Pros Take National Stage, Friday Makes History
The Oklahoma River served as the national stage for the United State’s top pro wake athletes Saturday, as Oklahoma City, Okla. hosted its fourth day of the 2009 Air Nautique WWA Wakeboard National Championships.
The Air Nautique Nationals is five-day-long event, featuring pro and amateur wakeboarders and wakeskaters, competing for U.S. national titles in 20 different divisions, separated by age and skill level.
The Pro Wakeskate division was first off the dock this morning for their semifinal round, with Florida native Reed Hansen posting the high score of the day with 75.00 points to lead his heat. Hansen, Brandon Thomas, Brian Grubb and defending national champ Stuart Shinn all advanced onto tomorrow’s finals. In the Pro Women’s division, Dallas Friday of Orlando, Fla. made wakeboarding history today, becoming the first female rider ever to land an S-Bend in contest, while in route to lead her heat with a score 98.50. Friday, along with five other female riders, advanced onto tomorrow’s Pro Women finals. Among the six female finalists is Amber Wing who scored a perfect 100-point run.
Defending U.S. national champion Phillip Soven of Longwood, Fla. and the 40+ other riders in the Pro Men’s division hit the water today for their opening round of the contest. Riders battled it out on the water in ten heats during the quarterfinals, with only the top two riders in each heat advancing onto tomorrow’s semifinals. Among the 20 semifinalists is Jim LaRiche of Boca Raton, Fla., who posted a perfect score of 100 points. On the amateur level, the Boys division hit water for their semifinals, competing in two heats of four. The top two riders from each heat advanced, sending Noah Flegel, Jason Soven, Zach Brown Paulie Koch to tomorrow’s finals. In the Boys Beginner division, Braxton Feemster captured the national title today, after taking first place in the finals. The Air Nautique Nationals concludes Sunday, July 12, running from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.