On Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 April Lakeside Paradise organises the "Lakeside Paradise Cold Water Classic" in cooperation with the municipality of Knokke-Heist and Red Bull. It is a 4 star competition, which means it is a World Cup event. Only the European Championship (5 stars) and the World Championship (6 stars) are ranked higher.
Currently 55 riders have already registered, with 10 different nationalities. Riders from the USA, Israel, Poland...and of course also from Belgium, because it is of course important that our own youth and local wakeboarders can take their chances.
The purpose of a 4-star competition is to score points in order to force a qualification for the European or World Championships. The Cold Water Classic is the very first competition, and also the start of the new season. With an estimated water temperature of 10 degrees Celsius, it will be cold for the participants indeed....
Many of them spent the winter months on more exotic cable cars to prepare for the new season. Glenn Vandenberghe and Rolf Devriese from Knokke-Heist have been training for a few months on various cable cars in the Philippines, Thailand...Amongst the U19 youth, we are looking forward to Casper Van Hemelryck-Bray, nominated as a promising youngster. In the ladies we will have to see how Belgian champion Pauline Appelmans fares during the winter months after her weekly training sessions at Lakeside Paradise itself.
Speaking of ladies: For this competition "equal prize money" is applied. This means that the prize pool of €5,000 will be divided equally between the ladies and gentlemen taking part. For the ladies, Julie Lupij from Poland (second in the world ranking) has already confirmed, as well as the men Max Milde from Germany, Lior Sofer from Israel, Marko Gacic from Croatia and Jasper Van Schuchtelen from the Netherlands, making the world top 4 a fact!
The IWWF (International Wakeboarding & Waterski Federation) will be in charge of the competition. The competition will be followed internationally and will attract a lot of press and spectators due to the high level of spectacle guaranteed. Currently, there is no other 4-star competition on the 2020 calendar. At present, only 2 and 3 star races are scheduled, with much fewer points to be earned than the 600 here for the winners. In the overall World Cup Ranking, your place is determined by the total number of points earned.
The entrance to everything is free. During 2 days, everyone can enjoy the most radical manoeuvres on the Duinenwater Lake in Knokke-Heist. Spectators will be able to sit around the lake on specially provided stands at the water's edge. All heats will be explained by an MC in an expert way. The results can be followed on a giant LED screen. On Saturday evening there is the "Cold Water Party" with DJ "Gio" where all riders make their appearance and where everyone is welcome. Entrance is also free to make this wakeboarding party complete. Finally on Sunday afternoon there will be the final wakeboard and wakeskate finals, followed by the prize-giving ceremony.