Ryder Duczek and Montanna Rouselle on the podium at the 2017 Centurion World Wake Surf Championships. (Submitted Photo)

Ryder Duczek and Montanna Rouselle on the podium at the 2017 Centurion World Wake Surf Championships. (Submitted Photo)

Local junior wake surfers experience podium finish at World Championships

Cranbrook’s Ryder Duczek earns first place finish, Montanna Rouselle places third at Kelowna event

FOR THE TOWNSMAN

Three local junior wake surfers competed in the 2017 Centurion World Wake Surf Championships in Kelowna over the weekend, and had an unforgettable experience.

Nine ‘Junior’ division riders from Canada and the US took to the water Thursday for the first run, with only the top four advancing to the finals Friday. Jaffray’s Cassidy Boehm and Cranbrook’s Montanna Rouselle both had outstanding runs and took first and second respectively in their heat.

In the other heat, Cranbrook’s Ryder Duczek took first place and Rylee Steffan, the top-ranked junior in the world, took second to advance to finals.

In the finals, Duczek laid out a flawless first pass including a 360, 720, shuv in, shuv out and body varial on his way to a 111 point run and first place overall finish. Steffan took second and Rouselle, who landed a 180, revert roast beef grab and had solid switch riding, took third overall. Boehm finished an impressive fourth overall.

Dubbed the “Olympics of wake surfing,” the Championships attracted riders from nine different countries and featured over 300 runs over the three days of competition. World-renowned Koocanusa-based rider Caroline

World-renowned Koocanusa-based rider Caroline Villaneuve captured second in the Women’s Pro Skim division, while Brittney Nyrose took third and Jodi Grassman captured first. Cranbrook’s Gabrielle Hockley had a solid qualifier, but did not advance to the finals in Pro Women’s Surf.

Duczek, who is sponsored by Boston Pizza Cranbrook/Golden, Just Liquid Sports, Isaac Hockley Royal LePage East Kootenay Realty and Hyperlite, was greeted home at a “Champions Meet and Greet” at Boston Pizza on Wednesday night.