Brother-Sister Duo Take Wakeboarding World by Storm - NBC Connecticut

Brother-Sister Duo Take Wakeboarding World by Storm



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    Tori and Paulie Koch hope to be champion wakeboarders.

    Tori and Paulie Koch might seem like normal teens, but they're spending their summer doing something extraordinary.

    The Koch kids are two of America's premier amateur wakeboarders and are working on the finishing touches of what they hope will be flawless runs at the 2010 World Wakeboard Association Word Championship next week, the Greenwich Time reports.

    Koch has become a recognized name in wakeboarding circles across the country, thanks to the efforts of the brother-sister duo from Old Greenwich.

    Tori, 16, is the reigning Junior Women's division national champion. She claimed the 2010 crown with a flawless finals run last month in Reno, Nevada.

    "I was working so hard to get to this point," Tori tells the paper. "To win a national championship this year, it was amazing."

    The victory had extra special meaning for Tori, who was less than two years removed from reconstructive knee surgery to fix a torn ACL. It was Koch's first competition back since injuring her left knee, a familiar place for a girl who has been competing since the age of 5.

    Tori's brother Paulie, 13 and a former national champ, finished third in the boys division and received a check for the PCM Amateur Best Trick -- a professional level KGB.

    Paulie's rise through the ranks of wakeboarding has caught the eyes of many, including Wakeboarding Magazine, which dubbed Koch a "future pro" and posted video of him at The Projects Camp in Orlando on its Web site.

    "That is such a great feeling. `Future pro,' that's just a big compliment," he tells the Greenwich Time. "It was pretty exciting when I heard about that."

    Wakeboarding Magazine isn't the only outlet that's taken notice of the two Koch teens.

    The Disney channel has featured the Koch clan in a sports short segment titled "Getcha Head in the Game," which searches out young athletes and films them practicing and training to capture their passion for their individual sports.

    The segment, which started airing in November, also features Tori and Paulie's younger sisters, Gabriella and Moxie.

    With the world championships fast approaching, the family is trying to focus less on exposure and more on the challenges ahead, including facing off against the world's best, most notably Australia.

    "The Australians are really good," Paulie said. "You know you have to have some really good tricks to beat them, and right now I think I can." Tori will no doubt have a few tricks up her sleeve as well, "I'd like to have one or two more tricks. I've been striving for consistency," she said.

    The brother and sister will take on the competition Aug. 19 to 22 in Orlando, Florida..

    Getcha Head In the Game from PAUL KOCH on Vimeo.