Local riders ready for Jet Ski Action
Avi Burk Published 04/25/2008 - 12:00 a.m. PDT

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“Rocket Man” Jim Wells took first place overall in the Sitdown class at the DJSA’s first preseason race of the year, clocking in with a time of 39.81 seconds on his Kawasaki Ultra 250.

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Diablo Jet Ski Action (DJSA) recently ran its final preseason race of the year at Salt Springs Reservoir Resort in Copperopolis, and is gearing up for its 2008 Summer Point Series opener on Saturday, April 26, at Lauritzen’s Yacht Harbor in Oakley.
Several local riders excelled in the final tune-up race, including Antioch residents Kurt Samuels, Johnny Curtis and Patrick Mallari, as well as Brentwood’s Cody Frades.
Samuels, who represents the Ski Clinic of Antioch, finished first in Super Stock and Modified Standup Combined class, dominating the field with two first-place and one second-place finish in his three heats.
Curtis and Frades both represent Delta Watercraft of Bethel Island and share a number of other similarities. Both men came to race jet skis after participating in stock car racing at the Antioch Speedway for years, and both men recently made the switch from standup riding to sit-down class competition.
Curtis finished second overall in the Sprint 1000-12000 Sitdown class, turning in a pair of second-place finishes and one third-place finish in his three heats. Frades, meanwhile, finished third in the overall Super Stock and Modified Sitdown Combined class, scoring a third-, fourth- and fifth-place finish in his three heats.
Mallari continues to show that he’s ready to be a force in both the Super Standup class as well as the Sprint Sitdown action this summer. He followed up a third-place finish in Super Standup action in the opening race of the preseason with a third-place finish in the Sprint 1000-12000 Sitdown class final preseason tune-up.
“It’s not the big leagues of racing but it’s the kind of local racing people are attracted to because it’s offered on a weekly basis throughout the summer,” said DJSA founder Jim Lambert, who started the organization in response to the high number of personal watercraft crashes he was called out to as he patrolled the marina as a member of the sheriff’s office. “I think it’s based on availability. The big races obviously attract the biggest-name racers, but they’re traveling all over to attend the events. Local people can be more involved in this type of racing.”
Lambert also credits the DJSA’s remarkable safety record for attracting a lot of riders who might be reluctant to ride under different conditions. To date, the DJSA has run more than 180 races and has not recorded a single safety incident – a fact in which Lambert takes great pride.
Saturday’s action will begin at 9:30 a.m. with a pair of practice rounds, then a mandatory racers’ meeting at 11:30 before the season gets officially underway at noon. A break in the action is scheduled between the second and third heats of the day, most likely about 2:30 p.m., when the Ski Clinic of Antioch will be putting on a high-flying freestyle exhibition. The awards ceremony should begin about 5 p.m.
Registration for the event is open to the public and will run from 8 to 11 a.m. Saturday morning. All intermediate and advanced riders are welcome to participate. For more information about DJSA, its safety requirements and programs, visit www.diablojsa.com or call Jim Lambert at 925-303-0713.