We’ve all heard the name Thibaut Dailland. We all know his prowess behind the boat as an overall skier and we’ve seen him dominate the podium. But to many, Thibaut is a mysterious character among the throng of famed elite athletes in the water sports arena. What’s Thibaut’s story? Where did he come from? How did he get so good? How do you even say his name? Connelly Skis sat down with their decorated team athlete to get the low-down behind his story.
Tell me about your upbringing and what is was like to grow up in Mauritius.
There is nothing that compares to growing up on an island, even down to what the people wear. Most days shoes and and a shirt were optional for me. Despite the fact that I was going to school, I was still able to enjoy all the benefits of living in a vacation destination - kitesurfing, scuba diving, surfing, etc. Living life near the ocean was amazing. However, having a home on a beach front definitely doesn’t keep your mind focused when it comes to your studies haha
How is your first and last name said correctly? We American’s have a difficult time with it haha
Thibaut Dailland: Pronunciation is “T-BO Dayland”
How did you get involved in skiing and where did you ski most of your life?
I was born and raised in Ivory Coast, Africa until the age of 14 when we moved to Mauritius Island. My dad was a surfer and my mom took up water skiing as a hobby on weekends. Before too long, my mom convinced my dad to get behind the boat. He was hooked from the beginning and the rest is practically history when it came to my ski career. My dad was my first coach, but at 10 years old I caught the eye of Tanguy Benet (also an Ivory Coast native) who saw potential in my skills and coached me all the way until I was 21.
When did you first come over to the states and why?
I first came to the U.S. in 2001 when I was 11 years old. Tanguy Benet was working at Swiss Ski School and persuaded me to come train with him and a group of skiers. Wow was that a cool experience! I practically had stars in my eyes stepping foot into America and getting to train with professional skiers like Marco Riva, Anais Amade, Sebastien Cans, Marina Mosti, Angeliki Andriopoulou and Carlos Allais. It was a dream come true!
Hey Ballers! My name is Adelaide and I’m new here on the site, (though I have low-key stalked my dad Mr. Jones while using this site for some time.) My dad and Mr. Horton have been friends for years. In fact, my most distinct memory of him was when I was little and visiting Skidawgs house for a tournament. He had just awakened and his hair was like a giant poof… (description of poof: picture cartoon characters hair when dynamite blows up nearby, and you’ll be getting close to his hair…) Anyway, thats a little background on how I know Mr. Horton and who my dad is.
I recently decided to post on BOS for something really important to me, my family, and so many others… cancer. Most of y’all know my dad is a very private man, so he kept the fact that he had Non-Hodgkins lymphoma really quiet. He was diagnosed a couple weeks after the 2016 nationals. He has since gone through chemo and is currently in remission! He’s noticeably feeling and looking better, which is a huge relief to me and my family.
Because of dad’s cancer, I was nominated to do the Student of the Year fundraising campaign for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS). LLS has a ten week campaign called Man/Woman of the Year, and this is the first year they initiated Student of the Year in our neck of the woods… or should I say bayou. This great organization researches blood cancers and helps patients while they undergo treatment. Mr. Horton was on our list of people who we mailed letters to asking for support. He suggested that I post on BOS to give y’all a chance to donate who we might not have been able to contact otherwise.
Dad told me that a number of you guys have been or are currently battling cancer. Please know my prayers are with you. One thing that I’ve learned about LLS is that often times cures or treatments found in blood cancers can be used for other cancers. Hopefully, the money I earn through this campaign not only helps lymphoma like my dads, but others as well.
I just want to thank all of you for taking the time to read this, and thank you for your contributions. If you would like to donate, you can do so at the link below.
Write in your questions for VP of HO Skis/Syndicate Dave Wingerter to have them answered in an upcoming podcast posted directly to BallOfSpray.
Don’t miss your opportunity to pick the brain of one of the leading minds in our sport. Ask him questions about ski design, slalom tech theory, production and more! Enter your question in the BallOfSpray Forum. We will select a number of great questions to be answered and posted to the BallOfSpray newsfeed.
Background on Dave Wingerter:
Wingerter is the Mastermind behind HO Skis and the Syndicate Program. A life-long competitive skier, Dave worked formerly as an aerospace design engineer in the defense industry, contributing to projects like the Atlas III and V rockets. In 2006, after years of combining aerospace technology with waterski theory in his free time, Dave decided to give waterski development a try. His first passion project, the Syndicate A1, burst onto the scene and changed waterskiing design forever. Over a decade later, Dave continues to pioneer the cutting edge of watersport innovation. You can find him skiing tournaments on the professional and national waterski scene where he theorizes, prototypes, designs, builds and rides his creations.
The HO Syndicate Omni is the best Crossover ski from HO to date. This ski has a remarkably wide performance envelope. It could be a great first ski or a great ski for cruising for miles on open water, and it is a great ski for chasing buoys.
For many skiers, the Omni would be a better choice than a more expensive and less stable traditional slalom ski. For this review, I ran numerous 32 offs on the 67 inch ski and through 35 off on the 65 inch ski. You can certainly take the Omni to shorter rope lengths, but past 35 off, a ski like the Syndicate Pro would be a better choice.
Compared to a ski like the Syndicate Pro, the Omni is a little wider at the front binding and significantly wider at the tail. One of the benefits of the extra width is that the ski is more stable side to side as well as from front to back. This additional stability makes it easier for skiers to be in a better skiing position. Approaching the turn, this ski instills confidence and allows the skier adjust their stance as needed.
In terms of speed, the Omni creates ample speed and then maintains that speed. For all levels of skiers this means more skiing with less fatigue and less sore muscles. In the slalom course, the Omni gets very wide around the balls with minimal skier effort. As the rope gets shorter than 32 off, the skier needs to be mindful to not create excess speed.
Turns on both sides are fast and crisp. The Omni delivers more of a snap at the finish of the turn than a carving turn. The On Side turns on this ski are particularly forgiving and fun. The Omni turns best with front foot pressure but is forgiving for less than ideal technique.
The one thing about this ski that stands out the most to me is how comfortable I feel on it from the second wake to the finish of the turn. During the review period, I was able to work on technical aspects of my turns that would be much more difficult to learn on a traditional shape ski.
ORLANDO, FL (April 9, 2018) – Nautique is extremely proud to announce the introduction of the all-new Ski Nautique. For nearly 60 years, the Ski Nautique has been the best waterski boat in the world. Those bloodlines continue today with the radically-improved 2019 Ski Nautique.
Tradition. Innovation. Performance. Craftsmanship. When a rare combination of elements like these come together in a ski boat, it’s sure to provide the next great waterskiing experience unlike any before it.
The two words “Ski Nautique” have been synonymous for personal bests and world records for the past 58 years. Today, the radically-new Ski Nautique once again raises the bar of what’s possible.
With a blended carbon fiber and fiberglass construction method that creates the perfect balance of strength and weight, this new icon is lighter than any other ski boat and creates the softest wakes imaginable. The new era in three-event waterskiing is here.
“Each new Ski Nautique has left a distinct impact on waterskiing and generations of athletes. We are excited to enter a new era for this iconic model and drive the technology and performance further than any previous generation,” said Greg Meloon, President of Nautique Boat Company. “Personal Bests and World Records are all going to be in the crosshairs behind this boat, and we can’t wait to see what the all-new Ski Nautique does for the progression of waterskiing.”
Check out all of Nautique’s new boat models and product innovations at Nautique.com
Imagine a ski that intuitively anticipates your every move, rips turns in the blink of an eye and quite simply breeds confidence. EVO is that ski. The all-new EVO is the next evolution of the ARC. Featuring quicker, more complete turns on both sides of the course the EVO is smooth and predictable with no surprises. But don’t be fooled… the EVO has the heart of a warrior. The EVO creates speed instantly out of the turn and builds progressive angle into the wake. The EVO’s heritage is taken from the World Record Holding ARC. If you liked the ARC you absolutely must experience the EVO.
JOIN THE REVOLUTION ON 3-30
E V O – Tour Red - 64” 65” 66” 67” 68”
E V O - Laser Blue - 64” 65” 66” 67” 68”
Junior 62” EVO available after 5/15- $1,099.99
Lynnwood, WA. March 15, 2018 - Connelly Skis, a renowned water sports and towables brand of more than 50 years, welcomes its newest sales representative, Nick Ithomitis, to the Connelly sales team. Ithomitis brings more than 15 years of experience as a watersports enthusiast and sales rep to the Washington, Oregon and North Idaho region. He will report to Jay Quam, VP Sales and Marketing.
Ithomitis’ experience as a sales rep in the Northwest territory includes working with many crossover dealers to the wintersports business, particularly as the Territory Manager for Nordica Skis and Boots. He also reps Alp-N-Rock, Strafe Outerwear.
“Nick has a great track record of delivering consistently on the sales of his brands, and provides excellent customer service to the dealers and field at large, and we are excited to have him on board.” Quam said.
Ithomitis began waterskiing at the age of 2 and has served as a collegiate team president for Western Washington University in addition to serving the sport as a participant, driver, Malibu Boats promo team member and more.
“Having grown up three-event tournament skiing, and skiing on Connelly for years, not only do I have a ton of confidence in the brand, but also an extreme passion for the products Connelly builds, Ithomitis said. “It really is the perfect fit, and I am excited to begin working with the Connelly retail partners.”