TSR Cablestock 2012
The 10th anniversary of Cablestock has arrived and Texas Ski Ranch did it big yet again! Ten years of insane riding and even crazier parties colliding at the same location bringing today’s best wakeboarders, wakeskaters and musicians from around the world to compete and party. Sounds brilliant right? It is!
Every year I find myself asking how they plan on topping it from the last, but they still somehow pull it off each time. This year TSR teamed up with the WWA Monster Triple Crown Wake Park Tour helping bring even more riders and spectators in for the festivities, not to mention they held the event on Cinco de Mayo!
This has been my 3rd or 4th Cablestock now and even though I tweaked my knee practicing the day before and made the decision to take myself out of the contest, I still enjoyed myself more than plenty! I even got to help judge one of the sections for the structures-only event and watch all the boys destroy it from a bird’s eye view. When I wasn’t judging, I was walking laps around the lake getting up close and personal with all the contest riding and snapping photos of all the action. I even got to check out Pat Panakos and the boys with The Wake Park Project while they had a free Sesitec 2.0 demo going all weekend.
The event started off on Friday with not only preliminary rounds of all the cable and boat divisions, but even some extra little fun contests that really help set off the event with a fun vibe. TSR has become famous for bringing new and unique contests to the cable and this season they brought back their famous tricks for cash and shove-it comp and also added a team competition.
The tricks for cash event was simple. You buy in with $5 for one trick that you think you can land on your first try that you most likely wouldn’t land on your first try. The judges will take your $5 and offer a reward to you with however much they think that trick is worth with your skill level. But don’t worry, if you don’t land it then you can always drop another 5-spot and make it back and more! This year we got a perfect double flip from Nico Von Lerchenfeld that earned him an extra $40 in his pocket, so the house definitely was not in favor the whole time. But don’t tell them that.
The annual shove-it contest was back again this year, but this year Thai Wake Park let loose their secret weapon, Daniel Grant, hitting 54 consistent shove-its in one lap, breaking the old record of 51 set by Grant Roberts two years ago. Big congrats to Daniel for that because that was insane.
The new event this year was the team competition. I was lucky enough to help judge this event as well. It starts off with six teams of four riders, each taking turns and being responsible for contributing the best tricks they can do in each zone on the cable. There were two rail zones, two kicker zones and an air trick zone. Best overall team performance wins. Take a wild guess on which team won. Yes, the home team, TSR. Even though they may have had home court advantage, TSR's win was well-deserved and fun to watch.
After all of the fun events were finished it was time to kick off the evening festivities with one of Texas’ finest local pro wakeboaders, Joey Bradley. Joey hit the stage as his alter ego, DJ Pool Boy, where he mixed some beats and kept the party going for the rest of the night.
The next morning started off early with the amateur cable events followed by the professional wakeskaters. The wakeskate cable final included some big names like Brett Little, Aaron Reed, Daniel Grant, Aaron Perkins, Collin Gee and Collin Haas. I honestly can't believe how many laps these guys can take in a contest trying the things they are trying and laying down solid lines without falling. Mad respect for these guys and a big congratulations to Brett Little for taking the win with Daniel Grant in second and Aaron Perkins taking the third spot.
After the wakeskaters it was the semifinal round for the Pro Men Cable division where Keith Lidberg, Freddy Von Osten, Matty Hasler, Dominik Guhrs, Daniel Grant and Tom Fooshee moved on to battle it out in the finals later on in the day.
Then it was back over to the boat lake for the wakeskaters and wakeboarders to compete behind TSR's loaded down MasterCraft X25. The finals for boat started off with the wakeskaters, which funny enough was almost the same final riders as the cable finals; Brett Little, Aaron Reed and Daniel Grant. Brett had a solid few passes, but it was Daniel that laid down what looked like a possible winning run. Of course, Aaron Reed was still left and had to show Daniel how the vets do it by laying down the best overall run and taking the first place title. Since that was the end of all the wakeskating for the weekend, it was time to get to the Pro Men Boat final.
The Pro Men Boat final was quite the stacked final of Shawn Watson, Joey Bradley, home town hero Tom Fooshee, Jimmy LaRiche, Raph Derome, Shane 'Danger' Bonifay, JD Webb and Bob Soven. Unfortunately, Bob tweaked his knee earlier that day and had to take himself out of finals just to be safe. Everyone else was slaying it though! JD got his first mobe dick 540 in a contest, Watson and Jimmy were going huge, Shane launched a massive S-bend and Raph was just showing everyone that he doesn’t just hit rails. When it came down to the final standings, it was Jimmy taking the third spot, JD taking second and Raph Derome walking away with the Boat title.
The great thing about TSR and holding this multi-contest event is that the boat lake and wake park lake are about 20 meters from each other, so when the Boat finals were over it was just like moving the crowd to the next hole in golf… but even closer!
It was time to get the main events started with the Pro Women Cable final. This year we had only four ladies in the contest, but that didn’t stop the level of competition from their end. The finals had Nicola Butler, Angelika Schriber, Jessie Aubuchon and hometown favorite Louise Sawyer. All the girls rode well, but it was Angelika who really stood out the most boosting huge heel 5’s off the jumps and destroying the air trick category. She ended up taking to top spot with Nicola and Louise finishing off the rest of the podium.
Next, it was the men's turn to battle it out for the big money. The Pro Men Cable final was Keith Lidberg, Freddy Von Osten, Dominik Guhrs, Matty Hasler, Daniel Grant and the king… who, of course, also goes by the name of Tom Fooshee. This had to be one of the hardest finals to judge because there wasn’t one rider that didn’t put out anything less than an outstanding run. If I only knew half the names of the air tricks these guys were doing then I’m sure it would blow your mind. To have the skills these guys have to land an air trick and get right back on edge for another one just blows me away… not to mention a 900 or mobe 5 off a jump in the middle of all of that. Absolutely insane! When it came down to calling out the final standings, it was the German sensation Dominik Guhrs in the third spot, Thai Wake Park's Daniel Grant finishing second and King Tom Fooshee back on his throne at the top.
The contest wasn’t over yet though. There was still the main event of Structures-Only. The whole structures-only event all weekend was filled with insane riding and so many double flips that it was making everyone dizzy. Definitely shows that the sport is still going and bringing new things to contests. The semifinal round set off a three-way tie for fourth between Daniel Grant, Nico Von Lerchenfeld and Julian Cohen. Daniel was throwing down huge nose grab moby dick 5s, Nico was making what looked like a 10-foot ollie up to the second section of the signature C-rail and Julian was tossing out 900s and double flips like it was a charity. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough for them to move on, but it was still incredible to watch it all go down.
For the finals it was down to only three; Tom Foshee, Keith Lidberg and Raph Derome. I was fortunate enough to help judge this final and not only did I help make sure the right calls were made, but it was also one hell of a view from the judges’ balcony! From what I saw there were some gnarly switch toe side backside 450 transfers from Keith, extremely technical rail hits from Raph and pretty much all the above from Tom. Raph never fell all weekend on a double flip, Tom was launching the biggest mute heel 900s I’ve ever seen off the Spy Optic jump and Keith was doing Pete Roses like they were nothing. It was all around ease and control from all three of these guys, but, of course, there had to be only one winner. The podium ended up being Keith Lidberg in third, Tom Fooshee in second and Raph taking home his second win of the day and taking home all the money.
What would Cablestock be without a huge after-party right? Exactly. That’s why big names like Slim Thug, Dirt Nasty and The Expendables were there to keep it going till no one could stand anymore. There is definitely a reason why there is only one of these events a year and that’s so you can have all those 363 days to rest up for the next one. Big shout out to TSR for doing it yet again and to the WWA for helping run the contest.