And just like that, it’s August. This year has flown by. Seems like only yesterday we were getting excited about the first major race of the year, the Carolina Cup. That was four months ago.
We’re now halfway through the international stand up paddling “season,” which loosely runs from April to October (with a couple of outposts in December). Carolina, OluKai, the Worlds, the Euro Tour, Payette and Molokai have already been run and won, while we’ve still got the Gorge Paddle Challenge, Pacific Paddle Games and a few World Series races to look forward to.
So because we’re halfway through the year, I thought it’d be a good time to analyse the best paddlers of 2015 so far. → READ MORE
Despite there being no big races this weekend there have still been a few changes to the SUP Racer World Rankings.
Why? Because it’s been exactly 12 months since the 2014 Ultimate SUP Showdown was held, which means it’s now time for that event to be purged from the system. And considering it was the second highest scoring race of 2014, the Showdown’s removal has had a big impact on the Men’s Top 100 and Women’s Top 50 Leaderboards. → READ MORE
Molokai 2 Oahu is the most prestigious race in the world. The 32 mile crossing of the Ka’iwi Channel (aka the Channel of Bones) is steeped in history, with each new edition producing countless heroic stories both in front of and behind the scenes. And this year’s race probably created more highlights than ever before…
With brutally slow conditions out in the channel and overhead surf to greet paddlers near the finish line, Molokai 2015 will be remembered for a long time to come. Now that the dust has settled, I’ve been looking back at some of the amazing photos from this year’s classic race and wanted to share a few of the best. → READ MORE
Travis Grant and Sonni Hönscheid have just won the most prestigious race of the year: The Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships in Hawaii. Travis claims his second title in three years to stamp himself as one of the greatest paddlers in the sport, while Sonni Honscheid deserves she belongs up there with the best after going back-to-back.
With some of the slowest and most grueling conditions in recent memory (there was virtually no wind at all), Travis outlasted Kai Lenny and Lincoln Dews for the men’s solo unlimited crown, while Sonni held off an impressive Annabel Anderson, who took second place over the line despite paddling a stock 14 footer. → READ MORE
And so Downwind Month continues. At the same time Connor Baxter was winning his sixth straight Maui 2 Molokai race on Saturday, one of his key rivals in ocean racing, Travis Grant, was dominating the Cline Mann Memorial Paddleboard Race over on Oahu.
Perhaps it was symbolic that Connor crossed the line first on Molokai while Travis won on Oahu, as these guys are the two favourites for next weekend’s Molokai 2 Oahu showdown. Connor has won three of the past four M2O showdowns, while Travis is the 2013 champion and went very close to beating Connor twelve months ago. → READ MORE
Last weekend saw one of the biggest and most beloved races in America light up South Lake Tahoe: The 2015 edition of Race The Lake of the Sky.
In what has become a true festival of stand up paddling, Race The Lake again attracted hundreds of competitors to one of the most scenic paddling destinations on the planet. As in years past, the crowd was an interesting mix of first timers, weekend warriors and a few very high profile international stars of the sport. → READ MORE
Mo Freitas and Shae Foudy have taken out the 2015 Santa Monica Pier Paddle, after a strong lineup of elite and amateur paddlers lit up the iconic paddleboarding venue on Saturday.
Annabel Anderson triumped over Candice Appleby in the five miler, however the short, sharp SUP Cross provided a bit of an upset… → READ MORE
Check out this awesome little highlights reel from the Carolina Cup. Courtesy of the Rogue SUP crew, this clip does a great job of capturing the intensity of the infamous Graveyard Race.
Very sharp edit. That slow-mo sequence at 0:20 looks like a bunch of ancient warriors about to charge into battle… → READ MORE
Done. What an epic race that was. Congratulations to Travis Grant and Annabel Anderson – 2015 Carolina Cup CHAMPIONS. Massive effort from Danny Ching and Sonni Honscheid to claim the runner-up positions, and really any paddler in the Top 10/Top 20 deserves a medal. That was hectic out there.
Click through for full results and a full replay of the live webcast… → READ MORE
Georges Cronsteadt has held off the youth brigade to show he’s still the stand up king of Tahiti, while Annabel Anderson showed her unbreakable strength as the pair claimed respective honours at the Air France Paddle Festival on the weekend.
Click through for full results and plenty of photos… → READ MORE
Results and pics from New Zealand’s 2015 National SUP Championship, which was held on the weekend at Omaha Beach just north of the capital Auckland.
The main event was won by world #1 and new SUP ATX/Lahui Kai team rider, Annabel Anderson, while Daniel Hasulyo took out the men’s ahead of Annabel’s Lahui Kai teammate, Jayden Jensen.
Click through for more… → READ MORE
Armie Armstrong and Annabel Anderson have won the King And Queen Of The Harbour race in Auckland, New Zealand today. There were some light bumps on offer for competitors on the 25km, semi-downwind course across the Hauraki Gulf.
Click through to see some awesome aerial footage of the race… → READ MORE
Results are in from today’s massive Hanohano Huki Ocean Challenge race down in Mission Bay, San Diego. The Hanohano race, now in its 19th year, is one of the real gems on the racing calendar and always draws a big crowd. This event seems much more about having fun and getting out on the water than any kind of serious elite competition. It’s one of those great community races that give our sport such a great foundation.
The Hanohano always attracts a stellar crowd, however this year may have been a new record as 440 paddlers hit the Short Course (including over 300 on Stand Up Paddle boards). → READ MORE
The first real post I ever did on SUPracer.com was the Top 11 of 2011. It was three years ago last week that I first tried to rank the world’s best paddlers in order – not an easy task in a sport as fragmented as stand up paddle racing.
I probably got things a little more accurate with the Top 12 of 2012 and again with the Top 13 of 2013. However those “power rankings” were always based as much on my gut feeling as any real stats, so 18 months ago I set about building a far more accurate and reliable ranking system… → READ MORE
A brief post just appeared on SUP ATX’s Facebook page and confirms what we all suspected: That the world’s undisputed #1 woman is joining the Lahui Kai race team.
After announcing her departure from long-time sponsor Starboard last week, Annabel Anderson officially joins the Lahui Kai team today and will be paddling the new Brian Szymanski-shaped race boards in 2015.
Click through for details… → READ MORE
World #1 Annabel Anderson has today announced she’s leaving the Starboard team. The New Zealander just put up a lengthy guest post on DistressedMullet.com, where she reflects on four years of victories, memories and pushing the limits of performance.
The only paddler to win the Battle of the Paddle “Double/Double” title and long-time tormenter of male paddlers writes on the theme of change, noting how maintaining the status quo is like “treading water.” → READ MORE
After tallying up the results from seven of the biggest races of the year, Annabel Anderson and Danny Ching have come out on top in the inaugural SUP Champions Tour.
Billed as having the world’s best paddlers at the worlds biggest/most important events, the Champions Tour was created to encourage the elite guys and girls to compete more than just once a year (i.e. not only at the Battle of the Paddle).
The Tour was also designed to “give back” to the events that have helped grow the sport (such as the Carolinas and the Gorges). → READ MORE
We’ve just wrapped up the 2014 Battle of the Paddle here at Salt Creek, California. What a weekend… Action. Drama. Heroics. But most all: Carnage.
Yesterday’s Elite Race saw some of the most exciting stand up paddle racing ever, with a solid south swell rolling into the BOP’s new home of Salt Creek and creating some very memorable moments. Today’s Distance Race was a little mellower, however the performances were just as strong.
Click through for the full results plus the archive of our LIVE BLOG, which includes play-by-play from the racing and plenty of shots of the carnage… → READ MORE
We’ve just wrapped up the second and final day of the 2014 Naish Columbia Gorge Paddle Challenge, with Connor Baxter and Annabel Anderson dominating an all-star field in what will surely be remembered as one of 2014’s best events.
After their respective victories in Saturday’s Course Race, the Starboard duo made it a clean sweep by claiming today’s unique “Double Downwind” event. With the winds lighter than usual for the Gorge (but much better than we’d feared last night), the elite field battled their way up the Columbia Gorge in back-to-back downwind runs. The majority of the world’s top athletes were on show today, which gave us some intense racing and a great spectacle (especially from my vantage point out on the media boat). → READ MORE
Woah… What a race. That was 13 miles of pain. I’m hurting.
Congrats to Danny Ching for muscling his way through this one and to Annabel Anderson for coming out on top despite a huge push from Jenny and Lina. Danny has now won this event three years in a row while Annabel has gone back to back in her first two attempts.
Click through for full results from all the races. → READ MORE