To be hosted by Australia at the Max Kirwin Ski  Park, Mulwala, NSW with more details to be posted as they come to hand.


Hosted by USA in September at Elk Grove, Sacramento, California.


Cancelled due to Covid 19.


Skarnes, Norway. The Australian Team won the silver medal.


Disabled Water Ski Australia hosted the 2017 World Disabled Water Skiing Championships at the Sport and Recreation Centre at Myuna Bay. This successful event commenced Monday 24th April and finished on Monday 1st May. Most teams also took advantage of the training on offer at the championships site from 17th April. There were 44 athletes from 10 counties competing at this World Championships.

During the above period, the 9 visiting countries plus the Australian team that entered to compete in this Championship, trained, familiarised themselves with the ski site and also did some sightseeing in and around Lake Macquarie, Newcastle and Sydney. Friendships were also formed amongst the skiers, support crew, families and officials.

After a hard-fought battle until the end, the Australian Team won the Gold Medal for the first time ever, and in their home country. The USA won the Silver Medal and Italy won Bronze Medal. One of the many highlights was the setting of two new World Records, both in jump. One by an Australian and the other by a Canadian.

The 44 athletes, their support crew, visiting families and officials came from USA, Italy, France, Canada, Sweden, South Korea, Brazil, Norway, Ireland and other states of Australia and were housed at the Myuna Bay Sport and Recreation Centre. There were 111 people housed at the Centre and about 65 people stayed within easy driving range such as Toronto and Wangi Wangi.

People stayed at Myuna Bay, or close by, for at least 5 nights, though most stayed for a period of 14 days with some of them continuing their stay in Australia after the event, to visit tourist destinations and do some sightseeing. This also included the Lake Macquarie area.

The Mayor, Kay Fraser, represented Lake Macquarie Council at our Welcome Night where she spoke and welcomed everyone to this event.

Lake Macquarie Council supplied their tear drop banners and these were displayed at the water ski site viewing area. Lake Macquarie Council was recognised as a major sponsor by the announcer on numerous occasions,

during the Championships and they were also acknowledged at the presentation night. The Lake Macquarie Council logo was also displayed on the 2017 World Disabled Water Skiing Championships website, T-Shirts and bulletins.

Besides the 44 athletes, their support crew, visiting families and officials that were housed, there was also visitors to this event who were local and interstate. These visitors were of various ages ranging from very young to the elderly and were generally further friends and family of the athletes. During the competition there would have been approximately 200 people at the water ski site each day.

The USD$10,000 naming rights from the Bolding Jim Grew Barbara Fund and the $10,000 that the Lake Macquarie Council sponsored Disabled Water Ski Australia to hold this event was used for costs associated with running the event such as accommodation and catering for the officials, purchase of fuel for the tow boats, event medals and trophies, competition bibs, various ski equipment and the like.

Without this generous sponsorship, plus many others both in funds and in kind, this event would not have been as successful, or may not have been able to be held at all, and we sincerely thank you for your generous support in holding the 2017 World Disabled Water Skiing Championships.

2015 World Championships

The twelfth World Titles were held at Shortline Lake, Elk Grove, California, USA from 20 – 27 September 2015.

Approximately 80 skiers with disabilities such as paraplegia, quadriplegia, arm or leg amputations and vision impairments from up to 18 countries will participate in this exciting tournament.

The Australian team was selected in early 2015 to allow for detailed planning and individual fund raising.  The skiers are elite athletes, some skiing close to the level of their able-bodied peers. These skiers put in many hours of intense training aiming at being the best in the world in their division. These skiers will compete in the same events as able-bodied skiers i.e. slalom, jump and trick.

2013 World Championships – Milan, Italy

2011 World Championships – West Chester, Ohio, USA

August 17th 2011 saw the start of the World Water Ski Championship trip for the Australian team, Darryl Hoyle, Belinda Sidman, Jamie McDonald & myself (Ian Hickmott). We were gratefully accompanied by team manager, Noel Dix, chief boat driver Kevin Wiseman and Glen Sidman as the team’s general assistant.

Our first group meeting point was Sydney International Airport, where we flew direct to LA, followed by another relatively quick flight to Cincinnati. Noel, who then took over the team’s next port of transportation as driver to the hotel, needed only a quick reminder (from an on-coming semi-trailer) what lane he was meant to be driving in. I think I can speak for the team, when I say “our hearts almost jumped out of our bodies”.

We first stayed in the same hotel in Cincinnati as the American team, where we would also train together on a private lake for 3 days prior to the competition. Unfortunately on the second day it was discovered I had taken all the skin off my lower back. This left me bedridden for the remainder of the training period, in hope that it would heal well enough to allow me to compete. The remainder of the team was really happy with the training location and facilities.

We then moved to another hotel in West Chester where we met up with the other teams from around the world. All up there were 39 competitors. We were also joined by some really windy and stormy weather due to a hurricane moving up the east coast.

Before competition started there was another three days of familiarizations, where each competitor was grouped into their division, depending on their abilities. The competition was going to be hard as all 3 mp divisions had to compete against each other for the first time at the worlds.

Trick and slalom were held on the first day. Darryl made both finals, while Belinda made it into the slalom final. Day two showed the jump heats, with Darryl, Jamie & myself all making finals. Belinda performed great and brought home a bronze medal for slalom on day three. The trick finals were also held on this day.

Darryl had a great effort and broke his record in jump on the fourth day by one meter, reaching a new 26.3 metre mark. I jumped my personal best of 15.9 meters and placed 6th.

Jamie had serious complications with his elbow. The Victorian Institute of Sport Physiotherapists worked on it for months, culminating in injections directly into tendon. Jamie trained lightly at Bushy Browns Adventure Ski Park in QLD for a week prior to leaving. He injured his hand in off-site training with US team while practicing for the jump event. His board was broken but repaired with help from Glen Sidman & also the Team USA. Jamie went on to break his own World Jump Record by 1.2m now 17.4m (adjusted score 5.8). (not 5.8m) Jamie won 4 medals in the Standing Division – Slalom: Silver, Tricks: Gold, Jump: Gold, Overall: Gold.

The closing ceremony dinner and presentation was also held on the evening of the fourth day. Darryl placed 2nd out of sit skiers division and placed 2nd overall. It was a great night with all the skiers celebrating a good event, having the opportunity to say goodbye and talking about preparations and regrouping in 2013 for the next Worlds in Italy.

I would personally like to say a big thank you to Noel for preparing and organising the Australian team – it wouldn’t have happened without him! Thanks also to Kevin & Glen as they were a massive help to all of us and a quick mention and thanks to Nick Purcell who also helped out in the boat.

2009 World Championships – Vichy, France

2007 World Championships – Townsville, QLD

“BRILLIANT” is how IWWF Disabled council described the worlds in Townsville.

Most competitors at the 2007 World Disabled Titles in Townsville commented that it was at the most beautiful site and it was the most organised event they have ever attended.

14 Countries and 52 competitors attended the event.

Australia for the first time ever in the history of disabled world titles, placed second on the podium in the teams point score. This is a huge achievement to finally get ahead of the United States who have long been the leaders in the sport.

The team was strong and made up by almost 50% Queenslanders who attributed greatly to the team scores.

They were:

2 Gold medals in jump were won by Ian Denman and Darryl Hoyle, who also smashed the world record.

Scott Wintle also took out the Gold medal in the Trick event.

Queensland Water Ski and Wakeboard Federation ‘Congratulate’ all these skiers!

An interesting point on how competitive these worlds were is that of the 14 countries present, 13 of them gained medals.

The Australian team was well managed by Noel Dix who we all know as the CEO of AWWF and coached very professionally by Drew Miller.

The event would have been one of the largest in Australia for the 06-07 season with the total budget being over $300,000.

As we all know the opening ceremony was sponsored by QWWF, and went off brilliantly!

The ceremony comprised of the presentation of the teams and officials, a reading by an Australian poet, a native traditional welcome and a dance, a bush band and exhibitions of native wildlife by the Billabong Sanctuary, all in the Auditorium and beside the fantastic pool at the Riverside.

A huge thank you was given to QWWF for its contribution.

A video of the event is compiled by WIN TV in Townsville and is available commercially.

The Townsville site and the Townsville Waterski club are to be commended and certainly recommended for future events.

Bushy Brown – Disabled Division



2019 Nationals – Moree, NSW

DWSA held its National Water Ski Championships together with Tournament Water Ski Australia (TWSA) at Moree Water Park over Easter.

2018 Nationals – Goondiwindi, NSW

DWSA held its National Water Ski Championships together with Tournament Water Ski Australia (TWSA) at Goondiwindi Natural Heritage & Water Park over Easter.

2017 Nationals

Nationals were not held due to a clash of dates with the Disabled Worlds.

2016 Nationals – Port Macquarie, NSW

DWSA held its National Water Ski Championships together with Tournament Water Ski Australia (TWSA) at Stoney Park, Port Macquarie over Easter.

2015 Nationals – Mulwala, NSW

DWSA held its National Water Ski Championships together with Tournament Water Ski Australia (TWSA) at the Max Kirwin Lakes, Mulwala over Easter.

2014 Nationals – Darwin, NT

Disabled Water Ski Australia (DWSA) held its National Water Ski Championships together with Tournament Water Ski Australia (TWSA) at Berry Springs in Darwin over Easter.  It was a great week of skiing and the two events worked well together. This year saw new skiers recognising the growing popularity of disabled water skiing in Australia.

Sharon Paterson was one of these.  Sharon has worked tirelessly to promote the sport and it was great to see her on the water reaping the benefits of the hard work she has done to be able to compete.  She is the only MP1 (the highest category of disability) woman to be competing in the world.  Sharon competed in the slalom, scoring a personal best in the rounds.  While she was not able to repeat the performance in the finals, Sharon received a well-deserved gold medal.

In the men’s MP1, two competitors lined up in the slalom, Vaughan Hogan was competing at his third championship while Rob Oakley was attending his first competition.  Rob broke the Australian Record in the first round but Vaughan was able to go one buoy better in the final to claim the gold and the record.  Rob was the only competitor in the trick event, marking just how difficult it is for MP1’s to master the water.  While he did not reach his personal best he walked away satisfied with the gold and was heard saying something about doing the jump next year as well.

Three competitors lined up for the men’s MP2 competition.  Jason Sleep from Victoria dominated the slalom with a strong performance.   Jason Hills from NSW was second and Ian Hickmont of Qld was third.  Jason Hills and Ian Hickmont went on to fight it out for overall honours contesting the trick and jump.  Both tricked well with Jason on top but Ian triumphed overall in a close battle thanks to him jumping over 16 metres.

In the MP3 two of Australia’s senior competitors stepped up.  Belinda Sidman contested the women’s slalom and trick events.  In a performance we have come to expect, Belinda set a new Australian record in the slalom and also tricked strongly. Darryl Hoyle demonstrated just how talented, or crazy, he is by competing in the over 45yrs men’s jump and trick.  The crowd was blown away when he jumped over 25 metres!  Darryl competed in the MP3 slalom and showed just why he is one of the world’s leading skiers across all three disciplines.
One competitor who deserves a mention is Sam Bell from NSW.  A rookie to the sport, Sam competes in the leg amputee category.  Unfortunately, Sam injured his ankle training for the jump event and was unable to ski despite a brave effort in the familiarisation run.  Despite this, Sam did not stop all weekend working to assist other skiers compete to their best and deserves a vote of thanks from everyone.

Finally, Glen Sidman was presiding over his first Championships as Director of Disabled Water Ski Australia (DWSA).  There was plenty to keep him busy but the event went off seamlessly and Glen also deserves a vote of thanks from all those involved. He was seen leaving the event with a smile on his face so with any luck, he’ll be around for a long time to come.

Rob Oakley

2013 Nationals – Stoney Park, NSW

Wow, what a great Nationals this year! Stoney Park hosted us over the Easter long weekend with 5 Days of action in Port Macquarie, NSW. TWSA sure know how to put on an event & make the Disabled Division very welcome. Everybody was helpful & supportive and the NSW Division ran it very well. Both lakes were used, one for slalom & the other for the trick & jump events. Having easy access to both lakes made it really very handy for all skiers. On Saturday night there was a night slalom & jump showdown plus an AC/DC cover band afterwards. Malibu supplied the competition boats and were great to ski behind. They also had three new boats on display. Food vans kept everyone well fed and they even had helicopter rides!

Now onto the competition! The forecast was for showers with rain periods but the gods were good to us and gave us great sunny weather 80% of the time. It was windy at times with jump event being moved from Friday to Saturday. It rained most of Monday but luckily the Disabled Division had already finished competing by then.

It was great to see Ian Hickmott back on the water after 18 months in hospital. He skied well and achieved a PB in the trick & slalom events. He had been practising his passes while in bed for so long.

New MP3 skier Jason Hills put in a solid performance in his first competition and exceeded the world criteria in all 3 events.

New MP1 Skier Vaughn Hogan broke the long-standing Australian slalom record on Thursday and again on Friday. He went through the course at 34km then into 37km. A great effort!

Jason Sleep broke his own slalom record at running 6 buoys at 9.75 metres. He had the boat roaring along while flying through the course on a very short line! He then had to try the outer course as there were no more shortenings.

Scott Wintle put in a solid performance as always getting a PB in Slalom. It could have been better had he known about the rule whereby you have to stop after every pass or spin after every pass. Unfortunately, he was a bit tired after four continuous passes and needed to rest which the rules do not allow for.

Belinda Sidman matched her record of 3 @ 52km in slalom and was only 20 points off her trick record. Not bad for a year off the water!

There were several disabled skiers absent this year. Bushy Brown, Darryl Hoyle, Jamie McDonald and Robin Cook could not make it due to injury & other reasons. Noel was kept busy & tied up all weekend in the slalom tower and last but not least, Glen (JN) Sidman (Junior Noel) had big boots to fill but did exceptionally well in his role of Team Manager. He was kept very busy and had everything on track and running like clockwork!

The Australian Team was announced at presentation night and team members are now looking forward to competing at the 2013 Disabled Worlds in Milan Italy this coming August. So now the team has to hook in and train through winter to show the world we are the ‘Flying Kangaroo’s’.

2012 Nationals – Mulwala

Once again, TWSA made the Disabled Skiers very welcome at the National Water Ski Championships conducted over Easter at the Max Kirwin Lakes at Mulwala, NSW. The twin lakes were great to ski on and the weather was mostly great except for one very windy morning on the final day of the championships. Although numbers were down it was great to see Jason Sleep competing again running into the 10.75m line.

Robin Cook drove all the way down from Queensland to compete in the slalom event with a good first round and a consistent final round. He is now keen to start into the jump and trick events. Darryl also drove from Queensland but due to family reasons had to leave early. Jamie McDonald as always put in a solid performance with strict instructions NOT to break the world jump record. All competitors are now looking forward to next year’s Nationals which will be held at Stoney Park.

2011 Townsville

On Thursday 21st – 25th April the National Water Ski Championships were held on the Ross River in Townsville. The event was superbly run by WaterskiQLD and the Townsville Water Ski Club on behalf of TWSA (Tournament Water Ski Australia).

A small group of disabled skiers attended the event with several new faces which was good to see. Thursday was our first event and slalom was held at the Loam Island venue which provided great viewing for spectators. Belinda Sidman stole the show beating her own Australian record skiing into 52kmph on the inner course for MP3 women. New skiers Robin Cook and Ian Hickmott (MP2) ran their first slalom passes and ran into 43kmph (inner).

Early Friday saw the trick event followed by the Jump. These events were held on the river in front of the Thuringowa Riverway Complex where the Disabled Worlds were held back in 2007. Belinda again stole the show equalling the women’s MP3 trick record. Darryl and Scott both jumped consistently and Ian Hickmott tried his luck on a 1.5m ramp but unfortunately crashed.

In the finals on Saturday, Belinda (MP3 Women), Darryl (MP3 Men) and Scott (MP2 Men) won the slalom event in their respective divisions. Second in MP2 men was Robin Cook and Ian Hickmott third. Sunday saw the results repeated for trick and jump. Darryl equalled his Australian trick record. In the jump event, the ramp was lowered to 1.25m due to a strong headwind. Ian Hickmott landed 3 good jumps all over 11 metres at his first Nationals.

At the presentation dinner on Monday night the team was announced for the 2011 Worlds this year in Ohio, USA. The team is Belinda Sidman (Captain), Darryl Hoyle and Jamie MacDonald. Scott Wintle was unable to attend as his fiancée Eliza is due to give birth to their second child in early June. Good luck to the team in the States.

2010 Nationals –  Bonneys Water Ski Park, WA

1st – 5th April…


Melbourne City Council is keen to have Disabled as an Event at Moomba and have approved it for inclusion in 2021.

Major points:

  • Funding – DWSA need to raise $25,000
  • Participants – Entries will be by invitation only to the world’s best disabled skiers
  • Timing – The Worlds dates have been linked to that of Moomba so that athletes can stay and compete at Moomba
  • Prize Money – Prize money will be on offer to 1st, 2nd and 3rd similar to the tournament event