Posts Tagged ‘world champion’

Keith St. Onge’s World Championship History

Saturday, April 26th, 2014

1996 World Championship:

At the age of 18 Keith skied in his first World Championship held in Fergus Falls, MN in 1996.  Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.  He qualified to ski in the second round in all three events (slalom, trick and jump) and took 7th Overall.

Keith St. Onge competing in his 1st World Championships in 1996

1998 World Championship:

In 1998 Keith moved to Florida for the winter and trained for the World Championship in Sydney, Australia.  He won his 1st gold medal in Slalom and took 3rd Overall.  Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.

2000 World Championship:

In 2000 the World Championships went back to Fergus Falls, MN.  Keith did not place in the top three in the individual events but took Silver Overall.  Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.

2002 World Championship:

In 2002 the Worlds were held in Wallsee, Austria.  Keith was favored to win the Overall.  He took Gold in Slalom, Silver in Tricks and Silver Overall.  He came up short to the young David Small from England that surprised everyone with his talented skiing.  Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.

2004 World Championship:

In 2004 the Worlds were in Mulwala, Australia.  Keith won the Bronze in the Slalom and Trick events.  Keith was favored to win the Overall title once again but came up short to David Small.  For the third time in a row Keith won the Silver in the Overall title.  Frustrated and depressed on coming up short for the Gold Overall medal St. Onge changed his life habits and set out on a quest to win an Overall Title before it was too late. Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.

2006 World Championship:

Keith trained harder than he ever had one year prior to this tournament and suffered a back injury that almost changed the outcome and stopped him from competing.  This event was held in Adna, Washington.  Favored to win once again the pressure was immense.  After the first round of the jump event Ketih’s back injury resurfaced.  The team masseuse (Charlene Portman) kept Keith’s back function-able to carry him through the tournament.  Keith went on to win the Gold in the Slalom event, Gold in the Trick event and his first Overall Title earning him the Gold.  This was by far Keith’s best performance setting World Records in every (3 rounds) round in the tricks event.   Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.

2008/2009 World Championship:

Coming off his first Overall Title in 2006 Keith teamed up with past coach Gary “Swampy” Bouchard to train for the Word Championship in Otaki, New Zealand.  With an incredible trick routine put together by coach Swampy, Keith was the first skier to trick over 12,000 points in history.  Keith won Gold in Slalom and Bronze in the trick finals.  Keith won his first medal (Silver) in the jump event and won the Overall Title for the second time.

Keith St. Onge winning his 2nd Overall World Title with L-R, Team Coach Lee Stone, KSO with close friends Adin Daneker & Ryan Boyd

2010 World Championship:

Brandenbourg, Germany was the location of the 2010 Worlds.  Keith and David Small merged their barefoot water ski schools to create the World Barefoot Center.  They trained with each other under the wing of Coach Swampy and began skiing as friends but still harsh competitors at the tournaments.  Keith took Gold in Slalom and Tricks while David Small took Gold in Jump and Overall.  It was a clean sweep for the new business partners and a big win for the business.  Keith was a member of the winning USA World Team that earned a Gold in the Team Overall.

2012 World Championship:

Waco, Texas hosted the 2012 World tournament and it was another show down.  Keith won the Gold in Slalom and Tricks while David Small won the Gold in Jump and Overall.   Keith also won the Silver medal in the Overall title.  Keith was a member of the USA World Team that earned a Silver in the Team Overall.  This was the first time in twenty six years team USA did not win the Gold Team Overall.

2014 World Championship:

The worlds were held in Mulwala, Australia for a second time.  David Small put a personal best slalom score of 19.8 on the board in the 1st round.  Keith skied next and also put a personal best score on the board of 21.1.  The next event was jumping while Keith put a 25.4m jump up his first round David Small came back with a 26.5m jump putting them dead even for the Overall going into the tricks event.  David put a near perfect run together matching his world record of 12,150 points.  Keith bobbled on his first trick while the rest of his run quickly disintegrated.  He fell early in his second pass and posted low score up.  It was to low to make the semi-final round, which meant he would no longer be able to fight for an Overall medal.  The only thing he could do was focus on winning the gold in slalom and try to medal in the jump event.  Jump is Keith’s weak event but he had put many training hours into this event over the past few years.

Keith won the slalom event and jumped a personal best distance of 26.6m/87.3ft to put the pressure on world jump record holder David Small.  David fell short on his last jump giving Keith his first World Championship Jump Title and 13th career World Championship Gold Medal.  David Small won the trick and overall while Keith won Slalom and Jump.  This meant a clean sweep for business partners David Small and Keith St. Onge as well as for the World Barefoot Center Ski School.

Winning this jump title made Keith St.Onge 1 of 4 men to have ever won all three events at a World Championship. Others being, Brett Wing, Mike Seipel & Ron Scarpa.

2014 Jump Finals: 1st Keith St. Onge, 2nd David Small, 3rd Ben Groen. A World Barefoot Center sweep

2016 World Championship:

The Blue Moo in Alma Center, Wisconsin will host the 2016 Worlds.

Clinic With Dave Packard in Massachusetts with David Small

Monday, September 10th, 2012

After the World Barefoot Championships in Waco, TX I had a 2 day clinic with Dave Packard in Massachusetts. We stayed at Daves place is Mass but drove to a lake just in side the Connecticut boarder to ski due to Daves lake that he lives on having a restriction where you cannot head out before 10am…. Very civilized if you dont want to ski 😉 It was a beautiful lake and even though we had strong winds the water conditions were great. I didn’t get any pictures of skiers as it was raining the whole time and I had coat upon coat on trying to stay warm and as dry as i could be. Dave had everything ready to go…. BI Boom, Tower, WBC shoe skis, everyone had good wetsuits, handles and ropes and he even had his own Head Zone Helmets which is great to see them being used outside of the ski school!!

First morning before the rain started ;)

We used Daves Master Craft for most of the first day and when we were out of gas in that we used an older Ski Centurian which brought back great memories. When I first started getting coaching back in the UK I skied at Bomere which is in Shrewsbury with Tim Hodgkins behind his Centurian. Really good to be in one again.

Some of the crew out for sushi

Even with the rain the guys made the clinic great fun and i don’t think we stopped laughing for the whole 2 days I was there.
Hope to see you all again soon.

David
AKA Small’z

Please welcome “Keynote” Speaker Keith St.Onge

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

My second grade teacher Mrs. Provencher emailed me one day.  She explained the Title 1 reading program she now directs had an open house with many activities including barefoot water skiing.  They used me and barefoot water skiing as one of their topics.  I was excited to hear this and not long afterwards Mrs. Provencher asked me if I would come up and speak to the Berlin Middle School in New Hampshire, which is where I went to school also.  I had been wanting to get into speaking part time and she was giving me a perfect opportunity to do so.  I agreed and we set the date for the middle of May.

To drum up an audience Mrs. P and I hit up seventeen classrooms before lunch and I spoke to them briefly.  I basically told them how I followed my passion and became a World Champion one day.  If they have a passion they could also follow it and do what they love! I was on stage in the auditorium for an hour and signed autographs for all the kids and adults afterwards.  Thank you Mrs. P. for your support!

Mrs. Provencher (My second grade teacher) & I

We had a huge line for autographs and everyone got a free poster!

Bruce Bunnel & wife Nicole. Bruce was with me the first time I barefoot water skied.

Line for Autographs

I remember how excited I used to be waiting for an autograph so,  I give my time to the kids and make sure everyone gets one!

My two cousins Shauna & Ryleigh

My middle school Gym teacher Mr. Enman even showed up!

My first speaking engagement went great but I was a little long winded…go figure.  There were over 200 people that were present.  We had a Question & Answer at the end and gave out free games and books.

My mother organized a get together at the Mill Yard Restaurant afterwards and it was a great night hanging out with friends and family.  My next stop was Chicago for a barefoot water ski clinic.

It was a great experience for me and I look forward to speaking to many more children!  I hope I can encourage the kids I speak to find their passion in life.

For more information on Keith speaking for you contact him through, www.keithstonge.com (708) 668-2961

Keith St.Onge

Dave Ramsey helping out the World Barefoot Center

Friday, January 6th, 2012

After reading Dave Ramsey’s book EntreLeadership, many things he shared in his book sunk deep into my slowly maturing mind.  I figured since he listened to me during a few clinics I hosted with him, why not listen to him?  All kidding aside, Dave did everything I told him during the barefoot waterskiing clinic even when I knew he did not want to. He accomplished great things on the water as a result.  I also do the things Dave preaches on his website, live events and his books, even though saving money can be difficult.  He trusts me and I trust him.

After reading about “Mission Statements” in EntreLeadership, I introduced the idea to my team at the World Barefoot Center.  Our business has grown immensely in under three years and now that we had a solid foundation, it was time to create a mission statement.

Dave Ramsey and World Champion Keith St.Onge Barefoot Water Skiing

Should we have had a “Mission Statement” from the beginning?  Yes.  As a small business in its early stages, it would have been great to have from the beginning to keep everyone focused.  If we would have had a statement, I’m positive it would have changed us, as we were being pulled in many different directions during the beginning years.  A Mission Statement would have given us direction and motivation.  When everyone is looking in the same direction with the same task and goals at hand, you have a powerful ship moving full steam ahead.  That’s what a Mission Statement does.

We decided to all write a mission statement within a few days; meet again and share our ideas with one another.  Our master writer, AJ Porreca, took our statements and wrote several models using various sentences we provided.  We all gave our opinions on what we liked and did not like and finally came up with our “Mission Statement” for the World Barefoot Center.  I can truly say I am proud to be a part of a TEAM that represents our “Mission!”  We believe in our mission statement so much we are going to paint it on the wall of the ski school:

“To build champions on and off the water, show commitment to the improvement of our students beginner to advanced and utilize our business as a catalyst to ignite passion and growth within the sport.”

As I pass the book, EntreLeadership, to my team to read, I look forward to practicing what Dave preaches.  Just as my students at the WBC ski school trust in me to practice what I preach.

Thank you for your guidance and friendship, Dave!

By: Keith St.Onge

David Small Barefoot Clinic in Washington State with Big A and his goats :)

Sunday, July 24th, 2011

Adin Danneker put this clinic on on his private lake in Olympia, Washington.

Adins perfect water ski lake


On Adins lake there are two decent sized turn islands which were getting a little over grown so on one of the days where it was a little windy we took some time out, took an hour drive and bought a couple of goats. The kids at the lake named them Jerry and Dude.

The transportation of the goats to the turn island on the lake


Once back to the house we transported them across to the islands where they proceeded to eat non-stop and get visits everyday from the kids that live on the lake.
Adin built his house and has an amazing set up with his boat slip leading straight from his garage to the lake and the boats already set up and hooked up to his tractor in the garage so its as easy as opening a door and backing it in!! Also in the garage is a big flat screen and a Audi R8 to take out on the few days a year there its not raining in Washington 😉

Adins toy for when its dry out :)

We had a tournament the weekend after the clinic so Adin and I were working on trick runs and trying to clean up slalom so as not to get cut. Adins multiple turns at the end of the week were great and he skied up a storm in the comp with a high 5000 point trick run, nearly equaling his PB in slalom and landing most of his inverted jumps!!
Jerry Kanawyer came to the clinic and we continued on from what we were working on while I was at Jerries place. He got better and better at his surface turns as well as figuring out some new slalom techniques. We jumped a bit while at Adins and Jerry is getting a good inversion on a 10 foot line which is very similar to a long line jump.

Jerry Kanawyer getting ready for battle ;)


The best way to learn the inverted style is directly on a Barefoot International boom (lifted very high) until the technique is perfected and there is no fear in the skier coming in to the ramp. If it doesn’t go as planned go to the WBC shoe skis and start on these. Then a it is best to have a slow progression from the boom by going on just the V of the handle. After this you just inch the line out until on a 10 or 15 foot line off the boom.
Jerry also skied great at the tournament in all 3 events, and did great which was nice to see.
Doug Jorden also came over and did a lot of Barefoot jumping as he is also learning the new inverted jump technique. Doug jumps a good distance on the long line but in a traditional style and when trying to invert long line he has a small mental block and pushes the handle down. What was done to try to overcome this was to keep him on the boom but extend the line further and further out until he was jumping on a 45 foot line! Impressive!

Doug on a 45 foot line on the WBC shoe skis invert jumping.... nearly on the long line!!!


I was there for 4th of July where we went to Lake Silverado in Adna for some skiing and fireworks which was better than anything public we could have traveled to!!!

Had to get a patio heater going as the sun set on Lake Silverado while we waited for the fireworks for the 4th of July celebrations.


Val Shinn came and had a day in sunny Washington where she worked her backwards position as well as sorting out her slalom. Judy Myers who is 68 came and skied with us for a few days. Even after a recent injury and a couple of months out came back and was working on her front one foots and her backwards position as well get getting her edging out of the wake sorted on the long line.

John Macdonald, Judy Myers, Claudia and Dave Landon and myself (David Small)


Claudia and Dave Landon came with 82 year old John Macdonald for a day. Claudia worked on her front one foot and toe hold position as well as getting her first backwards one foot on her feet (which Dave was jealous of). Dave was also working on his front position as well as his backwards one foots which looked good on the WBC shoe skies but he was a little slower than Claudia on transferring it to his feet.

Dave Landon sporting the head zone helmet


Im sure Claudia did he one foot at the end of the day so that Dave didn’t have a chance to get back out there to try to equal her… great marriage rivalry. John Macdonald is going strong and at 82 years young is an amazing skier!! He skies no problem skiing on the boom or long line and was working on butt riding out of the wake so he could stand in calmer water.

82 year old John Macdonald doing his flyer at Lake Silverados competition


With the help of the head zone (turned all the way up..lol) he figured out how to get out of the wake and nearly did a full wake crossing which would give him a US record for his age division!! GOOOOO JOHN!!

82 year old John, myself (David Small) and 68 year old Judy Myers on the start dock

Jay Leuek had a day skiing with us where he learned his back toe holds and step position as well as sorting out his front position… he found that byb not plowing it made his life a lot easier to progress.

Jerry Kannesky doing some dry land practice


Jerry Kannesky came over for a day and a half and its great to have him around. He is extremely passionate about barefooting and brings a lot of energy to the boat! In just a day Jerry got his back to fronts feet to feet on the long line, all 4 turns on the boom on his feet in one pass and the step ones and hop on the boom!! He hadn’t jumped much before and got out there on the boom and in a couple of jumps was doing some great inverted jumps and landing pretty much feet to feet. Amazing!

Jay showing us great form on a back toe hold on the WBC shoe skis


Cheers Adin for having me back out to your pad dude!! I always have a great time over there and Ill be looking forward to seeing you over at Nationals!!

Adins dog, Maggie is finding it hard to see so she borrows Adins glasses from time to time.

New York trip and Barefoot clinic with the Piskuras

Saturday, July 16th, 2011

Arrived in to White Planes, Connecticut and the Piskuras picked both my girlfriend and myself up from the airport and took us to their house 45 mins away.  They have a great set up there with their self designed house (with Jimmies man room which is something to be seen J ), Lorraines dental practice and Jimmys Motel that he is renovating all on the same property!  Talk about not having to go very far to work.  Lorraine was away on a sleep apnea conference until the Sunday so we arrived in on the Thursday night so that we could have a few days in NYC to see the sights before hitting the water.

I had never been in to New York before so it was the usual tourist stuff that had to be done.  We started off by taking the train in and arriving in to Grand Central Station, which is a site in itself.

Grand Central Station

From there we ventured to the Rockefeller building where we were going to go up and see the city from a birds eye view however the lady at the desk said that it was far better to see at night so we postponed it until a later date ( that later date never came around as we ended up been too busy to make it in the day and the clouds came in and low in the next couple of days so the night viewing was out as well. Lol. Next time).

Times Square

Times Square was next which is a bizarre thing seeing the hustle and bustle of a big city and then to see a green park with people sunbathing and playing baseball etc in! We walked around the park and ate lunch there and then ventured back in to the city.  We checked out the Museum Of Modern Art (MOMA), which turned out to be free entry for 3 hours which was a result, which is a very cool building and has a lot of ‘interesting; pieces in.  The next day John Swanky, who has been barefooting for decades and seems to know everyone that has ever accomplished something in the sport of barefooting, had us around for a great steak meal at his lakeside house and then took us in the city the next day to have a backstage tour of the Broadway play ‘Spiderman’.  It was a once in a lifetime experience and I never knew how much went on behind the scenes of a play.  Shana and I then checked out the Empire State building and took the tube to see the Statue of Liberty as well as walking around ground zero.  We figured that Manhattan Island isn’t that big so we walked up to see Brooklyn Bridge and then through China town, little Italy and any other miniature cultural blocks until we ended up back in times square where our hotel was… it was a longer walk than I had anticipated and ended up taking us around 2 and a half hours with a couple of bar stops J Our evening was a meal at a nice restaurant followed by checking out 2nd street and a lot of Irish bars with a lot of interesting characters in them 😉

Backstage at Spiderman

The skiing started off on Monday and continued all week with Lorraine (1999 Senior Womens World Champion!!), Jimmy, Emma and Pete Sylvester everyday with others coming for a ski here and there.

Lorraine and Jimmy P

I had been warned about debris in the river that we were skiing on so Lorraine ended up driving for Jimmys first set so that I could concentrate on his skiing and not dodging trees.  This was a good theory until we drove over a submerged log without hitting it and it surfaced right in front of Jimmy doing front wakes at 45 mph.  He had been making some great headway as well in just a few passes! Needless to say it didn’t end well with us having to take him to the hospital (at the end of the day as he refused to go earlier so as to not mess with our skiing…. Tougher than me!!).  They X-rayed his foot and said that he had broken his heel and to stay off it for about 6 weeks.  Since then he has found out that it was not broken and his recovery time had reduced which is always nice to hear!

Jimmys foot

Lorraine had not had a lot of water time prior to me getting there as they had had some terrible weather all Spring which made skiing difficult but she got right out there and work out a lot of kinks in her front and back wakes as well as doing a lot of back to fronts and front to backs on the shoe skis.  Towards the end of the week she was making a few feet to feet back to fronts on her feet and did one that was so slow and clean that I could not believe what I was seeing…. Congrats on that!  She was also attempting front to backs on her feet at the end of the week, making the turn to the back and then just not having the confidence to grab the handle and ski it out but it is the first time she had the confidence to try them on her feet which was HUGE!!  Im looking forward to seeing what she can do when she is ski fit and had water time….. VERY talented! Pete has been footing for a long time as well but had been a little bit of a boom and shoe ski baby for the past few years so we threw him behind the boat a lot on his feet to clean up his slalom.  He is a very good listener and even with his old school style of slalom and straight legs (thought he was dragging his butt on the water when he was almost locked out straight 😉 )  he managed to pick up some new techniques which made him not only faster and cleaner but a lot more consistent.  Lots of back toes and getting into the step position helped him no end with stiff legs and his turns were looking a lot better. Good job Pete!! Petes youngest daughter, Emma, was a star.

Emma perfecting her toe holds using the headzone

Going 'old school' while the Sanger was in for a new impeller

Her attitude was great even when we were out and it was cold and occasionally raining.  She came on leaps and bounds, just a few things she accomplished was her front toeholds, backwards toes and backwards behind the boat!! Emma, I hope you stick with it and I will be looking forward to seeing her and Pete down in FL this winter at the ski school for some fun in the sun.  Mid week Eric Gorman came out and skied a day with us where we just cleaned up a lot of his skiing and we had a great time with him!!

Throughout the week we did get rained out one day and then the impellor broke on the boat so that was out of action for a day so we ended up going ‘old school’ and using Petes Barefoot Nautique which was great fun!!

At the end of the week Lorraine had a long time friend and skier (Sheri Rogers) come on out and even though we got a little rained out in the morning and resorted to going to a nice restaurant in town (life’s hard) we had great water conditions in the evening and finished the week off with some great skiing from the two girls!!

Local winery

Rhubarb wine after 2 days fermenting

We then went and checked out Erics local winery (White Silo Farm & Winery) where he had some wine tasting going on.  I have never had rhubarb wine before but it is amazing, if you are of age and you haven’t tried it then go to his website (www.whitesilowinery.com) and order some!!! He also gave us the tour of the place and showed us the process of making the wine which was great to see!! Thanks Eric!

The boys

The crew

MASSIVE shout out and thanks to both Lorraine and Jimmy for having myself and Shana up there and your hospitality!! You guys are great and it is always a pleasure to be around you both….. even if I needed to go cold turkey from the caffeine once I left (it was great while I was drinking it though).

How to Become the Best Barefooter on Your Lake

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

First, you need to get kitted out in all the right gear– a wetsuit and padded shorts are a good place to start. KSO wetsuits and shorts are as good as they get.  As an added bonus, they have built in tumble turns!

Next are your handles and lines. US Gear handles are great with a soft grip and rounded corners for extra
comfort and they also look real cool as well. A KSO pro fusion line is the next step for absolute no line-stretch skiing. Lastlydon’t forget a pair of KSO shoe skis-the most comfortable and durable on the market. But most important of all
is to start with the correct help and training. Before you take to the water, call the World Barefoot Center and get some advice and book some training from the World Champions, Keith St. Onge and David Small.

Then comes the easy bit:  train for about ten hours a week on the water and go to the gym every other day for the next three years, and you will be the best barefooter on your lake.

Unless of course your lake happens to be Lake Conine.

Written by Adam Chalk