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The​ ​SportsInsurance.com​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​will​ ​return​ ​for​ ​its​ ​second​ ​season​ ​at​ ​Little Mountain​ ​Lake​ ​near​ ​Charlotte,​ ​N.C.,​ ​aka​ ​the​ ​Queen​ ​City,​ ​on​ ​Sept.​ ​16-17,​ ​with more​ ​than​ ​$10,000​ ​in​ ​cash​ ​and​ ​prizes​ ​on​ ​the​ ​line.

Queens Cup Water Ski

“The​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​was​ ​well-planned,​ ​well-executed​ ​and​ ​provided​ ​exceptional​ ​ski conditions,”​ ​said​ ​Jennifer​ ​Leachman,​ ​a​ ​former​ ​world​ ​record​ ​holder​ ​and​ ​a​ ​member of​ ​the​ ​USA​ ​Water​ ​Ski​ ​Hall​ ​of​ ​Fame.​ ​”I​ ​don’t​ ​know​ ​how​ ​they​ ​could​ ​have​ ​made​ ​it any​ ​better.”

Leachman​ ​won’t​ ​be​ ​able​ ​to​ ​ski​ ​in​ ​the​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​this​ ​year​ ​because​ ​of​ ​ankle surgery,​ ​but​ ​she​ ​encourages​ ​others​ ​to​ ​experience​ ​the​ ​event.​ ​Women​ ​of​ ​all​ ​skill levels​ ​enjoyed​ ​the​ ​camaraderie​ ​and​ ​inclusiveness​ ​of​ ​the​ ​2016​ ​Queens​ ​Cup.

Queens Cup Water Ski Event

The​ ​goal​ ​for​ ​the​ ​tournament​ ​is​ ​to​ ​bring​ ​national​ ​and​ ​international​ ​women​ ​skiers together​ ​at​ ​a​ ​world-class​ ​site​ ​for​ ​a​ ​slalom​ ​championship​ ​with​ ​a​ ​significant​ ​number of​ ​competitors.​ ​Tournament​ ​director​ ​Jeff​ ​Gilbert​ ​has​ ​goals​ ​he​ ​sets​ ​and​ ​meets​ ​for the​ ​Queens​ ​Cup.

“This​ ​tournament​ ​provides​ ​a​ ​great​ ​value​ ​for​ ​the​ ​entry​ ​fee​ ​–​ ​a​ ​great​ ​site,​ ​a top-quality​ ​tournament,​ ​a​ ​minimum​ ​of​ ​two​ ​to​ ​three​ ​rounds,​ ​and​ ​multiple opportunities​ ​to​ ​win​ ​cash​ ​and​ ​prizes​ ​for​ ​all​ ​levels,”​ ​Gilbert​ ​said.

Joy​ ​Kelley​ ​of​ ​Tennessee​ ​validated​ ​the​ ​scoring​ ​system​ ​–​ ​and​ ​made​ ​skiers​ ​over​ ​40 smile​ ​–​ ​by​ ​finishing​ ​second​ ​last​ ​year​ ​as​ ​a​ ​50-some-year-old​ ​skier.

“There​ ​is​ ​something​ ​truly​ ​unique​ ​about​ ​this​ ​event,”​ ​Kelley​ ​said.​ ​“Today,​ ​there​ ​is no​ ​other​ ​opportunity​ ​like​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​for​ ​women.​ ​It​ ​is​ ​an​ ​event​ ​that​ ​inspires, challenges,​ ​and​ ​allows​ ​us​ ​to​ ​simultaneously​ ​pull​ ​together​ ​our​ ​physical,​ ​mental and​ ​emotional​ ​strength​ ​–​ ​with​ ​a​ ​(scoring)​ ​system​ ​that​ ​provides​ ​appropriate​ ​and unlimited​ ​competitive​ ​opportunity​ ​for​ ​women​ ​30​ ​to​ ​70-plus​ ​years​ ​of​ ​age.”

With​ ​support​ ​from​ ​area​ ​Nautique​ ​dealer​ ​Race​ ​City​ ​Marine​ ​of​ ​Mooresville,​ ​N.C., the​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​was​ ​created​ ​​ ​to​ ​give​ ​women​ ​the​ ​opportunity​ ​to​ ​ski​ ​for​ ​a​ ​cash purse​ ​on​ ​a​ ​record-capability​ ​lake,​ ​with​ ​a​ ​format​ ​modeled​ ​after​ ​the​ ​men’s​ ​Nautique Big​ ​Dawg​ ​World​ ​Tour.​ ​Two​ ​rounds​ ​of​ ​Saturday​ ​qualifying​ ​will​ ​narrow​ ​the​ ​field​ ​to 16​ ​skiers,​ ​who​ ​will​ ​return​ ​Sunday​ ​for​ ​the​ ​bracketed​ ​Sweet​ ​16​ ​head-to-head​ ​finals. ​

Queens Cup Podium Winners


​A​ ​significant​ ​difference​ ​is​ ​the​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​scoring​ ​system​ ​that​ ​allows​ ​women whose​ ​top​ ​speed​ ​is​ ​30​ ​and​ ​32​ ​mph​ ​to​ ​ski​ ​on​ ​equal​ ​footing​ ​with​ ​those​ ​who​ ​ski​ ​34 mph.​ ​The​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​is​ ​for​ ​women​ ​30​ ​years​ ​and​ ​older.​ ​The​ ​2016​ ​field​ ​had women​ ​up​ ​to​ ​72​ ​years​ ​old​ ​and​ ​skiers​ ​from​ ​every​ ​age​ ​division​ ​down​ ​to​ ​Women​ ​2.

The​ ​tournament​ ​will​ ​also​ ​be​ ​scored​ ​Saturday​ ​to​ ​recognize​ ​the​ ​best​ ​three​ ​skiers​ ​of the​ ​day​ ​who​ ​beat​ ​their​ ​average​ ​handicap​ ​score​ ​for​ ​the​ ​year.​ ​Those​ ​top​ ​three​ ​will receive​ ​cash​ ​and​ ​prizes.

The​ ​inaugural​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​got​ ​rave​ ​reviews​ ​from​ ​officials,​ ​spectators​ ​and​ ​mostly from​ ​the​ ​skiers.​ ​Sweden’s​ ​​ ​Josefin​ ​Hirst​ ​of​ ​Florida​ ​took​ ​the​ ​crown,​ ​defeating surprise​ ​finalist​ ​Kelley​ ​of​ ​Tennessee​ ​in​ ​the​ ​final.​ ​Leachman​ ​of​ ​Florida​ ​was​ ​third.

“It​ ​is​ ​a​ ​ton​ ​of​ ​fun​ ​for​ ​any​ ​level​ ​female​ ​skier,”​ ​Leachman​ ​said.

Said​ ​Kelley:​ ​“The​ ​Queens​ ​Cup​ ​showcases​ ​the​ ​longevity​ ​of​ ​women​ ​in​ ​our​ ​sport and​ ​their​ ​powerful​ ​desire​ ​to​ ​keep​ ​reaching​ ​their​ ​potential,​ ​and​ ​be​ ​the​ ​best​ ​they can​ ​be​ ​at​ ​any​ ​age​ ​through​ ​water​ ​skiing.”

Little​ ​Mountain​ ​Lake​ ​is​ ​the​ ​site​ ​of​ ​world​ ​record​ ​performances​ ​in​ ​Masters​ ​Men​ ​and Open​ ​Men,​ ​as​ ​well​ ​as​ ​numerous​ ​national​ ​and​ ​international​ ​records.​ ​In​ ​addition​ ​to its​ ​Pro-Am​ ​tournaments,​ ​Little​ ​Mountain​ ​annually​ ​hosts​ ​a​ ​Big​ ​Dawg​ ​World​ ​Tour stop.

For​ ​more​ ​information,​ ​contact​ ​Gilbert​ ​at​ ​​gilb41@hotmail.com​​ ​or​ ​look​ ​for​ ​the tournament​ ​at​ ​usawaterski.org.​ ​It’s​ ​also​ ​on​ ​Facebook​ ​at​ ​Little​ ​Mountain​ ​Lakes Waterski

Queens Cup Water Ski Participants



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