Kenosha, Wis. - Fans lined the shores of Lake Andrea at Prairie Springs Park in Pleasant Prairie, Wis. today for the third day of the 2008 Air Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink, as most of the pro divisions took to the water for the first at this year's contest.
Highlighting today's festivities was the Pro Women's Division quarterfinals, where the top pro female rippers in the U.S. battled it out on the water in two heats of five. Former national champs Emily Copeland Durham of Denver, Colo. and Dallas Friday of Orlando, Fla. led their respective heats today will now enter tomorrow's semifinals as the top-seeded rider of their heat. Both Copeland Durham and Friday will look to leave current national champ Amber Wing in their wake during the semis, as Wing also advanced to the next round.
In the Pro Wakeskate Division, the U.S.'s top pro shredders hit the water today for their quarterfinals, where reigning national champ Reed Hansen of Groveland, Fla. appeared to be on track to repeat at the Nationals. Hansen threw down a stellar run, landing him the highest score of the day in his division with a 91.67 and will now enter tomorrow's semifinals as the top-seeded rider.
The Jr. Men's Division battled it out on the water today in the semifinals, where 12 riders competed in three heats of four with only the top-two riders in each heat advancing onto Sunday's finals. Current national champion Jimmy LaRiche of Boca Raton, Fla. continued his dominance at the Nationals today, after posting his second consecutive perfect score of 100 points. LaRiche will enter the six-man final as the top-seeded rider, where we look to claim his second consecutive national title.
11 of the top amateur female riders, ages 14-18, hit the water today for the Jr. Women Division semifinals. More than half of the competition was sent home packing, as only the top-two riders from the two heats advanced past the semifinal round. Danni Petraitis, Holland Finley, Corrie Dyer and Megan Blaschka will vie for the division's national title in tomorrow's finals.
The youngest riders out on the water today, the Boys Division, kicked off their quarterfinals, competing in five heats with only the top-two riders from each heat advancing onto the next round. Cooper Swink of Canyon Lake, Calif. posted the highest score of the day in the division with 70 points. Swink and the nine other riders moving onto the next round will hit the water in tomorrow's semifinals.
The Men's II Division wrapped up their finals today with Nick Link of Louisville, Ky. taking home the 2008 national title. Link and the top-five riders in the Men's II Division will now head onto the World Championship next month.
The nationals will continue tomorrow, Saturday Aug. 9 beginning at 9 a.m.
The Air Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink is a five-day carnival of water-sports action. But not all the action takes place on the water. On land, fans will experience tons of great music and food; 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. Admission is free and the event will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
To catch all the wakeboarding action from home, tune in to FUEL TV. For exact air dates, visit www.KingofWake.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.
The Air Nautique by Correct Craft is the exclusive tow boat of the WWA Nationals. Celebrating more than 80 years of excellence in the marine industry, Correct Craft is a family-owned manufacturer of internationally acclaimed, competition-caliber water-ski and wakeboard boats, as well as boats for recreational enjoyment. Correct Craft Inc. is known for superior-quality products, cutting-edge technology and innovative hull designs.
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 Air Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink. WakeBoarding is the definitive source on all things wakeboarding, with expert coverage of professional instruction, gear, boats and the latest news.
The Air Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink is organized by World Sports & Marketing of Orlando, Fla. The WWA Nationals have the support of the following sponsors: Correct Craft, Rockstar Energy Drink, PCM, Fox, Mona Vie, the U.S. Air Force, Hyperlite Wakeboards, CWB Wakeboards, Gator Boards, Ronix Wakeboards, Oakley, Reef, Cire, wakeworld.com, wakeboarder.com and theliquidcircus.com.