Anna Gay And Freddy Krueger Win Titles At Nautique Masters
by USA Water Ski & Wake Sports
U.S. athlete Freddy Krueger won his 14th career Masters title.
U.S. water ski athletes Anna Gay (Winter Garden, Fla.) and Freddy Krueger (Winter Garden, Fla.) won titles in respective events at the 61st Nautique Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard Tournament, presented by GM Marine, May 29-30, at Callaway Gardens’ Robin Lake in Pine Mountain, Ga.
Gay won her second career Masters women’s tricks title and first since 2016, scoring 10,190 points in the finals. Canada’s Neilly Ross (9,930 points) and Germany’s Giannina Bonnemann (9,580 points) rounded out the top-three placements.
Krueger won his 14th career Masters title, taking the victory in men’s jumping with a distance of 222 feet in the finals. The win ties Krueger with the late Andy Mapple (men’s slalom) for the most all-time victories at the Masters. Great Britain’s Joel Poland (212 feet) and Jack Critchley (209 feet) rounded out the top-three placements.
Other champions from the 61st Masters were: Freddie Winter (Great Britain), men’s slalom (3-1/2 buoys at 41 feet off); Jaimee Bull (Canada), women’s slalom (2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off); Patricio Font (Mexico), men’s tricks (12,120 points); and Hanna Straltsova (Belarus), women’s jumping (173 feet).
Defending champions Regina Jaquess (Santa Rosa Beach, Fla.), women’s slalom; Ryan Dodd (Canada), men’s jumping; and Jacinta Carroll (Australia), women’s jumping, did not compete this year. Jaquess and Dodd were injured, while Carroll was unable to travel from Australia due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Among other highlights from U.S. athletes, Lauren Morgan (St. Louis, Mo.) placed second in women’s jumping (168 feet); Nate Smith (Orlando, Fla.) tied for second in men’s slalom (3 buoys at 41 feet off); Dane Mechler (Charlotte, N.C.) finished fourth in men’s slalom (3-1/2 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off); Brooke Baldwin (Winter Garden, Fla.) finished third in women’s slalom (4 buoys at 38 feet off); and Adam Pickos (Santa Rosa Beach, Fla.) placed fourth in men’s tricks (7,560 points).
In addition, the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee designated the 2021 Nautique Masters as its Operation Gold event for 2021. U.S. water ski athletes finishing among the top-four placements in slalom, tricks and jumping earned additional cash-prize funds from the USOPC.
U.S. water ski athletes Kennedy Hansen (Milton, Fla.) and Blaze Grubbs (Rio Linda, Calif.) won titles in respective events on Friday (May 28) at the 28th Nautique Junior Masters Water Ski & Wakeboard Tournament. Some of the world’s top junior water ski athletes (age 17 and under on Dec. 31, 2020) competed for titles in slalom, tricks, jumping and overall.
Hansen won junior women’s tricks (7,980 points) and overall (3,000.0 points), and she placed third in jumping (130 feet). Grubbs won junior men’s overall (2,758.4 points) and placed third in jumping (168 feet).
Other champions from the Junior Masters were: Pablo Font (Mexico), junior men’s tricks (10,030 points); Federico Jaramillo (Colombia), junior men’s slalom (3 buoys at 39-1/2 feet off); Luisa Jaramillo (Colombia), junior women’s slalom (0 buoys at 38 feet off); Pol Duplan-Fribourg (France), junior men’s jumping (186 feet); and Agustina Varas (Chile), junior women’s jumping (144 feet).
Among other highlights from U.S. athletes, Jake Abelson (Holderness, N.H.) placed third in junior men’s tricks; Alyssa Drake (Oconomowoc, Wis.) placed second in junior women’s overall; and Brooke Boskus (Elkins, Ark.) placed third in junior women’s overall.
The Ski Nautique was the exclusive towboat.