JetSurf USA comes to Lake Geneva

Four-time world champion competes

By Randy Lefko Sports Editor
Posted 4/28/22

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS - Visitors to Keystone Heights over the weekend may have seen or heard some odd noises as they passed Keystone Beach at Lake Geneva last weekend with the high-pitched sounds of what …

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JetSurf USA comes to Lake Geneva

Four-time world champion competes

Posted

KEYSTONE HEIGHTS - Visitors to Keystone Heights over the weekend may have seen or heard some odd noises as they passed Keystone Beach at Lake Geneva last weekend with the high-pitched sounds of what could have been a jet ski or the wispy, surreal sound of a hovercraft going on in the background.

“This is a cool weekend of water sports action with the world wide championship cup of motorized surfboards here at Lake Geneva,” said Kimberly Morgan, Clay County’s head of tourism. “We also have motorized skateboards in the parking lot area.”

Morgan said Jacksonville-based Airstream Ventures company of event wizard Alan Verlander, who brought national class cycling to Clay County the past two years, was the start point of getting the JetSurf USA conglomerate to bring their racing action to Clay County.

The Keystone Heights stop was the first of four stops on the MOTOSURF Games schedule with stops in Huntsville, Alabama, Sebring and Mexico.

“Everyone here from around the world is enjoying the Florida sunshine and the friendliness of Keystone Heights,” said Morgan. “One note is that our Czech Republic competitors just left negative two degree weather to come here. The venue is made for this type of competition.”

The sports tourism body in Clay County has been determined to bring world level sports to the area with the help of Airstream Ventures and other entities.

“Clay County has not built a major sports complex or facility here, but that doesn’t stop us from being unique and exciting non-traditional sports to come in and put us on the globe,” said Morgan. “We had the national cycling qualifier and the mountain bike state championships in recent years.”

One noted athlete on the lake over the weekend was four-time world MotoSurf champion Lukas Zoharsky, a 20-year-old phenom, who was part of the racing action that had competitors flying upwards of 30-40 mph around a closed angled course on the beachfront of Lake Geneva with timed circuits determining fastest laps to get to a winner.

“I’ve done lots of races since I started racing when I was 10 years old in Czech Republic,” said Zahorsky, who has won in such exotic places as Abu Dhabi, Mexico, Russia, Singapore and Czech Republic. “There is not a lot of surfing in Czech Republic, but we have lakes.”

Zahorsky, with his muscular, low-center of gravity build, looked similar to a short, stocky wrestler, was king of the sport due to his ability to lock into the tight turns of the courses and maintain high speeds around the buoys.

“The gas-powered surfboards are a little lighter than the electric-powered surfboards that were part of an Electric Challenge round of competition as the boards are new to the sport,” said Zahorsky, who entered the sport as his dad was friends with the motor surfboard’s inventor, Martin Sula out of the Czech Republic. “The lithium battery makes them a little heavier and tricky in the tight corners to turn.”

Zahorsky, who finished his high school education and is currently in a university for a master’s degree, explained that the courses on the circuit are fairly similar with each course with special parts of the track with splits and a “joker” buoy.

“The joker buoy is a little longer than the normal ones and the riders have to go around them a few times in the racing,” said Zahorsky, who also attended his high school prom. “This Keystone Heights area has a lot of lakes which makes it a perfect place to train and race if you lived here. I have seen the cows and goats as well.”

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