Welcome to 2016, and what a season it’s going to be. From big international races to classic events to new names to watch, I’ve got a feeling it’ll be a great year for stand up paddle racing. Click through to find out why I’m so excited about the 12 months ahead… → READ MORE
The Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships. One of the most prestigious events in the world. For 32 grueling miles across the Ka’iwi Channel (aka the Channel of Bones) between the Hawaiian islands of Molokai and Oahu, paddlers from around the world fight for glory and pride.
The 2014 M2O race is just a few days away and SUPracer.com will have complete live coverage of the race, so stay tuned on Sunday 27th July for one of the biggest days on the SUP calendar…
The season is winding down and the SUP world has already begun looking towards 2016, so we’re currently in the middle of rounding up dates for all of next year’s main events. And no date is bigger, or rather, no date is more prestigious than that of the Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships.
The M2O has taken on mythical proportions in recent years. The 32 mile crossing of the Ka’iwi Channel, aka the Channel of Bones, has become one of the pillars of the international racing season, while the winners become instant legends within the community. → READ MORE
Some really cool water angles in there, along with running commentary that gives us some insights into what was an extremely tough channel crossing this year. → READ MORE
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
To understand this story is to understand how incredibly driven, determined and extraordinarily competitive Kai Lenny is. It’s a story of winning at all costs. But it’s also a story of mutual respect and admiration between two incredible ocean athletes, as you’ll discover at the end. → 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
One of the biggest talking points around Molokai this year was boards. And no board has raised more curiosity than the winning stick of Travis Grant, so I wanted to take a closer look at this “Magic Molokai Board” and find out what makes it so special.
Travis, who is clearly the best paddler in the world right now regardless of what the current rankings say, unleashed one of the all-time greatest performances to claim his second Molokai 2 Oahu crown on Sunday. → 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
The countdown to Molokai is almost complete. In less than 48 hours, 200 odd paddlers will be standing on the beach on Molokai staring out into a big wide ocean. They’ll be squinting their eyes trying to make out the silhouette of Oahu in the distance. On a clear day you can just see it.
Between them and the finish line is the biggest challenge in the world of paddleboarding: The 32 mile Ka’iwi Channel, aka the Channel of Bones. → READ MORE
In less than three days, several of the world’s best paddlers will tackle what is arguably the single most prestigious challenge in our sport: The 32 mile crossing from Molokai 2 Oahu. → READ MORE
The most prestigious race of the year, Molokai 2 Oahu, is only six days away. We’ll be previewing the big race all week, including a look at the contenders for the men’s and women’s crown. We’ll also have live coverage and mid-channel updates from the lead boats on race day.
But to warm up for Molokai Week, here’s a throwback to last year’s race. Bluesmiths produced this great feature on Jimmy Spithill, who competed in the 2014 Molokai solo. → 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
Connor Baxter has just won the Maui 2 Molokai race in Hawaii, further extending the longest winning streak in the history of men’s SUP racing. This was Connor’s sixth straight Maui 2 Molokai crown, dating back to the inaugural event in 2010.
With conditions on the famous downwind run milder than usual over the final five miles, Connor won in a time of 3 hours 13 minutes, nine minutes slower than his 2014 victory. Dark horse Australian Matt Nottage, a definite name to watch in the future, was runner-up while Brazil’s international star Vinnicius Martins took a very strong third place. → READ MORE
Since last week’s announcement that the Battle of the Paddle has been cancelled, at least for 2015 and perhaps indefinitely, the stand up paddling world has been asking one question: What’s going to fill the massive hole left by the Super Bowl of SUP?
The answer is sitting right in front of us… → READ MORE
Some people were worried the new lottery system – introduced this year to deal with unprecedented demand – would thin out the field for the 19th annual edition, however I can safely say this will be the most competitive M2O of all time. → READ MORE
While a lottery will probably annoy those who are always early with their entries, you can’t say it’s not fair. And when space sold out in just a few hours last year, something had to be done differently this time round.
In addition to the lottery, there will be “qualified” athletes that get a walk-up spot in the Ka’iwi Channel. Those include all previous M2O winners as well as top finishers in the 2014 race. There has always been something similar in place, with past champions afforded the respect of having a spot reserved for them no matter if the registration is full or not. → READ MORE
In a sport as fragmented and disorganised as SUP racing, I think it would be great to recognise and celebrate the big, standalone events that support and develop both the community and industry. To help promote them with a collective theme that highlights their significant contribution to the sport.
I say we call them the Majors, and these are the races that I think qualify. The five biggest races in the world this year are… → READ MORE
There were a lot of SUP races this year. We had over 400 listings on the Rogue Race Calendar. We sent 137 race results to the Results by Riviera archive. You couldn’t go a week without your Facebook feed being flooded with photos of SUP races here, there and everywhere.
Some of those races were fun, local events. Some were grand, international spectacles. Most fell somewhere in between. And that’s just fine. Most races don’t need to be grand to be successful, they just need to be well organised, encourage a few extra people to give the sport a try and offer everyone a fun day on the water.
But some races push the boundaries a little more than the average. Some races attract, either through deliberate marketing or incidental brilliance, a disproportionately large amount of attention and elite talent. Quite simply: Some races are a lot more competitive than others. Click through to see the full list and read my overly-thorough analysis… → READ MORE
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, seeing I went a little overboard and typed about 35000 words about this race over the past week or two, I figure these 35 photos will tell the story a little more concisely. So here it is. Molokai 2014 as told by the camera. → READ MORE
Who won the 2014 Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championships? Connor Baxter and Sonni Hönscheid, right? (Plus Travis Baptiste with his insane performance in the stock class.) That’s a pretty straightforward question and answer.
However there were two other winners at this year’s Molokai that went a little unnoticed. And I’m not talking about paddlers, I’m talking about brands. → READ MORE