It has been an epic and thrilling journey. The 2004 Waterski and Wakeboard World Cup circumnavigation included Stops in France, Russia, Great Britain, China and Singapore. Up to 32,000 spectators turned out in force at individual Stops. The stage is now set for a spectacular conclusion on the sun drenched shores of the Arabian Gulf in the oil and gas rich country of Qatar. The December 10/12 event will present the much awaited final battle for the 2004 World Cup titles in Slalom, Tricks, Jump and Wakeboard. Only the very best have qualified.
With a civilization dating back over 4,000 years, Qatar is full of surprises. Strong historical links exist with not only the surrounding Arab nations, but also with Portugal, Britain and even the Ottoman Empire. Doha, the capital on the palm tree-lined east coast, is seen as a major international sports and cultural centre. It has successfully hosted the Athletics Grand Prix, Formula Power Boat Racing, Tennis Open, Golf Masters, World Football Cup (U19’s), World Trade Organisation Conference and the Islamic Conference Summit. In 2006, Doha will host the Asian Games – one of the Worlds largest sporting events.
Waterski and Wakeboard athletes from 13 countries around the World have qualified for these World Cup Finals. The actual venue is breath taking. A gently curved 7.5 kilometre paved pathway, known as the Corniche, has created a natural grandstand along the bay shoreline. Tall palm trees and luxury hotels create a magical backdrop for the culmination of the biggest Waterski and Wakeboard event series ever organized by the International Waterski Federation.
At this moment, the special and essential equipment required for this Final has been shipped to Qatar from various points around the World. First to arrive were the MasterCraft boats having featured so well in France, Russia, Great Britain, China and Singapore. The Jump Ramp has also arrived. The high-tech electronic measuring equipment is in transit from Germany. All will be ready in time for the December 10/12 showdown at the Corniche.
The leaders who have battled their way to the top in the last five Stops include the following : Slalom – Chris Parrish (USA), Tricks – Russell Gay (USA), and in Jump – Freddy Krueger (USA). In Wakeboard – Daniel Watkins (AUS) and Phillip Soven (USA) will create an enthralling clash of skills. Athletes from Great Britain, Italy, Spain, Germany, Austria, Belarus, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, Tahiti, New Zealand, Canada, Argentina and Mexico, will also battle for their share of the season’s $650,000 cash prize.
Large hand crafted crystal World Cup Trophies have been specially commissioned by IWSF President, Kuno Ritschard. These will be presented to the winners by H.E. Sheikh Hassan bin Jabor Al Thani, President of the Qatar Marine Sports Federation. The Federation has played a major role in bringing this final 2004 Stop of the Waterski and Wakeboard World Cup to Qatar.
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