category Saturday that was the first seen in competition in nearly a decade. The maneuver made famous by legendary Freerider Joe Kenney and often attempted in competition by 7 time World Champion MX100 is one of the most challenging in surf.
As the competition commenced with 4 pilots battling for the top position Mitch started aggressively early in the heat against round 2 champion Abraham Hochstrasser. With clearly two differing styles the judges had their hands full evaluating the scores of both pilots and even as Young’s heat was cut short they faced a 3-2 split in the scoring.
While Young was recovered and attended to by medical staff and friends Hochstrasser continued with his run, however, in true freeride sportsmanship, Hochstrasser cut his run short, returning to the shore once he recognized Mitch was down and would not return to the water.
IFWA Competition after the LCQ is fiercely competitive, pilots push the limits of their equipment, strategy and skill to advance. Young is one of the best and it is only a matter of unfortunate circumstance that he sustained an injury.
Notable UK pilot James Shield also has been sidelined by injury as well but we are please to hear he will attend the 4th round in his home country participating as a member of the jury panel. We welcome Shieldsy and we hope only for the best recovery for Mitch as he faces the next weeks recuperating and at this time it is unknown if he will return for the final round of the 2015 10th anniversary tour.
IFWA President Mark Matsuda commented, “All of us in the tour as well as the supporting staff and media will raise a toast to a great competitor and an outstanding individual because in this, we honor Mitch in a manner we think will make him smile! We will keep him close in our thoughts throughout the remaining portion of the tour, he’s not the sort to leave behind and know he would do just that if the situation were another friend here with us!”
Recently wed, Young returns home to Morington Peninsula, Victoria Australia with his lovely wife Samantha by his side.
Big Hugs from us all and warm wishes during your recovery.
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