Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 10

Joey Morneault | 2nd time’s a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018

The cherry popper always has some great bails and crashes; it’s one of my favorite things about the Daytona Freeride

By: Joey Morneault

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 6

Daytona Beach, FL

The 2018 Daytona Freeride did not disappoint. Last year was my first time attending this event after having the time of my life I knew I had to head back for 2018. This year Ben, one of my local riding buddies, tagged along for the adventure. We caught a super late flight from Las Vegas, NV to Orlando, FL. The flight wasn’t the best but we didn’t care because we were headed to Daytona!

When we landed we were greeted by Sean Starr who was riding with us from Orlando to Daytona, so we all hopped in the rental car and hauled ass to the beach. After a quick pit stop at IHOP we were on the beach. The weather and surf was not as great as last year, but that didn’t slow us down a bit. On the beach I met up with some East Coast buddies like Carter Brackett, Jeff (Steve) Bolte, and others. After wondering around a bit more I managed to find some West Coast fiends like Michelle Thompson, Jason Schriner, and more. It’s really cool that people come from all over the world for the Daytona Freeride, I even met up with my buddy Stephen Foot who traveled all the way from the UK.

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 8

Ronny Mac and Joey partying!

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 3

Michelle (Skat-Trak) and Joey at the club

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018

Dinner with friends

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 1

What happens in Daytona stays in Daytona

The Cherry Popper

Throughout the weekend I shared tons of laughs and made lots of memories with my friends. One of my favorite parts of the weekend was watching the cherry popper contest. This contest is where riders who haven’t flipped before attempt for their first flip. The cherry popper always has some great bails and crashes; it’s one of my favorite things about the Daytona Freeride. The awards and ski display at the freeride was entertaining as always.

After the awards party, we all headed across the street to the club where all the craziness happened. Every night of the weekend we closed out the club and wandered to the pizza shop across the street. The pizza shop seems to be part of the Daytona experience because we end up there every night. On top of eating way too much pizza I found myself at Steve’s Diner for breakfast a few times too. It’s safe to say I ate too much food during my trip.

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 4
Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 2
Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 1


Sunday afternoon came around and we decided to go a little sightseeing. Ben and I hopped in the rental and went to see what else Daytona has to offer. We checked out the Daytona International Speedway along with some smaller local attractions. Towards the end of our journey we started checking out every pond, river, or other body of water that we could find on the quest to see an alligator. Sadly, no gators were spotted during our adventure.

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 9

Joey and NASCAR

Joey Morneault | 2nd time's a charm for the Daytona Freeride 2018 5

Where the gators at?

After our gatorless adventure we grabbed some dinner and went to bed early. This year was a short trip. I woke up at 2am, drove to the airport, flew to Las Vegas, and went straight to work. Needless to say, that Monday was a very long day. The Daytona Freeride is an event not to be missed. The laughs, memories, and new friends are worth the journey. I can’t wait for the 2019 Daytona Freeride!

Joey Morneault | Festival of Freeride (FOF) and Australia Trip

Joey Morneault | Festival of Freeride (FOF) and Australia Trip

A few years ago I met a Kiwi named Roger down at one of the local Jet Ski shops in Las Vegas.

Joey NZ

Joey (Left) and the Kiwi Roger (Right).

Over the past few years we ended up being pretty good friends and we traveled to some events together. Roger always told me that I needed to go down to New Zealand to come ride. For a few years I just laughed about it and figured I wouldn’t be able to make it happen. I recently went through a few life changes and decided to say “Screw it, I’m going on an adventure”.

Joey NZ 2

Joey NZ 1

I decided to go down to New Zealand during their biggest free ride event called the Festival of Free ride (FOF). After looking at flights I discovered that traveling to Australia wouldn’t cost too much more and just like that I had some plane tickets for an adventure of a life time. I didn’t really have any plans for the trip. The goal was to attend the FOF and just have fun. Everything else I just figured out during the trip.

Joey NZ 3

I was a bit nervous and a bit hesitant going into this trip. This was my first big international trip and I had a 24 hour travel period for me to make my way down under. It took a total of 3 flights to make it down to Auckland and I was pretty out of it by the time I arrived. Once I survived customs I met up with Roger and we headed to get some food. Driving on the other side of the road was the weirdest feeling. What was even more weird was the pizza selection. For dinner we had a banana and salmon pizza along with a caper and onion pizza. Both pizzas were surprisingly good and I would choose the banana pizza over pineapple any day of the week.

After grabbing some dinner I got to meet John Wright who was one of the race promoters for the area. It was cool to see how they hold jet ski races on the other side of the world. John also gave me a place to stay for a few nights during my trip which I was very grateful for. After getting a good nights sleep Roger and I grabbed some breakfast and headed to the shop so we can prep the skis for our riding trip. At breakfast I got to experience a meat pie and it was life changing. I wish we had meat pies in the United States.

Joey NZ 5

Joey NZ 8

After prepping the skis we headed just outside of Auckland to ride at a river called Les Batkin Reserve. While riding the scenery reminded me of Oregon lots of trees and grass everywhere. It felt awesome to ride a ski without a wet suit. Going from winter to summer was the best idea that I ever had. After a quick ride at the lake we loaded up the skis and headed off to Tauranga. Tauranga had a beautiful harbor and an amazing surf setup. We launched at the harbor, rode around the island, and played in the surf for a few hours. The surf wasn’t super powerful, but it was clean and playful. I had a blast riding Roger’s Super Jet out there.
After our surf session I ate dinner with everyone that rode surf with us. Dinner was an interesting experience. We went to a burger place and a handful of people in the restaurant didn’t have shoes on. I asked Linda Thompson if this was normal and she confirmed that it was normal. I still think no shoes in a restaurant is one of the craziest things ever. After grabbing dinner Roger and I headed to Gareth Wing’s house where we stayed for the night.

Joey NZ 7

The next morning Roger and I loaded up and headed back to Auckland. On our way to Auckland we made a quick stop to repair Paula Power’s steering cable.She was in the process of getting her super jet ready for the FOF and was ready to make a comeback.

 After a long day of traveling Roger and I arrived at our motel in Waiuku. All of the riders at the motel were having a few drinks and talking about jet skis. I also met up with Mark and Abraham at the motel. After a few hours of socializing it was time for bed so we could ride the next day.

Joey NZ 9
We were up bright and early so we could head down to the beach. The Kariotahi beach was amazing because it had black sand. At the event registration I ran into Tayne and Terry Lemon. I haven’t seen the Lemons since World Finals back in the USA. After registering I rode for a bit in the surf. The surf at the FOF was much more powerful than what I rode in Tauranga. The surf was actually big enough for me to do a few flips and rolls. It was first flips and rolls that I did since I totaled my surf ski. It really made me miss surf riding.
Joey NZ 11 Joey NZ 12

The second day of the FOF was amazing. The surf cleaned up and the weather was perfect. I couldn’t ask for a better day of surf riding. The FOF had some pretty good contests and my favorite was the Wave Blaster biggest air contest. It was nothing but carnage. Paulie Paul tried to do a backflip and bailed and Mike Hay bailed off of his ski and absolutely wrecked it. After the carnage was over we went to the awards ceremony. The ceremony had a massive amount of raffle prizes and quite a few awards to give out. Some of the awards were comical; my favorite award was the most injured award which the winner was given a carbon fiber toilet seat. The awards ceremony turned into an after party that was a pretty good time.
Joey NZ 4The following day Roger and I headed back to Auckland for to recover from the few days of riding. We met up with John and his wife for nice dinner overlooking the harbor in Auckland. This was probably one of the more relaxing parts of the trip.

The next day we were headed off to Mangawhai for some more surf action. The surf here was awesome and the water was bright blue. New Zealand seemed to have a little bit of everything when it comes to surf riding. After our surf session we went back to the river to flush the skis out. At the river we met up with Shane King, Pete Dimoline, and a few others. Once the skis were flushed out it was time to pack my bags and get ready for Australia.

I looked out my window on the plan as we were about to land in the Gold Coast and I really liked what I saw. Nothing but beautiful water and white sand beaches. As soon as I landed my buddy Justin Belczowski picked me up and we headed straight to Surfers Paradise. The beach down there was amazing and the weather was perfect. Justin showed me around the beaches and waterways while we headed over to Worx Racing. On my trip I made it a point to meet up with people that I have seen over in the States. I usually catch up with the boys at Worx racing during the IJSBA World Finals. After my visit at Worx we headed back to Justin’s house for dinner. After dinner we went down to park and I got to meet some other Joeys. It was pretty crazy to see kangaroos just hanging out everywhere at sunset.

Joey NZ 13

The following day Justin had to work, but he was nice enough to give me the keys to his truck. So I hit the road and went straight to the beach for a nice breakfast while looking at the ocean. After breakfast I walked the beach for a bit and then it was off to Springbrook National Park. I played tourist for a day, which was nice for a change. I drove around and saw some breathtaking views. After a day of exploring I headed back to meet up with Justin and Naomi for dinner. I enjoyed a very nice dinner with some great friends that day. After dinner we checked out some of the nightly entertainment that the Gold Coast had to offer. While walking around Justin and I found the iconic Meter Maids and we decided to get a photo with them. Seeing the Meter Maids really reminded me of Freemont Street in downtown Las Vegas. There were a handful of other street performers, but the Meter Maids were my favorite.

Joey NZ 15Joey NZ 14The next morning Justin showed me around for a bit. We ate breakfast on the beach in Kirra. Kirra was absolutely amazing. It looked like something that you would see on a post card or in a travel brochure. I highly recommend stopping there if you are in the area. After eating at Kirra we headed to Jet Pilot Headquarters to meet up with some of my sponsors. Getting a behind the scenes tour of JP was really cool. I got to see all of the new gear coming out for the next season. Jet Pilot was even nice enough to let me go on a bit of a shopping spree. I came home with tons of new gear.

After my stop at JP we went down the road to Australian Jet Ski Parts so I could catch up with some of the guy that I’ve met in the states. It was cool to see how AJSP operated.

For the remainder of my Australian experience I explored the waterways on a boat, checked out some street fairs, and ate some amazing food. My last stop was in Brisbane where I stayed with my friend Tim O’Neil. I have known Tim for a few years after meeting him in the states. He was nice enough to accommodate me before I flew out to return home.

Joey NZ 17

Joey NZ 16

Joey NZ 18

Joey NZ 19
Overall my trip far exceeded my expectations. I had an absolute blast and I met some awesome people along the way. Escaping our winter for two weeks was probably the best idea I have ever thought of. I was very fortunate to stay with friends throughout my whole trip so it was very affordable. I was very nervous to go on my first international trip and now I want to do an international trip every year. I recommend traveling to everyone. There is a whole world out there, you just need to go explore it.





Now in its fifth year, the 2017 Yamaha New Zealand Festival of Freeride brings together the country’s best ‘free riders’ along with international participants, including 7 x World Champion Pierre Maixent from France along with two U.S. Liquid Militia riders Mark Gomez and Joey Morneault.
Event Location: The iconic west coast Karioitahi Beach, 10mins west of Waiuku

Thanks to Yamaha Marine NZ for putting out this clip of the event.

Joey Morneault first time attending the Daytona Freeride 2017 5

Joey Morneault first time attending the Daytona Freeride 2017

I will go back as long as I’m still riding skis. The Daytona Freeride will not disappoint.

This was my first year attending the Daytona Freeride and my first time attending an East Coast event. I had an absolute blast and I recommend that everyone goes to this event. I didn’t know what to expect on the other side of the country, so I packed my bags and caught an overnight flight hoping for the best. I arrived at the Daytona airport around noon and walked straight to the baggage claim. I grabbed my bag and looked to my right and spotted a Liquid Militia shirt.

I immediately walked over to the guy wearing the shirt and introduced myself. After meeting Mark Walker and talking for a few minutes he offered me a ride to the event in his rental car. I was STOKED to be in Daytona for only 5 minutes and I already organized a free ride to the event. On the way to the event I was chatting with one of the other guys in the car and it turns out that he lives only a few houses over from my cousin in Philadelphia, PA. Sometimes I can’t believe how small of a world it is.

Baggage check

Baggage check

Welcome Skis

Welcome Skis

Daytona Bound!!

Daytona Bound!!

We arrived at the host hotel after a quick lunch and shopping adventure. The weather was absolutely perfect I was able to wear shorts and sandals all weekend. After checking in, I met up with Nicholas Foederer to grab my rider pass which is a a necessity if you want to ride. The next step was to walk the beach to see if I could bum a ride on a ski. A few minutes later I got to take Michael Grasso’s super jet for a rip. The surf conditions were pretty fun and it was pretty warm outside. I got away with only wearing my wet suit bottoms, it was a nice change from the West Coast surf. After a nice riding session I met up with Mark and his friends for dinner.

The View from the hotel deck

The View from the hotel deck

Joey- getting in some riding time.

Joey- getting in some riding time.

I basically went out to dinner with a random group of people that I haven’t met before. Everyone was super nice and welcoming, I was immediately treated like part of their riding crew. I stayed up pretty late waiting for my roommate (Cookie Monster) to arrive, she ended up missing her flight and arrived much later than expected. Luckily I killed the time by talking about jet skis with Buck, Bryan, Cameron and others down at the hotel bar. We probably could have talked till the sun came up, but I eventually called it a night and crashed out.

The Takeover!!

The Takeover!!

New Friends!!

New Friends!!

The next morning I woke up, grabbed breakfast, put on my sandals, and hit the beach. The beach was packed with awesome people and amazing skis. While walking down the beach I managed to hang out at the Skat-Trak booth with Michelle and Tom (Hot Products) for a bit. Michelle hooked me up with a sweet Skat-Trak hat and Tom gave me a Hot Products shirt for hanging out with them. They were giving out hats and shirts to tons of people that stopped by the booth. After hanging out at the booth for a bit I grabbed some lunch and walked the beach again. I spent countless hours meeting new people and enjoying the amazing weather. Towards the end of the day I suited up to ride some of my teammates skis. Mark Gomez and Brandon Lawlor were nice enough to let me take their skis for a ride in the beautiful Florida surf. While riding I witnessed Mark Gomez to be the first person to back flip a jet surf motorized surf board. It was crazy that guy can do anything LOL…

After some riding I went out to dinner with the same group from the night before. We decided to stay out a bit later and hit the club. We had a blast at the club that was conveniently located across the street from the hotel. On our way home we found a 24 hour pizza parlor, so we grabbed a quick snack before bed.

Joey suited up!

Joey suited up!

The following morning I was a bit sleep deprived, but it was totally worth it. I grabbed some breakfast and went down to the beach to watch the surf style event. My buddy Sean Starr was crushing it and ended up taking home first place! He was on fire all weekend. After watching Sean ride I got to experience the Cherry Popper event. The Cherry Popper is a contest for people to stick their first back flip. This event was priceless. There were so many awesome attempts and bails. I could have watched it all day. Eventually all of the contestants landed their flips. After the Cherry Popper I suited up and took Sean Starr’s ski for a ride. While riding his ski I witnessed Sean back flip one of the jet surf boards. I think Sean is determined to catch up to Mark’s accomplishments and he’s doing a great job of it. After my first ride I took a break and then went out again on Randy Lawlor’s ski. Randy’s ski was a monster with his massive engine. It wore me out pretty fast so I only had a short ride.

After the events closed down we got cleaned up and went to the Kona Tiki Bar for dinner. The bar was basically taken over by jet ski riders, it was such a cool experience to look around and see nothing but awesome people that share the same interest. After dinner we went back to the club and got a bit out of control. We had the times of our lives and ended up closing out the place. Immediately after the club we went back to the pizza shop for a late night snack. I swear the guy at the pizza place knew my name by the end of the weekend, we probably spent way too much time there.

The last day was the hardest part of the trip. Heading home from awesome events is always a bummer. After packing my bags I hopped in the car with Melissa and Michelle. We ate at a place called Steve’s diner. This diner was recommended to us by Jeff (Steve) Bolte. This diner had the best homemade food. Mark, Kaley, Andrew, Melissa, Michelle, Jeff, and I all talked about the future events that we plan to attend while we were eating. We all decided to come back to Daytona for 2018. This event was absolutely worth traveling for. It was such a nice break from the cold Las Vegas weather. I highly suggest this event to everyone. I will go back as long as I’m still riding skis. Daytona will not disappoint.

Jeff (Steve) Bolte

Jeff (Steve) Bolte

Melissa, Joey, Kaley, Mark, Michelle, Jeff and Andrew

Melissa, Joey, Kaley, Mark, Michelle, Jeff and Andrew

Joey Morneault | Liquid Militia Team Rider Profile

Joey Morneault - Double Trouble

Joey Morneault |Pahrump, NV – Jamming Literally

The race was out in Pahrump, NV and the track was much different than your normal race course. Instead of buoys the track has race wall’s and ramp jumps.

Joey Morneault |Pahrump, NV - Jamming Literally

This year’s race season has been a bit slow for me due to ski complications, but I knew I had to throw something together for the 2016 Super Area World Cup Qualifier. The race was out in Pahrump, NV and the track was much different than your normal race course. Instead of buoys the track has race wall and ramp jumps.

Since I have been without a ski for most of the year I had to borrow a ride. I entered the stock ski class on Trevor Ritchie’s 650 Yamaha Super Jet and I entered Pro Freestyle on my Yamaha Wave Jammer. I ended up taking a 5th on the mighty square nose Super Jet and a 1st place on the Wave Jammer. It was quite a battle going against faster skis in the stock class. Every moto I was dead last out of the start, I had to work my way up through the pack to gain positions. Overall I had a great time in the stock class.

650 Yamaha Super Jet Racing


Joey Morneault hitting the ramp on the wave jammer

Joey Morneault hitting the ramp

I’d say the Wave Jammer was the crowd favorite over the weekend. Everybody just loves how goofy it looks. Just before the races started I decided to enter the sport spec on the Jammer just to see how I would do. Sadly the 500cc engine couldn’t hang with the competition so I decided to have fun with it. In my motos I was doing no handers and supermans on the ramp jumps. The freestyle exhibition is where the Wave Jammer really shines, it allowed me to put on a good show for the crowd. During my freestyle run I did a handful of tricks off the ramp jumps including 180’s, supermans, and no handers. My finishing trick was a big fountain. I wanted to make it look good so I kept the fountain going till my engine stalled. Sadly I almost sunk my ski in the process, but it was worth it.

Joey Morneault No hands while racing

Joey Morneault boosting off the ramp

Joey Morneault super man

Joey Morneault super man

Joey Morneault-No Hands

Joey Morneault-No Hands

Overall I had a great time out in Pahrump, NV and I’m looking forward to the next event on August 27th. I plan to finish up the year by attending the Blowsion Surf Slam and the Pismo Freeride. I had some great support over the weekend from my Liquid Militia teammates and from my coworkers who decided to attend the race. It was nothing but smiles all weekend. Click Here to see Joey’s LM Rider Page.

Joey Morneault-180's

Joey Morneault-180’s

Joey Morneault - Freestyle Freddy

Joey Morneault – Freestyle Freddy



This Pismo trip was a little bit different than what I usually expect. Every trip I come home pumped with lots of good memories to reflect on. This trip I came home with none of those feelings. This trip I came home bummed and with an empty spot on my trailer.

Short one ski | Pismo

Short one ski | Pismo

The trip started like any other Pismo freeride trip. We headed out Thursday night and came home a few days later. The conditions on Friday were pretty nice. I had a great time surfing the waves and hanging out with everyone, it’s always good to catch up with friends. Saturday the waves were much larger and I was able to get my SuperJet upside down for some awesome pictures. I kept pushing it and wanted more. Nothing but smiles.

Joey and his girlfriend Brandi

It all started out good…

Joey's pre-disaster set up

Joey’s pre-disaster set up

Sunday was a little different, usually I don’t ride on Sunday because we have to head home. This trip we decided to stay an extra day and head home first thing Monday morning. I was stoked to have one more day of progression for the trip. I had a good riding session in the morning and then relaxed for a bit. Then I enjoyed some cake by the ocean (Thanks Evan Kilkus).

Now it was time for an afternoon of riding. I suited up and started sending it, this was the first trip that I was really trying to get flips dialed in. I was in the back playing in the big sets with everyone. I was getting tired and I decided it was time to go for one last flip before I head in. Well it turns out that saying ‘just one more’ will burn you every time.

Road Trips to and from

Road Trips to and from

Welcome To The Team - Joey Mourneult

Joey Backflippin’ @ 2016 Pismo Springbreak Freeride

Anthony Nelson - Jamming

Anthony Nelson – Jamming

I landed the flip but then bobbled and fell over. I scrambled to get my lanyard back in. As I was going to plug my lanyard in I look over my shoulder and see at 10’+ wave right behind me, I knew it was going to be ugly. At this point all I could do is hold on as tight as possible and hope I don’t get separated. That wave was a beast. The ski was instantly ripped out of my hands and I got tumbled like a rag doll. When I finally surfaced I searched for my ski, I saw that it was about 50ft from me towards shore and floating upside down. I immediately started swimming for the ski, luckily my buddy Anthony Nelson swooped in (on the Wave Jammer) and brought me back to my ski. I quickly noticed that not many people were riding at the time, I guess everyone had gone in. So it was basically just me, my swamped ski, and the ocean.

When I up righted the ski I knew there was no way it would start, it was completely swamped. I knew the only way to get it back in would be lay in the tray and hope the waves push me in. My hopes were immediately crushed as another massive wave broke right on top of me and ripped the ski out of my hands again. Luckily after this tumble I could get back to my ski quickly. At this point I noticed that it had taken on lots of water and the nose was starting to go under. I got on the tray and hoped that the bilge pumps could clear it out and I could safely get back to shore.

The ocean decided it had a different plan, I just kept getting hammered with wave after wave. The nose of my SuperJet started to go under and the tail of it started to bob. As the ski was bobbing the current swept me out past the back set.  As I was on my way out to sea, my buddy Jake Biland found me and headed to shore for a tow rope.  Not long after Jake left, my ski slowly began to go deeper and deeper underwater.

At this point my ski was under the surface and I was the only thing keeping it from going to the bottom. My JetPilot life vest does a great job of floating me, but it’s not really designed to keep a ski afloat. The swells in the ocean were massive, but my ski seemed to stay at a constant level. As a swell would come my ski would pull me under water for a few seconds, when the swell left I could catch a breath of air. I kept holding my breath and going under with my ski as long as I could.

This was where I made one of the toughest decisions of my life, I finally had to let my ski go. (It felt like that scene in the Titanic where Rose lets go of Jack and he slowly sinks to the bottom of the ocean) I watched my ski slowly disappear as it went down in the ocean. I will never forget that moment as long as I live.

Now I was just floating in the middle of the ocean all alone. I was hanging out for quite some time until I saw Jake pop up over a wave. I could tell he was looking for me, but couldn’t see me. I waving my arms so he could easily spot me, he finally noticed me and rode over. I was very relieved to know I would finally be on shore soon.

Happy to be alive

Happy to be alive | Joey Morneault

I grabbed on to Jake and he began to tow me back in. The ride was a bit smoky from the exhaust, but it was still better than swimming. Before we got to the break I realized that I had to go into the hellhole that I just got out of. Since I was being towed there was no way we could outrun the waves. I held on the Jake as long as I could. When a massive wave came up I had to let go and get tumbled while Jake circled back around to get me. We probably did this 4 or 5 times before we finally made it to shore.

I’ve never been so happy to be back on land. As I slowly walked up the beach everyone stared at me with a puzzled look. They soon realized that my ski was gone. I slowly walked back to the truck and sat down to reflect on what just happened. Riding the surf is like playing with fire, eventually you will get burned. Sadly that Sunday I got burned badly.

After sitting for a moment I flagged down a ranger to report that my ski had been sunk. They took a quick note and said to keep an eye out for it. I was told to fill out a missing vehicle report the following day if it hadn’t shown up yet. After talking to the ranger I walked up to the Liquid Militia tent for some food (Thanks Kyla). We finally started packing up and I noticed a big pile of trash bags on the beach from inconsiderate people that attended the freeride. I piled as much trash as I could on the empty spot on my trailer to take to the dumpster. I thought if I made peace with the ocean it might give my ski back unharmed. Once we made it back to the hotel we had a quick hot tub session and then it was off to bed.

The next morning we checked out of the room and hit the beach. I drove up and down the entire beach hoping that I would spot my ski. Sadly we didn’t see anything. At this point I knew I needed to fill out an official missing vehicle report. I went to the ranger station, filled out the report, and headed home empty handed. The whole drive home I kept looking in my mirror hoping to see my ski, but all I saw were some empty bunks. I got home, unpacked, and prepared for work the next day.

As the week went on reality finally set in and I was super bummed that my ski was gone and I may never see it again. I always had hope of it washing up, but as the weekend approached I began to loose hope.  The following weekend I was working at my shop and all I kept doing was staring at my empty stand that used to hold a SuperJet. I felt like I had lost a family member, that ski helped me achieve all of my accomplishments throughout my jet ski career. It was one of a kind and could never be replaced.

Almost exactly a week later (Sunday afternoon) I received a phone call form a blocked number, I answered the phone to hear that a Pismo park ranger was on the other side. He said that my ski was found washed up on the beach and that a towing company picked it up and had it at impound. I immediately called the towing company to find out the details. They couldn’t tell me much since it was the weekend, I had to call back in the morning to figure out what’s going on. I was stoked that my ski had returned. Now I just needed to figure out how to get the ski back.

Ranger Rescue

Ranger Rescue

Motor Carnage | Got Sand

Motor Carnage | Got Sand

First look at the damage

First look at the damage

The following morning I called the towing company and they hit me with some bad news. My tow bill was currently at $580 for getting my ski off the beach and storing it overnight. I was also informed that storage was $100 a day and if I picked it up on the weekend it would be a gate fee of $150 in addition to the current bill. I was really worried that I wouldn’t have the cash to get my ski back. I asked if I could have a friend pick my ski up on my behalf, they said it was fine if they had a note from me.

After calling a few locals I got ahold of Sean Starr who was one of the local freeriders. Sean and I had met at the Grayland Open, but we didn’t really know each other that well. I explained my situation to Sean so he knew what was going on. Before I could even finish my story Sean took the words out of my mouth. He offered to pick up my ski and get it cleaned out for me. Sean also gave me a place to stay when I drove up to grab the ski. Without Sean I would have really been in a bad spot. He did a great job of cleaning the ski and sent me plenty of pictures to help me assess the damage.

Joey, his ski, and Sean Star

Joey, his ski, and Sean Starr | Reunited

Ocean Carnage

Ocean Carnage

1 week in the depths

1 week in the depths

I was stoked to know that my ski was back in good hands, now I just had to finish a long work week before I could be reunited with my ski. Friday morning finally came and I couldn’t wait to hit the road and get my ski. As soon as I got off, Brandi and I got up to Pismo as fast as possible. We arrived at 2:30 am and found that Sean had a bed for us that was ready to go. We crashed out for a few hours and woke up to a nice dog hoping on the bed. I immediately got up and checked out my ski in the daylight. My ski was absolutely hammered, the hull seemed sound, but everything else was pretty trashed. The ocean broke off my bars, steering, and hood. My ski also got a wrecked paint job along with massive amounts of sand and even a bird skull. At this point it was basically a total loss. I was bummed, but I was happy to have my ski back. After assessing the ski we grabbed some breakfast and hit the road back to Las Vegas.


After I got home I could check out my ski to see the extent of the damage. Besides the hull and a few parts I basically have to start from scratch. I’m pretty bummed about the time and effort I had into my ski, because it was all ruined. I’m now trying to figure out where to start with the rebuild, or if I should just start over. Right now the possibilities are endless.

She's a bute

She’s a bute

Joey | Better Days Ahead

Joey | Better Days Ahead

Since my incident many people have asked if I am done with freeride or done riding skis all together. Do you drop a beer and stop drinking forever? Hell no! I will definitely be back. I know my event was very tragic, but it wasn’t bad enough to stop me. I’m sure my SuperJet will live to ride another day, it will just take some time and money to get it back on the water. When I come back I will be pushing harder than ever to make up for lost time. Progression is my drug and I want to keep pushing until I am killing it.


After reflecting on everything I am very grateful for the freeride jet ski community. Without my buddies I may have not gotten my ski back or I may have floated out to sea forever. Our riding community is like nothing else, people went out of their way to help me out and some even put their lives in danger to save me. This is a scenario that I will never forget. If it wasn’t for Jake, Anthony, and Sean I could be much worse off. I may have not been able to write this article.

I’ll see you all this summer, I know there are a lot good time ahead of us on the water!


Welcome To The Team - Joey Mourneult

Welcome To The Team – Joey Morneault

We are proud to Announce Joey Morneault to the Liquid Militia Team

Joey Morneault is a 24 year old young gun out of Boulder City, NV. He is a Amateur Jet Ski Racer and get’s loose in the surf competing in Amateur Freeride.

Welcome To The Team - Joey Morneault 1

Joey Racing – Photo : BeRad

Joey Morneault

Joey Morneault

Joey Morneault Profile Gallery 5

Welcome to the Team

A few questions for Morneault

1. How did you get involved with JetSki’s?

My buddy Tyler asked me one day if I wanted to go ride jet skis after school. At the time, I’ve never ridden any jet ski, let alone a stand up. That day, I went to his house after school and loaded up his spare ski (Kawasaki JS300) we both headed down to Lake Mead and I gave it a shot. It took me 3 days of practice to learn how to turn while standing up. I really enjoyed riding because it was an easy way to stay cooled off during the hot Nevada summer heat. Tyler was nice enough to let me keep the ski for a few weeks until he left for his mission. The following season I bought a Kawasaki Sxi pro and that is when the real addiction started.

2. What was the first ski you competed on?

My first competition ski is my current ski. A 2008 Yamaha Superjet. It’s currently totaled, but it will live to see another day.


Joey’s 2008 Superjet

Welcome To The Team - Joey Morneault 2

Joey’s Superjet after it slept in the surf for a week…



3. Why on earth would you want to be sponsored by Liquid Militia?

A little while after I started riding I heard about Liquid Militia. I soon realized that the Liquid Militia team was made of elite riders. I eventually started meeting some of the team members at different events. All of the riders were really nice people. After my first year of competing I decided I wanted to get on that elite team. After s few years of trying I have finally made it. The LM family is the best, it’s made up of very talented athletes that are super friendly. It’s the true definition of the jet ski family, and I’m now officially part of that family. I’m very stoked to support an awesome brand with great products.

4. What keeps you going to the next event?

The people I meet and hang out with are what keeps me going. We all share the same passion and interests, and it’s always awesome to see new faces. The jet ski community is one of a kind. I’d still go to events if I couldn’t ride, I’d just go for the people.


Nurse Nelson, Michelle from Skat-Trak, Tera Laho, Joey, Dr. Goldsworthy, Keith and Brandi of BeRad Photo (far right)


It’s all about a good time

5. What can help grow these sports?

We could use more exposure to people that are unfamiliar with the sport. Many people don’t even know that stand up jet skis are still made. People that don’t know about the sport don’t realize what you can do on a ski or how friendly the community is. I’ve introduced a few people to the jet ski scene and they absolutely love it. I’ve never met somebody that has regretted owning a ski. We just need some exposure to show how awesome this sport is.

IMG_9561Joey Morneault Profile Gallery 8IMG_5770

6. What’s your favorite current LM item and why?

My current favorite LM item is my new pullover hoodie. The design on it is awesome and it’s super warm and soft. The design that’s on it has been offered in the past, but I waited a few months for the hoodie to come out. It was worth the wait, I’m stoked on my hoodie.

7. What’s the difference between Racing Jet Ski’s and Freeride?

There are many differences, I’d say the main one is the mindset that you have at the event. At races you are very focused because it’s a competition, that you have been training for. A freeride is much more laid back, and you’re just there to hang out and have a good time with your buddies. Even if the freeride has a competition, everyone is still very laid back. Both disciplines are awesome and the people are what make them awesome.

8. What have you learned from Jet Skiing?

I have learned that the jet ski community is the most friendly action sport community out there. Everyone is super friendly and helpful. I’ve never met a jet skier that I did not like. Other sports have egos and rivalries. Jet skiers just have smiles and good times.

9. Where do you want to end up in this sport?

I’m not sure at this time. I’ve already surprised myself with how far I’ve come. I guess if I were to set a high goal it would be to win a world title for racing or win a freeride title on a Yamaha Superjet.

10. Dream ski?

I’ve already got it. My 2008 Yamaha Superjet is all I need. It has a stock 701 in it which is enough power to do flips and barrel rolls. It will also win trophies at the race course. You don’t need an aftermarket hull to be successful in this sport. It almost seems as if people have forgotten that you can accomplish just about anything on a stock ski. I’d rather shred my stock hull to remind them that you can’t buy skill.

Welcome To The Team - Joey Mourneult

Backflip @ 2016 Pismo Springbreak Freeride

Now that you can relate a little better to Joey, we wanted to say a few lines about him from our view. Why we were stoked on adding Joey to the team; he’s an amateur, so he represents the future of this sport, which is huge. Joey is a level headed dude, he is always the same personality no matter the situation (good to have on your side). He does not have the best equipment money can buy, but still rides hard and gives it his all. He interacts with the brand on social media (keeping us pumped). Lastly he likes the lifestyle of the brand and what we represent and wants to be a part of our little chit show.

Joey’s Facebook | Joey’s Instagram

Joey Morneault Team Profile>>