Barefoot skiers show skill

WATER SKIING: Twelve new “footers” trampled down to Bedford Weir in Blackwater last weekend to make their debut splash into the Central Region Barefoot Water Ski Club.

Each team member from eight-year-old Nikolas Bray to the current Open Ladies World Champion Ashleigh-Kate Stebbings put their best foot forward in the tournament for both the trick and slalom score.

The weekend stood as the monthly social Come and Try Day and tournament that caters from the beginner to the professional with ages from eight to 52 attending.

But it was the Central Region Barefoot Water Ski Club's secretary, Dave Bray, who picked up first place in the Men's Three division with a trick score of 980 and a slalom score of 7.6.

He was followed by Scott Verrall with a 650 trick score and a 7.4 slalom score.

Bray said he was pleased to see so many new competitors at the event.

“It is so great to see so many new faces attend our monthly event, it was definitely a huge success for barefoot waterskiing in the area,” he said.

“After a few tips you could see the look of jubilation on a skier's face when they achieved a trick that they had been attempting for years.”

Locals Chris Brennan, Gabe Church, Jack Mooney and Blackwater's Jason Russel scooted through the water remarkably well for their very first time and scored well in both events.

The four were awarded their one-minute badge that gives the skiers a lifetime membership number with Barefoot Australia.

The competitors were faced with near-perfect conditions for the two rounds of slalom and tricks, with expert coaching provided along the way.

“The water was perfect for footing, seeing most skiers achieving their personal bests,” Bray said.

Competitor Kassie Cooper said the coaching and advice she received on the day was “awesome”.

“I had a ball and would love to go out on any other opportunities,” she said.

“I am a bit sore, but it was worth it - I would encourage anybody to come and have a go.”

For more information on the Central Region Barefoot Water Ski Club and local tournaments call Dave Bray 0408 875 153.

Come and try

SPORTING Wheelies and Disabled Association will join together with the Rockhampton Water Ski and Power Boat Club to hold a “Come and Try” water ski day this Saturday.

The event welcomes all those with disabilities to the event at the Laurel Banks Ski Gardens on the Fitzroy River.

The event will go from 10am to 2pm

For more information contact Michael Oxley on 4938 3708.

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