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Genoa woman takes part in attempt to break record at water-ski event

With one foot holding onto the rope, the other balancing on a water ski, and both arms bracing the women beside her, Ali Alsup had done her part to complete the final trick in an attempt to break the record.

“That’s when all the tears started,” she said. “We knew we completed it.”

Alsup, 29, of Genoa, was one of 48 women to team up and break the record for most ballet water-skiers pulled by a single boat April 22 on Lake Ariana in Auburndale, Florida.

The number to beat was 40.

“We attempted to break the record with 50, but two girls fell,” Alsup said.

More than 300 people tried to break 44 different records during the five-day water-skiing event called Chain of Records.

Alsup said she and her sister took part in the attempt, while her father and husband helped out on the boat. In addition to feeding her competitive side, Alsup said show skiing also is a bonding experience for her family.

“It’s one of the few sports I can do as an adult with my family,” she said.

In show skiing, skiers perform gymnastic moves such as forming pyramids, swivel skiing or freestyle jumping while being pulled by a boat. For the ballet-skier record, participants had to successfully perform two tricks.

Alsup said she has been involved in the sport for 15 years, and she and members of her family have been on the Ski Broncs team in Rockford for six years.

Alsup’s son, now 3, was on water skis at 18 months old, she said.

Guinness World Records had many people on hand for the event, from judges to a safety crew. Their presence, along with the effort leading up to the event, “created a lot of jitters” for Alsup and fellow skiers from around the world.

“It felt so surreal to break a record on first try, to ski with the best of the best,” she said.

Guinness is in the process of approving the record, she said.

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