WOW! There have been ten count ‘em TEN WWSC’s and at the end of this month we’ll see the very best riders in the world converge on Parker, AZ for the biggest, the best, the RICHEST wakesurfing contest in the short history of this sport. We swiped the top of of the poster for the 2012 World Wake Surfing Championship which shows the total purse.
OH MY GOD! $40,000 in cash! That’s the biggest purse in wakesurfing history! It literally dwarfs all other events by multiples! This is for the single discipline of wakesurfing, not a bunch of sports – you know those other sports that no one watches. Forty thousand dollars for wakesurfing alone. We want to editorialize on that for a moment.
Wakesurf contests help legitimaize the sport. A championship is the culmination of the season and it gathers the best of the best to compete head-to-head. For those folks reading this as fans, you get the opportunity to see your favorite riders throw down for some of the biggest money this year. But also, isn’t that HUGE respect for those talented riders that put their time and energy into mastering new tricks, developing better style and creating tricks we never even knew could be done? You know it is and they deserve it! You folks reading this as competitors, you have to feel the deserved respect offered you as a wakesurf athlete. Even if you don’t bring home the first place hardware, you have to feel that Centurion, Towanza.com and the World Wake Surfing Championship are making legitimate efforts to support you and the sport with this huge(r) freaking purse! Not playing second fiddle to wakeboarding or as an adjunt, this is HUGE DOLLARS and for the singular sport of wakesurfing.
Wakesurfing contests have developed somewhat, some are still overblown marketing efforts that do little for the sport, riders or really anything but promote a brand. That’s not the case with the 10th Annual World Wake Surfing Championships. We all recognize that it’s the Centurion sponsored event, but there was absolutely no need for them to raise and GIVE AWAY $40,000 in cash prizes for wakesurfing alone. That’s not to mention the $15,000 in prizes! The efforts behind the folks involved, such as Todd Gaughan, President of the Competitive Wake Surf Association and principal of Towanza.com have helped bring a number of revolutionary concepts to competitive wakesurfing.
Prior to the current administration of the event, the women’s divisions actually had a smaller purse then the men’s divisions. That sort of sexism was veiled in some silly excuse like the competitors weren’t as accomplished. Don’t you hate when folks refuse to take personal responsibility, always blaming someone else? It was within the rich history of the WWSC that gender equality was recognized within the sport of wakesurfing. We see the likes of Rebecca Ort, Korina Smyrek, Bri Chmel and Jacqualine Fort, among many other talented ladies, competing at the WWSC.
There were literally years of arguing and negotiating to create a split in the divisions between surf and skim. It has allowed the surf style riders the opportunity to compete directly with each other and over the years develop their own style of tricks. If you’ve been following along during our “Shuv Week” you’ve seen James land a number of shuv’s on his surf style board, plus things like a back big. The development of this style of riding, the progressive wakesurfing that most of you reading this have come to enjoy has been fostered under this contest. It’s true that many contests had already adpoted those divisions, but the WWSC embraced them and now is awarding an equal distribution of the total purse to both surf and skim.
Also, the WWSC is a part of the Centurion Wake Surf series, under the rules and guidance of the Competitive Wake Surf Association. The adoption of those rules and guidelines insures a uniform and consistent rule set and judging criteria developed by the best and brightest, who are committed to an equitable set of rules that apply to everyone. That certainly hasn’t been easy, but it is driven by unformity and fairness. The WWSC representatives have been active participants and have worked hard at developing this uniformity and fairness and adopting a set of guidelines NOT just approved by a single person, but worked on by the largest collective group in the sport.
The point of all of that is the respect being attributed to the riders and the sport. It didn’t come without a fight, but honestly what of value doesn’t come with some sort of significant effort? The WWSC is pushing the sport to develop and respect it’s talented riders and in so doing is insuring not only the integrity of the sport but also it’s longevity. We here at Flyboy Wakesurf join in supporting the WWSC and we are a proud sponsor of that event. We also congratulate Centurion and the WWSC for it’s long-standing support of the riders.
One of the best things about the WWSC or really any live event is the fellowship that you develop within the contest circuit. The pro riders are readily accessible and you can talk to them. All are very approachable and really you can only get that at one of these larger events. There are also so many things going on, vendors, after parties, displays, plus the riding itself. If you are in the area, you owe ourself the favor of visiting the 10th annual World Wake Surfing Championships.
Now you also know why we are celebrating Shuv Week surf style wakesurf tricks! Gearing up for the biggest and best wakesurf contest of the year! See you all there!
Thanks so much for following along and reading our editorial. We’ll be back to more surf style shuv based tricks tomorrow!