Without question, there's nothing more impressive than a monster slalom spray. No one on shore really notices impeccable rhythm, good handle control or a super-strong lean - the power carve is the mark by which all recreational slalom skiers are judged.
Methods of cranking a big one have varied over the years, but with today's ski technology, everyone can do it. It can be accomplished very easily with only a couple of things to remember.
You will probably have more success if you concentrate on your good-side turn, meaning turning to the right for right-foot-forward skiers and to the left for left-foot-forward. First, as you approach the turn, you must be riding your ski in a neutral position - weight evenly distributed over both feet and with your upper body nice and straight.
Next, as you get into the turning zone, start to lean to the inside of the turn. (Make sure that your lean is not back over the tail of the ski.) This part of the turn and the direction of your lean is most important to establishing a good base for that "water wall."
Now comes the fun part. As your ski begins to roll on its inside edge and arc back toward the wakes, get set to push out with your legs. Don't jump the gun; let the ski roll away so you're leaning in to the side a long way before you start to extend out with your legs.
When you do push, use both legs evenly and remember, the harder you push and finish the turn, the more vertical your spray will be. At the same time, you must also pull the handle into your stomach. Keep it nice and low, just above your waist. This will give you some cushion when the rope tightens up and puts you into the next phase, the hookup.
New Zealand slalom champion and record holder Steve Cockeram is one of only 11 men to complete the 39-1/2 pass in a record tournament. He is sponsored by KD, Wet Tech and PowerBar.