The ICF Worlds are shaping up to be a pretty big deal as top athletes sign on (…but I still have a few questions)

As soon as the International Canoe Federation (ICF) announced it would be hosting a SUP World Championship in China this year, the messages started hitting my inbox.

“Who’s going?” “You reckon everyone will support it?” “Is such and such racing?” “Should I go?”

While running a successful SUP race involves far more than simply attracting a few big names, it certainly is one of the easier metrics to gauge interest in an event–especially when that event is billed as a “world championship.”

With the inaugural ICF Worlds just 10 days away (Oct 25-27), we can finally start to answer that question. As of last week, entries for the ICF SUP World Championships stood at 122 athletes from 35 nations.   → READ MORE

The sport lives on in SoCal: ‘Dana Point Harbor Hoot’ is carrying the torch for the original home of SUP

While many of us got misty-eyed and nostalgic over the BOP anniversary last week, some might have been left wondering whether or not the SUP scene was still alive in Southern California. While there are still a string of local events, we haven’t heard much out of Dana Point — the “spiritual home” of the sport since 2008 — after the BOP’s successor the Pacific Paddle Games was put on ice earlier this year.

But Dana Point ain’t done yet, and neither are many of the original paddlers that helped light the flame over a decade ago.   → READ MORE

WATCH: Beautiful recap of the unique new “Paradise Race” from the Alpine Lakes Tour

Here’s a beautiful recap from the latest round of the Alpine Lakes Tour in Europe.

A few weeks ago, the Tour premiered a new concept called the “Alpine Paradise Race” high up in the Italian Alps. Competitors had to hike through the wilderness just to get to the start line, with the pre- and post-race festivities taking place in a mountain refuge hut.   → READ MORE

Foil vid of the week: “Downwind Danger Zone” 😂

Jeremy Riggs or Tom Cruise? Check out this great little clip from one of Maui’s original downwind supremos and now a fully-fledged foil fanatic. Filmed recently along the classic “Kihei” downwind run on Maui’s south side.

Must be watched with sound on 😂

(If you don’t get it, you’re too young.)

WATCH: “That” wave from the BOP Salt Creek (five years ago today)

It’s exactly five years to the day since the Battle of the Paddle took over Salt Creek and gave us one of the most memorable races in the sport’s history.

After I posted that flashback photo this morning, I dug through the archives and found the video of the same wave. Oh the carnage.   → READ MORE

FLASHBACK: The crazy “Battle of the Paddle” at Salt Creek was exactly five years ago today

Giving new meaning to the term “Flashback Friday,” today marks the fifth anniversary of perhaps the most famous (or infamous) race in the history of SUP.

The Battle of the Paddle at Salt Creek was one for the ages. Not only was it the final edition of the event that single-handedly kickstarted the sport but it was also held in some of the craziest conditions we’ve ever seen.

There was carnage, there was chaos and there was no shortage of drama as perfectly-clean, six-foot swell rolled through Salt Creek in Southern California on the weekend of October 4th and 5th, 2015. Virtually every single top athlete in the sport was there and a good chunk of them are in this photo.    → READ MORE

Last-minute surprise: The ISA Worlds are actually happening this year (in… El Salvador?)

In a surprise announcement that will create mild chaos for its national federations, the International Surfing Association (ISA) has just confirmed the 2019 SUP & Paddleboard World Championship is actually happening after all. The event will be hosted by the Central American nation of El Salvador (yes, El Salvador) from 23 November – 1 December.

No, they’re not announcing the 2020 Worlds, the ISA is today announcing the 2019 Worlds. In October.    → READ MORE