July 6th, 2013 by alliance

Bob Soven - Performance

Bob Soven on his way to the Big Air title at the Red Bull Wake Open in Tampa.    Photo: Chris Garrison / Red Bull Content Pool

For not competing on the Pro Tour this year, Bob Soven just made a name for himself as a competitor. Everybody’s favorite ginger took the top spot on the second day of the Red Bull Wake Open in the Big Air contest. The Big Air contest this year stepped it up big time from last year’s event. Incorporating a giant kicker and landing ramp similar to the setup seen at the Red Bull Rising High contest in Germany a couple weeks ago, the riders were able to take their riding to the next level and throw down some crazy maneuvers. Behind Bob on the podium were Aaron Rathy in second and Daniel Grant in third. Rathy’s second-place finish puts him firmly in the lead for the Wake Open crown, having also taken second in the boat contest.

Red Bull Wake Open is broadcasting right now on NBC. Tune in and check it out!

Jeff Langley - Performance

Jeff Langley. This is high. Welcome to wakeboarding in 2013.    Photo: Christian Pondella / Red Bull Content Pool

Winners - Portrait

1st: Bob Soven; 2nd: Aaron Rathy; 3rd: Daniel Grant    Photo: Chris Garrison / Red Bull Content Pool

11 Responses to “Red Bull Wake Open: Day 2”

  1. Marc Poirier Says:

    Did any judges notice the fact that Oli Derome was switch??? In my book, a switch Indy bs 720 is much harder than Rathy’s and Grant’s trick… Nice… Too bad for Raph who got robbed too. Since when does a regular 360 beats a legit poked out 540… Probably the judges had too much fun partying the night before the big air event!!! This kind of sucks cause it cost Raph the title for the overall.

  2. darek Florian Says:

    Saw the TV show 3 times and it looks like Rockstar paid the right people to get Rathy on top at a Red Bull event , The judges who I think did not have the expertises to judges either paks , big air (if we can call that big air). First in the Boat comp. Rusty got push to 3rd , Result should be Raph1, Rusty2, Aaron3. in the big air this is were is (the biggest no see) from the judges , Raty Back mobe (not a big air landed on the top of landing and Grant no grab b720 push Derome Switchb720 with a grab to the 4th place ridiculous from the judges it should have been by far Soven1, Derome2, Grant3, and Rathy 4th.
    And now the funny part the park session: from what they show on tv should have been Raph1, JD2,Rathy 3rd and will love to see Hermier second pass cause he had a good first run, So red Bull I don’t know who recrute for you the judges but he should be fired. And guess what judges had replays to judge everything????????

  3. jhill Says:

    big air ramp needs to be steeper. landing is probably OK. they’ll get it figured out. it’s fine for the contest but no reason (besides cost) they couldn’t make the landing softer (rather than plywood) but still have hdpe on top- like the big air training jump at woodward…

    both of those might lead to some big air progression, which obviously didn’t happen at rising high or wake open.

    Cool contest though. Rathy and Raph are both good, then it’s a battle for 3rd. Way to go JD.

  4. jim powers Says:

    I was present for all three events. I watched almost every heat in each event. The panels of Judges for Wake, Big Air and Wake Park are very experienced and totally competent to Judge these events. They have a very difficult job and there were some close calls but the calls have to be made. We all understand that wakeboarding competitions are not judged by objective standards. It is not golf, or football, etc. It is subjective. The Judges do the best they can and the results at the Wake Open can be debated in certain instances. Nevertheless, the basis for the results in all three events was supported by the respective performances of the riders that made it onto the podium.

  5. Justin H. Says:

    Jim you are right. Judging is a difficult job and remember that most of us watched a TV edit that was probably put together by a guy who edits football games for a living.

    I hate to criticize a judge even if I saw it differently. You never really know what a judge is looking for and from shore you tend to remember falls and bangers, but miss the little mistakes and gaps in composition.

  6. yves Says:

    ya Justin you guys are probably the firm that organizer this event , can we get at least the namesof those judges so we know what to expect next time, and judges if you read this you need to apologize to Olie cause he did the best trick of the final not the biggest but remember this judges SWITCH Back 720…….. and justin they had the replays…..

  7. Brent Says:

    What is the purpose of doing tournament of that size (red Bull) if the judges do what you say there best . No judges have to be on there toes and if you can’t find them in wakeboarding get them from snowboarding or either skate and pay them the right amount of money the reputation sit on the shoulders of the judges

  8. Marc Poirier Says:

    One of the main problem with judging is consistency. Here’s what I mean. Three weeks ago, in Europe, Raph won the big air event with a cab 1080. The 2nd place was given to a back mobe. The scores between #1 and 2 were kind of close too. At the Tampa event, Bob won with a very nice and big indy backside 720. Rathy got 2nd with a switch back mobe…
    If a regular back mobe almost beats a cab 1080 in Europe, then how come a bs 720 beats a switch back mobe in America? And I’m not even talking about Olivier’s switch Indy BS720!
    Don’t get me wrong, I’ve got absolutely nothing against Rathy or the other guy’s. I’m having a problem with our judging system. A couple years ago, I used to judge at Wakestock on Toronto Island. That’s the time when all the pro’s were flying down and Pat Panakos was building some very cool rails. I remember that we already had issues with the way we were judging at that time(rails and boat). It was a free for all between us, the judges. I quote :” I don’t like this guy style… Normaly he makes it look better… What was that trick, did anybody see it… Was he switch?…”
    And the list goes on and on.
    Normally, when you are judging, you should always act like you’ve never seen the guy that you are actually judging(even if it’s Harley or Raph and you’ve seen all there latest runs or edit). Right now, wakeboarding is at a level where the people judging it should work with a solid system with points. example : a 720 = ?? points, a switch 720 = ?? points. Then you had grab points, height and distance points for a total of points for every single tricks. There should never be a style points category. How can you had style points??? If one of the judges likes a 20″ stance with both knees touching and the other judge likes a 26″ stance with knees spread all over. They are gonna judge the riders completely differently. That doesn’t make any sense.
    I know Mr Powers doesn’t want to talk against the judges personally, but I’m pretty sure he felt this way a couple of times when Daniel’s been misjudged. When our sport is now on NBC on a Saturday afternoon, is it possible to do everything right? This means, having the best judges at all time. Not the retired wakeboarder that still wants to attend all the cool wakeboarding events and partys. I mean, they used to be judge and they know personnally how much it sucks when they got screwed. Professionnal athletes don’t have much years to do good money. Let’s not take it away from them, it’s not fair!

  9. Max Says:

    Well said Marc you are right on ………

  10. Jeremy Kovak Says:

    There were no retired wakeboarders who were judging the Red Bull Wake Open. Just saying.

  11. jim powers Says:

    Any judging system ultimately gets its legitimacy from there being a general perception of fairness-justice. A sense of injustice will make anyone upset. To reiterate my earlier point, judging in wakeboarding will always be very susceptible to criticism because it is subjective-results are based upon impressions. Impressions are the consequence of numerous variables–how high, how difficult, how clean, grabs, length of grabs, where grabbed, in the flats or not, danger factor, flow, composition, yes-style….and then each and every variable has to be given weight-and all of this has to be processed moment by moment, trick by trick, run by run. In a boat pass, this is complex. So lets look at a Wake Park contest. The number of variables that will form the judge’s impression are even greater than a boat pass-much greater. Therefore, even more difficult to judge than Boat. Wake Park is very new. The Judging will evolve. I’m sure there is and will be a lot of conversation within the WWA as to how the judging system can be improved. I would encourage people who care about this to make positive suggestions as to how improvements might be made. Don’t make personal attacks. I have been around these guys in wake for a long time now. I am much much older. I think my perspective of who they are as people is pretty objective. They care deeply about the sport. They care deeply about each other. No one is trying to screw anyone. As in any justice system, trust is paramount. These judges are trying to get it right. They can be trusted. And yes, I have been pissed a few times at some results in the course of Daniel competing for the last 13 years. There is a lot of emotion involved in all of this. But I have never thought anyone judging was dishonest or trying to put the screws to my kid. The debate over results is healthy and fun as long as it is positive and does not defame or impugn the character of the people who judge these contests.


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