Glen Martin tonight makes his Moomba Masters debut against an international field in the men’s night jump.HIGH-FLYING water-skier Glen Martin will be part of tonight’s Moomba Festival entertainment on the Yarra River in Melbourne.
Nanjing Night Net

While the spectacle of the men’s night jump will capture the attention of crowds, it is serious business for the Warrnambool Water Ski Club member.

Martin had to qualify for the event, which features the top skiers in the world launching into the air and soaring as far forward as possible before making a safe touch-down.

Picture the track and field discipline of long jump, but swap the surface with water, the runners for skis and add a speedboat for momentum.

“It’s an international event,” Martin told The Standard this week.

“It’s one of the biggest tournaments in the world.”

Martin qualified for the men’s night jump after posting distances of 41.7 metres and a personal-best 43 metres at internationally-recognised competitions — including the Australian National Water Ski Championships.

The 23-year-old, who grew up in the sport, has contested the discipline for about three seasons.

After being offered to have a go at jumping at an intraclub event, Martin was hooked.

“It’s the challenge and the adrenalin of flying through the air,” he said.

Martin makes his debut at the Moomba Masters with promising form, having won a silver medal in the over 21 men’s jump in Townsville last year.

The physical education teacher has been training hard at Bridgewater for his big moment this evening.

“I’m very excited,” he said.

“I’ll probably get nervous before the event.

“But I’m just happy to be competing there.”

Each of the five entrants in tonight’s program is allowed three jumps in the opening round.

The top three advance to the second stage, where they will attempt a further two jumps.

One of the skiers will be cut, leaving two to battle in the final.

The finalists have one jump each to secure the title.

Action starts from 7.30pm on the Yarra River.

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