Regina Jaquess set a pending Women’s world slalom record of 3 buoys at 41-feet off on June 17 at the Cedar Ridge Early Record in Canton, Miss. The score was her second pending world record of the weekend (2-1/4 buoys at 41-feet off in the first round) and beats the current record of 2 buoys at 41-feet off that she shares with Whitney McClintock.
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Team GOODE’s Regina Jaquess had a historic weekend at the Cedar Ridge Early Record in Canton, Miss., setting two pending Women’s world slalom records.
Her first pending record of the weekend came on the first day when she scored 2-1/4 buoys at 41-feet off. She then pushed the record out even further the next day with a score of 3 buoys at 41-feet off. Both scores exceed the current record of 2 buoys at 41-feet off that she first set last October and that Whitney McClintock tied in April.
“Nobody is skiing better than Regina right now and she’s not slowing down any,” said Dave Goode, founder and president of GOODE Skis. “She’s healthy, in great physical condition and her GOODE ski is working exceptionally well. I can’t wait to see what she’s going to do with most of the summer and some big tournaments still to come.”
If approved by the IWWF, Regina’s score of 3 buoys at 41-feet off will mark the largest jump in the Women’s world record since 1996, when Kristi Overton-Johnson upped it by two buoys while also on a GOODE ski.
GOODE has signed professional water skier Terry Winter, the well-known practitioner and proponent of the “West Coast” slalom style, to not only ski and compete on the company’s world-record setting skis, but to put his expertise and creativity to work on the company’s graphic design, sales, marketing, and product development.
“When we began talking to Terry about riding our skis, it quickly became apparent that he had much more to offer than just the traditional ski sponsorship relationship,” said Dave Goode. “We saw the opportunity to add the influence of one of the sport’s most technically advanced and creative athletes to our products.”
In addition to representing GOODE at professional competitions, Terry will aid in the technical design of products, attend trade shows, participate in marketing efforts and help design the graphics of numerous hard and soft goods. Parallel to his professional skiing career, Winter has developed his graphic design skills consulting for numerous companies, in and out of the sport.
Winter, stated, “I’m excited to join Team GOODE. It allows me to continue doing what I love – skiing – while giving me the opportunity to work with the industry leader. Working on the functional design of the product, making it look cool, and then being able to go out and rip on that product is just so sick.”
Winter has been skiing on the 65-3/4 inch GOODE NANO for the past few weeks and has been impressed with the ski.
“Its shape and size makes turning so easy and it really holds the water,” said Winter who is currently ranked No. 13 in Men’s Slalom on the IWWF Elite Rankings List. “I’ve never had a ski that turned so hard on both sides while offering such a sense of stability and security. I am amazed at how well the NANO performs, and I know my potential to run buoys has gone up since switching to it. This past weekend was my first tournament on GOODE and I ran 2 buoys at 41-feet off in one round and 2-1/4 buoys at 41 in the other.”
Winter will be joining a strong Team GOODE that includes seven of the top-10 skiers on the Men’s and Women’s IWWF Elite Rankings Lists – more than any other ski manufacturer. The team includes the reigning Men’s world champion and both the current Men’s and Women’s open slalom world records were first set on GOODE skis.
“When I told Nick Parsons and T-Gas (Thomas Degasperi) about Terry joining the team they were very excited to have him on board,” said Goode. “He is one of the most respected skiers in the sport, both on and off the water. The combination of his great skiing talent and the type of person he is makes him a perfect addition to the team.”
SPOILER ALERT: If you’d rather watch the special online broadcast of the GOODE Atlanta Pro Am before knowing the final results, head over to Ball of Spray and watch the video now.
For those of you sticking around, we’re glad to be finally able to share the results with you as we’ve been keeping a lid on them in order to preserve anticipation for the online broadcast.
Following up their first- and second-place finishes, respectively, at the Masters the day before, Regina Jaquess and Thomas Degasperi each beat out a field of slalom’s top pros to earn titles at the GOODE Atlanta Pro Am hosted by WaterSki Atlanta.
Regina scored 3-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2-feet off in a runoff with Karina Nowlan (5 buoys at 38-feet off) to earn her second professional victory of the weekend. Whitney McClintock took third with 5 buoys at 38-feet off, while Team GOODE’s Karen Truelove was fourth with 3 buoys at the same line length.
Coming off his second-place Masters performance, T-Gas scored 3 buoys at 41-feet off to earn the win, with Nate Smith second (2-1/2 buoys at 41-feet off) and Will Asher (2 buoys at 41-feet off) third.
In Masters Men’s, former Open Men’s world-record holder Jeff Rodgers scored 3 buoys at 41-feet off to beat Dave Miller (4-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2-feet off) in the head-to-head final. Dave’s fellow GOODE skiers, Jay Leach (3-1/2 buoys at 38-feet off) and Chad Scott (2-1/2 buoys at 38-feet off), took third and fourth, respectively.
Team GOODE’s pros aren’t the only ones breaking records and winning tournaments, as two Junior skiers have recently put up big scores on their GOODE skis.
Italy’s Brando Caruso scored 5-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off last weekend to set a new Italian Junior national record.
Texan Ruth McCreary continues to bounce back from a stress fracture that sidelined her for much of 2011, as she tied the Girls 2 national slalom record of 3 buoys at 38-feet off. The mark also sets a pending South Central regional record.
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The innovative engineering of the carbon fiber GOODE 9100 revolutionized the sport of water skiing and changed water ski construction forever. “The ski was simply phenomenal,” says Dave Goode. “Shortly after the launch of the 9100 a new Men’s Open World Record was set – 1 buoy at 43’ off. I knew making skis from carbon fiber rather than fiberglass would change the industry and set a new norm. The challenge was getting skiers to try my new ski. Once they skied on it they were amazed with the performance. I’ve had many requests to bring this ski back to the water, so I’ve decided to do just that, by creating a Limited Edition Classic GOODE 9100 one-time summer production run, not to exceed 200 skis.”
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Skiers on GOODEs swept the Boys slalom competition at the 12th Junior U.S. Open Water Ski Championships, as Dane Mechler, Nick Lang and Wyatt Haines took first, second and third, respectively.
Dane scored 2 buoys at 38-feet off to claim the title, while Nick and Wyatt rounded 5 and 4 buoys at 35-feet off. Daniel Di Pol, also skiing on a GOODE, took fourth place with a score of 1-1/2 at 35-feet off.
The two-day tournament, which took place at Lake of Dreams in Jerseyville, Ill., featured Men and Women (ages 17 to 21) and Boys and Girls divisions (ages 16 and under) in slalom, tricks and jumping.
Regina Jaquess dominated the 53rd Masters, setting a course record on the way to her third career Women’s slalom Masters title.
Coming off her record-setting 2-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off in Saturday’s semifinals, Regina scored 1 buoy at 39-1/2 feet off in the final round to edge Whitney McClintock’s half buoy at the same rope length. Team GOODE skiers Clementine Lucine and Karen Truelove placed third and fourth with 2-1/2 and 2 buoys at 38-feet off, respectively.
In Men’s slalom, Team GOODE’s Thomas Degasperi came up just short of the victory, taking second with 3 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off. Nate Smith earned his first ever Masters title with 5 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off. Aaron Larkin took third with 1 buoy at 39-1/2 feet off and Chris Parrish finished fourth with 2-1/2 buoys at 38 feet off.
When skiing’s newest pro tournament – the GOODE Atlanta Pro Am – is held on Memorial Day in Atlanta, Ga., it will not only feature a lineup that would make many pro events green with envy, it will be a testament to the determination and love of the sport of its organizer, WaterSki Atlanta founder and Mens 3 competitor George Obser.
Earlier this week we were able to get George to take a short break from his pre-event preparations to talk about the tournament, its unique format and why he thinks it’s important to give pros opportunities to compete in cash-prize events.
Can you tell us a little about the GOODE Atlanta Pro Am and the reason you decided to hold it?
George: The GOODE Atlanta Pro Am started out as a very small idea a few years ago when I moved our ski club, WaterSki Atlanta, to our new site at Princeton Lake. Everyone that skis with us always mentions that it’s the most unique site they’ve ever skied and that it would be a perfect place to host a pro event.
Why host this event on Memorial Day?
George: The Masters tournament takes place every Memorial Day weekend and I grew up in Atlanta going to that event to watch the best skiers in the world. Atlanta is less than an hour drive north of Callaway Gardens, so I decided to make a few calls and see if any pro skiers wanted to come up to Atlanta the day after the Masters finals for a small pro am. I knew the skiers in my club would get a kick out of skiing with the pros in a small backyard tournament, and it evolved into something bigger than I ever thought possible.
I also served 20 years in the United States Marine Corps and retired just last August. Memorial Day is a holiday I don’t take for granted. I’ve lost many friends and fellow Marines over the years and will celebrate their service and the ultimate sacrifice they made during this event. Hundreds of American flags will be flying on the shoreline to honor those that have gone before us in service to our nation.
Unfortunately, opportunities for pro skiers to compete in cash-prize events have become fewer over the years. Why is it important to give pros a chance to earn some cash?
George: It’s important because it’s the right thing to do. The days of “Hot Summer Nights” and big corporate sponsorship and national broadcasts are behind us. It’s now up to the “little guys”, which are various ski clubs across the country like WaterSki Atlanta, to step up to the plate and take their passion for the sport to the next level.
Dana Reed has done just that with the Malibu Open in Milwaukee. The Sac-Town Gold Rush has taken off on the west coast, and Tommy Harrington and Jeff Gilbert are taking the same big steps on the east coast up at Little Mountain Ski Club in N.C. Pro skiing is even returning to Lake Eola in downtown Orlando later this summer. I think and hope that these small steps will eventually lead to something big again for professional water skiing.
In addition to the pros, you’ve included a pretty stacked field of MM skiers as well as amateurs, thus the pro am part of the title. What was the idea behind including them?
George: I included the MM division in the event because the Big Dawg series is something that I personally think has brought interest in competition back into water skiing.
And amateurs have a lot in common with Big Dawg skiers. Maybe not in buoy counts, but off the water they share the stress of having a regular job, family, busy kids, they are similar in age, and they both have to endure the never-ending challenge of getting enough quality water time.
We’ve heard that the format is going to be a little different, can you explain it?
George: The Open and Masters Men skiers will ski two preliminary rounds and the highest scores from either round will advance to the finals. The skier with the highest score in each division during the finals wins a cash prize.
The amateur competitors will be handicapped and skiing against their 12-month AWSA average. They will ski two preliminary rounds on Sunday and the top-10 amateurs with the highest number of buoys over their “average” (or closest to their average) will advance to the Memorial Day finals to ski with the pros and the Big Dawgs that advance.
A big part of making an event like this a success is getting sponsors. How has that gone so far?
George: Getting sponsors initially was surprisingly easy, but I made sure I wasn’t asking for the world because I knew most budgets for 2012 events were already spent.
All of the ski manufacturers agreed to support the Atlanta Pro Am right away and GOODE jumped on the opportunity to be the title sponsor the first day they heard about the event, which I’m extremely grateful for.
The boat manufacturers were also excited about getting involved in the event. Malibu, MasterCraft, and Nautique will each pull one round on Memorial Day. Eagle Sports went above and beyond to sponsor the event and will be providing the skier bib for the finals also.
Victory Brewing is our only “out-of-the-industry” sponsor and they have been nothing but gracious to us and they fit into the GOODE Atlanta Pro Am perfectly. Their brand is a great theme for a competition where everyone is striving for victory and I’m sure everyone will be quite thirsty and looking for one to drink after the skiing is over.
The stage is set for a big 53rd Masters Water Ski Tournament for Team GOODE this weekend as more Men’s and Women’s slalom competitors will ride GOODE skis than any other manufacturer.
In the Men’s competition, defending world champion Thomas Degasperi will be joined by fellow Team GOODE skiers Nick Parsons, the world’s No. 6 ranked skier, and Adam Sedlmajer, a first time Masters slalom qualifier.
On the Women’s side, two-time Masters slalom champion Regina Jaquess and 2005 champion Karen Truelove will be joined by Team GOODE’s Clementine Lucine, who qualified for the event by running 1 buoy at 39-1/2 feet off at last weekend’s Masters Last Chance Qualifier.
For two Team GOODE skiers in particular, the Masters offers the chance to achieve special career milestones.
Adam, whose only previous Masters experience came on a trick ski, has spent the last few months itching to slalom on the Masters’ hallowed water.
“I’m very honored for the chance to swerve on the famous Robin Lake,” said Adam, who completed his MBA two weeks ago at the University of Louisiana-Monroe. “Slaloming there has been my dream ever since I attended my first Masters in 2007, when I came to study in the United States.”
And while it might be understandable if he had some pre-Masters nervousness, Adam says he’s not letting the pressure of the event get to him.
“I’m going to take the Masters as if it were any other tournament,” said Adam. “I know it is very prestigious tournament, but you can’t let that get into your mind. I’m planning on skiing the same as I do everyday.”
On the other side of the Masters-experience spectrum is Thomas, who first competed there in 2006. For him, this weekend presents an opportunity to add a rare missing piece in the collection of titles he’s won across the globe during his extraordinary career.
“I’ve won two world championships, the Malibu Open, a bunch of pro tour stops and five European titles, but not the Masters,” said Degasperi, who is coming off a victory earlier this month at the Proa Nautique Mexico Open. “This tournament is definitely one that I would like to add to my list. There are many good skiers that can go home with that ring on their finger, but I know I can do it.”
In the junior ranks, GOODE skiers Brando Caruso and Makayla Haw will be looking to defend their 2011 Junior Masters titles. Brando won last year’s event with a score of 5-1/2 buoys at 38-feet off, while Makayla earned her victory with 1 buoy at 38-feet off.
After winning the Junior Women’s title at the Moomba Masters in March, Makayla will be seeking her second-straight major title since switching to Team GOODE and the GOODE NANO earlier this year.
To keep up with the performances of Team GOODE and the entire Masters field, watch the tournament’s live webcast at masterswaterski.com.