Posts Tagged ‘Tanner Thomas’

Update: 2015 IFWA Freeride World Champion

Sunday, April 3rd, 2016

Hello everyone,

It has been an Incredible whirlwind of adventures and events since my last update after the European leg of the IFWA tour back in June.
I will bring you back up to speed with what has gone on in the last 3 months leading to my recent world title accomplishment at the Blowsion Surfslam event.

July

 

RPM Lake Perris Race podiums, Trip to Ketchikan Alaska, and Aqua Moto Vintage GP Champion
July 11-12th I competed in two rounds of the RPM Westcoast Jettribe Race series at Lake Perris, CA. After some tough vintage 550 motos racing my little 10yr friend Wyland Reden I finished 2nd round one and 1st place round 2. I also took on freestyle at the event on my vintage 550 with my partner in crime Tanner Thomas and managed to pull off a 2nd and 3rd place finish.

July 14th-22nd, Trip to Ketchikan, Alaska:
Almost immediately following our adventure at the race, I had arranged to finally fly to and visit Tanner and his family at his home island in Alaska. A chance to see all that goes on in Tanner’s world, I toured the place by Land, sea, and air. It was an incredible experience and  I am very grateful for the Thomas family for taking such good care of me over there.

July 24th-25th, Chris Fischetti’s Aquamoto Grand Prix Race – Lake Havasu — Vintage 550 Champion :
Hitting the ground from Alaska running, I loaded up my brother’s 550 and bombed out to Lake Havasu, AZ. I raced in Chris Fischetti’s 10 lap 12 minute Grand Prix race in the Vintage 550 class. I battled hard, hit the ramp jumps every lap, and took home the title of Aquamoto King Of Lake Havasu. Here is the video from my on board GoPro camera from the entire race -> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FO_mAX2i6bo

August

 

Grayland Open Freeride Event Champion, TC Jetpilot’s Sortie event in Minnesota, and Bomber Eyewear Trip To Costa Rica:
August 7th-9th I loaded up a few rider’s skis including my own on and behind my truck then drove all the way up to Grayland, WA. At the event I was the event Announcer, time keeper, trick caller, event director, and Pro Rider contestant in the Grayland Open Freeride Contest. I had a few interviews with AIM Sports TV, who were on site putting a story together for EPSN. I also helped event coordinator Dan Lindgren out by attending 3 different local radio stations speaking about the event. After one hell of a long weekend, the event went incredibly well, and I was able to defend my Pro Freeride Championship title at the event.

AUG 21st-23rd, TC Jetpilot’s Sortie Lake Pepin, Minnesota:
A last minute addition to my crazy schedule was the sudden but much appreciate joint purchase of my flight accommodations to participate at the Twin Cities Jetpilot’s Sortie event at Lake Pepin, Minnesota thanks to West Side Powersports and Liquid Militia. I was able to ride and tune a few skis including my 2014 season Rickter Evo1 that My local friend there Brian had purchased from me last year. I connected with a lot of the local riders and hit some fun V-Wake sessions.
AUG 24th- Sept 2nd, Bomber Eyewear Team Vacation Costa Rica:
I took off sunday afternoon from Minnapolis, landed at LAX around 7pm and was airborne again from the same terminal with my sponsor Bomber Floating eyewear on the way to Jaco beach in Costa Rica. We stayed for a week in an incredible beachfront private estate connecting with the local Costa Rica Bomber crew doing photoshoots, surfing, and more. I connected with my friend Guiellmo Casas who owns his own resort north of where we stayed. With his blessing i was able to bolt on a few parts onto his Rickter he owns there in order to put on a freeride show on the main strip of Jaco Beach that sunday afternoon. On top of that the footage of me riding that day made into international Raggae Artist Toledo’s new music Video for his song “Buen Raggae” off his new album “Stress Free” Here is the video link to the music video: https://youtu.be/P0qEN0z8hpE

September – WORLD TITLE

 

Battle for the IFWA Freeride World title at SurfSlam
 
Sept 11th-13th, IFWA World Tour Final round, Blowsion SurfSlam in Pacific City, Oregon:
On Labor day I loaded up my truck with just my Rickter, my brother’s 550, and my sponsor Nick Salty investment’s Pit bull Mastiff, “Mr. Brown” and set off for Oregon. Mr. Brown provided a helpful supplement to my fuel expenses as well as kept me awake during the 15 hour drive north. The contest was an insane weekend of physical and mental breakdowns and breakthroughs. True to Oregon standards the surf conditions at the event site were erratic, and in most cases uncooperative. Competing in 6 minute head to head heats, judged 50 percent on surf riding ability and 50 percent aerial tricks. My first heat started out rough when my engine exhaust coupler popped mid run. I popped my hood and limped my ski back to shore where the first back up ski wouldn’t start, so my friend Abraham Ho let me use his personal new 1100cc Rickter Edge to finish my heat. I made up for lost time quick sending his nightmare powerful ski into the air to pull back ahead and secure the heat. One of the jumps I had managed to unlatch the hood latch the proceeded into another big backflip and didn’t realize that the hood merely opened and closed upon landing! 


My 1/8 final heat was against my good Australian friend Ryan Soloman. During this heat the waves really turned bad where sets just were not holding their shape and making judgement on waves incredible challenging. All was going alright until I threw a Scarecrow barrel roll off of a not so healthy wave. I over compensated and landed the trick driving my right knee into the handlebars. This gave me a charlie horse from hell during my heat making it impossible to put weight back onto the knee for over 3 minutes of the heat. I pulled it together enough to ride through the pain and pull off a few more maneuvers that would ever so slightly pull me ahead in the end. 
 
On the final day I started back strong into the 1/4 final heat vs my long time riding buddy Zack Bright. Waves yet again didn’t stand out for us both but the battle was on. We both threw out an immense amount of tricks that would make a difficult judgement in the end that eneded up in Zack’s favor for capitalizing on some more surf rides than I had in the heat. It was incredibly difficult to swallow with such high expectations this year but in the end it couldn’t have ended better. Zack took that victory in stride, rode amazing, and ended up winning the contest. The points I had accumulated on the previous 4 international tour stops combined with my 1/4 points secured my lead making me the 2015 IFWA World Champion! I also placed 2nd in the Big air show down for a super flip i threw of a larger wave. The cherry on top of it all was having my Mom Patty and older brother Philip there at the event to witness it all. Neither of them had ever really seen myself compete all 10 years I have been at this. Having them there amongst all of my freeride family meant the absolute world to me. Zack and I had both traveled to this event together as amateurs in years past, we never had the opportunity to compete together on the world tour, so to be able to finish the way it did really left the both of us choked up and full of good feelings over such a roller coaster of our own growing pains to get there. 


Going after this 10 year dream of winning the freeride world title brought so much light into my life through all of the incredible, genuine, and kind people I met around the world. All who helped me in some kind of way to achieve this dream along the journey of the IFWA world tour going to Australia, Portugal, France, UK, and USA. Standing on top of that podium in Oregon, I found myself struggling to fight my overloaded emotions to find the right words of sincere gratitude, and was nervous to maybe forget names of so many amazing people and companies that really made everything possible in that moment. I can’t thank you all “including you the reader” enough for your support in my dream to take on this immense goal of going after the world title. Doing so has generated some of the most unique and inspiring moments of my life so far. It forced me to step up as a freeride athlete and push harder than I ever had before. At the events overseas I had been brought to light through my fans and supporters as someone who embodies the characteristics of the athletes who inspired me on and off the water; Joe Kenney, Ross Champion, Mike Serlin, Randy Laine, Jerry Brandon and Taylor Curtis. Things have really come full circle from the kid who grew up riding a 550 with a big dream. These guys inspired me beyond words, so I don’t take it lightly when I hear I am having the same effect on this generation of riders, who will hopefully have experiences like I just had. It all is so incredibly amazing to me, I am so grateful, and even writing this now has me so full of emotions and gratitude I may never finish this email.
From the bottom of my heart, thank you to all of my friends family
and all of my amazing 2015 World Champion Supporting Sponsors:
Mystik Lubricants
Hydro-Turf
Worx Racing Components
Hot Products
JetPilot
Rickter/RRP
Liquid Militia Clothing
TC Freeride
DASA
GoPro
Cold Fusion
Skat-Trak
Impros
Thrust Innovations
Bomber Floating Eyewear
Blowsion
ADR Crankshaft
JetRenu
Salty Investments
KMG Racing
Champion Timepieces
Performance Fiberglass
Pacific Motorsports Brea
Patty’s Cakes & Desserts
My Brother Philip
Fullerton Physical Therapy
The Lawrence Family
Cranberry Winery, Bog Water Brewery
The Thomas Family
The OSIDE CREW
THANK YOU SO MUCH, WE DID IT!

Surf & Style Contest Champion and Back Flips in the Hotel Pool at the 2014 Daytona Beach Freeride Event

Sunday, February 9th, 2014

The round trip of driving 106 hours with my buddy Tanner Thomas to the 2014 Thrust Innovations Daytona Beach Freeride was well worth it with all that went down that weekend! To start things off this was the debut of my new T.C. Freeride built Rickter FR2 Evo- 1. The DASA 1000cc engine combined with the Skat-Trak 155 set back Magnum pump set up by Impros was and absolute rocket ship I had to slowly but surely dial in through out the weekend. Here are a few photos from my first ride Friday at the freeride followed by a killer event video by my friend, rider, and great video producer Seth Zaluski.

canfliplegdragpointroll2

Team Rickter Photo Shoot

Rick Roy the owner and innovator behind Rickter/RRP flew into the event despite not feeling well. We were able to assemble all of the new Rickters and the trailer in the right lighting and take some team photos. This was an incredible experience to really bring the reality to being apart of a professional factory team after the last 8 years chasing this dream.  Bellow are a few photos from that shoot.

dasaandrickroyrickter-freeride-teamfactoryrickter

MotoOption Surf&Style Contest Champion

surfnstylechampLast year I rode in the contest against about 8 other competitors and took home the title of the 1st Surf&Style champion. This year I went head on against 12 other solid surf riders. The contest was run the same, individual 3 minute heats judged primarily on surf riding ability, style, and speed. Adapting to my new ski and making the best of the rough small surf, I pushed myself as hard as I could in 3 minutes and came out on top to defend my title as the 2014 Surf&Style champion! MotoOption Clothing sponsored the event and also put together this video bellow covering the entire event and this contest.

Saturday Night Back Flips In Event Hotel Pool

poolflipsceneThanks to event coordinator Nick Foederer, and Brian Vergin event title sponsor and owner of Thrust Innovations. I was chosen to be the freerider thrown into the pool with a brand new 30k Thrust Innovations built Rickter XFS Freestyle ski powered by a DASA 1200cc engine. This Jetski was full blown pro freestyle competition ready! Without ever practicing on this ski, I did my best and was able to rip a few flips in the hotel swimming pool that Saturday night without hitting the edges or bottom of the pool. It was the most rad experience thanks to the hundreds of friends at the event surrounding the pool cheering me on. To top it all off as soon as I got out of the pool was when i found out I had defended my title winning the Surf&Style contest making Saturday night the best night of my life so far in 2014! Bellow is a video put together by my twin brother from another new york mother Drew Supon recapping the entire pool back flip and contest winner announcement experience. Thanks Drew!

View My Event Photo Album

Click here or the the photo bellow to view my 2014 Daytona Beach Freeride event photo album

Mark Gomez At 2014 Daytona Freeride

It goes without saying that 2014 has kicked off with an incredible start thanks to all of my 2014 sponsors and friends who have supported me every step of the way.

Thank you so much, next stop… Mexico with Champion Time Pieces!

-MG

52 Hours of Driving Later We Arrived At the 2014 Daytona Freeride

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Rickter Team at 2014 Daytona FreerideMy friend and fellow pro freerider, Tanner Thomas and and I drove over 52 hours 2,700 miles from Morro Bay, CA to the 2014 Daytona Beach Freeride in Daytona Beach, Florida. We have been pulling the team RICKTER trailer, loaded up with the latest and greatest of the 2014 RICKTER line up powered by DASA Racing, pushed by Skat-Trak Magnum pumps, and built by T.C. Freeride. The Rickter west coast team coming to the event consists of riders Mark Gomez, Tanner Thomas, Taylor Curtis, Randy Lawlor, Brandon Lawlor, Abraham Ho, Rick Roy, and Jeff Bolte. Keep an eye out at the 2014 Daytona Beach Freeride event for  the entire team and skis! Tanner and I filmed a video on the road which is featured bellow. We are here now at the event and are ready for a great weekend. Thank you everyone for your support to get us here safely and supported with things to read about while being on the road for so long.

daytonabound

Cheers to a great event!

-Mark

Mark Gomez Riding a T.C. Freeride built Rickter FR2 Evo-1 Debuting at 2014 Daytona Freeride Event Jan 16th

Saturday, December 28th, 2013

talking-to-rick-royAt the World Finals in Lake Havasu this year, I had a chance to discuss my 2014 goals with a few companies and current sponsors to work out a program that would mutually benefit my own riding and the ability to make it to more events as well, in order to best represent the combined sponsors that I have. I had the opportunity to have a long discussion with Rick Roy, the man behind his own factory in Thailand creating professional grade Freestyle hulls at RICKTER-RRP. I also had the opportunity to ride what will be close to my set up at body beach thanks to Taylor Curtis of T.C.Freeride, this is when I knew this would be the ski I can do damage with. After further discussions over emails, Rick and I came to a great sponsorship agreement as I am officially now riding for RICKTER- RRP for 2014.

evo1test4evo1test3evo1test2

 My 2014 RICKTER FR2 Evo-1 Hull:

mgevo2014-2I am going to be riding a unique heavy duty infused Carbon Fiber White Base/Blue RICKTER FR2 Evo-1 hull with factory integrated Blowsion Destroyer Evo Tubbie front sponsons.

I had an opportunity to ride the Blowsion Rickter Evo-1 with their tubbies installed and what I felt is that it allowed the Evo to lean over to pivot on the tubbies and roll through the turns which suits my style of riding. Rick welcomed my feedback and preference and even offered to help install these at the factory to have it look one with the ski, which came out extremely nice in my opinion. Besides the tubbies, the Evo 1 has the other advantages to the hull design such as being -6 inches shorter than a yamaha superjet, nose mounted handlepole bracket/pivot point, low profile hood for stronger hull design, swooping front nose rocker and bond line rail, and rear rocker which is adjustable by removable sponsons, improved pump intake design, and much more.

mgevo2014-3mgevo2014-1rick-installing-tubbies

 Hydro-Turf

mgevo2014hydroturftraymainAll Rickter hulls come with Rickter brand EVA installed on the hulls from the factory. EVA, is better known as traction matting or “Turf”. Being that one of my main and most valued sponsors for the last 6 years is Hydro-Turf, I Sent out my own assortment of Hydro-Turf’s unique cut and color mating to be installed at the factory in Thailand. I sent their Blue on white 2-Tone Waffle Cut for the rails/sides of the tray and White Waffle cut for the base to be laid on top of their 26mm Plush Underpad and a 1″ Kick Tail Wedge. Hydro-Turf not only looks unique with all of the available cuts and colors, but also has always offered me the most superior, durability and traction in the most harsh and slippery conditions. The 26mm Plush Underpad provides crucial support to my body as it absorbs the high impact energy from big air landings and flat lands which happen from time to time in the surf.  Without Hydro-Turf’s underpad, a lot of riders including myself, would not be walking away from the things they throw. The 1″ Kick Tail Wedge. has become vital to my riding offering me the leverage and allows my heel to drive into it so I can stay locked in during hard slashes and turns. The RRP Factory surprised me yet again with a custom integrated EVA shaped front foothold into the front of my tray.

Hydro-Turf will also be supporting me to make it possible to attend many events including a few tour stops on the International IFWA Freeride Tour! Thank you Hydro-Turf!

mgevo2014hydroturfmgevoffholdmgevohtkicktail

Engine by DASA Racing – 1000cc

dasakyle

This year I will be going skyward with the insane power from my new DASA built 10mm stroke 1000cc billet power valve 2 cylinder engine. Kyle Kennedy, watercraft division manager at DASA, agreed to support me for 2014 by building me an engine that will deliver an insane amount of power for my surf riding and I will also be able to perform flat water back flips my new Rickter. This will make my Rickter a modern “all around” performance jetski for my 2014 planned season of both surf and flat water events. I will not be competitive in any flatwater freestyle classes by CC limit but the overall goal is to be able to perform to the best of my ability with any water conditions I come across. Thank you Kyle & DASA!

mg2014dasa10mm1000ccevo1test

Magnum Pump by Skat-Trak set up by Impros

skat155magpumpTo get this Rickter airborne I need to process the water that my DASA engine is spooling up, this calls for the new Skat Trak 155mm Magnum pump. I am really thankful for David at Impros for being my standing Impeller sponsor over the last few years. He has always taken care of me and this year I am happy to say that I am maintaining that relationship with the added and now combined sponsorship of both Impros Impellers and Skat-Trak.  Both have come together to support me with this 155 Magnum pump. Thanks to Michelle and Glen at Skat Trak for getting it done for me in such a rushed time frame! Another big thanks goes out to Brian Vergin and Chris Anyzeski at Thrust Innovations for supporting me this year with some of his custom products including the 155mm EZ-Flow Pro Trim kit. This Trim system is the best design currently in the industry which will help me bring back flips around on flat water and create better set up wakes.

skat155mag thrust155trim

My Rickter Built by Taylor Curtis (T.C. Freeride)

tc-freeride-ad

Taylor Curtis is a pro freerider I have looked up to since I first got involved. Taylor has made his name in the industry through his aggressive power surfing, big wave riding, insane surf re-entries, and now for building pro level Rickter Jetskis, including my own through his business T.C Freeride. My Rickter hull and components are currently at Taylor’s shop getting assembled. These Rickters do not reach their full potential unless they are built right. Taylor has the extensive knowledge working hand and hand with RRP over the last few years through the developments in freestyle technology. I am absolutely stoked to know that my Rickter is going to be “Taylor made,” and will be dialed in perfectly by T.C. Freeride! Thank you for supporting me Taylor!

taylorcurtisevotcpodiumtcfreeridebuiltevo

WORX Racing Components

worxgarynemmaGary and Emma Watson have recently taken over and are currently re-branding WORX Racing Components. Gary Watson has been in the PWC scene for years doing amazing research and development to create professional components in order to make some of the fastest skis coming out of Australia. They have taken me under their wing as one of my major 2014 sponsors. I will be running their new WORX 242 Rickter Scoop grate as well as a few other new developing components. WORX is also a massive support to help me travel this year to compete on the IFWA Freeride tour! Thank you very much for your extended support WORX!

worx-racing_2013-wavebreak-shoot_09_0worx-242-rickter-grateworxmgturn

Cold Fusion

cloldfusionmidshaftCarl Gramberg of Cold Fusion has been supporting me since 2010 with his incredible and innovative billet products. I will be running the Cold Fusion Yamaha Midshaft assembly, Billet Electrical Box with Lexan cover, Billet hood prongs, Fuel Filters and much more! Carl makes some of the most reliable parts in the industry which I always trust in my skis. Thank you for your support Carl!

Hot Products Support

hotproductsandrrpThanks to Tom Perry and Scott Saito Hot Products USA I have two new 46mm Mikuni Carburetors along with a laundry list of other parts to put this Rickter together. Hot Products is also the USA distribution center for all RRP products helping me communicate and get the parts that I need during this tight deadline. I would not have been able to pull this build off without Hot Product’s support and networking in 2014.

First Stop: Daytona Beach Freeride Jan 16th 2014

tanner-and-iOn January 10th my Alaskan brother in freeride and fellow Rickter/Liquid Militia Clothing team mate Tanner Thomas flies in from his rock in Ketchikan Alaska to Taylor Curtis’s house. We will help Tanner finish his new Evo-1, load up the Rickter support trailer with all of the West Coast Rickter team skis and drive the 5,500 mile round trip to the Grand Seas Resort for the 2014 Thrust Innovations Daytona Beach Freeride event and back. Look for Tanner, the Rickter Freeride team, and I at the RICKTER team trailer on the beach at the 2014 Daytona Beach Freeride. See you guys there!

teamrrptrailer

More updates to come very soon!

-Mark

Take The RICKTER Factory Tour Video

See for yourself how RICKTER hulls are build and how I know RRP’s quality and manufacturing process is the best in the industry!

Grayland Open AM Freeride Contest 2013 – Grayland, Washington

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013

Thanks to the organization of Dan Lindgren director of the event and the support of the city of Grayland I was flown to Seattle and picked up by Tanner Thomas to announce for the 3rd year at the Grayland Open AM Freeride contest in Grayland, Washington. Thanks to Tanner , I was able to have my Matrix freeride ski there to ride with and help coach riders on certain riding aspects during the freeride clinic before the contest.

Click here or the photo bellow to view my Grayland Open 2013 Event Photo Album

loomis

H2X Show at 101st Calgary Stampede – Calgary, Canada 2013

Monday, July 8th, 2013

After leaving the race in Sparks, I continued up north to meet up with my buddies Tanner Thomas, Chris Rosner, and Jace Forest to perform in the 2 week H2X water show at the 101st Calgary Stampede in Canada. 14 hour days 4-7 shows a day for 2 weeks was one of the coldest but coolest experiences we have been able to be apart of. I rode my Matrix Freeride ski in freestyle segments of the show and operated for my friend Andre on the Flyboard. The trip had its hard times but overall was another incredible international experience that jetskiing made possible for me.

Click here or the photo bellow to view my H2X Stunt Show – Canada Event Photo Album

andreflyboard

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