A Bream Bay board rider has found international success in a sport so new to New Zealand he has pioneered it himself.
Dave Kay was one of just two New Zealand representatives at the World Wakeboard Association's Wake Park World Championships, held at Abu Dhabi in December.
He is "stoked" to take third place in the Amateur Masters Division for 30 to 40-year-olds in his first-ever cable park event.
A cable park pulls a wakeboarder or water skiier around a course by an electronically driven cable, rather than a motorboat.
For Dave his journey to the event has been over 2 years in the making.
His dream to ride a cable system only became a reality when he built his own scaled-down version on a lake in Ruakaka with the help of many local businesses and residents.
There are expensive German and American-made systems available on the market, but Dave's Kiwi ingenuity and mindset meant he sourced materials locally and built a system which performs better than any of the commercially available two-tower systems.
Dave's goal was to provide a recreational facility to compliment his board building and kite sports business based on Kepa Rd.
However, 18 months ago Dave was offered a position with one of the largest kiteboarding brands in the world, Cabrinha Kites, based out of Hong Kong.
The opportunity was too good for him to miss and the cable park and kiteboarding business was followed on by Matthew Spragg, who swapped his fast-paced lifestyle in Hong Kong for the kiteboarding dream in Ruakaka.
With 25 countries represented at the world championships, Dave says he is pleased with his third place.
"I have to be happy with that considering the 1st place competitor Andreas Voss distributes boards in a country [Germany] with the highest density of cable parks in the world and the second place position went to a professional cable park operator from the Philippines, Boboy Borras."
- © Fairfax NZ News