Reno, Nev. - The MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour was in full throttle today as fans lined the shores of Sparks Marina to catch all the high-flying, rail-sliding, water-sports action on the second day of the contest.
The festivities kicked off today with 15 of the world's best female rippers in the Pro Women’s Division qualifying round. Competing in five heats of three, only the top-two riders from each heat advanced onto the semifinals.
In the semifinal round, all eyes were on the undefeated Nicola Butler (Cape Town, South Africa), as the 16-year old standout looked to continue her run towards perfection. Butler did not disappoint, as the wakeboard phenom led her heat to earn one of the six spots in tomorrow's finals. Should Butler take the top spot in the finals, she will become the first rider in the Tour's 17-year history to go undefeated on the season.
The world's best hit the water today for the Pro Men's Division Round of 30. The Round of 30 featured 10 heats of three with only the top-two riders from each heat advancing onto tomorrow's quarterfinals.
Among the 20 riders advancing onto the quarterfinal round was the "Ice Man" Phillip Soven (Longwood, Fla.) who led his heat today with a near perfect score of 98.50. Soven, like Butler, is unbeaten so far this season on the MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour and will also look to go down in history as undefeated.
In a surprising turn of events, 2007 Rookie of the Year "Easy E" Adam Errington (Ullapool, Scotland) led his heat today, beating out the top-seeded rider Rusty Malinoski (Humboldt, Sask.) for the top spot. Both Errington and the "Bone Crusher" will advance onto tomorrow’s quarterfinals.
In the Jr. Men's Division, 10 of the top amateur rippers in the world battled it out on the water today in the semifinals, competing in two heats of five with only the top-two riders from each heat advancing onto tomorrow's finals.
After everything was said and done, the Jr. Men's Division finals will be an Aussie/ American showdown, as the four finalists are Jimmy LaRiche (USA), Jarrod Askew (AUS), Ryan King (USA) and Harley Clifford (AUS). All four Jr. riders will vie for spot on tomorrow’s podium and last-minute points toward the overall Tour title.
The event will conclude tomorrow, Sunday, July 13 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at Sparks Marina on July 13 for $10 (general admission), $5 (ages 6-12) or free (ages 5 and under).
The MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour is a three-day carnival of water-sports action. But not all of the action takes place on the water. On land, fans will experience tons of great food and music; athlete autograph signings; chances to win free giveaways; and shopping at the most cutting-edge stores for water-sports equipment including boats, wakeboards, wakeskates, sunglasses and the latest in wakeboarding and surfing fashions.
To catch all the wakeboarding action from home, tune in to FUEL TV. For exact air dates, visit ProWakeboardTour.com.
FUEL TV is a 24/7 action-sports lifestyle network for wakeboarding, skateboarding, snowboarding, surfing, BMX and freestyle motocross. A unit of Fox Cable Networks, FUEL TV was launched July 1, 2003, and is seen in 25 million U.S. homes. To subscribe to FUEL TV, call 877-4-FUEL-TV. For program times and other information, visit www.fuel.tv.
MasterCraft is the exclusive tow boat for the Pro Wakeboard Tour, as it has been since the tour's wakeboarding events began in 1992. Indmar Marine engines will provide the power for MasterCraft's X Series line of competition tow boats.
Rockstar is the world's most powerful energy drink. Developed to improve the recovery time of those who lead active and exhausting lifestyles, Rockstar Energy Drink is available in 10 flavors -- Original, Sugar Free, Juiced, Zero Carb, Guava, Pomegranate, Punched, Roasted Mocha, Roasted Vanilla Light and Roasted Latte -- at convenience stores and retail grocery outlets across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia and the United Kingdom.
WakeBoarding, published by Bonnier Corp., is the official magazine of the MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour. WakeBoarding is the definitive source on all things wakeboarding, with expert coverage of professional instruction, gear, boats and the latest news.
The MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour has the support of the following sponsors: MasterCraft, Rockstar Energy Drink, Mona Vie, the U.S. Air Force, Indmar, Billabong, Hyperlite, CWB, Gator Boards, Ronix, Oakley, Reef, Ogio, Cire, Zero Off, Epiphone, Reno Tahoe, wakeworld.com, wakeboarder.com and theliquidcircus.com.