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  1. #1
    Rustymuscle's Avatar
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    Elevating The Sport: How To Become a Truly Professional Racer



    Let us begin by saying that what has been published here is neither a reprimand or adjudication against any one person or even the whole of the racing body. We can both agree that professional PWC racing is nowhere near what it could be, what it used to be, nor following in a trajectory of where it ought to go. Blame, being justified or not, is easily dished out, but fails to actually provide solutions – and this article intends to provide realistic solutions to assist racers of all stripes in elevating the sport from the ground up. What is presented here is a near perfect outline of how to both satisfy current and secure future sponsorships, guarantee the most visibility through the existing media, and tips on how to do so either easily or most affordably.

    More at WatercraftJournal.Com


  2. #2
    "just sayin".. jetdave56's Avatar
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    Good article Kev but can someone world class names were all familiar with actually make a living racing jet skis ?... sure there are perks traveling expenses paid for, the ski given to you and all parts and work done for you ,trophies to be proud of and the free swag but can you make 6 figures a yr ? I believe the manufacturers pay a small bonus for winning certain races ,definitely in dirt bike world class events But are the sponsors and brands they given you a health plan , 401k plan a contract with a weekly salary so you can pay your normal living expenses? Is it enough to quit your day job or drop out of school? .. maybe I'm naive and there's more financial gain that just the glory the trophy and hotel tab paid for ..

    its certainly not Nascar racer salary ,but as a hobby with lots of perks it might be a dream come true and if you ride world class and make the podium all the time you go for it!....just don't quit your day job

  3. #3
    Rustymuscle's Avatar
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    Sorry Dave, there's too much that needs to be addressed.

    1. As stipulated towards the beginning and throughout the article, most if not all professional racers (including those who actually do sustain themselves solely upon being a PWC racer) fail to do most of the suggested items. Were they to actually follow the criteria, we'd see a different outcome.

    2. Six figures a year? A 401K? Dental?! This is a ludicrous sum. All one needs to do is consider the overall health of the sport and in a larger spectrum, the overall size of the industry as a whole. It is estimated that the personal watercraft industry (including new and certified pre-owned sales) nets roughly $55 million a year.

    Compare that to the performance automotive aftermarket ($45 billion) and the domestic pet industry ($38 billion), the PWC cannot sustain any pay scale remotely close to your request. Even the most successful and consistent professional riders (Mark Gomez, Kevin Reiterer, Chris MacClugage) all have side jobs - then again, so did Larry Rippenkroeger, Jeff Jacobs, Scott Watkins and Christy Carlson.

    3. Even during the late 1990s, riders weren't full-time employees, but sub-contractors. They paid their own taxes. Today's riders are no different, needing to accumulate paychecks, spending wisely, working diligently to market themselves to cover costs and expenses.

    If you're young, energetic and motivated, an annual income of $35-$50K is very attainable even in today's industry. But few will commit fully and will need to learn to balance both a full-time job and being a full-time pro racer.

  4. #4
    OzarkYamMonster's Avatar
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    Hello Kevin, the piece you wrote is just that an entry to getting more out of the Race Game. However, even the very best riders i.e., Mike "The Klipper", who as you know is extremely involved in almost every power sport there is has to stay busy & enter just about every race circuit there is at an demanding pace to sustain his life style. The money numbers are just that $55M just will never cut it. The great races & venues we see today are for the most part the best that it is going to be. It is just the way it is. Steve Lee

  5. #5
    Rustymuscle's Avatar
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    Correct, but again, Klipper is an abnormality. And the article says making a career out of racing is possible (which it is), it does not promise NASCAR or NBA-levels of fame and/or fortune.

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