July 20, 2019 10:20 pm
Updated: July 22, 2019 7:40 am

Jet skiers compete in Saskatoon watercross racing event

WATCH: Jet skiers from across Western Canada took part in a two-day racing series in Saskatoon on the weekend.

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Dozens of jet skiers flocked to the South Saskatchewan River in Saskatoon on Saturday for the first of a two-day watercross racing event.

Members of the Western Canadian Watercross Association took part in the weekend series to see just who was the fastest on the water.

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For 16-year veteran jet skier Steve Chestalouski, the sport provides a way to combine a favourite pastime and a good workout.

“When I was back from Mexico, I was weighing 268 (pounds), started racing and got down to 220 just from stand-up jet ski racing and riding,” said Chesalouski. “It is a lot of core strength and a lot of muscles you don’t use for anything else.”

Novice rider Morgan Sieben has been surrounded by people who are involved with the sport and as a result, got hooked three years ago.

“I always had a friend who had jet skis at the lake and I always wanted to try. It’s easy enough to try, you are always on the water and it’s been fun. I met this group and got into racing,” Sieben said.

Chestalouski, who is fighting for a chance to head down to the U.S. for the World Finals in the fall, is still searching for his first racing win. He has competed in 12 such events.

“Got in the top 10, but have only broke the podium twice,” he said. “Got number three in the world twice. They have a master’s class for 40 and over — for old guys like me. Hopefully, I can get it this time.”

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The sport has gained popularity in the last number of years and has become less male-dominated.

“There’s a women’s class and there is also a lot of women on the sit-down and run about (jet skis). So, definitely, a lot more women coming to race, which is great to see,” Sieben said.

After the final two-day series of the season takes place in Alberta next month, the World Finals take place in October at Lake Havasu in Arizona.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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