SmartPlate, which was coined by Skier's Choice for their 2007 Supra boat line, does two things. First of all, it remembers and personalizes a rider's wake shape. Secondly, and equally important, it allows the boat to get on plane quicker.
Why the concept? "Once ballast systems were introduced, more consumers started adding weight to their boats, which increased the time it took for a boat to get on plane," explained Matt Brown, Product Development Manager for Skier's Choice. This is where the "smart" idea came into effect. "The ability for a boat to get on plane quicker with improved fuel efficiency while maintaining ease of rider input all seemed to be advantages that could contribute in making a hydraulic wakeplate smarter."
The new "smart" technology works by positioning the wakeplate to an automatic down position optimizing hole shot performance. It also has the ability to customize plate position for each user. Essentially the SmartPlate system is considered a hydraulic wakeplate, but offers several other advantages that the standard hydraulic wakeplate fails to offer.
SmartPlate works with three variables that can be adjusted easily by the driver: 1) the wakeplate-down position; 2) the wakeplate-up position; and 3) the cross-over speed. Speed and wakeplate-position options can be set in either automatic or manual mode.
Perfect Pass, a "cruise" and speed control feature that is used in Supra boats aligns itself by working hand in hand with the SmartPlate system. "The driver is able to move the throttle which maneuvers the SmartPlate to an automatic up/down position and is also able to hold speed to within .2 miles per hour," said Brown. "Anyone could drive a world class tournament with these types of controls! It makes it easier on the driver and personalizes wake shape and speed for the rider."
The SmartPlate is not the only advancement Skier's Choice has originated. Back in the 80s, they were the first company to introduce a trim tab for wake adjustment which was a manually adjustable tab used to create lift on the back of boats; they were also the first to use a hydraulic wakeplate, which was introduced in the 90s.
The SmartPlate system is currently installed in their 2007 Supra boat line. "SmartPlate is definitely a turning point in the wakeboarding arena," said Brown. "Boat owners and riders alike now have the advantage of personalizing their performance & control options with our new system. We believe this is nothing but a stepping stone to future advancements in the wakeboarding world."