For Immediate Release
View the Carnival photo gallery here. (Photos by Chad Sharpe)
The Carnival - Final Results
The Coveted Carnival Belt Changes Hands
Orlando, Fla. - Wakeboarding's most prestigious rail contest wrapped up today at The Projects outside of Orlando, Florida, as five riders battled head-to-head for the title.
The Sea-Doo Wake Edition PWC delivered consistent pulls all day while Fox and Red Bull kept the party flowing with food, drinks, clowns, girls and a DJ. Shawn Watson, who had been riding strong all weekend, won his round against Kevin Henshaw and Aaron Rathy won a close match with Keith Lidberg.
Watson continued his streak against Rathy and faced returning champ Parks Bonifay for the final round. Dano the Mano set the stage for what has become Wakeboarding's Heavy Weight title showdown. Watson again rode solid, landing a switch toeside 270 to back lip / 270 off the Fox Transfer (angle wall) and a nose press across the entire Hyperlite A-Frame. Bonifay had a respectable showing with several hammers, however Watson pulled a higher score. Tony Smith, who judged the event commented on Watson's mastery of the entire course. "Watson has a solid, consistent run with a lot of variety."
Watson joins an elite group of rail masters - only Bonifay and Scott Byerly have had ownership of the belt previously. "It's an honor to win the belt. It's not even about the money," Watson said. "Endurance plays a big factor. The course is set up so well and it wears you down. The Carnival is a great event and Pat Panakos does a great job building the course. You definitely have to have a good strategy to be successful. It was great to see Parks ride well, I know what it's like to go through a knee injury and it was cool to see him pushing it and throwing hammers."
The Carnival is made possible by the support of Fox Riders Co., Red Bull, Sea-Doo, Hyperlite and Alliance Multimedia.