Bringing Back Tradition in Santa Monica

(Santa Monica, Calif.) Hundreds of competitors and thousands of spectators gathered Sunday to honor paddleboarding’s past and present at the Santa Monica Pier Paddle Race and Ocean Festival.

The event, sponsored by Honolua Surf Co, was part of the World Paddle Association’s championship qualifying series and featured some of the top paddlers in the country. The elite class paddlers raced on a 5.5 mile course which was won overall by Dialy Ndiaye with a time of 54:12 in the unlimited class. Lifeguard and prone paddler Anthony Vela was first overall at 54:31 and Candice Appleby was the fastest woman, winning the women’s elite prone paddle with a time of one hour four minutes and twenty seconds. SUP fans are used to seeing both Appleby and Vela race standup–which they did for the surf relay.

“The (prone) paddleboarding history around the Santa Monica Pier is legendary,” says Honolua Brand Director Pat Fraley. “We want to reinstate that and get (the tradition) back to the way it was. There was a place on the pier for housing boards as part of a club. Standup is bringing back that social aspect. We see little regional standup clubs sprouting up again and a future where these little regional clubs compete against each other. Our company is all about supporting the traditions of these sports and of the waterman lifestyle.”

Paddlers in this year’s race ranged in age from 9-years-old to those well into their seventies. Also present were a number of families with multiple generations who raced together. Santa Barbara’s Matt Becker was the top finisher in the 14-foot class and Antoinette Cocco won the women’s 12’6″ (see results below).

“They were fantastic water races and a wonderful celebration of Santa Monica’s formative place in the evolution of paddleboarding, surfing and ocean lifesaving,” said Joel Brand, event director. “And it’s only going to keep getting better next year.”

The Pier Paddle was a benefit for Santa Monica-based Heal the Bay and its public marine education facility, the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. Heal the Bay will receive a portion of net proceeds from the event.

Vela, ahead of the pack.
Vela, ahead of the pack.

“Bringing paddle sports back to the Santa Monica Bay and the Pier is a wonderful measure of Heal the Bay’s 25-plus years of work to improve water quality,” said Randi Parent, public outreach specialist at Heal the Bay’s Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. “It’s gratifying that the paddle sports community has come together to support a cleaner, healthier bay for the benefit of us all, and particularly for the marine life.”

Release courtesy Santa Monica Paddleboard Race and Ocean Festival. Photos – Top Stefan Paltera, bottom two, Eric Mehlberg.

SUMMARY OF RESULTS — LONG COURSE
Courtesy Pierpaddle.com

Division 1 – SUP – Women’s – 12’6 & Under
ANTOINETTE COCCO 101 1:07:18
JANELLE NERISON 153 1:16:51
GRETTA KWESI 152 1:21:58
ALLEANNA CLARK 151

Division 2 – SUP – Women’s – 12’6 & Under – 40 & Over
TERRI PLUNKETT 201 1:09:29
MANYA CLARK 251 1:14:55
TOMMY SWANCEMP 554

Division 3 – SUP – Men’s – Unlimited
DIALY NDIAYE 351 0:54:12
RICHARD VAN DUEN 301 1:19:35

Division 4 – SUP – Men’s – 14′ – 17 to 39
MATT BECKER 455 0:55:52
CHANCE FIELDER 401 0:57:57
KEVIN NERISON 456 0:58:18
BRIAN HAAG 453 0:59:19
MIKE VAUGHAN 452 1:01:29
BILLY BROWN 402 1:04:50
ANDREW SOLMSSEN 451 1:08:22
BRYAN BAVER 454 1:10:07
REEVE COLLINS 457 1:21:57

Division 5 – SUP – Men’s – 14′ – 40 to 49
JIM TERRELL 502 0:55:54
JAY BUTKI 501 1:01:09
TOM SWANECAMP 554 1:04:38
MACE CAMHE 552 1:06:55
BARKLIE GRIGGS 553 1:08:28
KURT SIMPSON 551 1:14:13

Division 6 – SUP – Men’s – 14′ – 50 & Over

GENE “TARZAN” SMITH 651 1:02:19
JOHN GOODMAN 601 1:03:07
MARK ANDREWS 605 1:04:18
JOE BARK 604 1:06:35
FRANK PERNA 602 1:20:55

Division 7 – SUP – Men’s – 12’6 & Under – 17 to 39

MIKE MURPHY 704 1:00:35
DAVID BOEHNE 701 1:00:36
TUCKER INGALLS 753 1:03:46
BRANDON RAMBO 702 1:04:22
BRYAN TYSKA 752 1:09:01
BRANDON JENNER 754 1:12:26
NICHOLAS D’ANGELO 751 1:15:24
NICK SHEEL 703 1:17:45

Division 8 – SUP – Men’s – 12’6 & Under – 40 & Over

JOE ROWAN 859 0:58:57
PAUL ZACHARIAS 802 1:02:12
KARL RING 805 1:02:34
BRAD RAMBO 806 1:05:17
ALLEN BROSTOWICZ 801 1:10:25
JEFF SWEET 857 1:10:26
GERRY WALLFESH 853 1:10:27
JOHN CLARK 856 1:11:22
MICHAEL BROWN 854 1:12:58
TONY STEARNS 852 1:13:13
SCOTT COHEN 862 1:15:24
DOUG DEARTH 860 1:16:17
CLIFF SIMON 858 1:17:20
JERRY MEADOR 851 1:18:50
GEOFF SHOTZ 863 1:21:14
FRITZ HEINZLE 861 1:25:50
DANN SHUBIN 804 1:33:52
NICO VILGIATE 855 1:40:15
TODD CARANTO 803

Division 9 – SUP – Men’s – SUP Surfboard (Up to 12’2)

BRANDON BLAKE 951 1:09:07
BRENDAN BAKER 952 1:10:32
JAKE WINEBAUM 956 1:11:03
TIM SANFORD 955 1:12:52
MARK McCARTHY 903 1:13:34
MIKE McELVANEY 902 1:16:44
JIM OLESON 954 1:21:41
PHILLIP BUDOWANEC 957 1:23:41
JOHN HEALY 901 1:27:07
BRYAN McMAHON 953

For complete results go to Pierpaddle.com