Sparks, Nev. – The top pro wakeboarders on the planet are set to battle it out on the waters of Sparks Marina in the greater Reno area of Sparks, Nev. on August 14-16 for the fifth and final stop of the 2009 MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour. Athletes will compete through a series of elimination rounds throughout the three-day event, judged on rail tricks and big-air maneuvers, as they’re towed on the water behind the official PWT towboat, the MasterCraft X-Star, at a speed of approximately 25mph.
Athletes competing at the final tour stop are not only vying for a cash purse, but also for vital points toward the tour standings, as the highest total points-earner at the end of the five-event season will claim the coveted Pro Tour title.
In the Pro Men’s division, 15-year-old rookie phenom Harley Clifford enters the final Pro Tour stop as the top-seeded rider in the contest. Should Clifford top the contest podium at Sparks Marina, the Aussie young gun will become only the second rider ever to win the Pro Tour title in his rookie year, behind wakeboarding legend Parks Bonifay. The Australian native will also become only the second international athlete ever to win the U.S. Pro Tour title, behind fellow Aussie Josh Sanders.
Although Harley Clifford is the front-runner in the contest, the rookie faces a tough field of competitors, who are also in contention for the Pro Tour title. Aaron Rathy, Phillip Soven and Andrew Adkison all have a shot at the overall title and will look to leave Clifford in their wake to win it.
Sparks Marina will also serve as the fourth stop in the Queen of Wake series for the Pro Women’s division. The newly crowned U.S. national champion Dallas Friday paces the field of female rippers, but faces an unfavorable history of competing in Reno. Defending Queen of Wake titlist Nicola Butler and former wakeboard world champ Amber Wing look to take advantage of Friday’s losing streak in Reno and dethrone the points-leader from the top spot, as both riders trail close behind her.
In the Jr. Pro Men’s division, Bob Soven looks to follow in his older brother’s footsteps by claiming his fifth consecutive win to sweep the Pro Tour season. Older brother Phillip Soven accomplished this feat in the Pro Men’s division last year, on the 2008 Pro Tour. If Bob Soven wins at Sparks Marina, he will become the first rider ever to sweep the Pro Tour in the Jr. Pro Men’s division.
Overall awards for the season and for fifth tour stop will be given out at the annual Pro Tour Awards ceremony held on Sunday, August 16 from 8 p.m. – 10 p.m. in the Celebrity Showroom of John Ascuaga’s Nugget.
For daily event schedules, photos, videos, athlete bios, scores, standings and more, visit www.allisports.com .
The MasterCraft Pro Wakeboard Tour is organized by World Sports & Marketing of Orlando, Fla. The Pro Tour has the support of the following sponsors: MasterCraft, Rockstar Energy Drink, Mona Vie, the U.S. Air Force, Indmar, Billabong, Hyperlite, CWB, Ronix, Liquid Force, Gator Boards, Oakley, Ride the Wake, FUEL TV and Allisports.com.
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.
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To catch all the high-flying, rail-sliding, water-sports action of the King of Wake series, tune in to FUEL TV – the official television partner of the King of Wake. WakeBoarding, published by Bonnier Corp., is the official magazine of the King of Wake series. Read about all things wakeboarding, with expert coverage of professional instruction, gear, boats and news.
King of Wake
Viewed as the world’s elite pro wakeboarding circuit, the King of Wake series has attracted the sport’s top athletes from throughout the globe. With more than $300,000 in prize money over the eight-event season, athletes compete during the course of the year to be named the “King of Wake” – an award based on points accumulated at each stop of the series. Events include the Wake Games, the WWA Wakeboard National Championships, the WWA Wakeboard World Championships and all five stops on the Pro Wakeboard Tour. The King of Wake is organized by World Sports & Marketing – the leading wake events producer since 1988.
Alli, the Alliance of Action Sports
Alli, the Alliance of Action Sports, is a global business that encompasses national and international action sports tours and events, multimedia production, and a consumer facing lifestyle brand. The Alliance includes: the Dew Tour, Winter Dew Tour, China Invitational, Maloof Money Cup, AMA Motocross Championship, King of Wake series, and the Free Flow Tour; Alli Productions, which creates original content, produces and presents content with partners, and distributes Alli content through a variety of channels. Alli is owned by NBC Sports and MTV Networks and represents a network of athletes, fans, brands and properties. Its mission is to facilitate the momentous growth of action sports, through competition and lifestyle, for a new generation of fans and athletes. The Alli properties are home to more than 550,000 spectators each year and broadcasts more than 150 hours of original content in 100 countries and 280 million homes worldwide. More information can be found at www.allisports.com.