I just finished an eventful two weeks of being on the road for the Malibu Open in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the Mastercraft Pro Shootout in Calgary, Canada and the U.S. Nationals in San Marcos, Texas. Unfortunately now like the rest of you, I am back to reality working my desk job wishing I was out on the water.
The Pro Ski Tour puts on a great event at Veterans Park. I missed this event last year due to my friend’s wedding so I was excited to make it back to Milwaukee this year. Unfortunately I had an early exit this year as I did not make the first cut missing 11.25m for the first time in a very long time. It is never fun having to sit on the shore and watch the rest of the weekend. I made the most of it by enjoying the great skiing and taking the opportunity to really watch and break down other skiers’ technique. I started preparing mentally for the Mastercraft Pro Shootout so I could be in a positive mindset for the next event which just a few days away.
The Waterski Awards also took place in Milwaukee on Friday night. The event highlighted the past 12 months on the water and recognized the male and female athletes of the year in slalom, trick and jump as well as juniors. The Waterski Magazine did a great job hosting the event and Dano the Mano did a great job as the MC. They also honored John Worden for everything he did for the Malibu Open in years pasts and everything he did for the sport of water skiing. John will truly be missed by everyone in our sport. Here is a picture of the west coast folks at the awards banquet.
Mastercraft Pro Shootout
As I arrived in Calgaray, I was ready to bounce back from my early fall at Malibu Open. I had a great practice ride and went site seeing in Banff National Park with Joel Howley and his parents before the event.
It was tournament day and I was hoping to wake up feeling great but it was the exact opposite. I woke up with a very tight upper back and stiff neck. I was able to loosen it up a bit before I skied. I ended up tying my personal best by running firstname.lastname@example.org/41off which put me in 4th place after the 1st round. I was excited with my performance but I could barley get out of the water due to the tremendous amount of pain. I was able to see a massage therapist on site which really helped. I iced and took care of myself the rest of the night. The top two scores from the first round advanced to the finals and everyone else had to ski a second round the next day and you had to be in the top 6 to advance to the finals. Insane skiing took place in the first round with 16 men running 10.75m. This was said to be a record for the most 10.75m lines completed in one round of a pro event.
Video from Round 1
I woke up even stiffer the next day and was really worried about my body and even if I should ski. I was able to loosen the body up again and felt that I could give it a good effort out on the water. I was the 2nd seed in the 2nd round so I knew what I had to do when I took to the water. Three guys had email@example.com and two had firstname.lastname@example.org so I knew 3 would guarantee me a spot to the finals. I did just that, I ran email@example.com and secured the 4th seed going into the finals. I was stoked to run firstname.lastname@example.org back to back rounds and to make another final; my 4th final of the year. Surprisingly my body felt alright after the 2nd round and my goal was to stay loose before the finals. In the finals we had a 12m start and the prestine conditions we had the last two days turned to swirling and gusting winds. The finals didn’t go as well as I would have liked as the tail popped out at one ball at 10.75m and I finished in 7th. I still obained one of my goals to make the finals so I was happy with my overall perforance of skiing great 2 out of the 3 rounds.
Video from Round 2
Men’s Round 1 & 2 Results
I found myself back in Austin, Texas area where I was a few weeks ago for the Aquaplex Invitational Record. The days leading up to nationals I skied with some of the top junior skiers in the country; Bailey Austin, Daniel Dipol and Samantha Dumala. I always enjoy going to Nationals as everyone from our country comes together. My skiing didn’t go as planned as I fell midway through 10.75m but I did have the opportunity to participate in some really cool things at nationals. My dad always taught me to enjoy the journey. The skiing is only a small part of the experience. I was the boat judge for Boys 1 Slalom. I was able to watch Cooper Tate ski for the first time as he won Nationals, running 2,5@12m. This year, Cooper broke my 15 year old Boys 1 National Slalom Record, 3@12m, a few times with his best score being email@example.com. So it was great to finally watch Cooper rip.
I also had the opportunity to hand out awards on behalf of my sponsor HO Skis, with my teammate Jon Travers, at Tuesday’s Celebration Station. Celebration Station was a great addition to Nationals this year as it awarded all skiers who won medals that day at the same time!
My sponsor Centurion Boats sponsored the Junior Awards Banquet and I was privileged to hand out awards and congratulate the junior skiers on their outstanding skiing at nationals. I always enjoy supporting and helping out the juniors; as they are the future of our sport. I like to give back to the juniors because I received a lot of benefits when I was a junior and I remember how “cool” it was to receive awards from the pros and having the opportunity to meet the pros I looked up to.
Alana and Asher Jones (pictured below) both received most improve slalom skiers in their divisions and Alana received most improve trick skier as well! The Jone’s must have been skiing a lot in the last 12 months. Congrats Alana and Asher, keep up the great skiing!!