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Discussion in 'Ski Racing - Legends on the Rope' started by SKIA36, Dec 3, 2009.
I have been told by the Arrowhead crowd that Stevie Hensler is the best all around skier they know.
If we're talking going around 6 balls......AM or Wade Cox
Are we talking ski racing or all around? Billy Johnson was/is pretty damn good play skier and pretty fast. The most natualr ski racer I ever saw was Morgan O'Dell (said best natural not the best ski racer. Todd isn't too bad either.
the late KIRK BOOK
CHARLIE SAUNDERS ( CHAZZ )
Not too sure about the buoy chasers but from the ski racing crowd there's been so many i remember just being completely jaw dropped by (not just racing but play skiing)
I remember watching Videos of Gary Heinbuch when i was a kid on house boat trips and at our house in canyon lake, the guy hardly skied facing forward, him and my dad would take turns show off, i think Gary won just about every time.
There was Cory Cook when he was in his prime seemed unbeatable unless the boat broke! not to mention remembering him tear up parker many times on a play ski when i was a kid. Followed closely by Martie Wells, never saw him play ski, but his racing career should speak for himself
For women its gotta be lori dunsmore, she has always been a machine, I remember training with her in Mead when I was a little kid, she could do just about anything behind a boat
Todd has got to be the most impressive play skier and racer i've ever seen, everything he does looks effortless. Justin Frank ain't so shabby either.
Don't forget guys like Bob Majah and Mike Bemis either i think those two can still keep up with anyone half their age, show boating or racing!
Keep your eyes out on Trevor Went too, hes getting better every race, and from what ive seen has just as much "hot dogging" skills as well
you too STEVE (SKIA36)
I have to say nobody has done what Todds done is ski racing.
but other than the obvious...
Mike Bemis, Lori, My Uncle craig,
for play skiing, i gotta give it to Trevor, being that he is only 15, with Sam Todd and Justin close behind....and Danny Churchill. that guy is crazy on a play ski.
Best pure water skier by far was CHUCK STEARNS.
I do second the Steve Hensler.
Trevor would back me saying Greg Anderson is one crazy play skier... makes Trevor look OK
What is play skiing? would that be AKA free skiing?
Play skiing= free style skiing, helicopters, front/back flips, body slides, barefoot,slalom, tricks, show skiing, going fast... you name it.
Most of the speed skiers I know of were pretty good at just about anything in the water.
Mike Mack sliding on the strip :thumbsup
Danny Aldrich, Sam Maus jr, Charlie Saunders, Davey Frank CRAZY GOOD JUMPERS. These guys were doing things on skiis that wake boarders do today.
The Marine Stadium Boys of the 80s. Roger Crocker, Kevin" Dogger", Ronny Gayman (With his spiked up blond mohawk).
This guy was one of my idols! I had a pictue of him in my garage when I was younger. I love doing body slides in the back of Totem pole bay at Arrowhead.
Forgot about Roger...unreal play skier...can do it all on just about anything
Me too :thumbsup and I was fortunate enough to ski and hang out with him in that little shack on the water on the Calif. side back in the 80's :thumbsup
Mason Thompson, Sonny Tan, Mark Schadrack, and that little kid Morgan O'Dell, a chip off of his uncle Butchs ol' block.
My vote has to go to Chuck Stearns as the best all-around water skier ever. Did and won it all in speed ski racing (won the Catalina Ski Race in four different decades!). First skier inducted into the Water Ski Hall of Fame -- was the dominate Men's all-around slalom, trick and jump champion for more than ten years. Most talented natural skier was Mike Murphy -- nothing he couldn't do on a water ski, barefoot, kneeboard or SkySki -- incredible ski racer and he really didn't train -- won the Endo's Ski Drags one year on a borrowed ski -- one of the best performing show skiers of all time.
What were the endo's ski drags?
Endos Water Ski Werks in Belmont Shore sponsored Drag skiing at Marine Stadium. Unreal exhibitions. Quarter mile ski runs, on skiis and barefoot. The skiers would ski behind Blown drag boats.
wow. sounds gnarly. hope no body ever took a spill!
Lots of them tumbled. The worst I ever saw was Danny Churchill. He fell going through the lights . His drag chute opened , ripped oped his crotch and almost killed him. He was in the hospital for a long time. I am sure some of the other RDP members remember it.
wow enough said on that. ha
Mike Murphy and Tony Klarich.
I think Denny (skyskier) was there or knows the details of that one.
I think Butch Peterson broke his pelvis on one pass, may have been one of his record speed runs,, 117 or so.
Denny's got a great picture of him and Butch at the strip back in the early 60's I believe....he posted it here a while ago :thumbsup
Here's the video with the high speed barefoot and kneeboard passes. Some brutal spills too.
It's starts around the 3:05 mark.
Holy crap! the first guy barefoot'n tumbled like a rag doll I'm suprised he popped up :thumbsup
Mike Murphy, Checkout the skier's life, parts 1 & 2, :thumbsup
Roger Crocker is bad ass.I met him at the catalina ski race a few years back,he told me "I am Roger fucking Crocker, you dont know me"?then we did some of this....:drnkfr:boobeyes::moon::hitit1:arty2:
Thanks a tough one Steve. I will narrow the query a bit and submit my choice for the Parker Strip, 'past and present': Dave Chandler
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I was waiting for ya to chime in on this thread......love that opening video on MM's site :thumbsup I'm still planning that trip to Canyon lake with you for a pull with Mike
Butch & Chuck dominated the jr. boy's class in tournament skiing ( trick, jump & slalom ) back in the 1950's, AND both were THE top men's open ski racers in the ' 60's. The day this pic was taken I won the men's open race at Parker, Butch walked down to our boat to congratulate me on the win :thumbsup. As evidenced by this photo I didn't "out muscle" him Or the rest of the guy's ,..............I'm pretty sure I was the only one that didn't crash & burn . When I was in vietnam I got a call from home and my Pop's told me Butch had died from his head injury after being hit by a car while he was on a bicycle ..........he was one class act :thumbsup
Just got off the phone with him 2 minutes ago, Let me know when you guy's want to come over, I'm hoping to be here in Cal/AZ till next spring :thumbsup...............bring your wetsuits
All around fun skiers, the guys from Arrowhead were/are the best, you could populate this thread with just a list of them. A few have already been mentioned but one not listed yet and who I watched do stuff with his ski in the air I still can't believe is: Todd Burnett
I know he was mentioned already, but will add again is, the late Mason Thompson
He taught me how to barefoot in South Africa on my 16th birthday along with SA's top Jr at the time Bruce Swanepool, Bruce was an amazing skier, he was not only their #1 racer, but he was also a top slalom, barefoot and trick skier, he is on the top of my list.
I think I watched Mason ski more than anybody else there is, it didn't matter how far apart we would start at a marathon, but after the first turn, we would be side by side, or usually he was just in front of me. We would battle in every race we skied, there is no way to log all the miles we raced side by side, he usually came out on top, but we always had a great relationship.
Reading the story about Butch made me think of something I don't think I have shared but with a few friends, but it tells you what a class act Mason was. It was the year I got hurt and Mason won the overall Catalina, he was one of the youngest to ever win and he also broke the record. After the awards ceremony, we chatted for a brief moment and he with all sincerity said, it should have been me up there, rather than him. Not sure I belived him, but it was a really nice thing for him to say in the moment and also let me know how much he appreciated all the years we battled.
One of the best ever and also a great guy, miss seeing him at the lake.
Is his shop still off the 60 fwy in Mira Loma? Is that were it was? correct me if I'm wrong. I went there a few times in the 80's & 90's.
The shop WAS there, right at Eliminator boats, Mike closed down the shop before Eliminator made the move to Perris when he went into the Skyski biz.
the late Denny Bartlett.
Most fluid skier I ever saw.
Added bonus, BEST Snow Skier, anyone who went on one of his trips to Canada in Banff of Whistler will testify to this.
I don't think I have seen Kurt Schoen's name, can't have a list without him
Whatever happened to Klarich? I pulled him around the stadium a few times
as well as Pinto.
What about his brother Mike? ...before the dead arm.
Greenland and Bartlett, those 2 were trouble together.
Last I heard, Klarich is a longshoreman and lives in Canyon Lake.
He was close friends with my late uncle Greg. They were both really something to see on skis, kneeboards and barefoot.
In fact, I've been trying to track down a copy of this old Orange Julius poster with the Greg and Tony on kneeboards doing flips over each other, both decked out in neon HO gear. If anyone has it or knows where I could find a copy, let me know!
If you want a list of all around skiers from Arrowhead, the 1st name on it HAS to be Mr. Mac McKenzie :thumbsup........Mac owned & operated " McKenzies Ski School " at lake Arrowhead back in the '50's and maybe even the '40's, the ski school is STILL being run I think by his daughter, Pam. I 1st met Mac when I was skiing the 13 - 15 boy's class in 1960 I saw this "old man " rip off a series of 360's on a trick ski at one of the races at Parker while they were out playing around. I asked him if he would teach me how to do that his reply was, "go get your life jacket" The whole family are some of the genuinely, nicest people you'd ever wanna spend time with on the water.
My buddy's dad was telling me the story of seeing that no more than a month ago. He couldn't remember who it was or whether the guy lived or not. I'll have to fill him in on "the rest of the story". Thanks!
I guess a lot of people have forgotten the details of Churchill's crash at Long Beach Marine Stadium. If anybody still has a very old Powerboat Magazine (May 1974) laying around, I did a six-page story with photos of the crash. Way too much information to give here but the "Reader's Digest" version goes something like this. Danny set a new quarter mile speed record of 126 mph at an NDBA drag race at the old Oakland Airport course in spring of 1972 pulled by Mac Christensen. He knew this was an incredibly dangerous sport and was offered an opportunity to try out a new parachute pack which would help him decelerate and be pulled back away from the ski in the event of a crash. He tested the new device with good success. Then came October 22, 1972 (he won the Catalina ski race that previous August) at Long Beach Marine Stadium. He was paid $300 for the exhibition and an additional $200 if he broke the record. Everything was out of synch for him that day....he arrived way behind schedule to the Stadium -- no time to prepare -- he never got a chance to talk to his driver (Christensen) before the run. About 100 feet before the end of the course, Danny got pulled over the front of his ski at 120+. He did a snap forward somersault so quickly that the shroud lines of the parachute went between his legs and then the parachute opened. The injuries were catastrophic -- his pelvis was split over 13 inches and damage to internal organs extensive. He lost over 13 pints of blood before he got to the hospital. He was at Long Beach Community for eleven weeks and he wasn't getting better (pneumonia, extensive hemorrhaging, allergic reactions to medication, bed sores, etc.). Fortunately he was finally transferred to UCLA Medical Center for more surgeries. Eight months after the crash, and still on crutches, he skied at the River with the help of some friends. After 18 months and 16 separate surgeries he was finally able to resume a near normal life and that's when he sat down for the interview for the story. He never returned to ski racing as a competitor, but he did regain most of his skills and was (and still is) one of the best hot-dog skiers of all time.