One of the largest and most exciting action-sports events to ride into central Florida in 2008 is the Air Nautique Wake Games. This distinctive team-driven pro-am contest will feature the world’s top pro wakeboard stars mixing it up on the water with some of the best up-and-coming amateur riders. All the high-flying and rail-sliding, board-crushing action is set to hit Orlando at the Orlando Watersports Complex on April 24-27.
The Air Nautique Wake Games will have the top 10 professional riders in the world serving as team captains. Each rider will draft a 10-person crew with a mix of male and female, pro and amateur riders. Team members not only go for the win in their respective divisions, they also contribute points to a team score. The crew with the best overall score will take home the 2008 Air Nautique Wake Games team title and prize money.
1 Team Captain
2 Pro Men Wakeboarders
2 Women Wakeboarders
3 Amateur Men Wakeboarders
2008 TEAM CAPTAINS
ANDREW ADKISON: 26, is a native of Panama City, Fla., and has been riding pro for seven years. Adkison is a two-time world champion, former rookie of the year and claimed the inaugural Wake Games title back in 2006.
ADAM ERRINGTON: 19, enters his second year as a pro rider, garnering rookie of the year honors and placing second at the 2007 Wake Games. Although young in his career, the Ullapool, Scotland, native has what it takes to win this contest.
TREVOR HANSEN: 23, is an eight-year pro rider and an Orlando, Fla., native. Hansen has had many top-three finishes at major contests, including a silver medal at the 2002 U.S. National Championships and a third-place finish at the 2006 Wake Games.
DANNY HARF: 23, is a four-time X Games gold medalist, a two-time U.S. national champion and a former rookie of the year. The nine-year pro rider is a native of Visalia, Calif., and is considered by many to be the frontrunner of this event.
RUSTY MALINOSKI: 24, hails from Humboldt, Saskatchewan, and is a five-year pro rider. Malinoski has many credits to his name, including a WWA World Series title and numerous Pro Tour victories.
SHAUN MURRAY: 31, is one of the most accomplished riders out there. The Mission Viejo, Calif., native has claimed four national championship titles, countless Pro Tour victories and captained the winning team at the 2007 Wake Games.
CHAD SHARPE: 27, is a 10-year pro rider who hails from Cloverdale, British Columbia. Sharpe has captured many honors, including an X Games silver medal, several Pro Tour victories and the 2005 Double or Nothing title.
PHILLIP SOVEN: 18, is a Longwood, Fla., native and an eight-year pro rider. He won nearly every contest he competed in during the 2007 season, including the ’07 Wake Games and is the only rider in history to win the King of Wake series, the Pro Wakeboard Tour and the WWA World Series in the same year.
DANIEL WATKINS: 31, is a Gold Coast, Australia, native and a 12-year pro rider. Watkins has won back-to-back WWA World Series titles, two Australian national championships and numerous Pro Tour stops.
JD WEBB: 20, is a five-year pro rider and a native of Anna Maria Island, Fla. Webb is a former rookie of the year and has had many top-three finishes, including a silver medal at the 2007 World Championships.
Following the contest’s qualifying rounds, these 10 riders will draft their teams on Friday, April 25, at 6 p.m. at the Orlando Watersports Complex. From there on out, the 10 teams will hit the water, performing rail tricks and aerial stunts while maneuvering on the water at a speed of approximately 30 mph.
Amateur riders will also have a shot to pick up some extra cash at Wake Games, as Pleasurecraft Marine Engine Company (PCM) is sponsoring the PCM Amateur Best Trick Award. This award is a $500 bonus presented to an amateur rider chosen by tournament officials for landing the most impressive trick of the contest.
The Air Nautique Wake Games is a four-day carnival of water-sports action. But not all the action takes place on the water. On land, fans will experience tons of great music and food; athlete autograph signings; chances to win free stuff; and shopping at the most cutting-edge stores for water-sports equipment including boats, wakeboards, wakeskates, sunglasses and the latest in wakeboarding and surfing fashions.
To catch all the wakeboarding action from home, tune in to Fuel TV. For exact air dates, visit www.kingofwake.com.
Fuel TV is a 24/7 action-sports lifestyle network for wakeboarding, skateboarding, snowboarding, surfing, BMX and freestyle motocross. A unit of Fox Cable Networks, Fuel TV was launched July 1, 2003, and is seen in 24 million U.S. homes. To subscribe to Fuel TV, call 877-4-FUEL-TV. For program times and other information, visit fuel.tv.
The Air Nautique by Correct Craft is the exclusive tow boat of the Wake Games and the WWA Nationals. Celebrating more than 80 years of excellence in the marine industry, Correct Craft is a family-owned manufacturer of internationally acclaimed, competition-caliber water-ski and wakeboard boats, as well as boats for recreational enjoyment. Correct Craft Inc. is known for superior-quality products, cutting-edge technology and innovative hull designs.
WakeBoarding, published by Bonnier Corp., 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.
The Air Nautique Wake Games is organized by World Sports & Marketing of Orlando, Fla. The Wake Games have the support of the following sponsors: Correct Craft, Rockstar Energy Drink, PCM, Fox, MONA VIE, the U.S. Air Force, Central Florida Toyota, Hyperlite, CWB, Gator Boards, Ronix, Oakley, Reef, wakeworld.com and the theliquidcircus.com