Strong Current Challenges Wakeboarders to Adapt at Nautique WWA Nationals

Minneapolis, Minn. – The top wakeboarders in the United States took to the Mississippi River in downtown Minneapolis today to continue vying for national titles at the 2011 Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink. While all of today’s five skill-level divisions competed on the same body of water, the Jr. Pro Men’s category was forced to alter their traditional competition format, due to the strong current of the mighty Mississippi.

“It was really different and really challenging,” said Jr. Pro Men’s division rider Daniel Powers. “We had to do all wake tricks, which was difficult because the water was so choppy.”

Jr. Pro Men riders, like Powers, normally have to incorporate rail-based tricks on floating pieces of apparatus, in addition to their wake-based tricks, during their competition run. But the strength of the River’s current forced tournament officials to remove the apparatus from the water, as equipment safety anchors could not be secured.

“We tried multiple times to set the anchors, but they refused to remain in place,” said Chief Judge Chris Bischoff. “If the anchors aren’t secure then the equipment isn’t safe, and we’re not willing to put our competitors at risk like that. They’ll just have to adapt to an all wake format.”

The 12 riders in the Jr. Pro Men’s division were split into three heats of four during today’s semifinal round, with only the top two riders from each heat advancing onto Sunday’s finals.

Powers, who is featured in the August issue of Sports Illustrated and was projected to be one of the division’s finalists, saw an early exit from the competition today, due to several uncharacteristic falls.

“It was really rollie out there; pretty much everyone was falling,” said Powers. “It is what it is, but I wish I did better.”

Among the division’s six finalists are Jacob Valdez, Freddie Wayne, Mike Dowdy, Kyle Evans, Gordon Harrison and Shota Tezuka. The six-man final for the division’s national title is scheduled for Sunday, July 31 at 9:30 a.m.

The Nautique WWA Nationals will continue with several other divisions tomorrow, July 30, beginning at 9 a.m. and ending at 4 p.m.

The 2011 Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink is free to the public during all five days of competition. For those who cannot attend the event in person, just “like” the King of Wake’s Facebook page ( to watch all the live streaming footage.

The 2011 Nautique WWA Nationals will also air on the VERSUS television network at 6 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Sept. 6.

For more information on the Nautique WWA Nationals, visit .

The Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships, presented by Rockstar Energy Drink is organized by World Sports & Marketing of Orlando, Fla., and has the support of the following sponsors: Correct Craft, Rockstar Energy Drink, Overton’s, Peavey, MonaVie, FOX, Hyperlite, CWB, Ronix, Liquid Force, Byerly, Oakley, Sayiwon’t and YOUR MOM magazine.

About Nautique
The Nautique by Correct Craft is the exclusive tow boat of the WWA Nationals. Celebrating 86 years of excellence in the marine industry, Correct Craft Inc. is the producer of the Nautique line of boats. The manufacturer of Nautique is known for delivering superior quality product, cutting-edge technology and exceptional service experiences.

About Rockstar Energy Drink
ROCKSTAR is the world’s most powerful energy drink. Enhanced with the potent herbal blend of Guarana, Ginkgo, Ginseng and Milk Thistle, ROCKSTAR is formulated to provide an incredible energy boost for those who lead active and exhausting lifestyles – from athletes to rock stars. ROCKSTAR ENERGY DRINK is available in eighteen amazing flavors: Original, Sugar Free, Zero Carb, Juiced Mango Orange Passion Fruit, Juiced Guava, Juiced Pomegranate, Tropical Punched, Punched Citrus, Roasted Mocha, Roasted Latte, Roasted Light Vanilla, Cola, Recovery Lemonade, Recovery Orange, Recovery Grape, Pink, and 2X. ROCKSTAR ENERGY SHOTS are available in Wild Berry and Tropical Punch flavors. ROCKSTAR ENERGY DRINK is available at convenience and grocery retail outlets across the United States, Canada, Australia, Austria, Belgium, France, Ireland, New Zealand, Japan, Germany, Switzerland, Finland, Spain, The Netherlands, the United Arab Emirates, Greece, Mexico, the Philippines and throughout the United Kingdom.  Go to or for athlete and event updates, videos, profiles, and product information.

About WWA
The WWA Wakeboard National Championships is the solely owned property of the World Wakeboard Association (WWA). The WWA also owns and operates the WWA Wakeboard World Championships, WWA Wakeboard World Series, WWA Wake Park World Series, WWA Wake Park Triple Crown and WWA Wake Park Nationals. With 27 affiliate countries worldwide, the WWA is the global leader in the sport of wake. The WWA is a rider-formed organization dedicated to promoting and growing wake sports worldwide. It is the leading source for riders, event organizers and competitive standards. For more information on the WWA and its events, check out .

About King of Wake
The King of Wake is the world’s elite pro wakeboarding series, attracting the sport’s top athletes from across the globe. Over the course of a season, athletes compete for the ultimate wakeboarding crown in a series points race of eight events throughout the United States to see who rules the wake. The 2011 series consists of the Wake Games, the WWA National Championships, the WWA 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.

Friday, July 29 – Day 3 of 5 Results:

Jr. Boys Beginner Division
Final Round – Heat #1
1    Kevin Duffy                   88.33
2    Andrew Scheafer             76.67
3    Thomas Herman              60.00
4    Ryan O’Toole                 58.33

Jr. Boys Division
Final Round – Heat #1
1    Tyler Worrall                63.33
2    Kade Kasey                    48.33
3    Carter Mathter                41.67

Jr. Pro Men Division
Semifinal Round – Heat #1
1    Jacob Valdez                 80.00
2    Kyle Evans                    71.67
3    Joshua Twelker               61.67
4    Robbie Houlihan              43.33

Jr. Pro Men Division
Semifinal Round – Heat #2
1    Mike Dowdy                 78.33
2    Gordon Harrison           65.00
3    Pierce Homsey                56.67
4    Kyler Green                    45.00

Jr. Pro Men Division
Semifinal Round – Heat #3
1    Shota Tezuka                71.67
2    Freddie Wayne              63.33
3    Tony Iacconi                   61.67
4    Daniel Powers                 53.33

Boys Beginner Division
Semifinal Round – Heat #1
1    Bryson Hancock           70.00
2    Mitch Allen                   60.00
3    Michael Buss                46.67
4    Andy Birch                      40.00
5    Zach McCauley               33.33
6    Chris Birch                      23.33

Jr. Women Division
Semifinal Round – Heat #1
1    Gianna Dinatale            66.67
2    Katelyn Fenner             56.67
3    Delanie Parker                 46.67
4    Julie Bray                        30.00

Jr. Women Division
Semifinal Round – Heat #2
1    Tori Koch                      81.67
2    Rachel Orgill                 71.67
3    Mallorie Henry                60.00
4    Hannah Green                 46.67
5    Rosy Bray                       28.33