Jordan ‘JJ’ McLean may be a world champion but his goal next year is to nab Cayman’s biggest prize.
The Bodden Town native states he wants to win the 2012 Jet Around Cayman race, the largest jet ski competition in the Cayman Islands. McLean, 22, states he especially wants to challenge current champion Roshad Goff.
“I missed a lot of time here,” McLean said. “I wasn’t here this summer and I missed Jet Around 2011. I won it in 2008 and 2009 and last year I didn’t finish as I broke down with mechanical issues.
“I want to do Jet Around next year. Roshad is hard to beat but I’m looking forward to that. He’s a very competitive guy though I can’t underestimate anyone else.”
McLean is back on Island after claiming the pro class championship at the 2011 International Jet Sports Boating Association World Finals this month. McLean competed in the Expert and Pro Runabout Limited divisions in Lake Havasu, Arizona.
Interestingly, for that competition he was joined by Goff and his younger brother Nathan McLean. Goff competed in the Expert Open class and placed sixth while Nathan finished ninth in the Amateur Limited division. McLean states both represented Cayman well.
“Nathan is getting into the flow of things. He had some hiccups but he raced well and had fun. Roshad did good as well. He had a lot of Cayman support and he represented our country very good as well.
“I would also like to congratulate Erika Olde on her third place finish in the Women’s Roundabout Limited class. She’s another Caymanian but she has been away in school.”
McLean’s world championship comes at the close of a busy year of racing. He competed in the US national series with American team-mates Chris MacClugage and Dustin Charrier on Dean Charrier’s Dean’s Team racing outfit. He also claimed the Canadian national title. He has spent well over $10,000 in race fees and expenses while maintaining his 1.8 litre, 1812cc, supercharged Yamaha FZR he has competed on since last year.
The son of East End native Mack McLean and Bodden Town resident Elaine McLean states he is fully invested in jet ski racing.
“It’s an expensive sport and you have to be prepared for eventualities. I’ve been racing eight years and I’m going to be around this sport for some time. I don’t want to stop.
“I’m looking forward to seeing Caymanians excel in this sport each year. We all grew up close to the water, dealing with all sorts of water conditions and I know us Caymanians are passionate about anything to do with the water. It definitely gives our racers a competitive advantage.”
For McLean the sport is also a family affair. Locally he is part of the Tryin a Ting race team featuring his brother Nathan and his first cousin Daron McLean (son of East End politician Arden McLean). Both Nathan and Daron had strong showings at this year’s Jet Around race. JJ states he hopes Daron can compete abroad soon.
“Daron is a good rider. I hope he comes with us to the world finals next year. I also hope for more Caymanian riders next year.”