x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 18 January 2018

World's best say wakeboarding 'has a huge future in region'

Tom Fooshee and Amber Wing, the world's top men's and women's wakeboarders, showed off their skills and also said the sport 'has a huge future' in the UAE.

ABU DHABI // Tom Fooshee and Amber Wing, the men's and women's wakeboard world No 1s, on Saturday joined Dean Smith, the world champion, to give the capital a glimpse of what to expect when it hosts the first cable wakeboard world championship in December.

The trio showed off their skills ahead of the inaugural UAE National Wakepark Championship at the Al Forsan International Sports Resort.

"This is a great facility and I can assure the world championship will be a huge success," said Fooshee, a 27-year-old American.

"The youngsters who took part in the national championship have a lot of promise and the sport has a huge future in this region."

Fooshee, Wing and Smith were the judges for the UAE national championship.

They will return later in the year to have an attempt at the Abu Dhabi championship, which runs from December 7 through December 11.

"It has been a great experience to spend a few days in Abu Dhabi, and I will be happy to introduce this facility to the other members of the world wakeboarding fraternity," said Wing, an Australian. Attila Huszer was crowned the UAE men's national champion. Vera Basan took the women's title.

Wakeboarding is an aquatic sport which combines elements of snowboarding, water skiing and surfing. Riders are scored on tricks performed after being towed by a motor boat.

Atef Nagib, managing director and a member of the board of Al Forsan International Sports Resort, said: "This is an exciting and spectacular event and has a huge following from the youngsters"





Men’s Open: 1. Attila Huszer (96.67 points); 2. Robert Bacan (76.76); 3. Sultan Naji Al Ameri (63.33)

Women’s Open: 1. Vera Basan (90.6); 2. Tracy Orr (70.0); 3. Airah Bagares (53.3)

Juniors (ages 14-17): 1. Drew Gibson (83.3); 2. Omeir Saeed (73.3); 3. Tom Cook (63.3)

Juniors (under 13): 1. Jake Gibson (83.3); 2. Ahmad Al Hameli (63.3); Saeed Al Qubaisi