Combine wakeboarding and surfing and you get wakesurfing. This new spin on two great sports is taking waterways all over the world by storm and do we have news for you…
We won’t bore you with the details, but all you need to know is that Sydney University Wakeboard and Waterski Club (USYDWake) is now able to offer wakesurfing on ride days to all members behind their beastly Mastercraft X2 boat.
Unlike wakeboarding, where the rider is attached to the board with fitted bindings and gets towed between 20-25 meters behind the boat, wakesurfing uses a short, light- version of a surfboard on which the rider stands. The boat moderately accelerates, increasing the size of the wake which allows the rider to be pulled into position using a shorter line and handle than wakeboarding. To find the sweet-spot in the wave, which forms in the wake just behind the boat, the rider pulls themselves in towards the boat. Then, when the target speed is reached they will feel the rope go slack and when comfortable release the handle and line. All going well, at this point you can surf the wave for as long as you can remain in the wakes “sweet-spot.”
In preparation for a 2017 launch of wakesurfing, USYDWake’s R&D department (or should we say, intrepid committee members) spent the tail-end of 2016 undertaking the necessary groundwork and conducting water trials. ‘Researchers’ had a great time on the water and all agreed it would be a superb addition to the club’s activity list.
Club member Courtney Rose Gorman had only been wakeboarding a handful of times but managed to get up on the wakesurf board on her very first go.
“I loved the advice and encouragement from everyone on the boat and even though I’m a complete beginner I never once felt out of place. Anyone can really have a go,” Gorman said.
Club President Tim Wakeling was equally enthusiastic after trying this new water sport.
“Two wakeboarding sets out on the water in the one day would normally be it for me, but wakesurfing is the perfect way to close off without over-doing it, especially on those windier summer afternoons,” Wakeling said.
For the surfers out there, there’s no doubt you will be able to relate to Club Member Matt Gibson who loved the endless wave.
“I could sit out on the break-line at Manly for two hours and be lucky to catch one decent wave, so when I found the sweet-spot riding behind the boat I didn’t want it to stop,” Gibson said.
If you haven’t already caught a glimpse of wakesurfing on social media, take a look at Steel Lafferty’s #MannequinChallenge video which is shared on the Club’s Facebook page. Once that has fuelled your interest, be sure to visit the Sydney University Wakeboard and Waterski Club website to sign up for their mailing list with details of upcoming events and ride day information.
Membership is free for Sydney University students so long as you have an up-to-date Sydney Uni Sport & Fitness membership. Tuition is available on all our ride days from our very capable boat captains and drivers.
Visit USYDWake at O-Week 2017. They’ll be easy to find, just look for their boat next to Fisher Library.