Hawaiians Dominate North Shore Paddle Challenge

Last weekend, the North Shore of Oahu saw some epic racing at the North Shore Paddle Challenge at Turtle Bay Resort. Hawaiians dominated the weekend's events with lots of wins in both the Sprint and Long Distances Races.

In the Sprint Race, Starboard's Zane Schweitzer showed his surfing skills, winning each of his heats throughout the day. 2010 Standup World Tour Champion, Kai Lenny, gave Schweitzer a battle in the first lap, but after cutting the inside line too close, Lenny got held up on the buoy. Schweitzer took advantage of Lenny's snag, increasing his lead and taking the win after a long first day of racing.

C4‘s Mariko Strickland of Honolulu dominated the Sprint Race in the women's 12'6 division, with Rachel Bruntsch (Honolulu) on her heels. In the 14' class, young competitor Halie Harrison (Hawaii) raced to a victory, just ahead of fellow Hawaiian, Laura Birse.

On the second day of racing on Oahu's iconic North Shore, standup paddlers competed in the Long Distance race, a downwind run taking them from Turtle Bay Resort in Kahuku to the historic town of Haleiwa. For 12 miles, competitors raced past the North Shore's legendary surf breaks, vying for the win. Competing on his 12'6, Andrew Logreco (Oahu) took an early lead over the pack of elite racers and maintained his position throughout the race, winning with a 2-minute lead over the Open division. Big Islander, Jerry Bess, won the Open division with the fastest overall time on his 17' Naish, while Tahitian windsurfer Robert Territehau took first in the 14' class.

After competing in a close Sprint race on Saturday, Rachel Bruntsch and Mariko Strickland swapped roles, with Bruntsch taking the Long Distance Race and Strickland finishing close behind. With their first and second finishes in the two days' events, Strickland and Bruntsch were given the shared title of North Shore Paddle Champions.

In the prone division, Hawaii's Kai Hall won both the Sprint and Long Distance races, as well as taking home the overall title of North Shore Paddle Prone Champion. – Shari Coble

For more info: Standupworldseries.com

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