The weekend extravaganza at Mills Pond Park demonstrated that humans on boards being towed by motorboats can hurtle through the air in superhuman fashion, regardless of whether you know what a corked spin is or not.
Alternatively, as many did at the World Wakeboard Association’s World Championship finals, they could drop to the water and suffer a devastating faceplant on the rocks.
The invitation was extended
Two hundred and twenty wakeboarders from fifteen different nations participated in the invitation-only tournament, which concluded on Sunday. They competed for the title of best in the world. A total of 4,100 people descended on the park over the course of four days to see wakeboarders perform 180-degree turns, also known as ten-eighties, which is a technique in which riders spin around three times.
In order to wakeboard, you need to be able to launch yourself into the air, according to Rob Corum, executive director of the World Wakeboard Association, who explained the basic idea of the sport, which originated from water skiing in the late 1980s.
Jennifer Bostwick, 26, works as a firefighter in Plantation on most days, but she was at Sunday’s wakeboarding competition to gasp at the tricks that were stomped (wakeboard-speak for when a move is completed precisely) and sigh at the major wipeouts that occurred.
According to the Fort Lauderdale resident, “here is where you go to pick up your next trick.” She’s presently working on nailing what’s known as “the tantrum,” which consists of a back flip followed by a complete 360-degree turn.
Because the sport is still in its infancy, landing a move that has never been seen before is an important aspect of the tournament. Among the manoeuvres that Steel Lafferty, a Fort Lauderdale native who graduated from Westminster Academy in 2010, can lay claim to are three specific techniques, including one that earned him the title of Trick of the Year in 2011.
In the wakeboarding world, the “toeside backside ten-eighty” is a series of three 360-degree spins that accelerate the wake surfer away from the boat. “The wake-to-wake ten-eighty” is a trick that propels the wakeboarder from one side of the wake to the other while spinning three times in the process. Then there’s the “toeside, backside 900,” which is a combination of the first two.
Lafferty was eliminated from the competition, which marked the end of the wakeboarding season’s five-month run, when he attempted a “Indy Moby Dick,” which is a backflip performed while spinning around the board.
Despite Lafferty’s claim to be the 2011 national wakeboarding champion, “today just wasn’t my day,” he claimed. The World Wakeboard Cup, held in Linyi City, China, saw him take home the title of “rookie of the year,” and he finished third overall. However, with sponsorships from Red Bull and boat firm Mastercraft, there will always be a future opportunity.