2013 Canadian Wakeboard Championship
Christian Primrose and Ashley Leugner Capture National Titles
Bala, Ontario – The 2013 Canadian Wakeboard Championship presented by Monster Energy and Nautique wrapped up in the Muskoka Town of Bala today. The Canadian Wakeboard Championships are the pinnacle of domestic competition in the sport where athletes from across the country meet to test their skills against the country’s best. Riders perform tricks and jumps that are then scored by a panel of judges.
In the Men’s Open Division, Barrie, Ontario’s Christian Primrose had two clean passes to win the Men’s Championship with a score of 85.00. The Championship adds to the young rider’s resume which includes being named the 2011 Rookie of the Year at the Canadian Wake Awards and the Waterski-Wakeboard Canada junior Wakeboard Athlete of the Year in 2012. Earlier this year he won the Raise the Bar contest in King City, Ontario with a jump of 12-feet. An aspiring Jr. Pro Tour competitor, Primrose’s career highlights also include a second place finish at the 2011 Wakeboard Worlds and the 2011 Wake Nationals Open Division and a fourth in the 2012 Open Division.
"I was stoked with my win," said Primrose. "I really wanted it and it happened. I was really excited to make the national team. We had some early weather difficulties but the water was great for my ride. Everyone rode great today, everyone killed it. I was just happy to come out on top."
Dustin O’Ferrall of Vernon, British Columbia placed second with a score of 76.65, adding to his medal total of two previous golds earlier in the meet (Men’s Professional Features and Men’s 2). Local rider Robbie McMillin of Baysville, Ontario Lake finished third (68.33), matching his 2011 rank.
Ashley Leugner of Fort Qu’Appelle, Saskatchewan won the Women’s Open posting a score of 83.63, atoning for her second place finish in the event the year before after winning the 2008, 2010, and 2011 titles. In 2009 she was the runner-up in the IWWF World Championship.
"I was back for redemption to regain my title," she commented after the win. "I felt great with my ride and landed some tricks that were really difficult. I am just so thrilled to come out on top, especially this year with the level of competition here at the Nationals."
2012 Canadian Female Wakeboarder of the Year, Orangeville, Ontario’s Erika Langman placed second (79.67), while Taylor Johnson of Estevan, Saskatchewan was third (60.67).
The Championship is a mix of young up-and-comers, mingling with Canada’s top wakeboarders all vying for national titles and points towards a berth in the World Wakeboard Championship in Busan, Korea.
In the professional features event in which riders are cable-towed across jumps and rails, Dustin O’Ferrall of Vernon, British Columbia was crowned champion with an 80.00 score followed by a 60.00 score by Nicholas Dorsey of Ardros Sands, Alberta and 40.00 by Winnipeg, Manitoba’s Mike Fisette. In the Women’s Professional Rails division, Langman added to her medal total by defending her 2012 title with a 70.00 score, flipping positions with Leugner from the Open event who won silver with a score of 50.00. Michela Phillips of North Vancouver, British Columbia took home bronze with a score of 40.00
In other competition, O’Ferrall took home his second national title of the championships winning the Men’s 2 (25-29 yrs) division with a score of 88.00 defeating fellow British Columbian Drew Kennedy of Vancouver (75.33) and Adam Burwell of Regina, Saskatchewan (60.67). Men’s 1 (19-24 yrs) saw 2012 Ontario Roots Series Open Champion Gavin Hicks of Toronto, Ontario take the number one position with a score of 79.33 followed by Daniel Dyck’s 73.33 (Abbotsford, BC) and local rider (Baysville, ON) Robbie McMillin’s 41.67.
Ontario Rookie Wakeboarder of the Year Harrison Carter (Lindsay, ON) won the Jr. Men (14-18) division with an 81.00 score. Lake Country, British Columbia’s Keaton Roper (76.67) took home silver and Sebastian Santacroce (Claremont, ON) the bronze with a 65.00 score. The Veteran’s Division (40 yrs and over) was won by Frank Morin of Quebec (73.67) and David Tsuyuki of Scarborough, Ontario (72.00) took home the Masters division title.
Sage Dayman (Estevan, SK) won the Boys Division (10-13 yrs) with an 87.33 score and Peterborough, Ontario’s Cam Spalding took home his second consecutive Jr. Boys title (9 and under) with a score of 88.67.
On the women’s side Newmarket, Ontario’s Leslie Sparkes topped the Amateur Women’s podium with a 72.67 score, followed by a 70.67 by Taylor Johnson of Estevan, Saskatchewan and a 67.00 by local rider Emily Tenwesteneind of Keene, Ontario. Michella Phillips added a gold to her rails bronze won earlier, topping the Junior Women’s Division (14-18 yrs) with a score of 84.33 while Ontarians Jenn Evans (Fenlon Falls) and Samantha Jarrett (Toronto) took silver and bronze respectively.
Bainsville Ontario’s Mackayla Petrie won the Girls Division (10-13 yrs) after being awarded a score of 79.67 by the judges and Ontario’s Emma Brearley grabbed the Jr. Girls (9 and under) title.
In the Wakeskate division of the Championships (riders are not strapped into the board), James Balzer of Langley, British Columbia made it back-to-back Professional Open titles (and his fourth overall) with a score of 85.67, edging out provincial rival Tanner Champion of Nanaimo (77.67), repeating his 2011 result. Bala, Ontario’s Dan Brown rounded out the podium with a score of 71.67.
On the amateur side, hometown rider Mickey Henry of Bala, Ontario took gold with a score of 77.67 while Kelowna, British Columbia’s Erik Schreoder (68.33) won silver and Ontario’s Brad Grant bronze (62.33). In the Women’s Division, Jess Woolsey (Collingwood, ON) topped the podium (46.67) followed by Becca Ballantyne (Kitchener, ON – 31.33) and Jennifer Brazeau (Greely, ON – 14.67).
Bala, Muskoka has a rich history as the central hub in Canada for all things wake. Since the early 90s, Muskoka has played host to the original Wakestock, Nautiques Wakeboard XCup Series, Muskoka Militia Crew Challenge, Jake Thomas’ television show The World of Wakeboarding and many more clinics, camps, and events. It has been the home stomping grounds for multiple pro athletes and sport ambassadors.