Two Local Riders Keep Wake Games Title Dream Alive

Lake Elsinore, CA - Melissa Marquardt and Eddie Valdez, both of nearby Canyon Lake, continued their march to taking the championship in the inaugural Air Nautique Wake Games in Lake Elsinore, California. Both riders advanced in their respective divisions in today's semifinal rounds, with Marquardt winning her heat.

Marquardt, competing in the pro women's division, scored a 60.00 to win today's semifinals. She also won her heat in yesterday's quarterfinals and should be the favorite to win her first major title since winning the Vans Wakeboarding Pro in 2000.

"I have to win one more time, tomorrow! I'm really looking forward it, because I love riding behind this boat, the Nautique 210 Super Air. I'm really comfortable with it, and it's helping me to do well in this contest," said Marquardt.

Riding in the Junior Men's division, Valdez made it into the finals taking third place in his semifinal heat with a score of 41.67 just making the cut of three.

Tomorrow concludes the inaugural Wake Games with the finals in pro men and women's wakeboarding in addition to pro wakeskating and the remaining amateur divisions not yet decided. Competition begins at 10:00 tomorrow morning on Lake Elsinore. In addition to the individual titles, the team competition will also conclude with 10 teams of five riders each vying for the Team Wake Games trophy.

The Super Air Nautique is the exclusive tow boat for the Wake Games, which also has the support of the following sponsors: Verizon Wireless, the U.S. Air Force, Circuit City, Sea-Doo watercraft, Fox, Hyperlite Wakeboards, Perfect Pass, Infinity Marine Audio, Liquid Force, Gator Boards, CWB, J-Star, Oakley, Reef, Epiphone Guitars, Wakeworld.com, Wakeboarder.com and One Percent Design.

WakeBoarding, published by World Publications, is the official magazine of the Air Nautique Wake Games. WakeBoarding is the definitive source on all things wakeboarding, with expert coverage of professional instruction, gear, boats and the latest news.

Day Three Results:

Women's Professional - Semifinals
(Top 4 Riders advance to finals)
Heat 1
1 Melissa Marquardt USA 60.00
2 Lauren Loe USA 50.33
3 Raequel Hoffman USA 41.11
4 Shelby Kantar USA 36.67
5 Gretchen Hammarberg USA DNS

Professional Wakeskate - Semifinals
(Top 2 Riders in each heat advance to finals)
Heat 1
1 A. Rathy USA 84.33
2 George Daniels USA 71.67
3 CK Rogers 43.33

Heat 2
1 Brian Grubb USA 86.67
2 Ben Kaiser USA 80.00
3 Chase Gregory USA 74.67
4 Drew McGuckin USA 68.33
5 James Evans USA 56.67

Junior Men (14-18) - Semifinals
(Top 3 Riders in each heat advance to finals)
Heat 1
1 Jimmy Lariche USA 56.67
2 Nate Miller USA 47.33
3 Alex Scagliotti USA 35.89
4 James Hindes 34.78

Heat 2
1 Adam Errington USA 60.44
2 Anthony Jr. Racinelli USA 54.00
3 Eddie Valdez ; USA 41.67
4 Larry Taylor USA 30.00

Girls (13 and under) - Finals
1 Raimi Merritt USA 40.00
2 Tori Koch USA 30.56
3 Sofia Gonzalez MEX 26.11

Junior Women - Finals
1 Shawna Hoffman USA 43.33
2 Victoria Kulp USA 34.44
3 Brittney Arruda USA 20.56

Amateur Wakeskate - Finals
1 Mitch Kelley USA 55.00
2 Reed Watson USA 43.33
3 Almond Acuna DNS

Women's Wakeskate - Finals
1 Savannah Barber USA 60.00
2 Bri Chmel USA 40.00
3 Stef Tor CDN DNS

Veterans - Finals
1 Camilo Gutierrez USA 40.00
2 Anthony Racinelli Sr. USA 35.00
3 Joe Pearson USA 28.89