Erika Lang Trick Skiing World Record Holder

Erika Lang Keeps Setting World Records, One Trick at a Time | Team USA

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Erika Lang Keeps Setting Water Ski World Records, One Trick at a Time

Erika Lang Trick Skiing World Record Holder

Erika Lang competes during the preliminary round at the 2023 IWWF World Waterski Championships on Oct. 13, 2023 in Lake County, Fla. (image: Johnny Hayward)

By Bob Reinert

Team USA


Put Erika Lang behind a powerful motorboat, and she can do things no other woman ever has.

That was the case again in May, when Lang nailed another water ski tricks run in Groveland, Florida, to establish a new world record.

Riding under puffy white clouds and a pale blue sky, the Phoenix native performed a dizzying series of turns and spins while connected to the tow rope by her left foot. Then, in her second pass while holding the rope handle with her hands, she flew back and forth over the wake, performing a more impressive flip each time.

It was just another day for the world’s best trick skier.

Full article at Team USA.

My boat floating for the first time in Veteran’s Park Lagoon

Water Skiing on Veteran’s Park Lagoon in Milwaukee | Medium

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How We Got to be the First People to Waterski on Veteran’s Park Lagoon in Milwaukee

My boat floating for the first time in Veteran’s Park Lagoon

My boat floating for the first time in Veteran’s Park Lagoon (image: Joel Hughes).

By Joel Hughes

Medium


From 2010 to 2016 the quiet lagoon in the middle of Veteran’s Park in Milwaukee would transform into a premier urban waterski venue for one special weekend each year, hosting an elite professional waterskiing tournament called the Malibu Open. This tournament has since moved to another location, but for those 7 summer weekends we had something really special going on with waterskiing in the heart of Milwaukee.

A very long list individuals and corporations contributed time and money to make this amazing event happen. We played a very, very small part in comparison. Here is the story of how we helped out on one cold, windy autumn day in 2009.

Full article at Medium.

Lauren Morgan water ski jump

Lauren Morgan: Scholar, Feminist, and World Games Gold Medalist | CBS 42

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Lauren Morgan: Scholar, feminist, and World Games gold medalist

Lauren Morgan water ski jump

Lauren Morgan exits the water at Oak Mountain State Park after securing a gold medal for the US in the women’s water ski jump. (Photo by Lee Hedgepeth)

By Lee Hedgepeth


BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – Lauren Morgan didn’t know she’d be representing the United States in the World Games until three days before the international sporting competition began. She didn’t have the normal opportunity for planning or for preparation. But the world-class water skier was determined. A little panicked, too, but determined nonetheless. She wanted to win, and she knew she had the skills to get the job done.

Full article at CBS 42.

Whitney McClintock Rini

The Dawn of a Golden Era? | Waterski Journal

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The Dawn of a Golden Era?

Whitney McClintock Rini

Image: Whitney McClintock Rini (photo: Radar Skis)

By Freddie Winter

Waterski Journal


Amongst the many reasons that sport is such a large part of our culture is the collective excitement we feel when witnessing something that was previously thought extremely unlikely or even unthinkable. In most areas of life progress is reached behind closed doors with few witnesses but sporting spectacle is there for all to experience as history is written in real time. The Malibu Open at the start of last October was one such occasion, as all four women’s slalom finalists ran into 10.25m, marking the first time this had happened. In the minds of many, there was suddenly a new era of competitiveness in women’s slalom.

Read the full article at Waterski Journal

Neilly Ross Trick Skiing

The Future of Tricks | Waterski Journal

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Future of Tricks

Neilly Ross Trick Skiing

Image: Neilly Ross (ph. Vincent Stadlbaur)

By Freddie Winter

Waterski Journal


April 30, 2021

Tricks are for kids. Or at least that’s what one might think when examining the last decade of competitive trick skiing. Previously it was not unheard of for precocious teens to take on and beat their more seasoned rivals: in 2001 fairly well known slalom skier Regina Jaquess won a World Trick Championship shortly after turning 17. However, recently teenagers conquering the world on their trick skis is not just more prevalent but more or less the norm.

Read the full article at Waterski Journal

Jaime Beauchesne Slalom Skiing

The Enigma: In Search of the Elusive Jaime Beauchesne | Waterski Journal

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The Enigma: In Search of the Elusive Jaime Beauchesne

Jaime Beauchesne Slalom Skiing

Image: Todd Ristorcelli

By Freddie Winter

Waterski Journal


February 3, 2021

The term ‘Legend’ is overused in the context of sport. The word is often used hyperbolically, along with ‘icon’ and the acronym ‘GOAT’, to describe someone who has reached a high level in their field. The overuse has diluted the real meaning to the point of cliché. Of course, there are instances when the shoe fits: those described are remembered amongst the sports gods and their achievements talked about amongst fans for years after their retirement. The next generation of athletes, aiming to emulate these legends, are measured with regards to the titans that preceded them.

Read the full article at Waterski Journal

Slalom skier Nate Smith was investigated for sexual misconduct by SafeSport

Sex Misconduct Report Shows Limits of SafeSport’s Reach | Washington Post

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Sex Misconduct Report on Water Ski Champ Shows Limits of SafeSport’s Reach

Nate Smith has denied any sexual misconduct. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

By Rick Maese

Washington Post


One of the world’s most dominant water skiers was the subject of a scathing report this year from the government-backed organization charged with investigating sexual abuse claims in Olympic sports. U.S. Center for SafeSport investigators found he had sex with an underage girl, physically and emotionally abused a girlfriend and had inappropriate communications with at least one other young girl.

Full article at The Washington Post

Krista Rodgers Schipner Dear Water Skiing

Dear Water Skiing | Waterski Magazine

Articles

Dear Water Skiing, It’s Not You. It’s Us.

Krista Rodgers Schipner Dear Water Skiing

Image: @waterski_mag

By Krista Schipner

Waterski Magazine


April, 2017

I urge the water-skiing community to remember where and how they fell in love with the sport in the first place. Many of our current die-hards are third generation water-ski babies. Where did their parents or grandparents first fall in love with the sport?

For most of us, it was having fun under the sun and on the water with family and friends. And the skier was more concerned about getting a PB or impressing someone in the boat than he or she was about how perfectly straight the boat path was or if the time was indeed 16.95.

Skiers today – and their moms, dads and grandparents – likely fell in love with this sport behind an old outboard boat, or a wooden ski with a binding that resembled a flip-flop more than a Wiley’s. The passion was probably developed over the summer, at someone’s family cabin after days of out-the-fronts, mouthfuls of water, and skiing doubles with friends.

Water skiing, you’ve provided us endless hours of fun, sore muscles and memories. You’ve taught us to get up after falling down time and time again. You gave us a place to bond with our parents, neighbors, friends and strangers. You’ve taught us life lessons about strength, humility, determination and dedication.

You’ve given us a world where our hometowns, language and culture fall second to how we identify ourselves. Being a water-skier and part of this family always comes first.

Thank you for giving us early mornings smelling like sunscreen and gasoline and late nights consisting of sunburned skin and blistered hands. Thank you for providing that feeling, that one every water-skier knows, of breaking glass under your ski.

Thank you for the joy. For the laughs. For the triumphs and the competition.

Compensation adds enjoyment. A new set of goals, benchmarks and adventures. New friends, trips, events and memories.

But we apologize. We apologize for taking you for granted. We apologize for trying to make you something you are not. We apologize for making it too complicated.

We became selfish.

We became enthralled with ourselves. We turned inward instead of reaching out. We focused on fractions of feet, inches of deviations in a ramp, quarter buoys and new standards for judges. We added layers upon layers of technology to the sport in an effort to chase a futile Olympic dream. We made it daunting. We made it hard in ways it shouldn’t be. We took advantage of volunteers.

Competition brings joy until too many rules squelch it. It becomes too much of a burden to bear for the technical-controller volunteer or the promo-boat owners. It is too much.

We became exclusive. Elitist.

Self-serving. That is not what you are about. That is not the heart of the sport. We lost sight of why we are all here in the first place.

From beginners to pros to retirees and everything else in between, remember you work for the industry, the industry doesn’t work for you. We are all in this together and need to contribute in the best ways we can. We took advantage, and now it is time to take responsibility.

Water skiing is not dying. The box that we’ve tried to put it in, however, is collapsing. Weekend warriors are soaking up the sun on a public lake, someone is trying the course, and another has finally got the nerve up to ride a tube for the first time. These are our people. They are part of our water-ski family too.

For most of us, water skiing is a lifestyle that is just as much dedication to craft as it is a social activity. I invite the ski family to remember the first time they got up and the joy it brings them to teach others, and I challenge them to continue to spread that joy.

Water skiing, we are sorry, but we are not done. We’ve seen where we’ve gone wrong, and we see the bigger picture. We will teach new people to ski. We will invite our friends who have left the sport to come and take a ride. We will embrace the kids who just want to tube or kneeboard, and we will praise the barefooters who get the early-morning butter. We understand that we are all part of the same team with a shared love for being behind the boat, and we will be better teammates moving forward.

With love,

Krista.

This article originally appeared in Issue 1, Volume 39 of Waterski Magazine.