Over the last weekend the Australian Waterski Nationals were held up at Stoney Park in Telegraph Point in New South Wales, providing a showing of not just Australia's up and coming talent, but also giving our Aussie's who compete on the world stage a taste of home, as well as a chance for almost all Australian water-skiers to test their abilities. With most of the top skiers only weeks off from their Moomba campaigns, what might seem to the average bystander as a breeze on the way through to the next international competition, was far from it.
In the Open Men's and Women's divisions, there was plenty to talk about with Queensland having their say with Siani Oliver placing first with 1 Buoy off the 11.25 line after a 7th placing in moomba, followed by Katelyn Miller of New South Wales and Jacinta Carroll Placing third, who didn't compete in slalom at Moomba due to injury. Men's Slalom also showed the best of the Australians who competed in Moomba, with an international Australian duo Joel Howley from Queensland in first with 4 buoys on the 10.75 line just short of his first round score of half a buoy off the 10.25 line. In second was another Moomba competitor in Nicholas Adams just short of Joel pushing 3 and half buoys on the 10.75 line, with Craig Juede in 3rd.
The trick event showed the Jacinta Carroll once again placing 1st in the women's division at 7480, while 2nd and place was Katelyn Miller giving a feeling of deja vu, with 3rd place going to Jacqui McDonald with a PB of 3230. The Mens provided a real mix on the podium with ACT's Archie Davis scoring 7960 to put himself first, while Great Britain managed to steal a spot in second with Luke Outram scoring 6530 and Queenslands Adam Potts scoring 6160 for 3rd.
Women's Jump never really showed any doubt with the girl from Geelong, Jacinta Carroll, putting herself firmly in first with a jump of 54.5 metres also providing her with 1st in the overall stakes. The girl from New South Wales, Jacqui McDonald jumped herself into 2nd place while the United States Erin Kalbrenner, placed 3rd to round out the podium. Men's also provided plenty of excitement with South Australian Joshua Wallent jumping 57.1 metres just shy of his 1st round jump of 60 metres for 1st place, while second and third place went to Harrison Harber and Archie Davis with jumps of 54.6 and 52.2 metres respectively.
While we focus on the open divisions, there was still plenty of excitement with the next generation coming through in the juniors. Some mentions go to William Bastian skiing to 3 buoys at 12 for 1st place in the over 21 division, but in the younger divisions Jack Christie, fresh from his Moomba victory, showed plenty of skill taking first in the under 17 slalom, making it down to the 11.25 line, while also pulling off 2nd in both trick and jump, while younger brother Bailey dominated in the under 14's. For junior women's in the under 17 division, there was a clear overall winner with Casey Wooderson who placed herself in 1st in all 3 disciplines.
With Nationals for 2016 all wrapped up many have considered this one of the strongest season's yet, and with skiing once again becoming a greater presence with in the watersports industry we can only expect the competition to get stronger for Nationals 2017.
Written by Jesse Chiminello