ORLANDO (August 7, 2016) – The fourth and final day of competition at the 2016 Nautique WWA Wakepark National Championships hosted the sports brightest stars in their quest to become crowned National Champions. One of the nations most decorated cable park facilities, Orlando Watersports Complex (OWC), witnessed a energetic crowd and the highest number of participants in the events history show up to absorb the thrilling action on the water. Following last weekends Nautique WWA U.S. Wakeboard National Championships that watched all athletes compete exclusively behind the award-winning Super Air Nautique G23 towboat for round four of the Nautique Wake Series, riders’ qualified throughout the continental United States in the National Points Chase for the chance to showcase their talent on world-stage in wakepark.
“The WWA has been taking chances and trying new things in a continuous effort to grow the sport,” said WWA President Shannon Starling. “We’ve just completed the largest wakeboard event in history with the 2016 Nautique WWA Wakepark National Championships pulling nearly 600 entries. It’s extremely satisfying to see that 54% of all participants are first time competitors at the Nautique WWA Wakepark National Championships.”
A star-studded field emerged for the highly anticipated final showdown in the Pro Wakeboard Traditional division that would ultimately watch the incredibly talented riders uncork the biggest tricks of the entire weekend. Rising star Guenther Oka (IND) meticulously navigated his way around the technical OWC course design, consistently nailing each trick combination en route to the win at the opening round of the 2016 Wakepark World Series with an 89.50. A valiant effort by five-time Wakepark World Series Champion Tom Fooshee (TSR) helped him secure the runner-up position, narrowly missing out on the overall win as judge’s credited him with an 86.50. The final podium position went to Joe Battleday (JB Ski – GB) with a 63.00.
Local hero George Daniels (OWC) relied on his home park advantage to pull a variety of tech rail hits and flats tricks to keep the crowd on the edge of their seats as he cruised to the Pro Wakeskate victory and was awarded with an 86.50. The battle for the second and third positions was an all out war between Nick Robinson (IND) and Andrew Pastura (IND), however, Robinson used a clutch performance on his final tricks to score 77.50 and outduel Pastura’s 74.50.
In the Grom Features Finals, Gavin Stuckey (OWC) performed flawlessly as fans lined the perimeter of the park to take the top spot and win on the weekend in convincing fashion with a 97.50. Just behind Stuckey, Toby Jacobsen grabbed a score of 84.10 to complete the one-two sweep for OWC at their home park. Hydrous rider Cameron Reeves carried his momentum from earlier in the week to land himself on the podium in third with 73.30.
Perhaps the closest riding of the day took place in the Boys (10-14) Features Only competition, which featured massive tricks from the up-and-comers who battled for the weekends bragging rights. At the conclusion of the Finals, Riley Dillion’s (Roseland) 93.70 earned him the National Championship, just ahead of Trent Stuckey’s (OWC) 91.70. A hard-fought effort by Gavin Giglio (OWC) landed him in third, giving OWC two out of the top three positions and further proving the parks strength in nearly every division regardless of age or skill level.
“It’s been an incredibly successful back-to-back weekends of events on the water for the Nautique WWA National Championships,” said WWA Executive Director Corrie Wilson. “The weekend could not have ended on a better note as rider’s in all divisions displayed such a high level of riding across the board. From Julia Rick’s perfectly executed highside-backside 7’s in the women’s features to Cody Hesse’s mute double cab mobe and Max Van Helvoort’s double cork, I’m walking away stoked on the state of competitive wakeboarding.”
Defending park champions Orlando Watersports Complex (OWC) were the early favorites heading into the weekend as they boasted a strong lineup and prepared to compete with the home park advantage throughout the four-day event. The Orlando-based squad proved to be the team to beat yet again in 2016 as they captured the team titles in both, Traditional Cable and Features Only, for the second year in a row.
As the organizer and sanctioning body of the 2016 Nautique WWA Wake Park National Championships presented by Rockstar Energy, the World Wakeboard Association would like to thank all of its partners for their support in making the event possible, including Nautique Boat Company, Rockstar Energy Drink and the National Points Chase.
Click HERE to view the full results from Sunday’s Finals.