Riders Look to Make Grade as í06 Pro Wakeboard Tour Season Begins in Georgia
Acworth, GA Ė On Thursday, Lake Allatoona in Acworth, Georgia became the site for the MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tourís first event of 2006 where over 200 riders battled for just a few qualifying spots for the rest of the events in the í06 Pro Wakeboard Tour season.
Thursday was a chance for riders to make a name for themselves. Nearly 70 Pro Men Wakeboarders and 50 Pro Wakeskaters were fighting for just 16 qualifying spots each.
One of those riders to earn a spot in the next round and a chance to compete the rest of the season on the Pro wakeboard Tour was Atlanta native Corey Bradley. Bradley, is in his second year competing in the Pro Menís division. He finished in 23rd place in the final Pro Wakeboard Tour season standings in í05.
Bradley won his Pro Menís Qualifying heat on Thursday to move into Saturdayís Pro Men Quarterfinals. Winning his qualifying heat isnít just good for Bradley for this event, it puts him in great position for the rest of the í06 Pro Wakeboard Tour season.
Bradley, 21, was born in Atlanta and attended North Hall High School in Gainesville, Georgia. He is currently living and training in Orlando, Florida with 2004 Wakeboard World Champion Andrew Adkison. Bradley finished in 17th place in the 2005 KING OF WAKE World Rankings with two top 20 finishes and one top 10 finish on the season.
Other notables earning a qualifying spot on Thursday at Acworth included Shaun Murray, one of the most well know personalities in the sport of wakeboarding. Murray earned a spot by winning the fifth heat on Thursday. It has been two years since Murray has competed professionally, going out on top at the end of 2003 by winning the World Championship.
Also moving on today was Shawn Watson the two-time Wakeboard National Championship who lost most of the í05 wakeboarding season due to injury. Watson won the second heat on Thursday to earn a qualifying spot.
As the first event of 2006, Thursday was a big test for many Junior Menís riders making the jump to pro. Three riders who were amateurs last year, but moved up to the pros in Acworth are Aaron Rathy, Jeff House and Phillip Combs. All three qualified for the next round by winning qualifying heats on Thursday.
MasterCraft will be the exclusive towboat for the Pro Tour as it has been since the Tourís wakeboarding events began in 1992. Indmar Marine Engines will provide the power for MasterCraftís line of competition towboats, the X Series.
The MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour is a five-event circuit organized by World Sports & Marketing of Orlando, Florida. The Pro Tour has the support of the following: Verizon Wireless, U.S Air Force, Circuit City, Rip It Energy Fuel, Sea Doo watercraft, Billabong, Hyperlite Wakeboards, Perfect Pass, Infinity Marine Audio, Liquid Force, Gator Boards, CWB, J-Star, Oakley, Reef, Epiphone Guitars, Wakeworld.com, Wakeboarder.com, and One Percent Design.
Rip It energy fuel is the exclusive sponsor of the JX Series, the proving ground for amateur male riders 18-under.
Wake Boarding, published by World Publications, is the official magazine of the Pro Wakeboard Tour. Wake Boarding is the definitive source on all things wakeboarding, with expert coverage of professional instruction, gear, boats and the latest news.
Thursdayís Qualifying Results
MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour
Lake Allatoona in Acworth, Georgia