LOUDON (WATE) – The Wakeboard World Series has made its way to East Tennessee. Preliminary rounds kick off Saturday, with finals set for Sunday in Loudon.
Some of the top competitors from across the world in wakeboarding are showing off their impressive tricks. You can expect to see wakeboarders soaring, jumping, twisting and flipping their way to the finals.
Canadian rider Oliver Derome is one of dozens of wakeboarders in this competition who will be using their talent out on the water.
“If you can make it to finals, that means that you really gave it a good run for your money for everyone,” said Derome. “It’s really fun to see international riders because they’ve grown up in different platforms of wakeboarding and they’re exposed to different types and styles of riding.”
Derome says wakeboarding is a lot like water skiing or snowboarding. You stand on a board and use the wake to do tricks.
Like most athletes, Derome has been strapped into a board since a young age. He grew up water skiing as a family tradition.
“My dad was a Canadian champion level water skier, so growing up on the water we were family of four kids and my younger brother also competes with us,” said Derome.
He adds that it takes a lot of training and strength to pull off many of the moves.
“When you’re edging into the wake, you want to have a consistent edge and build the tension into the rope. So when you release off the top of the wake, you get a nice proper pop so the pull of the rope is going to be even all the way to the top of the air. And then from there, you do your trick,” said Derome.
The Wakeboard World Series finals will take place on Saturday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. There will be face painting, caricature drawing, inflatables and free cream for children under 12. The event will be at the Malibu Boats Factory at 5075 Kimberly Way.
The next stops on the series will be in Austria and Japan.
To find out more about the riders and the competition: https://www.thewwa.com/malibu-factory-smoky-mountain-pro-set-to-be-a-turning-point-in-the-wakeboard-world-series/