The biggest championship in the sport of wakeboarding returns “home” to the United States this year after one year abroad. The WWA Wakeboard World Championships is set for September 20-24 in Fort Worth, Texas.
The United States has hosted the WWA Worlds nearly every year since its inception in 1994. This is the 12th time the championship has been held in America. Come September you can expect all the top riders in the world to vie for top honors at Marine Creek, the site in Fort Worth. Malibu Boats will be the exclusive tow boat for the four-day event, marking the first time Malibu has pulled the Worlds in the United States.
Competing in front of an American audience has been beneficial to U.S. riders; in fact, no world champion has come from any country other than the United States. But that could be changing as the fastest-growing water sport in the world takes on more of an international flavor.
Year to year over the past few years, top riders from Australia and Canada have moved closer to the elite riders from the States. Josh Sanders, Brett Eisenhauer and Daniel Watkins, all from the land down under, have pushed themselves into the elite status in wakeboarding and could all take the title. A fast riser from Canada is Rusty Malinoski. Built like a linebacker, Malinoski has burst on the scene with powerful moves that make him a threat for the title.
On the American side, defending world champion Phillip Soven has to be considered the favorite in the event. A Team Malibu and No Fear rider, Soven is spectacular on the water and capable of putting together a run that no rider American or otherwise can beat. Other Americans to watch include Andrew Adkison, who won two years ago, the last time the event took place in United States. Adkison also won the first major championship of 2006, topping the field at the Pro Wakeboard Tour opener in Atlanta in April. Former world champions Shaun Murray (’03) and Erik Ruck (’02) will also be competing.
In addition to the top pro men, the top women in the world will also be on hand. Team Malibu rider Dallas Friday is the one to watch. She has dominated the women’s field over the past three years, winning nearly every time she takes the water. But Emily Copeland Durham, the defending world champion, has the talent to knock off Friday, so expect the two to vie for the top spot. Amateur titles will also be on the line in Fort Worth, and the hottest new sport on the water, wakeskating (like skateboarding on water), will be on display.
Malibu is the exclusive tow boat of the WWA Worlds. Since Malibu’s inception in 1982 President/CEO Robert Alkema’s mission has been very simple even if the evolution of design and engineering has become increasingly complex. “Build the best boat possible. Enjoy your workplace. Give Malibu owners the best value.” This is an oath and a standard that the people of Malibu Boats believe they are bound to uphold. They build the best boat and have fun doing it and that dedication bleeds over into everything that wears the Malibu brand.
The WWA Wakeboard World Championships is organized by World Sports & Marketing of Orlando, Florida. The Worlds has the support of the following: No Fear, Malibu Boats, Indmar, Verizon Wireless, U.S Air Force, Circuit City, Sobe, Hyperlite Wakeboards, CWB, Liquid Force, Gator Boards, Wakeworld.com, Wakeboarder.com and One Percent Design.
WakeBoarding, published by World Publications, is the official magazine of the WWA Wakeboard World Championships. WakeBoarding is the definitive source on all things wakeboarding, with expert coverage of professional instruction, gear, boats and the latest news.