POLK CITY, Fla., July 18, 2018 - USA Water Ski & Wake Sports is pleased to announce the hiring of Nate Boudreaux as the organization’s next executive director. Boudreaux, who will begin his new position with the national governing body of organized water skiing and wakeboarding in August, takes over for Bob Crowley, who announced his retirement earlier this year after eight years with the organization.
“I am confident Nate will work hard to make a smooth transition from Bob Crowley, who has been a stable rock of leadership in our organization,” said Tim Cullen, president of USA Water Ski & Wake Sports. “After receiving national, and even international, interest in the executive director position with many excellent candidates, we’re happy to have Nate join us. USA Water Ski & Wake Sports is at a critical juncture and will require an injection of energy, creativity and an inspiring leader who is capable of building on past success while spearheading the growth of our beloved organization.”
Boudreaux comes to USA Water Ski & Wake Sports after a four-year (2014-18) stint at the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), a non-profit organization made up of over 50,000 sports medicine and exercise professionals. At ACSM, he served as director of corporate partnerships and was responsible for driving new business and revenue streams, while also servicing a portfolio of more than 20 corporate partners. During his tenure at ACSM, Boudreaux increased sponsorship revenue by 64 percent and forged multi-year partnerships with major brands like adidas, Gatorade, Technogym and Polar.
"I'm excited for the opportunity to join a great organization like USA Water Ski & Wake Sports,” said Boudreaux, who prior to ACSM, spent nine years (2005-14) at USA Football, an independent non-profit organization endowed by the NFL that serves as the national governing body of youth and amateur football. “I look forward to working with the USA Water Ski & Wake Sports board of directors, as well as our 15,000 members, headquarters staff and sponsors to help take the organization to the next level."
At USA Football, Boudreaux served in numerous management roles within marketing, communications and sponsorships. Most recently, he was the organization’s associate director of business development and partnership marketing. Boudreaux also spent four seasons (2002-05) in the NFL as the media relations coordinator with the Cleveland Browns. He also worked as media relations director for a pair of Arena Football League teams (Carolina Cobras, 2000-02; Florida Bobcats, 1999), and spent time in minor league baseball with the New Orleans Zephyrs (1997).
A graduate of Loyola University of New Orleans with a B.A. in communications, Boudreaux earned a post-graduate certificate in Sports Industry Essentials from Columbia University.
Twenty-five years after revolutionizing water skiing with the first-ever carbon-fiber slalom ski, GOODE Skis is proud to announce the arrival of the 9970, the best-ever version of the legendary 9000 series that permanently etched the likes of Regina Jaquess, Jeff Rodgers, Kristi Overton-Johnson, Karina Nowlan, and Chris Parrish in the world record books.
“Everything we’ve learned about carbon construction and ski design over the past 25 years has gone into the 9970,” says Dave Goode, president and founder of GOODE Skis. “We knew we couldn’t bring the 9000 series back if this ski didn’t live up to the legendary legacy of the previous skis. That was something that was in the back of our minds throughout the development process.”
Designed with the 36 m.p.h. skier in mind but highly capable at all speeds, the 9970 capitalizes on a new construction method and newly sourced advanced carbon materials to weigh in at a mere 2.5 pounds on a 67-inch model – the lightest GOODE ever. Additional areas of design focus included a new rocker profile and a larger flat spot.
“The 9970 is very fast cross course and carries a lot of speed through the turn,” says Martin Kolman, GOODE’s newly added product manager, the world’s current No. 1 overall Men’s skier and a mid-41 off slalom skier. “The 9970 gets angle out of the turn like no other ski I’ve been on. It really wants to be ridden on an edge.”
The 9970 is narrower from the front binding to the tip than the GOODE XTR, a characteristic that allows skiers to carry more speed through the turn, something that 36 m.p.h. skiers, especially, will appreciate.
“Our skis have had unparalleled success at 34 m.p.h. over the last few years,” says Dave, “but I really wanted us to be a force again at the higher speed. The 9970 is a legendary ski, made better. It’s going to put us back on the map at 36.”
Learn more about the 9970 here.
Connelly Skis family has grown once again! This time, we are pleased to welcome Slovakia native, Martin Bartalsky. A once formidable force in the collegiate scene, Martin has also made his mark in the pro realm with impressive overall finishes at the World Championships and podium placements at U.S. elite tournaments. However, Martin’s prowess extends further than what he can accomplish behind the boat. Read below to learn more about our newest member, and don’t forget to check out the rest of our elite team at https://www.connellyskis.com/ski1.html
Tell me about your background (where you grew up, your family, what daily life was like, etc.).
I grew up in Slovakia. Most of the year I went to school like other kids, but I would miss a few weeks because of training and tournaments. Interestingly, my parents initially wanted me to be a competitive snow skier, and waterskiing was meant to be a summer hobby for staying in shape. Usually, I would go to school in the morning and spent afternoons and weekends at the lake, on the ski slopes or at the gym.
How did you get involved in waterskiing? Was it a family sport or did you discover it on your own?
My dad used to be a 3-event waterskier back in the day. Both of my parents loved spending time at the lake in summer. They were members of the waterski club back home and that's where I started. Since the beginning, I’ve always skied a lot.
How did you get involved in and get good at 3-eventing?
3-eventing seems to be a lot more popular in Europe than in the U.S. Most of the kids actually start as 3-eventers. We always had a jump at our lake. When I was under 14, tricks were my best event. When I was 18, jump was my best. I did not really learn how to step it up in slalom until my early 20s. I still love to hit the jump when there is a nice headwind! If there were more hours in a day, I would definitely keep 3-eventing! Jumping is still my favorite event.
When did you first move to the states and why?
I skied at the Junior Masters when I was 17, and a few guys came to talk to me from Monroe, LA. I pretty much committed on the spot, and I spent my last year of high school getting things ready to move. I knew if I wanted to go to college and keep waterskiing, I had to move overseas.
What are you doing when you are not water skiing?
I love hanging out at the lake even when I am not skiing. During the winter, I spend most of my time snow skiing and even got back into racing last year. That was a lot of fun. I also go to the gym quite a bit. Work also keeps me very busy (I work in e-commerce — digital advertising, building/managing web stores and sourcing inventory).
How do you best prepare for your ride when you are at a big tournament?
Over the years, I came up with a routine that seems to work for me. I usually go for a quick run and do my regular warm up. I do like to eat but not within less than 30 minutes or so before my turn. I hate skiing on an empty stomach. I like to have a few sips of Redbull to wake me up. I found that coffee does me no good before skiing. I ski the best when I am a little nervous, but not too much. I need to get myself under the pressure to ski my best.
Name some things other than water skiing that you are passionate about?
Like I have mentioned, I love snow skiing. I love to race, ski powder or just rip groomers. I also love to ride motorcycles up in the mountains.
What do you like about your new Connelly GT and the culture of the company?
Joining the Connelly team has been nothing but a pleasure from the very beginning. All of the employees and team members I have dealt with are awesome. I am extremely thankful and excited to be on the Connelly team. I have always been very picky with how my skis feel. I have to trust the ski in any type of condition. The Connelly GT impressed me from the very beginning. The ski is very stable, yet gets me side to side effortlessly. Both turns are symmetrical, and I can always predict what the ski is going to do for me.
What are your goals for skiing now and in the future?
I had a fairly slow start this year since it was cold in Utah and I did not travel as much as I was planning on. I would love to get back on the podium at a pro tournament this year. I have a few events planned for the next few weeks (Canada Open, Malibu Open, California ProAm and possibly Europeans), but I try not to plan too far ahead.
What is one thing you can’t live without?
Water and snow! Is that one or two things? Sorry!
Most embarrassing moment at a tournament?
I think there have been a few, but those usually happen to many of us. Two years ago I was at a tournament in Austria, and I begged the best driver at the site to get in the boat for Open Men. He did just for me, and I missed my gates by about 10 feet on my opener.
Favorite place to be in the summer:
Summer activity of choice (besides waterskiing)
Uh.. what's that? No waterskiing?
Favorite food to grill on a warm summer night
One of America’s most cherished holidays is right around the corner, and if you’re like us, you’ll be spending it under the rays with your crew by the water. Stock up with the best gear from our line of Instagram-worthy floats and let the relaxing begin!
Take your U.S.A game to the next level with our Connelly Stars & Stripes float. Now you can honor our great nation at the beach, the lake or even by the pool. Buy it now from our website for $29.99. Just click the link below.
This 4th of July, enjoy a brew while floating on a brew. Our Beer Mug pool float includes a frothy head pillow and side cup holder so you can avoid spilled drinks and party fouls. It’ll be the best $34.99 you spend this holiday. Click the link for a cold one. Koozie not included.
What better way to announce the initiation of summer than with bikinis and flip flops? We feel sandals are an essential summer accessory and would double as an awesome pool float. Decked out in a “foot strap” head pillow and a side cup holder for your 4th of July drink of choice, we say this is a definite must in your gear haul for Independence Day activities. Snag one now for $39.99 at the link below.
For those pint-sized Ashers-in-training, the 63” Kid’s-specific Syndicate PRO is here! The 63” Syndicate PRO combines proven tournament performance with a kids-specific width profile and forgiving flex pattern. The PRO balances natural angle creation with consistent and stable turns. Each 63” PRO is handmade made in the USA, with a 100% carbon fiber lay-up and machined PVC foam core. Give your kids the ski the pros ride, because future rippers deserve real Syndicate skis. Available at HO/Syndicate retailers and now on the HO Demo Program! Get yours HERE!
The GOODE Virtual Water Ski Bracket Challenge is back, once again pitting many of the world’s best 34 mph water skiers against each other in head-to-head match-ups while testing fans’ skiing knowledge with a March-Madness like contest.
World champions and record holders, Senior World championships and perennial Big Dawg and National title contenders will duke it out over the four-round, four-month virtual tournament. Make your bracket pics now.
ONLINE FAN CONTEST
Like previous years, there will be some serious prizes on the line for the top finishers in the online fan contest.
The overall winner will win a free GOODE high-performance slalom ski, while the second- and third-place finishers will receive prize packages from GOODE’s online store.
But you can’t win if you don’t enter. Fill out your bracket before the June 26th deadline.
Last year Greg Badal edged Dave Miller in the finals, giving fan contest winner Kyle Kuykendall a perfect bracket and a new XTR.
For morning information, including officials rules and how the Bracket Challenge works, visit goode.com/bracket.
Zero Off Announces New Software for 3 Event Water Skiing
Zero Off and the three event towboat manufacturers will release the new Revision S (Rev S) software operating system beginning with 2019 model year boats, Rev S will enhance the existing SLALOM PLUS mode for skiers who want a more responsive pull.
After 18 months of testing and validation, the new Rev S will:
• Retain the current slalom settings (A, B, C, 1, 2, 3) and features skiers have come to appreciate with Rev R; and
• Enhance the existing SLALOM PLUS setting with a firmer more responsive pull when “+” is used.
Skiers who like a bit more acceleration out of the turn will find that the Rev S SLALOM PLUS setting improves acceleration through the wakes, resulting in an earlier and freer feel into the next buoy. Skiers of all abilities and sizes will find that Revision S allows them to optimize their skiing and break new personal records.
Rev S will be available starting July 2, 2018.
The Mystic Lakes Ski Club and the American Water Ski Association are pleased to announce that the inaugural America’s Cup Invitational will be held on Friday, Aug. 10 at the Mystic Lakes Ski Club in Maize, Kan. The event, which will be held in conjunction with the 76th GOODE Water Ski National Championships, will feature U.S. athletes competing in men’s and women’s slalom, tricks and jumping with a total cash-prize purse of $40,000.
U.S. athletes ranked Level 9 and Level 10 in a respective event are invited to compete in the America's Cup Invitational. The Open division at the 76th GOODE Water Ski National Championships will be the qualification round for the America's Cup Invitational. Level 9 skiers who want to compete in their age division will not be competing in the Open division for placement, but just for score to qualify for the America's Cup Invitational.
Skiers must indicate their intent to compete in the America's Cup Invitational by Aug. 1. All skiers must enter the Nationals via online registration, but must also enter the America's Cup Invitational and pay an additional $150, which will go toward the prize money.
The tentative schedule for qualification events is that Open Men and Open Women tricks will be at the end of the day on Thursday, Aug. 9, Open Men and Open Women jumping will start around noon on Friday, Aug. 10, and will be followed by Open Men and Open Women slalom, which will be the last Nationals’ events of the day.
The America's Cup Invitational will start at 7 p.m. and include the following events: women’s tricks (boat choice), men’s tricks (boat choice), women’s slalom (pulled by Malibu), men’s slalom (pulled by Nautique), women’s jumping (pulled by Nautique) and men’s jumping (pulled by MasterCraft), which will be held under the lights.
For additional information, including sponsorship opportunities, click here (PDF).
This past weekend at Callaway Gardens’ Robin Lake, Connelly Skis newest elite athlete Manon Costard competed for the women’s slalom title at the 59th Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard tournament. In the preliminaries, Costard put up an impressive score of 3 at 39.5 off to seize the third spot into the finals. Despite battling stiff winds and tricky rollers in the championship round, Costard showed extreme confidence, relying on the predicability and stability of her GT.
“All weekend, the ski helped me create angle and stay early in the course, which gave me some room to deal with the challenging conditions without having to panic or rush at any point,” Costard said.
Initially tying for first, Costard dueled it out for gold with world record holder Regina Jaquess and clinched the win with a score of 3 buoys at 38 feet off for her first ever Masters triumph.
“This first win at Masters, in addition to the amazing emotions it comes with, brings me even deeper certainty in my decision of skiing on the GT.”
Pine Mountain, GA (May 27, 2018) – The all-new Ski Nautique made an incredible impression this weekend at the 59th Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard Tournament® presented by GM Marine Engine Technology at Callaway Gardens. During the final day of competition, new Masters champions were made at the most prestigious event in all of watersports. The all-new Ski Nautique pulled the best waterskiers in the world to victory, while the Super Air Nautique G23 was on-hand to pull the best wakeboarders and wakeskaters to Masters titles as well.
In the Women's Trick division, Neilly Ross took home the win beating the rest of the stacked final of all Nautique athletes. Neilly scored 9,550 points to earn the victory. "It's been a whirlwind of a weekend," said Neilly "Competing in Junior Slalom and then Pro Trick, I had a tough winter with an injury but have worked extremely hard and couldn't be more grateful to be back on the water at the Nautique Masters. There's no other event like it and I'm so honored to be here and take home my second pro Masters title." After Neilly, team Nautique athletes Erika Lang (USA), Natallia Berdnikava (BLR), and Anna Gay (USA) rounded out the Final round respectively.
In the Pro Men Trick discipline another Nautique athlete, Aliaksei Zharnasek (BLR), posted an incredible score of 11,870 to notch yet another win under his belt. Danylo Filchenko (UKR) came in second place with a score of 10,900 while Franck Desboyaux (USA) came in third place with 9,280 points.
During the Final round of the Masters Big Dawg competition, Jeff Rodgers (USA) claimed victory against Greg Badal (USA). We'd like to congratulate Federico Jaramillo (COL) on winning the O'Brien Watersports scholarship during the Junior Men Slalom exhibition.
Manon Costard (FRA) won the Pro Women's Slalom division after defeating Regina Jaquess (USA) in a run-off after they both ran an exceptional 2 @ 39.5-off. Pulled by the all-new Ski Nautique, Whitney McClintock grabbed third place after running 1 @ 19.5 off.
In the Pro Men Slalom Finals, the crowd watched intently as Team Nautique athlete Nate Smith found himself on top of the podium for the 5th time at the 59th Masters. Nate skied incredible behind the all-new Ski Nautique grabbing 3 @ 41-off to take home another Masters title. “I’m extremely excited to come away this weekend with my 5th Masters title," said Nautique team athlete Nate Smith. "Robin Lake is a place where I love to ski, and I felt great this year behind the all-new Ski Nautique. That was my 4th Masters win in a row, and next year I’ll be looking for 5!”
In the Wakeskate division, The Super Air Nautique G23 set up perfect wakes for Reed Hansen (USA) to earn himself a Masters title with a score of 85, followed by Coco Mendez (USA) with an 80 and Brian Grubb (USA) with a 75.67.
The PCM, GM Marine powered Super Air Nautique G23 wake was on point During the Women’s Wakeboard Finals, where the many on hand witnessed Meagan Ethell (USA) grab another Masters title. After Meagan it was Nicola Butler (USA) coming in second after she put together 2 clean passes and scored an 89.33 and Nautique athlete Erika Lang (USA) in third with an 80.67.
Robin Lake laid down flat during the Men’s Wakeboard event. This year, Harley Clifford (AUS) took the win landing multiple double flips and a heelside 900 off the double-up behind the award-winning G23 earning himself a 97.67. Nic Rapa (AUS) took second followed by Nautique Athletes Tony Iacconi (AUS) and Mike Dowdy (USA).
Nautique athlete Jacinta Carroll continued her reign with another win in the Pro Women's Jump division. Jacinta blasted a 176 foot (53.8m) jump in the final to beat fellow Nautique team athlete Natallia Berdnikava (BLR) who posted a 159 foot (48.3m) jump. They were followed by Hanna Straltsova (BLR) and Lauren Morgan (USA) respectively.
During the Pro Men Jump division it was Freddy Krueger (USA) taking home the victory after jumping an incredible 231 feet in the final round. He was followed by Nautique team athlete Ryan Dodd (CAN) with a 223 foot jump 228 feet, Jack Critchley (GBR) with a 211 foot jump.
Pine Mountain, GA (May 25, 2018) – Today marked the start of the 59th Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard Tournament® presented by GM Marine Engine Technology. The story of the first day of the event were the titles claimed during the 26th Junior Masters behind the all-new Ski Nautique and award winning Super Air Nautique G23 at Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia. The best junior waterski and wakeboard athletes took to beautiful Robin Lake to make their mark in history and take home the most coveted Junior titles in all of watersports.
As the first official day of the Masters, the GM Marine Engine Technology powered Ski Nautique pulled Nautique team athlete Paige Rini (CAN) to a Junior Masters championships in both the Junior Women's Trick and Slalom disciplines. Paige scored a 8,020 behind the all-new Ski Nautique to win the Trick portion of the event, then turned around and got 2 @ 38-off to take the Slalom win.
During the Junior Men's Trick division, it was Louis Duplan-Fribourg (FRA) taking the victory with 10,500 points, while Felipe Franco Belmont (PER) came in second place in 9,260. The Junior Men’s Slalom final saw Federico Jaramillo (COL) showcasing his talents and receiving a Junior Masters title after he ran 2 @ 39.5-off behind the completely redesigned Ski Nautique.
In Junior Women’s Jump, the pull from the 2019 Ski Nautique saw Brooke Baldwin (USA) jump an incredible distance of 137 feet (41.7m) to win the 26th Junior Masters title. During the Junior Men’s Jump, it was Louis Duplan-Fribourg with a distance of 177 feet (53.8m) to win the Junior Men's Jump portion of the event.
When it was all said and done, it was Paige Rini taking the overall Junior Women Masters title after feeling extremely comfortable behind the all-new Ski Nautique. With a couple first place finishes, Paige had an incredible day of skiing to earn the victory. “I’ve been coming here since I was a little girl and I love the Masters. Winning Slalom, Trick and Overall on Robin lake is the most incredible finish to my Junior ski career.”
On the Junior Men front, Louis Duplan-Fribourg took the overall win after getting on the podium in 2 disciplines. His first-place in the Jump and Trick was enough to stake his claim as the 26th overall Junior Masters champion.
The 5-time Wakeboard Boat of the Year in the Super Air Nautique G23 set up perfect wakes for the Junior Men’s Wakeboard riders, and after the smoke cleared it was Sam Brown (AUS) taking the Junior Masters victory. After laying down two insane passes, Sam found himself on top of the podium for the first time in history and stoked to stamp his name in history.
For complete up-to-date scores of the 26th Junior Masters, please visit masterswaterski.com/standings/
An invitation to compete in the Masters is universally considered an acknowledgement of achievement for reaching the pinnacle in a given watersports discipline - only the world's most elite athletes compete at the Masters. To view the 2018 criteria please visit the Masters website. This tournament is sanctioned by IWWF/USA Water Ski and WWA. Watch all of 59th Masters action live on Saturday May 26th starting at 8:00AM EDT, please visit masterswaterski.com.
We saw the merit for wider skis. It provided better performance and heightened improvement in the wider population of course goers. Doug Cannon has engineered Connelly products for 25 years, and along with a team of Connelly masterminds, he helped create the most efficient, effortless and predictable 34 mph ski on the market. Say hello to the Connelly Carbon V.
Forgiving, light and snappy, easily maneuverable, responsive. These are just a few of the qualities that set this buoy slayer apart from the pack.
Doug and the Connelly team originally bred the Carbon V from the Prophecy, the precursor to the GT. Unlike many other ski companies, Connelly created a ride that added more than just uniform width. They fashioned the Carbon V with a wider fore body to generate stabilization and speed as well as a slimmer tail for quicker edge changes. As a result, the Carbon V boasts aggressive turns without blowing out the tail and stays solid through the wakes.
According to Connelly elite slalomer Seth Stisher, the Carbon V is prime for people who are working their way to their max speed and need support at longer line lengths and slower speeds. It’s a great stepping stone for learning the course for the first time and honing clean, basic, efficient moves, he says.
Because the Carbon V was constructed with the same geometry (bevels, sidewall, tunnel) as the GT, skiers are able to work on the same principles as someone who is focusing on short line slaloming.
“Our top end skis were always designed to perform their best at a top level,” Doug says. “Skiing on them at slower speeds leaves some performance on the table. We wanted to make an extremely high performing ski that worked to its full potential at slower speeds (32-34 mph).”
Thus, the Carbon V was fabricated with efficiency in mind, so skiers could accomplish big goals with less effort.
If you are dreaming of 38 off but are still working on the yellow loop, we think the Carbon V is your answer to prayer.
The Syndicate Hilltop Pro-Am, a 2-day 4-round record slalom tournament capped off with a Head-to-Head Pro final will celebrate it’s 3rd year on August 4th and 5th, 2018. Held at the immaculate Hilltop Lake in Arlington, Washington, the event offers pro skiers a shot at a $10,000 prize purse at a venue capable of producing world record scores. In the record rounds, amateurs share the dock with pros, skiing for personal bests and HO gear at the heavily tree protected blue waters of Hilltop.
Check out our recap of the Syndicate Hilltop 2017 Action:
Last year, Nick Adams took home the crown after hard fought head-to-head matchups, defeating the likes of both Jon Travers and Will Asher, while Jaimee Bull took home the pro womens victory.
TEAM D3 World Record Holder Nate Smith continues his total dominance of every slalom event he enters. Since switching to his new D3 EVO Nate has been almost perfect at the 10.25 (41off) rope length.
Nate’s first pro event on the EVO was the TRAVERS GRAND PRIX last Friday the 11th. Nate won both rounds and the championship with scores into 9.75 (43off) No other skier ran 10.25.
FUN FACT- Nate Smith has run the 10.25 pass in competition more times than any other skier in the history of our sport. Unfortunately for the competition he isn’t showing signs of slowing down any time soon.
At D3 we are honored to have Nate as an ambassador for our brand and our sport. He is always willing to give back and drive the boat, judge an event, coach skiers, whatever he can do to help the sport we all love. Next up for Nate and TEAM D3 is the US Masters at Callaway Gardens, GA presented by Nautique Boats. The excitement starts on Friday the 25th and ends with finals on Sunday the 27th.
Be sure to catch the web cast for all the action or join us at our booth on site. https://www.nautique.com/events/masters
Ellie Horton is three event and third generation competitive water skier. She grew up skiing at Horton Lakes, which was built by her grandfather Dr Jack Horton, and began competing when she was ten years old.
Currently, Ellie is a second year student at Florida Southern College. She is studying journalism and skis on scholarship for the FSC water ski team. is ranked 3rd overall in the nation, 9th in the U21 overall world standings, and has her open women’s rating in overall.
She is a member of the D3 water skis Factory Team and is sponsored by CAMARO wetsuits and NewCity Clothing.
Her recent successes have included winning Division I women’s tricks at the 2013 collegiate nationals as well as taking the tricks and overall title at the U21 2014 Pan Am Championships.