"Water Skiing is a Family Sport"
Kris LaPoint will long be remembered for his remarkable consistency and his ability to compete at the top of the ever-demanding sport of water skiing for such a long period of time. His competitive water ski career spanned more than 40 years, and he was competitive every bit of the way.
LaPoint set his first slalom record in 1966 and was still competing in professional events in 2006 at age 53. At the time of his induction to the American Water Ski Educational Foundation’s Water Ski Hall of Fame, he was widely recognized as one of the greatest slalom skiers in the history of the sport.
A native of Castro Valley, Calif., LaPoint began water skiing at age 5 and began competing at age 10. He set the world slalom record for the first time at age 13, and he went on to break it six more times during his illustrious career.
First impressions were apparently important to LaPoint. In his first appearance at the Western Regional Water Ski Championships, he won the regional slalom title. In his first appearance at the Water Ski National Championships, he won the national slalom title. In his first appearance at the prestigious Masters Water Ski Tournament in Pine Mountain, Ga., he won the Masters’ slalom title. He went on to become a seven-time Masters’ slalom champion and nine-time national slalom champion. In 1992 in San Diego, Calif., LaPoint became the oldest male (39 years old) to win an event on the professional water ski tour.
LaPoint attributes much of his success to the fact that he trained and competed with his younger brother, Bob, a 2006 inductee of the AWSEF’s Water Ski Hall of Fame. “Water skiing is truly a family sport, and having someone to train with you, drive for you and compete against you is very important,” LaPoint said. “That is very unique to our sport and that’s why so many different families have been successful in water skiing.”
At the time of his induction, LaPoint was living in Montverde, Fla., with his wife, Jennifer, and the couple’s daughter, Taylor.