Battle Ground: Close Look At The BOP Elite Race Course

The Battle of the Paddle Elite Race course mapThree days and counting til the Battle of the Paddle…Three days until the world’s best converge on Doheny State Beach, Dana Point for the biggest SUP race of the year. While there will be 500 – 1,000 individual competitors racing across several different events on Saturday and Sunday, all eyes will be on Saturday afternoon’s main event, the Elite Race.

In terms of prestige and level of competition, this is the big one. The Elite Race is the single toughest race of the year to win, with paddlers from all around the world converging in Southern California to battle it out around the (in)famous M-shaped course. But if you’ve never seen the Battle of the Paddle in person you might be confused when paddlers throw up terms like “Hammer Buoy” and “The Chicane”… so let’s take a closer look at the BOP Elite Race course and see what’s in store this weekend.   → READ MORE

Oh Is There A SUP Race This Weekend…? Four Days And Counting ‘Til The BOP

Battle of the Paddle
Four days and counting… Holy crap. How did that sneak up? Feels like it was only yesterday that we announced Tiki Racing Month, relived the carnage of the infamous Hammer Buoy, took a trip down memory lane, had some fun with numbers, announced a massive new addition to this year’s event and… well, you get the point. We’ve been giving you daily BOP updates all month long in anticipation of the year’s biggest race, but now, suddenly, the race is about to be ON!

At 9am on Saturday morning, on the fabled shores of Doheny State Beach (its name already etched into SUP racing folklore) the 2013 Battle of the Paddle – the sixth edition of the California BOP – will hit the water for two days of insanely competitive and, hopefully, extremely FUN Stand Up Paddling action.

Four days to go… So it’s a good time to reveal exactly what we’ll be giving you with this whole “LIVE COVERAGE OF THE BOP” that we’ve been trumpeting all month.   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle Drug Testing: It’s Just The Beginning

Battle of the Paddle drug testingThere’s a great post over on (which you should totally be following by the way) that gives some perspective on the recent Battle of the Paddle drug testing announcement.

The jist of the article is this: What the Battle of the Paddle is doing is great and will definitely elevate the sport, however it’s only the beginning. In-competition testing should be backed up with random, out-of-competition follow-up testing, though on the other hand that’s an extremely expensive process that stand up paddling probably isn’t ready for. It’s a great read and offers some solid education for paddlers, most of whom would have very little idea about how the USADA/WADA anti-doping process actually works.   → READ MORE

The Road To The Final: Battle Of The Paddle Elite Race Heat Draws

Battle of the Paddle Elite RaceWe’re just five days away from the biggest race of the year, the 2013 Battle of the Paddle at Dana Point, California. On Saturday 28th September the best of the best will line up on the shores of Doheny State Beach for the main event: The Elite Race.

This is the one race of the year that attracts the best talent and the most attention. The bragging rights that go along with an Elite Race title are unmatched. And that’s because it’s such a super hard race to win… Not only do you have to beat the world’s best in the Elite Race Final, but you have to qualify just to even get to the start line.

For the past two years the BOP has been using qualifying heats to manage the size of the Elite Race field. Everyone from Danny Ching to your weekend warrior lines up in the morning heats, but only the top 70 odd paddlers will make it through to the prestigious final in the afternoon. It’s always interesting to watch the Elite Race heats and see who’s in form, who’s playing it safe and who’s firming as a dark horse bet.   → READ MORE

It’s Coming… Eight Days Til Battle (Here’s The Full BOP Schedule)

Battle of the PaddleEight days and counting til the big one: The 2013 Battle of the Paddle California. We’ve already looked at the carnage and the chaos of the buoy turns, taken a trip down memory lane and announced some big changes for to the format for this year. But now let’s take a look at the event itself with the official Battle of the Paddle schedule.

Not exactly the most exciting post you’ve ever read on, but fairly important all the same. So here’s everything you need to know about next weekend…   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle Raises Prize Money, Slightly, To Set New Bar As “Most Lucrative SUP Race”

Battle of the Paddle Prize MoneyBattle of the Paddle organisers have upped the prize money for this year’s race ever so slightly, with line honours bonuses for both men and women in the Distance Race pushing the total prize purse of the world’s most lucrative SUP race to a new level.

The final prize purse at the 2013 Battle of the Paddle will stand at $26,950, after an extra $1,750 was added to the Distance Race. Traditionally it’s been set at $25k, which has been a benchmark many other events have strived to match (but which none have exceeded) over the past five years.   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle: Three Big Changes For 2013 (Including Separate Women’s Final…)

Battle of the Paddle12 days and counting til the Battle of the Paddle…

The pros have started arriving in town and the warm-up races have begun. Last minute training and board testing is taking place, while everyone’s starting to get a little excited (and slightly nervous) about the biggest race of the year.

So what can we expect to see on September 28th & 29th? Well as far as the race format goes, it’ll still largely be the same old BOP that we know and love, though with a few new twists… Apart from the big news about drug testing at the Battle of the Paddle, there are a few other tweaks this year, including some big news about the women’s Elite Race…   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle 2009, The Year Australia Dominated Dana Point (Full Results + Video)

2009 Battle of the PaddleWe continue our countdown to the BOP by looking back at the history of this iconic event. We’ve already taken a trip down memory lane with Chuck “The Terminator” Patterson’s win @ the 2008 Battle of the Paddle and now we skip forward twelve months to 2009, when the famous “M-shape” Elite Race course was introduced for the first time and a couple of Aussies took the locals by storm.

In a year when SUP race board designs were only just starting to be refined, Andrew Logreco led for much of the Elite Race on a custom creation that looked more surfboard/longboard than any kind of modern racing shape. But despite the enigmatic Oahu boy’s heroics early on, in the end it was Jamie Mitchell who took the win and the $10,000 winner’s cheque, while a 14-year-old Slater Trout made a name for himself by claiming second (ahead of a certain someone making their SUP racing debut: Danny Ching).

Click through for race footage plus full results from the second ever BOP Elite Race…   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle Favourite Travis Grant Goes Down With Knee Injury Two Weeks Out

Battle of the Paddle Travis GrantMost serious race fans will agree that one of the few top picks ahead of this year’s Battle of the Paddle is Travis Grant. The Aussie has been on an absolute tear the past nine months, winning several international-level races in Australia and Europe before posting some big results in Hawaii, which culminated in his epic Molokai-2-Oahu victory six weeks ago. Travis is also a former BOP Elite Race champion (Hawaii 2011) and a permanent fixture on the podium.

So with the 2013 California Battle of the Paddle just two weeks away, Travis was considered by many (us included) to be one of the hot favourites for the Elite Race title along with the likes of Connor Baxter and Danny Ching. But unfortunately Travis’ BOP campaign could be over before it’s even begun, after he dislocated his knee while surfing in Hawaii yesterday.   → READ MORE

It’s Official: Battle of the Paddle Will Have Anti-Doping Drug Tests This Year

Battle of the Paddle performance enhancing drugsIt was the single most Instagram’d shot of the 2012 event: The announcement twelve months ago that BOP 2013 would introduce anti-doping tests. We haven’t heard much about it since then but today it all became official, with organisers providing details of how the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) will be overseeing the testing for performance enhancing drugs at this year’s race.

The decision, a first for the Battle, has received a very positive response (no pun intended) from the paddling community, as having USADA on the beach will greatly increase the professionalism of the world’s biggest SUP race as well as the sport of Stand Up Paddling in general.   → READ MORE

WATCH: Another Awesome Vid From The 2012 Battle Of The Paddle

Battle of the Paddle Stand Up Paddleboard raceAs the big Tiki Racing Month banner over there to the right will tell you, there are just 18 days and counting til the 2013 Battle of the Paddle lights up Dana Point, California. Just over two weeks until we get to see the world’s best paddlers duke it out in the world’s biggest SUP race.

We’re going to be bringing you live coverage right across race weekend (September 28th & 29th) while over the next two weeks we’ll be ramping up our pre-BOP coverage with previews, predictions, interviews with and insights from the world’s elite. Until then though, enjoy these five minutes of awesome action (and amping music) from the 2012 edition.    → READ MORE

12 Interesting Stats From The Battle Of The Paddle

Battle of the Paddle Open RaceThere have been seven editions of the Battle of the Paddle since the iconic race kicked off in 2008: 5x in California (2008-) and two in Hawaii (2010 & 2011). In 18 days time we’ll see the eighth edition while later this year we’ll see a third destination with the Battle of the Paddle Brazil, but until then let’s look at some random stats from the past five years.

From winningest paddlers to the most successful countries and a few random states for the trivia nerds, this is the Battle of the Paddle by the numbers…   → READ MORE

Five Of The Greatest Rivalries At The Battle Of The Paddle

Connor Baxter, Jamie Mitchell, Danny ChingThere are certain names that are synonymous with the Battle of the Paddle. Names such as Danny Ching, Candice Appleby, Jamie Mitchell, Travis Grant and Connor Baxter. These fine athletes have dominated the BOP and pushed the sport to new levels, while at the same time creating strong rivalries among themselves.

Rivalries are what make sport so enthralling. Federer vs Nadal. Slater vs Irons. England vs Australia. It gives individuals added motivation to perform while giving fans something extra to get excited about and cheer for. And now thankfully we have a few genuine rivalries in SUP racing as well.

So as part of our 24/7 coverage of the 2013 Battle of the Paddle in partnership with Starboard, today we’re looking at some of those rivalries up close…   → READ MORE

Memory Lane Trip: 2008 Battle Of The Paddle Results + Videos

2008 Battle of the Paddle videoOnly 22 days and counting until the 2013 Battle of the Paddle… On September 28th & 29th hundreds of paddlers from all around the world will converge on Dana Point, California for the sixth annual edition of this iconic SUP race.

But where did this whole BOP craze begin? Well I think it’s a good time to take a stroll down memory lane, waaaay back to 2008 and the first ever Battle of the Paddle…

BOP 2008. This was the event that kicked off the whole SUP racing revolution. So click through to see some memory-lane style video highlights as well as the FULL RESULTS from the first ever Battle…   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle: The Golden Buoy

Battle of the Paddle - Golden BuoyTiki Racing Month continues. In partnership with Starboard, we’ll be giving you daily Battle of the Paddle updates right through September, culminating in our big LIVE coverage of the BOP on September 28th & 29th. Previews & predictions, interviews & insights, history & highlights… Starboard + = Battle of the Paddle.

Today we continue our far-more-in-depth-than-is-really-necessary look at the seemingly insignificant yet extremely important Battle of the Paddle BUOY TURNS. A couple of days ago we highlighted just how important (and chaotic) the Battle of the Paddle “Hammer Buoy” can be. Well now let’s go one step back and take a look at an even more important buoy turn: the very first one. Click through to see why it’s such a big deal…   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle 2013: Only 24 Days To Go (Here’s The ENTIRE RACE From Last Year While You Wait…)

2012 Battle of the Paddle full length videoJust over three weeks until the 2013 Battle of the Paddle California. The BOP. The Big one. The Super Bowl of SUP. Time to do some last minute surf race training and stock up on a few ding repair kits (because there’s ALWAYS carnage and crashes at the Battle).

In case you’ve somehow missed it (Living on Mars? Under a rock? Fingers in your ears?), has teamed up with the good ship Starboard to bring you complete coverage of Battle of the Paddle 2013, aka Tiki Racing Month. From daily updates in the build-up right through to live coverage on race day (September 28th & 29th), Starboard and are your home for the Battle of the Paddle.

Yesterday we saw an epic BOP photo sequence and today we’re taking another look back at last year’s race, this time with the entire, hour-long, official production of the 2012 Battle of the Paddle.   → READ MORE

This Sequence Sums Up Why We Love The Battle Of The Paddle

Battle of the PaddleAs part of Tiki Racing Month – our coverage of the 2013 Battle of the Paddle in partnership with the good folks over at Starboard – we’ll be delivering at least one BOP update each and every day this month. Previews, predictions, interviews, insights and more, all leading up to our massive live coverage of the event on September 28th & 29th.

Yep, is your home for the Battle…

Today let’s have some fun by looking back at the 2012 Battle of the Paddle, which was blessed with perfectly sized waves for a stand up paddle race. Not too big that it became random and chaotic, but just enough surf that we got to see plenty of carnage, especially around the infamous “Hammer Buoy”…   → READ MORE

Battle Of The Paddle 2013: 26 Days And Counting…

Battle of the Paddle CaliforniaOnly 26 days until the 2013 Battle of the Paddle lights up Dana Point, California, with the world’s biggest SUP race and best stand up paddle athletes. In case you somehow missed our not-so-subtle announcement yesterday, is partnering with Starboard to bring you complete coverage of the BOP this year with Tiki Racing Month. From daily updates all month long to LIVE COVERAGE on race day, this is your home for the Battle.

For the next four weeks we’ll be updating you every single day about the Battle of the Paddle California. From previews and predictions to interviews and insights. Photos and video highlights from past Battles through to BOP trivia (Starboard giveaways are coming soon) and more.   → READ MORE

Welcome To Tiki Racing Month: The Countdown To The Battle Of The Paddle Starts NOW

Tiki Racing Month
We’re only four weeks away from the 2013 Battle of the Paddle. The BOP… The Super Bowl of SUP… The largest stand up paddle race in the world… This is the big one. The one race that attracts virtually every top paddler from across the globe. This is where names are made and careers defined.

However the BOP isn’t just the biggest race of the year for the paddlers, it’s also an event that every single SUP fan around the world wants to follow. And they want to follow it LIVE…

Well now, thanks to Starboard and their famous Tiki mascot, that’s exactly what you can do: Starboard will be presenting wall-to-wall live coverage of the Battle of the Paddle here on all month long. From daily BOP updates to live coverage of the race itself, this is your home for complete Battle coverage.

TIKI RACING MONTH runs from September 1st to October 5th and gives you complete Battle of the Paddle coverage in three parts:    → READ MORE