Just outside Seattle, WA lies the most hallowed grounds in waterskiing. Herb O'Brien dug Radar Lake in 1972 and since then it has become the most iconic lake in the sport. In August of 2017 we hosted a skiing extravaganza in a fashion that would make Herb proud. The Pros were given 6.5 minutes to post the highest score possible, they could skip passes, miss and try again, the bottom line was they had 6.5 minutes to post as high of a score as possible. Once the skiing was done, the fire was stoekd and campfire shenanigans ensued. Check out what unraveled to be a once, maybe twice in a lifetime opportunity.
I get to hang with Dave Wingerter, HO Skis Vice President, as he works through the questions brought to him by you guys, via BallOfSpray.
Just a sample of the questions covered in this podcast from BallOfSpray Forum:
Determination, strength, perseverance and focus, topped with an occasional smile...that's what girls are made of.
We caught Stokesperson and Connelly skier, Ellie Horton training with fellow athletes, Natascha Roettcher, Manon Costard and Siani Oliver.
Hide yo buoys - These girls slay.
This past weekend at Callaway Gardens’ Robin Lake, Connelly Skis newest elite athlete Manon Costard competed for the women’s slalom title at the 59th Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard tournament. In the preliminaries, Costard put up an impressive score of 3 at 39.5 off to seize the third spot into the finals. Despite battling stiff winds and tricky rollers in the championship round, Costard showed extreme confidence, relying on the predicability and stability of her GT.
“All weekend, the ski helped me create angle and stay early in the course, which gave me some room to deal with the challenging conditions without having to panic or rush at any point,” Costard said.
Initially tying for first, Costard dueled it out for gold with world record holder Regina Jaquess and clinched the win with a score of 3 buoys at 38 feet off for her first ever Masters triumph.
“This first win at Masters, in addition to the amazing emotions it comes with, brings me even deeper certainty in my decision of skiing on the GT.”
Pine Mountain, GA (May 27, 2018) – The all-new Ski Nautique made an incredible impression this weekend at the 59th Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard Tournament® presented by GM Marine Engine Technology at Callaway Gardens. During the final day of competition, new Masters champions were made at the most prestigious event in all of watersports. The all-new Ski Nautique pulled the best waterskiers in the world to victory, while the Super Air Nautique G23 was on-hand to pull the best wakeboarders and wakeskaters to Masters titles as well.
In the Women's Trick division, Neilly Ross took home the win beating the rest of the stacked final of all Nautique athletes. Neilly scored 9,550 points to earn the victory. "It's been a whirlwind of a weekend," said Neilly "Competing in Junior Slalom and then Pro Trick, I had a tough winter with an injury but have worked extremely hard and couldn't be more grateful to be back on the water at the Nautique Masters. There's no other event like it and I'm so honored to be here and take home my second pro Masters title." After Neilly, team Nautique athletes Erika Lang (USA), Natallia Berdnikava (BLR), and Anna Gay (USA) rounded out the Final round respectively.
In the Pro Men Trick discipline another Nautique athlete, Aliaksei Zharnasek (BLR), posted an incredible score of 11,870 to notch yet another win under his belt. Danylo Filchenko (UKR) came in second place with a score of 10,900 while Franck Desboyaux (USA) came in third place with 9,280 points.
During the Final round of the Masters Big Dawg competition, Jeff Rodgers (USA) claimed victory against Greg Badal (USA). We'd like to congratulate Federico Jaramillo (COL) on winning the O'Brien Watersports scholarship during the Junior Men Slalom exhibition.
Manon Costard (FRA) won the Pro Women's Slalom division after defeating Regina Jaquess (USA) in a run-off after they both ran an exceptional 2 @ 39.5-off. Pulled by the all-new Ski Nautique, Whitney McClintock grabbed third place after running 1 @ 19.5 off.
In the Pro Men Slalom Finals, the crowd watched intently as Team Nautique athlete Nate Smith found himself on top of the podium for the 5th time at the 59th Masters. Nate skied incredible behind the all-new Ski Nautique grabbing 3 @ 41-off to take home another Masters title. “I’m extremely excited to come away this weekend with my 5th Masters title," said Nautique team athlete Nate Smith. "Robin Lake is a place where I love to ski, and I felt great this year behind the all-new Ski Nautique. That was my 4th Masters win in a row, and next year I’ll be looking for 5!”
In the Wakeskate division, The Super Air Nautique G23 set up perfect wakes for Reed Hansen (USA) to earn himself a Masters title with a score of 85, followed by Coco Mendez (USA) with an 80 and Brian Grubb (USA) with a 75.67.
The PCM, GM Marine powered Super Air Nautique G23 wake was on point During the Women’s Wakeboard Finals, where the many on hand witnessed Meagan Ethell (USA) grab another Masters title. After Meagan it was Nicola Butler (USA) coming in second after she put together 2 clean passes and scored an 89.33 and Nautique athlete Erika Lang (USA) in third with an 80.67.
Robin Lake laid down flat during the Men’s Wakeboard event. This year, Harley Clifford (AUS) took the win landing multiple double flips and a heelside 900 off the double-up behind the award-winning G23 earning himself a 97.67. Nic Rapa (AUS) took second followed by Nautique Athletes Tony Iacconi (AUS) and Mike Dowdy (USA).
Nautique athlete Jacinta Carroll continued her reign with another win in the Pro Women's Jump division. Jacinta blasted a 176 foot (53.8m) jump in the final to beat fellow Nautique team athlete Natallia Berdnikava (BLR) who posted a 159 foot (48.3m) jump. They were followed by Hanna Straltsova (BLR) and Lauren Morgan (USA) respectively.
During the Pro Men Jump division it was Freddy Krueger (USA) taking home the victory after jumping an incredible 231 feet in the final round. He was followed by Nautique team athlete Ryan Dodd (CAN) with a 223 foot jump 228 feet, Jack Critchley (GBR) with a 211 foot jump.
Pine Mountain, GA (May 25, 2018) – Today marked the start of the 59th Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard Tournament® presented by GM Marine Engine Technology. The story of the first day of the event were the titles claimed during the 26th Junior Masters behind the all-new Ski Nautique and award winning Super Air Nautique G23 at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia. The best junior waterski and wakeboard athletes took to beautiful Robin Lake to make their mark in history and take home the most coveted Junior titles in all of watersports.
As the first official day of the Masters, the GM Marine Engine Technology powered Ski Nautique pulled Nautique team athlete Paige Rini (CAN) to a Junior Masters championships in both the Junior Women's Trick and Slalom disciplines. Paige scored a 8,020 behind the all-new Ski Nautique to win the Trick portion of the event, then turned around and got 2 @ 38-off to take the Slalom win.
During the Junior Men's Trick division, it was Louis Duplan-Fribourg (FRA) taking the victory with 10,500 points, while Felipe Franco Belmont (PER) came in second place in 9,260. The Junior Men’s Slalom final saw Federico Jaramillo (COL) showcasing his talents and receiving a Junior Masters title after he ran 2 @ 39.5-off behind the completely redesigned Ski Nautique.
In Junior Women’s Jump, the pull from the 2019 Ski Nautique saw Brooke Baldwin (USA) jump an incredible distance of 137 feet (41.7m) to win the 26th Junior Masters title. During the Junior Men’s Jump, it was Louis Duplan-Fribourg with a distance of 177 feet (53.8m) to win the Junior Men's Jump portion of the event.
When it was all said and done, it was Paige Rini taking the overall Junior Women Masters title after feeling extremely comfortable behind the all-new Ski Nautique. With a couple first place finishes, Paige had an incredible day of skiing to earn the victory. “I’ve been coming here since I was a little girl and I love the Masters. Winning Slalom, Trick and Overall on Robin lake is the most incredible finish to my Junior ski career.”
On the Junior Men front, Louis Duplan-Fribourg took the overall win after getting on the podium in 2 disciplines. His first-place in the Jump and Trick was enough to stake his claim as the 26th overall Junior Masters champion.
The 5-time Wakeboard Boat of the Year in the Super Air Nautique G23 set up perfect wakes for the Junior Men’s Wakeboard riders, and after the smoke cleared it was Sam Brown (AUS) taking the Junior Masters victory. After laying down two insane passes, Sam found himself on top of the podium for the first time in history and stoked to stamp his name in history.
For complete up-to-date scores of the 26th Junior Masters, please visit masterswaterski.com/standings/
An invitation to compete in the Masters is universally considered an acknowledgement of achievement for reaching the pinnacle in a given watersports discipline - only the world's most elite athletes compete at the Masters. To view the 2018 criteria please visit the Masters website. This tournament is sanctioned by IWWF/USA Water Ski and WWA. Watch all of 59th Masters action live on Saturday May 26th starting at 8:00AM EDT, please visit masterswaterski.com.
We saw the merit for wider skis. It provided better performance and heightened improvement in the wider population of course goers. Doug Cannon has engineered Connelly products for 25 years, and along with a team of Connelly masterminds, he helped create the most efficient, effortless and predictable 34 mph ski on the market. Say hello to the Connelly Carbon V.
Forgiving, light and snappy, easily maneuverable, responsive. These are just a few of the qualities that set this buoy slayer apart from the pack.
Doug and the Connelly team originally bred the Carbon V from the Prophecy, the precursor to the GT. Unlike many other ski companies, Connelly created a ride that added more than just uniform width. They fashioned the Carbon V with a wider fore body to generate stabilization and speed as well as a slimmer tail for quicker edge changes. As a result, the Carbon V boasts aggressive turns without blowing out the tail and stays solid through the wakes.
According to Connelly elite slalomer Seth Stisher, the Carbon V is prime for people who are working their way to their max speed and need support at longer line lengths and slower speeds. It’s a great stepping stone for learning the course for the first time and honing clean, basic, efficient moves, he says.
Because the Carbon V was constructed with the same geometry (bevels, sidewall, tunnel) as the GT, skiers are able to work on the same principles as someone who is focusing on short line slaloming.
“Our top end skis were always designed to perform their best at a top level,” Doug says. “Skiing on them at slower speeds leaves some performance on the table. We wanted to make an extremely high performing ski that worked to its full potential at slower speeds (32-34 mph).”
Thus, the Carbon V was fabricated with efficiency in mind, so skiers could accomplish big goals with less effort.
If you are dreaming of 38 off but are still working on the yellow loop, we think the Carbon V is your answer to prayer.
The Syndicate Hilltop Pro-Am, a 2-day 4-round record slalom tournament capped off with a Head-to-Head Pro final will celebrate it’s 3rd year on August 4th and 5th, 2018. Held at the immaculate Hilltop Lake in Arlington, Washington, the event offers pro skiers a shot at a $10,000 prize purse at a venue capable of producing world record scores. In the record rounds, amateurs share the dock with pros, skiing for personal bests and HO gear at the heavily tree protected blue waters of Hilltop.
Check out our recap of the Syndicate Hilltop 2017 Action:
Last year, Nick Adams took home the crown after hard fought head-to-head matchups, defeating the likes of both Jon Travers and Will Asher, while Jaimee Bull took home the pro womens victory.