What's In a Number?

posted Mar 16, 2016, 10:42 PM by Gary Burtka   [ updated Mar 16, 2016, 10:58 PM ]

Folks are often curious about the number behind a racer or athlete, knowing that for most racers their number typically has some significance. A birthday, favorite number, lucky number, or a racer that they were a fan of; the reasons for why someone chooses a certain number can range far and wide. In my 20-plus year career racing jet skis, I have used only 3 numbers. 

995 - Was the first number that I selected in Wyandotte in 1993. I was instructed to select a 3-digit number. In those days all Top 50 numbers were for earned rankings. 51-999 were otherwise based on first come, first served. I chose 995 because I was set to graduate high school in 1995, so 995 it was. I ran #995 from 1993 - 1997 & 2006 on the race course.

13 - After a long hiatus from racing ( except for Sport in 2006 ), In 2009 I came back out in Vintage running the number 13 in honor of my Grandfather, after his passing; his lucky number was 13. By 2009 two-digit numbers were no longer based on ranking so I was able to claim it. I ran #13 from 2009 - 2012.

93 - Going into the 2013 season, I decided I wanted my number to identify more with my personal brand. Being a bit of an old schooler, I never felt quite right with an unearned top 50 number (feeling it improperly represented me - either positively or negatively) and came out with 93. 1993 was the year I first started racing, and has forever changed my life. I have been running #93 since 2013 and have no plans to change that. 

1st World Championship

posted Jan 10, 2016, 8:47 PM by Gary Burtka   [ updated Jan 10, 2016, 9:52 PM ]

This season I attended the first ProWatercross World Championship's in Naples, Florida in September of 2015. The site and host hotel were
amazing. We had CBS on site filming all week. On Throwback Thursday I became the 2015 ProWatercross X-2 World Champion, then on Friday kicked off a 3-day Pro freestyle contest on my Backie Chan! I finished 5th in Freestyle and look forward to the ProWatercross 2016 World Championships!


Burtka Debuts The Chan in Daytona

posted Feb 19, 2015, 7:28 PM by Gary Burtka   [ updated Feb 20, 2015, 4:52 PM ]

Gary Burtka Backie Flip  

After more than 8 months in the works, I finally debuted on my new Backie Chan hull at the 2015 Daytona Freeride. This event was a jam packed weekend that allowed me to ride the Backies in both surf and flat water. After waiting months to test the flipping and barrel rolling capabilities, it was amazing! The hulls performed outstanding! 

YouTube Video

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