At this year’s Jet Around Cayman, a prominent local jet ski rider proved he could walk the walk and talk the talk.
Shane ‘Nobee’ Edwards won the Veterans Class at this year’s Jet Around Cayman. In addition his time of one hour and 36 minutes was good enough to place him tenth overall.
For most races Edwards usually runs his own jet ski. However for JAC he used one that belonged to his friends. Gary and GJ Whittaker lent Edwards a stock Yamaha FX Four Stroke.
Similar naturally aspirated machines can make over 120hp.
Edwards says he was surprised he did well as he was not fully prepared.
‘I didn’t train for the race. I just went out to have a good time and surprisingly won the class. The craft I rode performed excellent. The craft gave me what I needed to out-perform some of the faster and fitter competitors.’
Edwards is one of the more outspoken members of the jet ski community. He has publicly come forward to talk about issues such as the need for a jet ski association.
In addition he annually holds another big event in the jet ski race schedule: the East End Surf Challenge. This year’s race was held back in January.
According to Edwards this year’s success at JAC was no fluke. He has had numerous top five finishes over the last nine years.
Edwards reportedly placed fourth in the Open Class in 1999, second in the Open Class in 2001, second again in the Open Class in 2002 and third in the Open Class in 2003.
In addition, Edwards’ finishing time of one hour and 26 minutes back in 2002 was, at the time, the second fastest finish in the history of JAC.
Edwards says he, along with his group Team 2Frenzied, has made a point to be involved in almost every JAC.
‘My team has participated in the JAC race consistently for the past nine years. My team has been one of the teams to pave the way in the sport.
‘We have a nationally recognized event held every year on Heroes Day, a website and young riders from the community of East End. Our aim is to build the sport and we have done so by introducing riders to jet ski racing.’
Among the riders Edwards and his team have brought into the sport is former JAC winner Jason Smith, West Bay native Scott Hydes and East End talent Daniel McLean.
Many acclaimed riders can credit Edwards for getting into the sport. Among them is prodigy Vance Ramgeet. Ramgeet became one of the youngest winners in the history of JAC when he won in 2004.
In fact Edwards has a good eye for young talent. East End native Alberto Rankine is a former member of Team 2Frenzied. In his first JAC race in 2006 he placed third overall.
At this year’s JAC Team 2Frenzied consisted of Javon Dixon, Codie Rankine, Omari Rankine and Fabian Scott.
Edwards’ efforts have also drawn the interest of the business community. Over the years he has consistently drawn many sponsors. Edwards’ sponsors this year were Cayman Concrete, First Impression Interior and Exterior Decorators, Naya Wear and Pirates Cove Bar.
At the end of the day Edwards is grateful for the role his team and the Whittakers played in his success. He also acknowledges how fortunate he was to make it through the race without a major mishap.
‘I thank God for giving me the strength and ability to compete in the race and most importantly finish safe without injury.’