Slalom skiing is an individual sport, yet the boat driver plays an important role in the enjoyment of our ski sessions and in the success we achieve.
Just as in most sports, in order to become the best driver you can be you need to practice as much as you can. There is more to it than just spending time in the driver seat though.
Here are some ideas that might help you next time you make it out on the water:
- The first is to keep your boat balanced. Fifty pounds of weight that can be moved around usually does the trick.
- It is very important to get the boat up to speed and lined up early so the skier has a nice long run into the pre-gates without having to worry about either the driver or the boat path.
- Once the skier starts the pull out, make sure your boat path stays in line with the course without getting pulled over to the left. The last thing you want to do here is to correct while the skier is on his glide, since that will almost always guarantee a negative swing with the skier.
- As a driver you want to stay in sync with your skier, so it’s important to stay proactive. Know where your skier is at all times, and don’t be afraid to move a little sooner than you are comfortable.
The worst thing you can do is wait until the skier pulls you and then react since you will be chasing the skier the whole time and your boat path will suffer. If you execute this properly though, you will be able to keep the line tight, and both you and your skier will feel tremendous satisfaction!