Team Mexico Wins 2015 Painkiller Cup
A team of Mexico paddlers won the $10,000 2015 Painkiller Cup race in the British Virgin Islands. Team Stand Up Mexico featuring Javier "Bicho" Jiminez, Ryan Helm and Shelby Taylor dominated the 14-mile downwind course to win in a time of two hours 48 minutes and 30 seconds. There was almost no wind allowing the racers to paddle the course in nearly flat water the entire time.
The events format sees three person teams alternating every 30 minutes as they paddle from Trellis Bay, on Tortola, to the Soggy Dollar Bar on Jost Van Dyke. Also including a Mini-Painkiller Cup course from Sandy Cay to the Soggy Dollar Bar, and a surf ski class. A unique aspect of the event format is that each of the 3-person team includes at least one women paddler.
Finishing just over 3 minutes behind the Mexican's was Team Limin from St. Croix. Limin was pushed hard by another Cruzan team Freedom City Surf Shop. "We pulled ahead of Freedom City off of Trunk Bay on Tortola's North Shore," explained Limin captain Bill Kraft. "It was neck and neck with them during the first two rotations but Isabelle managed to inch ahead of Jessica Rando and then we stayed just ahead of them after that".
While the Freedom City team stayed in the hunt they eventually lost to Team Caribbean Paddler. Guadeloupe racer Romu Mamadou overhauled the Cruzan's as they entered the final mile of the race outside White Bay on Jost Van Dyke. The Caribbean Paddler team included Mamadou and Ffils Franck from Guadeloupe along with Kristin Thomas of Laguna Beach.
The Mini-Painkiller Cup was won by Tortola paddler Lee Donovan while Mark Doig from Moskito Island aced the surf ski division.
Team Stand Up Mexico earned $5,000 for their winning efforts plus a $500 bonus for winning the opening sprint leg from Trellis Bay to the Guana Island cut.
Limin from St. Croix pocketed $2,500 and Team Caribbean earned $1,250.
There were 12 teams in the Painkiller Cup. Fourth went to Freedom City from St. Corix while Team Chicken Gun Ya from St. Thomas came fifth.
"The entire event was a blast," described Mexican coach and Riviera racer Ryan Helm. "The weather was perfect and we raced well and were expertly guided by our captain Jim Briant"
By: Tropix Media
More race coverage here.