The Backstory To Kipp Caddy's Wild Jet Ski Accident at Cape Solander - Stab Mag
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The start of a series of unfortunate events. Photo: Zach Bowden

The Backstory To Kipp Caddy’s Wild Jet Ski Accident at Cape Solander

“The ski got stuck in reverse and wouldn’t kick back into drive.”

news // May 9, 2021
Words by Jack Mutschler
Reading Time: 2 minutes

It’s easy to fuck up on a jet ski. Sneaky outside sets, misfiring engines, and other skis nearby are a few of the many opportunities for a tow session to go awry. One mental mistake and you’re on the rocks, with every tourist nearby pointing their 4k-friendly iPhones in your direction. 

Coolangatta started the string of madness with a Darren Handley’s yardsale at Kirra. Then Hawaii sent a whiskey throttle to infinity and beyond. Not to be outdone, Brazil came in hot with whatever you want to call this. Yesterday, Sydney joined the unwelcoming spotlight with this clip of Kipp Caddy at Cape Solander.

The comments on the now monthly Ski-Doo wreck are brutal and unforgiving. The ethical reasoning for this is the fact that it’s dangerous. Safety is the priority (especially in a crowded lineup), and an inexperienced ski driver shouldn’t be hanging with the big boys.

Specific scenarios are born from negligence, but often we see qualified pilots finding themselves in an XXL pickle. Kip Caddy is no stranger to a waverunner, given his ten years of slinging in to waves. He’s successfully navigated tow sessions in Nazaré, Mullaghmore, and Shipsterns. Accidents are inevitable, and Kip provided us with a detailed account of his most recent one:

I could see it all unfolding before it even happened. The ski got stuck in reverse and wouldn’t kick back into drive. It began to drift, and I noticed the sets starting to roll in. Once I realized that the ski couldn’t be shifted out of reverse, we grabbed a rope from another ski to try and tow us out of the break, but we were a few seconds too late. It was hard watching my new ski getting absolutely pounded into the cliff without being able to do anything. One of the skis came and dropped me to where you paddle in, and I just sprinted around the rocks as fast as I possibly could. By the time I got there, a few lords were trying to pull the ski out. With the sets continuing to roll in, the best option was to jump on and drive it out of there. Unfortunately, the ski got stuck on a rock, and I had no other choice but to jump off. It was a bit of a waiting game until the ski washed up enough to lift it out of the water, but the ski was wrecked by that time. A bunch of legends got together and helped carry the ski up the cliff to the car park, thanks guys. 

Clip by Chris Demajo.

Despite the misfortune, Kip got the ski in the car, then went back out and paddled into this.

When asked about how to avoid this stuff in the future, Caddy answered with the truth. “It’s a dangerous profession. I have accepted that some situations are seriously just unavoidable. There isn’t much in that situation that I would have done differently.”

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