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Riding the waves at Wakefest 2013

11 September, 2013   Abel Khoo


Sasha Christian braves through her knee injury to achieve a second placed finish in the Women's Open Final (image by VOXSPORTS).

 
Wakefest Singapore 2013, one of the biggest annual wakeboarding events in Singapore, took place over the weekend of 7th and 8th of September at Bedok Reservoir. The event played host to not only some of the best local wakeboarders, but participants from the Asian region as well, including Malaysia, Hong Kong, Thailand, Indonesia, Korea and Japan. A total of nine competing categories made up this year’s Wakefest, giving wakeboarders of all levels with different skill sets to participate and join in the wakeboarding fun.

As a sport, wakeboarding is considered to be a relatively young and growing sport that has been gaining popularity among Singaporeans in recent years. With more wakeboarding facilities opening up, there are now more places for experienced wakeboarders to train, as well as for amateurs and new wakeboarders to learn the ropes in the sport. 
 
Paul Fong, chief organiser of Wakefest Singapore 2013, said, “We’re thankful to have Bedok Reservoir as our training ground. We used to train in saltwater but now when we have our own freshwater site to train, our local wakeboarders do not have a disadvantage against international wakeboarders like we used to.”



Podium Finishes
 
Majority of local wakeboarders who participated in Wakefest 2013 managed to clinch a podium finish in the categories that they competed. Among them was Southeast Asia’s number one female wakeboarder, Sasha Christian, who was placed second in the Women’s Open Final. While not finishing first was a pity for Sasha, it was proof of her great sportsmanship, having pushed through the competition despite still in the recovery stage from a knee injury that had kept her off the waters for two and a half months recently.
 
Sasha enthused, “I had a knee injury last year so it’s been on and off for me for the past year. I’ve been back in the waters about three weeks ago and I’m really training hard for the World Championships. It was a great run today, I’m very happy with it!”
 
To date, more tertiary institutes have integrated wakeboarding as one of their co-curriculum activities offerings. One of the more notable institutes would be Singapore Management University (SMU) which helped to co-organise Wakefest Singapore 2013.  
 
Jasmine Ng, 22 year-old President of SMU Wakeboarding Club said, “I’m actually surprised at the increasing number of members in the club because wakeboarding is an expensive sport. The school (SMU) has been really supportive in subsidizing our trainings and this will encourage more people to take up the sport at a young age!” 

Those interested in picking up Wakeboarding can head to the Singapore Waterski & Wakeboard Federation’s website at www.swwf.org.sg for more information and to find out about the available venues in Singapore.