What was the path to your first tournament?

jgills88jgills88 Posts: 141 Baller
edited February 22 in News & Other Stuff
We all started somewhere, howd you find your way to that first tournament?

If you've never been to one, why not?
Akron Waterski -- Always looking for water
Tagged:
6balls
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  • harrison_343harrison_343 Posts: 41 Baller
    One day i went and did a come and try day at my local ski club, went up the weekend after for a ski and got talked into entering a tournament the next weekend. Was good
    thagerjgills886ballsswbca
  • RednucleusRednucleus Posts: 806 Mega Baller
    My 1st try at a course was a Lake Stevens Aquafest Tourny mid 80's - I was a decent skier, how hard could it be - after crashing at one ball I was hooked. The following three years did the INT league; lots of fun, met lots of great people. Haven't done the tourny thing since then.
    jgills88thager6ballsswbca
  • braindamagebraindamage Posts: 296 Solid Baller
    I was 17 and skied open water slalom since 12. I loved to ski and had a friend about my dad’s age who competed and would sell me his old skis cheap.

    He told me about a competition about 20 mins away. I’d never skied a course, so I showed up a couple hours early and talked one of the drivers into giving me a few passes before the tourney. I made it through 1 pass officially. I didn’t ski a course for another 32 years and have never entered another tournament.
    jgills88thager6ballsswbca
  • Nickpep22Nickpep22 Posts: 18 Baller
    A neighbor on the lake needed a third one day stopped and asked me I went. Never skied before in my life some how got up loved it 8-10 years later found Bennett’s. Last season a couple of the guys I ski with got me to enter a tournament loved that as well. This year it’s 12 tournaments lol. As for why I went it was a private ski lake no other boats…..sold!!!
    jgills88thager6ballsswbca
  • MDB1056MDB1056 Posts: 999 Crazy Baller
    edited February 24
    Grew up non a lake in southern Wisconsin. Helped our ski club build a slalom course in about 1970. Tires with wood and concrete with rebar anchors, sub anchors about 3ft below surface. Spent many mornings hopping out of the boat to connect buoys one at a time- then skiing for a few hours . Mostly behind a Johndon Reveler I/O. Great wake. Entered first tournament in about 1971. Wisconsin State at Tomahawk. AWSA was $15 yr and entry fees were I think $15-20. I was 15. Old wood Obrien Mach 1. Was $100 new. Hot stuff back in the day. There were 3 of us that started skiing tournaments. I was glad they were older and could drive. Got pulled behind a lot of very early Correct Craft’s with 318 Chryslers
    jgills886ballsMISkierswbca
  • ZmanZman Posts: 1,956 Mega Baller
    edited February 24
    Back in 2007, @Chad_Scott called me to come ski a tournament at the Ski Ranch. I hemmed and hawed how much I just liked skiing and hanging out on our own lake.
    He paused, then called me something not nice. Keep in mind we were and are long time close friends. So, I said, OK, since you put it like that sign me up. And, so it began.
    thagerjgills886ballsswbca
  • Stevie BoyStevie Boy Posts: 2,366 ★★★★Quad Panda Award Recipient ★★★★
    edited February 24
    In the UK there used to be a ski league with divisions 4, 3, 2, 1 and Premiere, there were numerous competitions available to enter and not to expensive, so we used to get a group of us together, go along for the day out and have a good laugh, the group consisted of various levels of skier.
    Then they Knocked the League system on the head and went to Ranked Competitions, it immediately, reduced the number of events available and killed the competition scene.
    Competitions became expensive to host and the availability of qualified officials and getting them to travel was a issue.
    Without the Competitions people moved away from water skiing and became involved with other sports, predominantly Triathlon Events.
    I remember skiing against a very young Freddie Winter, he could ski pretty good then, alas my ski buddies, myself included, could never get the better of him,

    Looking Forward To Getting On The Water, It Has Been A Bleak Winter

    jgills88chrislandy6ballsswbca
  • 2Valve2Valve Posts: 472 Crazy Baller
    I had a good friend that was going to start competing so I figured I would give it a try.
    I know on one occasion I got a pretty cool trophy.
    Memories:
    Great drivers
    Great new boats to ski behind
    Really good people
    swbcajgills88Shell
  • jayskijayski Posts: 1,159 Mega Baller
    Highway mostly, then a little gravel road to the site....
    jgills88thagerThe_MSski6jones
  • teammalibuteammalibu Posts: 1,204 Mega Baller
    @jayski that explains the road rash!
    I blame it all on JD and Cottonwood!
    Mike Erb Cedar Ridge Canton Miss.
    Horton is my hero
    The_MSjayski
  • teammalibuteammalibu Posts: 1,204 Mega Baller
    @MDB1056 what lake are you referring to? I grew up in Silver Lake in Kenosha county!
    Mike Erb Cedar Ridge Canton Miss.
    Horton is my hero
  • swbcaswbca Posts: 707 Crazy Baller
    edited February 25
    At 16 years old, I was in my very first tournament in Waverly Iowa in boys division. My parents drove me there from Minnesota. I weighed about 150 pounds but broke two ski ropes. I was sitting in the water in the middle of the lake hearing the announcer complaining about all the trouble I was causing while another boat was bringing replacements from shore. 1st place, Crappy rope !
    Home of the world's first submersible slalom course
    jgills88
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 6,081 Mega Baller
    @swbca what year was that? I used to ski Waverly on that river site in Iowa while at the u of iowa for school. Shallow, current, basically had a hard right turn into the course slung you out into your gate glide on the one end. Waterloo was nicer--private but backwash and beachball style buoys. Pickle farm in Des Moines was nice, and then followed by Dream Lake Estates. You ever ski any of those?
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • swbcaswbca Posts: 707 Crazy Baller
    @6balls It was in 1962. I don't remember much about the site . . or even skiing there. I just remember laying awake most of the night in a motel (first tournament excitement) and spending about 15 minutes treading water while they replaced broken ropes. At some point I also skied at Waterloo. Eventually Minnesota started having enough tournaments that traveling became less necessary.
    Home of the world's first submersible slalom course
    6balls
  • MDB1056MDB1056 Posts: 999 Crazy Baller
    @teammalibu - Lauderdale Lakes. Between Elkhorn and Whitewater. Walworth County. I still have family and friends on the lake.
    swbca
  • ETskierETskier Posts: 156 Baller
    1974, Walloon Lake, MI. Behind a Hydrodyne I/O Tournament Skier. Looked like a drag race car. Wow, what a ride. Didn't do another one until 1983 in Indy.
    MISkierbraindamagejgills88swbca
  • teammalibuteammalibu Posts: 1,204 Mega Baller
    edited February 26
    @MDB1056 yes I skied there many times in the 80s still have friends that live on the lake!
    Mike Erb Cedar Ridge Canton Miss.
    Horton is my hero
  • Spencer_ShultzSpencer_Shultz Posts: 44 Baller
    My first first tournament was in 2004 when I was in the 8th grade. Couldn’t run a single pass in a 3 round tournament. Went home and vowed I would never go to another event. Picked up wakeboarding.
    Found out about the INT in 2012 and that’s what got me hooked. Got to ride my ski and my wakeboard.
    2013, the INT didn’t exist in Missouri and by that time, I was all in on skiing. Skied my second USA waterski event and haven’t looked back.
    So what changed everything? I learned how to kind of control my nerves with humor and talking! Y’all better lighten up on the starting dock 😄
    jgills88Cooper_Trelawney2ValveBongo
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