The Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships may just be the hardest race in the world. Clocking in at 32 miles, the Ka’iwi Channel—or the Channel of Bones—shows paddlers what they’re really made of.
Or they show us. Connor Baxter broke his previous channel record with a time of 4:08:08 on his unlimited board—and claimed his third M20 title in the process. If he’s not the most well-rounded racer in the world, we don’t know who is. But bumps are where Baxter feels most comfortable and there were bumps on offer this year. And it wasn’t even “great,” according to racers. One of these years M20 is going to get perfect conditions and it’s anybody’s guess how fast Baxter can cross Ka’iwi.
2013 champion Travis Grant didn’t make it easy for him, though, switching leads back-and-forth with Baxter mid-channel before chasing him right up to the finish to complete his crossing a little over a minute later (he broke Baxter’s previous record too). Grant is another guy who flies in good downwind conditions. A strong finish from a perennial contender.
Scott Gamble, an underground Hawaiian paddler, rounded out the top three after a second-place finish last year. Gamble proved again that although he rarely races outside of the Hawaiian Islands, when the world’s best are together, he can hang with them.
Gamble edged out early leader Kai Lenny, who would eventually drop off his original pace and settle for fourth. A disappointing finish for Lenny, who still hasn’t added an M20 title to his ever-growing trophy case. And you know he wants it.
In a ridiculous performance, Travis Baptiste finished fifth overall on a stock 14-foot board. Against a bunch of the fastest guys in the world. On unlimited boards. Crazy.
On the women’s side, Sonni Hönscheid put on a dominant performance, clocking in the third-fastest time in solo women’s SUP history. After her third place last year, Hönscheid has established herself as one of the best open ocean paddlers in the world.
Jenny Kalmbach, who took second last year, repeated this year, finishing a couple minutes short of Hönscheid in a battle that lasted all the way across the channel. Kalmbach is a force in any race she enters (she won the inaugural Battle of the Paddle and the 2009 M2O and nearly picked off Annabel Anderson at laster year’s Battle of the Paddle and this season’s Carolina Cup). We have a feeling that once she hits the top of the podium again, she’ll be hard to knock off.
New Zealander Penelope Strickland come out of nowhere to claim third while Barbara Nunes, another little-known name, took fourth.
Talia Decoite and Andrea Moller, two women who we thought had a good chance of winning this race, both shot off the line but in the end settled for fifth and sixth place, respectively.
Another big year for M2O. The race that always seems to deliver.
1: Connor Baxter (4:08:08)
2: Travis Grant (4:09:15)
3: Scott Gamble (4:19:57)
4: Kai Lenny (4:23:35)
5: Travis Baptiste (4:23:54) STOCK
6: Dave Kalama (4:24:44)
7: Livio Menelau (5:31:15)
8: Kaeo Abbey (4:35:26)
9: Armie Armstrong (4:41:06)
10: Andrew Logreco (4:50:50)
1: Sonni Hönscheid (5:12:38)
2: Jenny Kalmbach (5:15:40)
3: Penelope Strickland (5:27:12)
4: Barbara Nunes (5:36:03)
5: Talia Decoite (5:37:43)
6: Andrea Moller (5:44:30)
7: Bailey Rosen (5:58:37)
8: Lani Gomes (6:43:03)
Full results here.
Photo: Dan Barham
Cold climates breed hardy folks. The weather dictates how they live their lives. But there are always those special souls who venture out regardless of the conditions. Norm Hann is among the hardy. And he faces winter’s worst with a paddle in is hands.
“I take pride in being a Canadian paddler,” Hann says. “We’re fortunate up here; you can paddle all winter. I take pride in paddling in all conditions.”
Hann, 44, is one of Canada’s leading paddlers, finishing the Molokai-2-Oahu last year solo, starring in the conservation movie “Stand” and bringing serious SUP expeditions and training to British Columbia.
Hann grew up in Northern Ontario, Canada wandering around the outdoors surrounding his grandpa’s cabin. When he was in college he played basketball at the national level while getting his teaching certification. He taught for a couple years and spent his summers hanging out in Banff where he “got into the Western mindset” while earning guiding credentials on the side.
In 2000 he moved west for good and found a job guiding fishing, hiking and kayaking trips at the King Pacific Lodge, deep in the Great Bear Rainforest, which stretches up the BC coast from Vancouver Island toward southeast Alaska.
In 2008, he saw a video of Loch Eggers and Laird Hamilton standup paddling.
“I loved the ocean and loved surfing but you can only get so good if you’re not (on the ocean) everyday,” Hann says. “SUP looked like the absolute perfect combo of paddling and surfing.”
After forcing a local to sell him one of the only standup boards in the area, Hann took to the water.
“Being a guide on the coast here in BC, my eyes just got really wide at the potential of having SUP on the coast,” he says.
Hann first did a paddle along proposed oil tanker routes covering 400 kilometers from Kitamat down through Great Bear. This stretch of coast grew close to Hann’s heart over his time guiding there and would eventually turn into the “Stand” movie project. He started bringing people on tours there that same year.
“It’s an area under threat,” he says. “There are people in Canada and the US seeing what’s happening and want to check it out.”
He also began his own standup business in Squamish.
“It’s beneficial to me to have a teaching background,” Hann says. “Coming from a high-caliber athletic background I also had a lot of tremendous coaches. Standup is so multi-disciplinary that I believe teaching the foundation and the proper skills, sets (beginners) up for success for all these disciplines they can do.”
Hann is certainly certified for the job, both with on-the-water time and through technical classes such as wilderness first aid and swift water rescue. He’s also an instructor for Paddle Canada, which means he teaches at the highest level within their SUP program.
His instruction schedule is fittingly diverse. In the spring he concentrates on teaching paddle surfing and instructor trainings, getting shops and businesses ready for the upcoming busy season (an area which he says is growing rapidly). In the summer he focuses on touring and expeditions and then in the fall he comes back around to surfing.
“It’s a lot of fun introducing people to our coastline and opening peoples eyes to what you can do on a standup paddleboard,” he says. “You can get as gnarly as you want with it. I look at it as a really incredible tool to experience water with.” —Will Taylor
•Sun Dog Adventure Sports Surf Shop, 778.246.3294
•Standup Paddle Vancouver, 778.833.2445
This article originally ran in our 2014 Beginner’s Guide as “Local Knowledge.”
For more information, visit: NormHann.com
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Caio and Ian Vaz are at the forefront of high performance SUP right now, standing first and fifth respectively on the the SUWT rankings. In this clip they show us their free-surfing skills in Hawaii along with other Brazilian rippers such as Yuri Daberkow. The take-away? These guys are great surfers and would be in any generation, on any type of craft. Technical, smooth and very fun to watch.
More Vaz brothers here.
Say it with us: SUPstacle. It’s weird to say, but SUPstacle is where SUP meets an obstacle course, and it looks like it would be pretty fun. Or at least a fun workout. The creators of SUPstacle are already holding events in Germany and we’re wondering if it’ll catch on elsewhere… What do you think?
For more information, visit the SUPstacle Facebook page.
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One of the many great aspects of standup paddling is that you never know what you’ll see or encounter during a paddle. It’s not unusual to encounter some wildlife or see paddlers immersing themselves in newly discovered paddle destinations with breathtaking scenery. But, standup paddling with hot air balloons cruising overhead is a new one for us. And it looks pretty cool. Check out the video above, by Imagery Design and Jukin Video, and get out there!
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Photo: Waterman League
After four action-packed stops on the 2014 European Cup presented by Starboard, the Standup World Series heads to Santa Severa Beach in Rome, Italy this weekend for the final stop of the Cup, and the $10,000 World Challenger Series.
The World SUP Challenge presented by Jeep forms part of the long-standing Italia Surf Expo that brings together the water sports industry for unique festival on the beach in Rome. This year, the World Challenger Series event will also serve as the Finals for the 2014 European Cup, wrapping up an amazing couple months of racing across Spain, France, Finland, Germany, and Italy.
The event will include a surf expo, sports, culture, and parties, as Italy celebrates the arrival of the World Challenger Series in Rome, and one of the biggest weekends for surf culture in the country. With product demos, lifestyle booths, movie premieres, and open air parties, the World SUP Challenge in Rome will be a weekend to remember, as the European Cup comes to a close.
Friday, July 25
10:00: Open Registration
11:30: Athlete interview
19:00: Registration Closes
23:00: Beach party
Saturday, July 26
09:00: Skipper Meeting
10:00: Start Sprint Race
16:00: Contest Finishes
premiazioni sul podio Red Bull
23:00: Mega Beach Party
Sunday, July 27
09:00: Skipper Meeting
12:00: Start Long Distance
15:00: Contest Finishes
Premiazioni finali sul podio Red Bull
23:00: Closing Ceremony and Beach party
The Shonan Chigasaki Pro Japan, will bring SUP to Asia for the first major international event in the sport’s history, as a selection of the World’s best SUP athletes will meet with hundreds of Japanese participants for a groundbreaking event.
Twinned with the City of Honolulu, Chigasaki will celebrate the sport of Surfing from August 15th – 17th to commemorate Duke Kahanamoku’s birthday and stage a World Class Challenger Series event that showcases standup paddling.
With high profile athletes from Australia, Europe, Hawaii, the US and beyond, the Shonan Chigasaki Pro Japan will be an impressive event, as the quaint seaside town just outside Tokyo is transformed into the center of excitement for the weekend of the August 15th – 17th.
Entries are still open for the Shonan Chigasaki Pro Japan. Packages with accommodation and travel specials are available for competitors and spectators at: WatermanLeague.com
For more information, visit: WatermanLeague.com
Click here for more on the Standup World Series.
Photo: Robert Zaleski
Taylor Chaput pulls into Diver’s Cove in Laguna Beach, Calif. with a SUP board strapped to the roof of her car, greeting me, a complete stranger, with a hug and a smile. Fitting, seeing as she is the founder of Bliss Paddle Yoga.
“Bliss is that moment on the water when you’re perfectly in the present moment. Your senses are heightened and you’re taking it in and it’s just … joy,” she says.
Chaput, 26, grew up in La Verne, Calif. and spent her younger years focused on soccer, softball and volleyball. College brought with it a four-year degree in accounting. But during an internship, Chaput quickly discovered that counting beans and a typical nine-to-five job wasn’t for her. A weekend SUP experience with her mom sparked a new found love and connection to the water.
“I would just be at my cube, dreaming about the water, and when that four or five month internship was over I decided that I (was) going to invest everything into this.”
With her sights set on starting a business, her parents gave her a few SUP boards for graduation and that was all it took. Bliss Paddle Yoga was born.
A rookie to paddling and to yoga, Taylor came into the business eager to expand her realm of knowledge. She broadened her palette by gathering tips from fellow paddlers, videos (at SUPthemag.com), SUP clinics and simply by logging miles on the water. “Some things resonate with you and other things don’t,” she says.
Chaput considers her teaching style very laid-back. “For us, it’s not about going out and standing up or having the perfect paddle technique. It’s about going out on the water, letting go of your fears, and trying to be in the moment as much as you can.”
Chaput finds particular joy in the moments where her students fall in love with the sport. “The most rewarding thing for me is seeing someone so scared on the beach, not sure they want to go out, and then going out on the water and seeing their huge smiles. That’s the coolest thing. It’s that, ‘Oh-my-God, I-love-this’ moment.”
Bliss has expanded significantly since its opening in 2010. With locations in Laguna Beach, Newport Beach and San Diego, Bliss offers paddle lessons, SUP yoga and teacher trainings. The trainings are three-day immersion courses with a focus on water safety, helping yoga instructors bring their practices to the water. They’ve trained instructors all across the world, helping SUP yoga to migrate to locations such as Japan and Bali. “That’s what I like about the training,” Chaput says, “It’s a way for us to build our network in a cool, authentic way.”
Nahid Margolies has been taking paddleboard yoga lessons with Chaput for the past two years. “At the end of class you feel a calmness dipping your fingers in the ocean as Taylor takes you through a peaceful final relaxation. The paddle back to shore is usually quiet as everyone is blissed-out and just basking in the beauty of the ocean.”
Chaput is already planning for the future. “I’m hoping that we continue to expand Bliss across the world and continue to share that bliss of being on the water because everyone needs to experience it; it’s something special.” –Rebecca Parsons
• Island Paddleboard: 949.673.4280
• San Diego Stand Up Paddle: 619.934.7472
• Surf Diva: 858.454.8273
For more information, visit: PaddleboardBliss.com
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We could listen to Gerry Lopez talk about anything: surfing Pipe, shaping boards, getting into standup, the peace he finds from yoga or, in the case of this video, crossing the Ka’iwi Channel, home of the biggest open-ocean race in the world, Molokai 2 Oahu. And with M20 coming up this weekend, it’s time to get excited.
More M20 here.
Molokai’s Clare Seeger Mawae is instrumental in putting on the M4Molokai race, renting out standups and shuttling competitors’ boards between islands for the annual downwind race. Here, the local standup paddler gives us a recap from one of the most exciting SUP weekends on the “Friendly Island” of Molokai:
Molokai was the center of standup paddling activity on the weekend of July 12th and 13th, with the most epic wind and amazing downwind paddling conditions. Molokai came through with a dream weekend of paddling, having two incredible races touching the Molokai shores.
First off was the M2Molokai race where more than 80 competitors crossed the channel from Maui to finish at Kaunakakai Wharf on Molokai, with a tight and close finish between Connor Baxter (3:04:31) Kai Lenny (3:06:44), and Dave Kalama (3:08:58). Nearly half of the M2Molokai competitors stayed over on Molokai to compete in the M4Molokai the following day, for the ultimate weekend of paddling.
The M4Molokai race started from Kamalo Wharf, taking competitors to Hotel Molokai, on a perfect 8.5-mile downwinder for both novices and advanced paddlers. Kamalo was certainly the hub of activity on Sunday morning with smiling faces, happy people, friends and families coming to support the start of the race. A beautiful pule (prayer), was given at the start briefing, with a blessing of rain from the skies, the wind filling in, and ocean swells rising. The standup paddlers had a beach start with three course options, allowing all levels to compete in their comfort zone. The canoe paddlers followed 15 minutes later with a water start out in the channel.
The SUP finish was incredible for the top three finishers, with spectators cheering them on as they paddled their hearts out to the finish line. New Zealand Paddler Armie Armstrong took the ultimate last few stokes with a winning time of 1:03:46, with the Brazilian paddler Vinnicius Martins in second at 1:03:51, and Japan’s Tomo Murabayashi finishing third at 1:03:52. The crowd was certainly treated to an incredible finish at Hotel Molokai by the field of international athletes, while Rick Schonely, Eddie Tanaka and friends played music to welcome them in.
The weekend’s conditions were some of the best that the State has had in months, and the fleet of OC1s, SUPs, Skis and OC2s had a blast with this ocean run. The line up for this year’s Molokai event was global with a battle of the nations, as New Zealand, Brazil, Japan, Australia, Hawaii, Mainland USA, and Ireland paddled it out with record times.
The Molokai OC1/ski paddlers also showed that they were certainly not slow with Geoff Bogar taking the overall time of 57:38 on his ski, and Molokai’s Richard Mariano following a few seconds behind on his OC1 with a time of 1:00:09. Molokai’s Cami Kimball was third fastest overall and took the women’s first place with a time of 1:01:05. from along with Kathy Shipman and Peggy King from Maui.
Molokai competitors had great races, with all of them knocking 15-20 minutes off their times from the previous year’s event. Twelve-year-old Alex Mawae certainly showed he is an upcoming force, also knocking off 20 minutes from his time the previous year, while his sister Josie also did great, with both Molokai kids winning their youth divisions. Other notable Molokai paddlers who took first in their divisions include Todd Yamashida, David Lichtenstein, Jesse Ford, Brandi and Bobbi Morris, Geoff Bogar and not to forget both Coral Gonzales and Desiree Puhi for giving everyone a run for their money on their OC1’s.
—Clare Seeger Mawae
If you missed out on this year’s event, then mark your calendar for July 2015!
Click here to view full results from the 2014 M4Molokai Race.
For more information, visit: SUPMolokai.org, or the Facebook Page.
Click here for more Event Coverage, presented by SIC Maui.
The annual Race the Lake of the Sky in Lake Tahoe, Calif. sees hundreds of paddlers competing in multiple races throughout the weekend. This year’s event saw nearly 500 participants between the 5-mile short course and 14-mile long course races. Race the Lake of the Sky continues to grow each year, and this time lapse video from the third annual event shows just how much action is packed into the two days up at beautiful Lake Tahoe.
Click here for more Event Coverage presented by SIC Maui.
Tatiana Howard and her crew at the Butterfly Effect (BE) have been touring the globe for the past few years, spreading SUP and empowering women. Recently, the BE Tour made a stop in northern Italy to get women out on the water for a few days of fun. Over three days, BE participants, or “butterflies,” standup paddled, windsurfed, and kite surfed on Italy’s largest lake. Check out the gallery of Butterfly Effect women standup paddling Lake Garda and get inspired to “be the effect.”
Next up, Tatiana and the BE crew heads to Cabarete, Dominican Republic on August 2, followed by Tarifa, Spain on August 8, and then Wanderlust Tremblant from August 21 – 24, 2014.
For more information, visit: BEtheEffect.com
Click here for more Event Coverage, presented by SIC Maui.
This isn’t the first time’ve seen paddlers SUP surfing Malaysia’s tidal bore at the Batang Lupar River in the town of Sri Aman. But, this is the first time we’ve seen footage of Malaysian paddlers SUP surfing their local benak. Maybe it’s because the water is infested with crocodiles and locals know it all too well, or maybe it’s because they’re used to surfing their longboats at the annual tidal bore festival, Pesta Benak. Whatever the reason, we’re just enjoying these paddle surfers’ ride.
Click here for more tidal bore fun.
14’ X 28” X 5.75” (325.4 LITERS)
Downwind paddling is one of the true joys of standup paddling. The Kaiwi-Kai was designed by surf and SUP legend Gerry Lopez specifically for paddling with the wind at your back and the combination of a planing hull through the tail (flat) and a displacement hull in the nose with a bit of rocker makes it ideal for just that. But that combo, along with the extra thickness for stability, makes it a solid choice for general paddling situations, too.
This gear review originally ran in our 2014 Beginner’s Guide as “Boards to Begin.”
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Maui’s Connor Baxter and Canada’s Lina Augaitis added new titles to their name with last weekend’s Standup World Series wins in Germany, at the Camp David World Cup of SUP. The recent wins secure the two competitors’ leads in the World Rankings as the World Series looks toward the European Cup Finals and Stop 4 of the 2014 tour, this coming weekend in Rome.
After leading the Sprints on Saturday, Baxter took an incredibly close second to rival Kai Lenny, who edged ahead in the final moments of the race to take the win in an intense battle to the finish. Baxter wasn’t going to let the weekend pass without a win to his name, showing up for Sunday’s Long Distance Race ready to leave the competition behind. And, Baxter did just that, taking the win despite hairy conditions with 25km winds howling throughout the day, forcing event directors to adjust the course to include downwind and upwind legs. Australian Jake Jensen took second place for the men, after digging deep in a battle with third place paddler Zane Schweitzer. The previous day’s Sprints Champ, Kai Lenny, took fourth, surprisingly missing the podium after losing ground to the top three paddlers during the difficult upwind leg. France’s Eric Terrien took a solid fifth, while Denmark’s Casper Steinfath took sixth.
With his fourth place finish in the Sprints, Lenny took second place overall at the Camp David World Cup of SUP, and remains in second overall in the World Rankings. Jensen took third overall in the event, while Schweitzer took fourth, ending his winning streak in the European Cup, where he posted a string of three wins from Spain, France and Finland. Jensen’s third place result closes the gap between his and Schweitzer’s World Rankings, where Schweitzer sits in third and Jensen in a close fourth, only 500 points behind.
On the women’s side, Augaitis proved her dominance with another title win after taking both the Sprints and Long Distance race. The title win moves Augaitis into the lead in the World Rankings over Australian Angie Jackson, who now sits in second. France’s Olivia Piana also moved up in the World Rankings after this weekend’s strong performances in both the Sprints and the Long Distance, where she took second, to give her a solid second place event finish over third place Dutch paddler Carla Schellert, who finished third in the Long Distance and fifth in the Sprints.
With only one event remaining in the European Cup and three events in the Standup World Series, the competition is intensifying. Next up are the European Cup Finals in Rome, July 25 – 27, 2014.
For more information, visit: WatermanLeague.com
Click here for more Event Coverage, presented by SIC Maui.
SUP magazine videographer Morgan Hoesterey spent a lot of time in Mexico this spring. Here she talks with SUP yogis Gillian Gibree and Fatima Villarreal about practicing in the beautiful waters of Tulum. Stay tuned for Part III. Get out there and paddle!
Click here for Part I.
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When it comes to SUP performance, Travis Grant’s advice is some of the best. The Australian paddler’s race record is impressive enough with big wins throughout his career, including winner of the 2013 Molokai2Oahu (M20), the 2013 Battle of the Paddle distance race and the 2012 ISA World Cup Championships. Then you add in Grant’s pedigree in other disciplines, including outrigger canoe, surf ski and surfing, and you have one of the most respected names in the game. And, with Molokai just around the corner—and Grant hungry to defend his title—one of the most feared.
In the midst of his run to the season’s premier downwind races, Grant was good enough to spare a few minutes to share his top three tips on gear, stance and the importance of core engagement with SUPthemag.com’s Brody Welte from PaddleFit. Here’s the lowdown:
Photo: Erik Aeder
I don’t know why you see so many people with a narrow stance on their board. If you were going into a boxing match, you’re going to have a nice wide stance with soft knees that enables you to be well balanced and as powerful as possible. It should be the same on your board. If you have a narrow stance—which can really make you unstable—start practicing getting your feet further apart and see how much easier it is to generate a strong, powerful stroke each and every time. It makes a real difference.
To be as fast as you can on the water, you’ve got to get the most powerful muscles in your body involved during every stroke. Engaging the core is going to do this, particularly at the end of the pull when you have a chance to really generate power on your paddle. It will also help protect your lower back during extension. In training, practice deliberately tightening your core during every stroke. Then, after a while, it will become automatic and you can focus on other elements.
In addition to getting your core involved and refining mechanics for every part of your stroke, you’ve got to find a paddle that helps you generate the greatest amount of power with the least amount of effort. That’s going to make you more efficient on the water in any conditions, as long as you’re digging deep enough into the water. For me, it’s the Quickblade Trifecta paddle every time.
Photo: Andrew Shield
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What’s the old saying about standup boards being good for small surf?
That was certainly apparent this weekend at Zuma Beach in Malibu, California during the US SUP Tour, where a talented contingent of surfers battled each other, and small conditions, and were still able to make the sport look pretty darn good.
Daniel Hughes won on the men’s side while relative SUP newbie Sophia Bartlow—whose mother is World Champion longboarder Jericho Poppler Bartlow—topped a talented bunch of women surfers in a final that included Izzi Gomez, who won twice on the Standup World Tour last year, and Emmy Merrill, a two-time ISA champion.
The men’s draw was also impressive as Dave Boehne, who finished second, surfed incredible all day and found the only barrel of the competition. Colin McPhillips (3rd) was also in form and showed his uncanny ability to find that one wave each heat that would stay open and allow for multiple turns. Fernando Stalla finished with a solid 4th and also surfed extremely well throughout the day.
For Hughes , it’s been a year since his last win. “I really hope this get’s me going so I can get on a roll,” he said.
From a spectator standpoint, the location for the competition was ideal on Malibu’s north side with plenty of foot traffic throughout the day. US SUP Tour organizers Chuck Hendsch and Ian Cairns signed on Michelob Ultra this year as a sponsor, which has them teaming up with other Michelob-sponsored events. The result was a tightly run competition and a stellar after party. Prone surfers, SUP surfers and beach volleyball players mingled at the after party hosted by Casa Escobar across from the Malibu Pier.
This high-profile sponsorship could really solidify the Tour’s future. “We’re going to finish things of strong in 2014 and we’re hoping for even bigger things in 2015,” said Hendsch.
The US SUP Tour’s next stop is August 2nd and 3rd in Hermosa Beach with a race only. Here’s hoping their next surf event in Huntington Beach September 13th and 14th sees “bigger” surf.
Men’s Pro Surf
1st Place Daniel Hughes
2nd Place Dave Boehne
3rd Place Colin McPhillips
4th Place Fernando Stalla
Women’s Pro Surf
1st Place Sophia Bartlow
2nd Place Emmy Merrill
3rd Place Izzi Gomez
4th Place Nikki Newland
Men’s Open Surf
1st Place Jedd Hasay
2nd Place Dave Figlioli
3rd Place Mitch Taylor
4th Place Joe Carberry
Men’s Over 40
1st Place Chuck Trout
2nd Place Mitch Taylor
3rd Place Ralph Bill
4th Place Ian Cairns
Jess Leedy – SUP Wipeouts (Instagram) from Norwell9 on Vimeo.
Sometimes you just need to watch an awesome wipe-out reel. What better time than a Friday afternoon? Enjoy Jess Leedy charging and taking his licks in these 15 seconds of glory.
More Leedy surfing here.
Photo: JP Van Swae
There’s a reason the Gladiator Hybrid is the most popular SUP fin Larry Allison makes. It’s designed to handle a variety of conditions, from flatwater racing to open-ocean downwind paddling and gives paddlers a nice middle ground between tracking, speed and stability that will give you fantastic performance in all these realms. If a middle ground fin isn’t for you, the Gladiator also comes in a Pro Model, for flat water paddling speed, and an Elite, for rough water paddling stability. Pick your poison. They’re all good.
Makani Fins designer Louis Genest spent 13 years implementing CAD systems in the aerospace and automobile industries before turning his attentions to fin making. It shows. The KAWA is a light, sharp, deadly race fin that was mathematically confirmed by NASA equations to have a lower drag foil than previous prototypes. That means greater paddling speed, fewer paddle strokes and longer glide. It tracked well, shed weeds like a sea monster and was ultra-speedy during our tests. A fine buy for any SUP racing aficionado.
The first thing we thought when we saw the Red Tip was, “How could that possibly work?” Then we rode it. The unique, hydro-foil-like tip creates really nice lift and drive–you can actually feel the tail of the baord riding higher in the water—as you head down the line. It gives you extra speed over flat sections amd also holds well in deep rail turns, while still releasing predictably in more vertical situations. This fin worked best as a 2+1 in longer boards, adding some flair and fun to otherwise predictable sessions. It belongs in your standup quiver.
These fins are for ripping. Three-time world longboard champ Colin McPhillips knows how to turn with the best of them and these signature fins are what he uses to do it. The thruster set is a subtle 2+1 (the center fin is slightly larger) for increased drive and hold with the classic thruster feel. These fins excel in good, powerful waves and the smaller size of the fins allows you to come off the bottom hard and put them through the lip while the medium flex feels natural under foot. A good choice for SUP surfers looking to get aggressive.
This gear review originally ran in our Spring 2014 issue as “Fins for Fun.”
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Words: Molokai2Oahu.com with Jenny Kalmbach Photo: M2O/Kurt Hoy
2009 Molokai2Oahu (M2O) Champ Jenny Kalmbach knows what it takes to cross the Ka’iwi Channel, and a lot of it has to do with how prepared you are as a competitor. The pro paddler out of the Big Island of Hawaii has some helpful tips in preparing for the M2O—one of the most challenging events of the year. Here are Jenny Kalmbach‘s top 10 preparation tips for M2O:
If you’re planning on staying a fewnights on Molokai before the race, bring your food essentials. There aren’t a lot of shopping options, especially near the race start. So, think about what you want for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and make sure you bring whatever food you want for race day sealed in a dry bag and available on your escort boat.
The morning of the race is CRAZY. It can be tricky finding your captain and paddling your gear out. You will want to keep your stress levels as low as possible that morning, so make sure you HAVE A PLAN. Talk to your boat captain ahead of time about where to meet, what his boat looks like etc. If possible, meet up with him the day before the race to drop off some gear or talk about your race plan (course, nutrition drops etc.).
This race can be won or lost by the choice of your line. I’ve been on both sides of this, so don’t just wing it. Talk to your boat captain, ask friends who have done the channel before, look at tide and current charts—use as much information as you can to choose the line you think will be the best to get you from Molokai to Oahu.
Once you have picked your course, stick to it. This is important. It’s tempting when you’re out there to want to change things up, but you have a plan for a reason so don’t mess with it. It’s okay to make slight variations on your course due to conditions, but don’t suddenly shoot change direction because you think it might be faster.
Pack light and use a waterproof or dry bag. Whatever you have with you on the beach will have to be paddled out to your boat… and sometimes there is shore break, so keep it light. I like the Dakine Crew Duffle or the Grunden Gage Rum Runner Backpack.
Talk to your team about the big and little things. How often will you need to change your hydration pack? What nutrition is going in it? Do they know how much? Are they going to throw it to you or is someone jumping in the water to hand it off? Do you want them to cheer you on or do you prefer silence? Do you want to know where you’re at and how far you have to go or will you keep track of that yourself? What about your competition? Do you want them to tell you where you stand? These might seem like little things, but once the race starts, you’re not going to have a chance to talk to them and explain things, so think about ALL of this before the start horn blows—one less thing to worry about when you’re in the middle of the Molokai Channel.
Wear sunscreen and sun protective clothing. It’s a long, hot day out there, so don’t let the elements get the best of you. I wear long compression tights (2XU elite compression tights) and I slather on as much sunscreen as I can (Coola Sport 45). Don’t forget a hat (avoid dark colors) and polarized sunglasses are essential (Oakley Radarlock Edge).
It’s just you, the open swells, some birds and malolo (flying fish) out there, so having music can really help some paddlers. Create a playlist of your favorite songs and make sure you have enough songs for the day.
This may not affect your time or experience across the channel, but I promise you will be happier because of it after your race. Your arms are going to be tired after all that paddling, and brushing out the knots in your hair is not fun. So, for the girls out there, or guys with long hair, I’d recommend putting it up in a bun or a bubble ponytail. Trust me when I say it will take hours and a bottle of conditioner to remove the knots if you choose to braid your hair or put it in a simple ponytail.
Most importantly, enjoy the experience and HAVE FUN! Don’t get frustrated, if you fall just laugh it off and get back up… keep paddling and keep smiling.
Stay tuned for coverage of the 2014 Molokai2Oahu Paddleboard World Championships. SUPthemag.com’s event coverage is brought to you by SIC Maui.
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Colorado River Surfing With Badfish SUP from Badfish SUP on Vimeo.
Non-river surfers often say they want to try surfing river waves because they’re always breaking. River surfers know different. River waves are based on flows and become rideable based on the amount of water in a particular river and how said water reacts to river features like rocks and/or elevation change in the riverbed. Sometimes river waves are dynamic and riders are able to surf them like they would an ocean wave. Other times, they’re flat and listless.
This spring the Glenwood Springs Whitewater Park hit a flow of 22,000 CFS creating some of the best and biggest river surfing conditions on that stretch of water in years. Team Badfish was there to take the wave on and got it all on video. Mike Tavares shows off his backside prowess, Brittany Parker nails a 360 and 11-year-old Miles Harvey gets us stoked on river surfing’s future.
More Glenwood Wave here.
The Standup World Series‘ annual event in Germany, the Camp David World Cup of SUP, kicks off Friday, July 18, 2014, in its new location in Fehmarn.
The Camp David World Cup of SUP is the third event of the 2014 Standup World Series and the fourth of five stops in the European Cup. Top standup paddlers from around the globe will compete in sprints and a long distance race, with results combined from each of the two races to determine the overall event champion.
This third World Series event will see lots of action as the European Cup nears the championships and the world’s fastest paddlers make their final pushes toward the European Cup Title as well as the overall World Title. World Series rankings leader Connor Baxter will be battling with fellow Maui boys Kai Lenny and Zane Schweitzer, who round out the top three rankings going into the Germany Stop. Lenny, a two-time World Series Champion, won April’s Abu Dhabi Stop and will be looking for another win to strengthen his number two world ranking and bump Baxter from the top. Schweitzer has been taking Europe by storm, winning the last three World Series events, including Spain, France, and most recently, Finland.
For more information, visit: WatermanLeague.com
Stay tuned for Event Coverage presented by SIC Maui.
Waterman Buzzy Kerbox has raised his son Kody in the water, and it’s evident. Kody is one of the top competitors on the Standup World Tour and World Series, posting impressive results in SUP events around the globe. But, Kody still makes time to SUP with his old man when he’s home on Maui. Here, the father-son duo take you downwind paddling, while sharing some helpful tips along the way. Watch and be inspired to get some glides.
The Maui 2 Molokai (M2M) 27-mile crossing takes paddlers on a tremendous journey from Maui’s Honolua Bay to Kaunanakai town on Molokai. The event is somewhat of a precursor to the Molokai 2 Oahu World Championships, and if the results from last weekend’s event foreshadow anything, it’s that Connor Baxter, Kai Lenny, and Dave Kalama will round out the top places for the men, as they took first through third at last weekend’s M2M. Devin Blish took the big win for the ladies, ahead of two-time M2O Champ Andrea Moller and 2012 M2O Champ Talia Decoite (Gangini), who finished second and third, respectively. Check out the highlight video and results below:
HAVE YOU SEEN BLURR #3 from InfinitySURF on Vimeo.
You may recall last summer, when Dave Boehne and his band of merry mates brought us 5UP P1RATE5, a paddling flick that didn’t just laugh in the face of Google search algorithms, but one of the best pure SUP surf movies ever made.
This summer, the Blurr is at it again, this time with “Have You Seen Blurr,” a three-part film set during the Surftech Shootout in Santa Cruz, California. Here, we wrap up the “Blurr” series with the third and final installment.
Click here for Part 2 of Have You Seen Blurr?
Leeward from theandyj on Vimeo.
Recently, Southern California was graced with some summer surf and Standup World Tour competitor Daniel Hughes took advantage of it. Here’s the SoCal local, snagging a keeper or two at Newport Beach’s infamous beach break, the Wedge.
SUP magazine caught up with five people who SUP to talk standup paddling. We asked the five everyday paddlers to tell us about their secret SUP spot, without giving too much away. Here’s what they said:
OCCUPATION: Owner, SUP Oklahoma; Lawyer
HOMETOWN: Tulsa, OK
Bixhoma Lake, just south of Tulsa. I’ve taken people out there that have lived in Tulsa their entire lives and didn’t know it was there. They’re blown away by how pretty it is and how clean the water is. It’s just cool that you can find some new place that you’ve never been to or never heard about but it’s literally in your own backyard.
OCCUPATION: Student; Lifeguard
HOMETOWN: Santa Cruz, CA
It’s a fifteen-minute paddle up the coast from my house, give or take a few minutes for wind and conditions. The surf spot is nestled in between two points, so it’s nice and protected, but hard to get to. Nobody’s ever there! One must either paddle to the spot, or be very quick and nimble and on their feet at low tide. The waves are fun, the scenery is awesome and the beach is sandy. I love my little secluded spot!
OCCUPATION: Employee, Island Surf & Sport
HOMETOWN: Newport, RI
Probably Third Beach in Middletown. It’s usually quiet and you can paddle around this wildlife preserve, sometimes you’ll see deer. The water’s a little clearer around there and there’s some rocks to paddle around. It’s nice because it’s usually protected in the afternoon from offshore winds, so it’s nice and clean.
OCCUPATION: Owner, Rendezvous River Sports
HOMETOWN: Jackson Hole, WY
How about the Hoback River? It’s about 17 miles, fun surf waves, lots of rocks, lots of eddy moves, the rapids are all makeable and challenging and it’s in a beautiful, wild, scenic canyon. And it’s only thirteen miles from town!
OCCUPATION: Owner, Mountain to Sound Outfitters
HOMETOWN: West Seattle, WA
Alki Beach in West Seattle. It’s pretty fun because you have urban wildlife so we paddle with sea lions and seals, lots of cool birds, jellyfish and salmon. There were orcas off our beach two days ago! When the silver salmon come through they run shallow so you can see schools of them going underneath your board.
This article originally ran in our Summer 2014 issue as “Word on the Water.”
Click here for more from the People Who SUP series.
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FOCUS AND FUN WITH TALIA DECOITE from tehanigangini on Vimeo.
In this video, spend a day training and playing with Maui’s Talia Decoite as she prepares for the biggest Hawaiian race of the year: Molokai2Oahu. It’s a hard life on the Valley Isle.
More Decoite here.
Since 2008, few women have torn it up in SUP like champion paddler Candice Appleby. From the Battle of the Paddle to the 2014 Hobie Hennessey’s Waterman’s Challenge, to the 2012 Paddle Royal, no course is safe from the hard-charging SUP competitor. And, proving that she’s not just at home in the ocean, our 2012 SUP Woman of the Year took top honors at the recent 2014 Payette River Games.
Appleby’s amazing run of success is no coincidence. From intense interval sessions and long downwinders to brutal endurance and strength training on land, Appleby’s solo training sessions—as well as those with her other half and co-founder of Performance Paddling, Anthony Vela—are often the difference between her and the rest of the SUP field.
While we’d never expect Appleby to give away her competitive advantage, she shared some tips for standup paddling with Brody Welte of PaddleFit. Check out Appleby’s top three tips and try them next time you hit the water. —Phil White
Photo: OnIt Pro
It’s important to feel capable and comfortable moving around on your board. As conditions change and vary, so should your foot placement. Practice walking on your board, cross stepping, shuffling, and getting comfortable in a variety of positions; this will allow you to be ready for any scenario, whether during a race, in the surf, or when you’re just training and having fun. Practicing free styling on your board helps, too. If you don’t come from a surfing background but want to learn how to cross step, try it on a curb, then take it to the water. Make sure to always engage your paddle while walking your board by bracing.
The “bracing” stroke should be your best friend. Well, not really, but it should be used every time you paddle! By placing the non-power surface of your paddle blade on the water, you create resistance that will act like a balance aid or “brace”, hence the term ‘bracing stroke.’ This can be used in SUP surfing, hopping over waves, during buoy turns, in a downwinder, or basically anytime you lose balance and need to compensate. Make sure to be aware of your bracing stroke and use it! It’s also really fun during free styling and will help with tricks like the “stationary layback.”
There are many different types of racing starts, including running beach starts, shoreline starts at ankle-, knee- and waist-deep water, water starts, etc. Having a good start and “skim” can give you an edge over the competition by getting out in front early. On the flip side, a bad start can easily leave you at the back of the pack and potentially hinder your overall results. Make sure to practice starts, especially those variations that intimidate you. My favorite type of start is a running one because if you get a good skim, you can leave your competitors behind. Practicing starts will help with race day nerves, which, as we all know, are the worst when waiting for the horn to go off. Be comfortable holding your equipment and make sure to always check the conditions of the ocean, lake or river floor before you run into it!
Photo: Greg Panas/Standup World Tour
Hailing from Oahu’s North Shore, Mo Freitas is one of the island’s top standup paddlers—and a top Standup World Tour athlete that competes around the globe. It’s easy to understand why the 2013 SUP Awards Male Rookie of the Year is mentioned in the same breath as world champions like Kai Lenny and Connor Baxter—Mo shreds, and he’s raising the bar in performance paddle surfing. Here’s some Mo action.
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