To all of our Water Sports Enthusiasts,
Another successful year has passed at Bennett’s. The holiday season has come and gone, with spring and summer are just around the corner.
During this off season we have made some updates to our facilities. We have made a new dock for Lake 2 and added another boat lift, we have cut down the banks to help with better skiing conditions and our #1 jump ramp has been refinished. We have also added another cottage (cottage #5) to our facility at the bottom of the judges' tower, with the best views of the lakes and of our facility.
Steve and Danyelle have continued to do an excellent job at the helm of our Pro Shop and boat business, in their second year since taking over. They are enjoying servicing our customers and hope to continue to do so for many years to come.
October 2017 saw our group here at Tri-Lakes host a Collegiate Nationals to remember! Over 315 collegiate skiers from all over the country, representing 24 teams, took to our lakes to compete for individual titles and the Division 1 and 2 trophies. We had various media representatives come out to the lakes, including ESPN and World Pub, and we were very fortunate to have Marcus Brown at the lakes to film the whole event for a Flowpoint episode which should be released in 2018 (keep an eye out for that video). Two long standing national collegiate records were broken by Erika Lang in tricks, who set a new college record of 6110 points, and Hanna Straltsova who broke the collegiate jump record with a jump of 159 ft (48.5m). We would like to congratulate ULM for winning their 28th National Title. Each and every skier who attended skied their hearts out and we had an outstanding group of judges and boat drivers who made the tournament a huge success. We would like to congratulate Jane Greenwood for being awarded the Phil Chase Outstanding Official Award along with Adam Webb who received the Bill Stevenson Outstanding Driver Award. We would like to thank all the judges and volunteers who helped to make this event a success, along with all of our generous sponsors without whom this event would not have been possible.
As always we would like to highlight some of our athletes' achievements over the past year. It is impossible to include everyone, so apologies in advance if we have left anyone out.
This year mother-daughter combo Danyelle and Anne both took home titles at the US Nationals in San Marcos, with Danyelle winning Open Women's slalom and Anne winning Women 5 tricks. This year Anne was also awarded the outstanding judge award at the 2017 South Central Regionals. Danyelle has had a busy year pro skiing, setting a new regional Open Women's slalom record at Cedar Ridge with 2@39off, which she then equalled at the San Gervasio Pro Am in Italy where she took 5th place. Danyelle also qualified for the World Water Ski Championships which were held in Paris in September, and we all as a family went over to Paris to watch her compete.
Our club members, instructors and students have also had a great year and here is a list of some of their incredible achievements:
- Robert Howerton - 4th at Regionals in Men 6 Slalom, and also qualified and skied at Nationals
- Mariah Fields - 2nd in Women 1 jump at Regionals, at Nationals she came 2nd in Women's 1 jump, 3rd in Women 1 tricks and 3rd overall
- Kayla Leff - 5th in G2 slalom, 3rd in G2 tricks and 3rd in G2 jump at Regionals
- Andre Broussard - 5th in Men 1 slalom and 3rd in Men 1 jump at Regionals
- Jody Hooten - 1st in Men 4 tricks, jump and overall at Regionals, and 3rd in Men 4 tricks, 1st in jump and 1st overall at Nationals
- John Able - 1st in Men 6 trick and 2nd in Men 6 jump at Regionals and 5th in Men 6 jump and 3rd overall at Nationals
- Dr Ron Cannon - 1st in Men 7 jump at Regionals and 3rd in men 7 jump at Nationals
- Carter Hooten - 1st in B2 tricks, jump and overall at Regionals and 3rd in B2 tricks at Nationals
- Kate Adriaensen - Kate is a club member who continues to work hard at KPMG while still competing at pro ski events. Kate made two finals at World’s in Paris, came 3rd in slalom at the World Games in Poland, and got invited to slalom at the prestigious Masters water ski event.
A special mention is given to Ellie Williams from Baton Rouge, who goes to school at Episcopal in Baton Rouge. At Regionals Ellie placed 4th in slalom and 4th in tricks in G2. She was also awarded the most improved G2 skier award at Regionals and Nationals. She was elected into the Regional A Team.
The Bennett’s Boat and Ski Pro Team have also had an incredible year, some of their achievements are listed below:
- Bailey Austin - Bailey came 2nd in Open Women's slalom at Nationals and 2nd in slalom at the U21 World Championships in Ukraine. Bailey set a new regional Open Women's slalom record with 2½@39off this past fall. Bailey also competed in her first collegiate Nationals with her team, the University of Louisiana Lafayette.
- Brittany Greenwood - Brittany placed 3rd in Open Women trick and overall, and 2nd in jump at Nationals. Brittany also represented the USA at the World Games in Poland.
- Sam Greenwood - Sam placed 2nd in Men 1 trick and 3rd in jump at Nationals, he also set a new Men’s 1 regional overall record. Sam came 2nd in jump at collegiate Nationals and was awarded 2017 Collegiate Male Skier of the year.
- Matteo Luzzeri - Matteo is still working hard on his PhD but also managed to compete at the Andy Mapple Pro-Am in London, at the San Gervasio Pro Am in Italy, at the Malibu Open and at a number of tournaments in Florida and at Bennett’s.
- Trent Finlayson - Trent has been working hard on and off the water, with him and Danyelle working together to help set up Radar’s newest pro built slalom ski (and they are happy to help you all do the same).
At Bennett’s we are lucky to have so many families supporting us including the Greenwoods', the Covingtons, the Parkers, the Hootens, the Leffs, the Broussards, Chad Scott, Robert Howerton, Doug Rogerson, the Bloyers, the Mears, and the Williams'.
The sport has been wonderful to our family and each year we try to give back to our community and water ski family. This year we issued out 15 free weeks of ski school to local private schools, charity auctions, and college water ski teams.
We want you to get excited about wakeboarding this year at Bennett’s. We love watching our students learn to wakeboard, learn new skills, and seeing their smiling faces when they learn a new trick. In 2018 Dustin will continue to give our students great instruction and help them to improve their skills, while having fun.
We want to offer everyone the opportunity to come out and ski with us for a set, the weekend or a week at ski school. This year we are offering a custom package during the month of April where you can choose the number of ski rides you wish to take, the activities in the evening or weekends, which days you would like to come (doesn’t necessarily have to be over a week, you can straddle a two week period), and we will do everything to accommodate your needs and desires. Go to our website to check out the April special. If April isn't the month for you then you can still call to enquire about other dates.
It is so important for us to get more and more students out on the water learning how to ski or improving their skills. It helps our sport to grow and I don't know any sport more fun for the entire family to participate in and enjoy!
We are looking forward to what 2018 will bring! Load up the boat, come to a ski/wakeboard camp and remember to have clean, healthy and safe fun on the water!
Don’t hesitate to give Danyelle and Steve a call for any of your water sports or boating needs. Steve has a great selection of new and used Mastercraft boats to show you, so give him a call and line up your demo ride today. Anne is always available to book your 2018 sessions or answer any questions you may have. You can contact her at 225-938-1498 or by email. Keep updated with our events and team achievements on our Facebook page - Bennett’s Boat and Ski.
We look forward to seeing you all either at Bennett’s or at tournaments, this year.
From our family to yours - thank you for all you do for us!
Jay, Anne, Steve and Danyelle