Pacifico's US series of events on the Standup World Series will kick off next week in the City of Chicago from the 29th June to the 2nd July.
The Chicago World Paddle Challenge presented by Starboard and in association with Maui Jim will be a premier stop on the Standup World Series and will also be the biggest event to have hit the mid west of the US in the sport's history, as the World's best descend upon the Lakeshore in Chicago for a spectacular showdown.
Racing Champion Connor Baxter to headline in Chicago
Racing phenom Connor Baxter (Starboard) will be headlining this dynamic event in the heart of one of the most famous US cities, as he looks to capitalize on his event win in Fiji and take a stronghold over the Stand Up World Series ratings.
Connor will be joined by team mate and record breaking endurance athlete Bart de Zwart (Starboard), as they prepare for this flagship event on the Stand Up World Series.
Eric Terrien (FR) to represent Europe's elite in Chicago
Leading European athlete Eric Terrien (Bic SUP) from France will be in Chicago to stake his claim on the 2012 World Championship Series, as he faces up against some of the World's best at the Pacifico's Chicago World Paddle Challenge presented by Starboard and in association with Maui Jim.
Coming off a strong finish in France with 2 bullet wins in both Long distance and sprint races, Eric will be looking to bring it to Connor and the rest of the elite athletes making it to Chicago.
Slater Trout will be making his presence felt in Chicago
Another leading racer Slater Trout from Maui will be looking to improve on his strong finish in Fiji to make his presence felt on the Standup World Series. Slater stormed onto the scene a few years back at an exceptionally young age, and is certainly one to watch out for here in Chicago.
Kai Lenny will be looking to dig deep for his winning form
2x Standup World Tour Champion, Kai Lenny (Naish) is also at the top of the leaderboard currently on the Standup World Series, having tied with Connor for points in Fiji and after his second place overall finish in France.
Kai will be looking to continue his great form with a strong finish in front of this remarkable US city backdrop and amidst his fiercest competitors, but also friends from Maui and further afield.
Strong local paddlers to come out of the woodwork
Beyond the top names making it to Chicago, there is a melting pot of strong local paddlers that will be looking to make their presence felt at Pacifico's Chicago World Paddle Challenge, presented by Starboard and in association with Maui Jim.
Pacifico ambassador, John 'Jack' Swiatowiec a long time paddling enthusiast who is not only a Chicago resident, but also President of the Chicago chapter of the Surfrider Foundation will be looking for a strong finish at home here in Chicago and is excited to have the world's best come to his home waters.
Jack represents a tight knit paddling community with Great Lakes Board Company at its nucleus, as well as resident pro Michael Westentberger, who is developing grass roots paddleracing skills and programs at Lincoln Park Boat Club.
Surfrider Beach Clean up at North Avenue Beach, Chicago
It will all start at Great Lakes Board Company on Saturday 30th June with a Surfrider Beach Clean up from 8am, so an invite goes out to everyone to come be a part of making the beach a cleaner place and protecting our environment.
This will then be followed by a Na Kama Kai Youth Clinic led by Founder and legendary Waterman Duane DeSoto at Lincoln Park Boat Club from 2pm. This will provide underprivileged youth from the City the opportunity to be a part of a unique experience inspired by Duane and Na Kama Kai's work in the islands.
Sunday Sprint Racing: explosive and action packed racing
The Standup World Series Sprint Race format will be adapted to the unique environment that North Avenue provides, making for a dynamic display of the world's best and participants of all levels battling it around the sprint course for in an exciting heat elimination format.
With a beach start and finish, the 10's of 1000's of spectators on the beach will certainly have entertainment here at Pacifico's inaugural Chicago World Paddle Challenge presented by Starboard and in association with Maui Jim.
Monday's long distance course to follow Lake Shore Drive
Monday 2nd July's Long distance Course will follow Chicago's LakeShore drive and the skyline that it is known for, turning in front of Oak Street and making back to North Avenue for a 2 lap course. This will bring the participants right to the City center for an exciting entry for the sport at a competitive level here in Chicago.
Stay tuned to for detailed course map and more information at StandupWorldSeries.com