Yes, Team Australia again proved it is the best paddling team in the world, winning its second consecutive ISA World SUP and Paddleboard Championship. But Sean Poynter won one for Old Glory and a tiny US contingency in Peru while everyone back home watched the webcast. Team USA failed to form a full squad for this year’s Worlds and Hawaii has yet to send a team. But that made it all the more sweet for Poynter, who now carries much needed momentum into Brazil, the second stop of the Standup World Tour in April. We caught up with our boy for a quick Q and A following his win for the USA at the ISA WSAPBC
SM: How’d it feel standing on that top of that podium with the gold medal around your neck representing your country?
SP: Ah man.. no better feeling. Having the national anthem play and all. It’s pretty moving really. I got Bronze last year and all I wanted to do then was speed up the year so I could do it all over again and get the Gold. So I’m just really happy and stoked I could get a gold for USA. Psyched!
SM: Was it different because the U.S. sent such a small team? Did it make it more significant?
SP: Yeah, small team, but we really liked it. I liked it for sure. It was fun being the small team representing such a big, significant country. We were gettin’ mad props, everywhere. It was really cool. So yeah, to bring home the Gold was a lot of fun for us all. All the countries were cheering. It was cool.
SM: Why did you make it a priority to get to the ISA games this year?
SP: Well I really wanted to get there especially after last year, and even more so after my result at Sunset, which I wasn’t so happy with. I wanted to kinda redeem myself. So we made it happen last minute with myself, Colin McPhillips and Thomas O”Neill.
SM: Does this help your momentum heading into the Brazil stop of the SUWT?
SP: Oh guaranteed. Yeah, I’m feeling really good right now. My surfing is the best it’s ever been and it’s only getting better, so yeah it’s a great result and I’m really excited for Brazil.
SM: How important do you think it is for the U.S. to have a team next year at the ISA Worlds?
Oh yeah, we gotta beat the Australians. It’s important. Their anthem was just playing way too damn much. But no, it’s important and a lot of the competitors were pretty bummed. We’ll get a solid team for next year for sure. We need to start the process earlier.
Check back at SUPthemag.com this week for full analysis of the ISA Worlds in Peru.