Live the Maui SUP lifestyle and feel healthy the moment you arrive. Four amazing women will paddle daily on warm waters, enjoy yoga, massages and fresh organic meals, explore and experience luxurious and tranquil accommodations for a week to remember.
Smaller waves greeted competitors on opening day but Steamer Lane still allowed for some incredible performance riding from Matt Becker, Dave Boehne, Brennan Rose and a host of talented paddlers.
Saturday morning, the winds shut off creating awesome conditions for the 6.2-mile race presented by SUP magazine. The picturesque course started at Cowell's Beach and rounded the Santa Cruz Wharf heading south to the Harbor mouth and back to the beach on lap one. Competitors were then treated to an epic view of a firing Steamer Lane on the second lap. Anthony Vela stayed in the lead pack from the start and ended up on top of the winner’s board followed by Benjamin Sarrazin, Rose, Becker and Chance Fielder. Despite a serious case of the flu, Candice Appleby won the women's race followed by Alison Riddle and Jen Fuller.
Appleby enjoyed a stellar weekend where her talents were on full display. After the race, she went over to Steamer Lane and had her best heat of the weekend, posting the second highest heat score of the day behind Becker before being knocked out in the semi-final on Sunday. Did we mention she was the only woman competing in the surf contest? "I love competing against the guys," she says. "It pushes me to be better." Following the event, Appleby flew to Australia for a series of events and free surfing.
Sunday was all Matt Becker's. The 17-year-old from Santa Barbara, Calif. tore apart every wave he paddled into, opening up a full repertoire that included stylish cutbacks, big hacks and even a radical, fins-free vertical turn when one of his waves reformed into a beautiful wall closer to Indicators that got the crowd on the cliffs amped. "It was really fun," he said. "The fact that we had waves for the contest made a world of difference. The event allowed you to put all your skills into one basket."
Santa Cruz local John Griffith, who surfed fantastic on his home break all weekend, ended second while Vela capped a stellar weekend by finishing third. Avery Dinauer ended fourth.
The combination of a race and surf contest created an awesome platform for an event. And despite intermittent rain showers, the epic conditions made for an action-packed weekend. "Look at this," said Surftech's Duke Brouwer, pointing to another set rolling through Steamer Lane Sunday afternoon. "We couldn't really have asked for better conditions."–JC
Please check back as we add photos to this post and watch for a video recap of the Surftech Shootout in the next few days.