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
The final event of the 2014 Stand Up World Series
is happening this weekend has just wrapped up on the North Shore of Oahu. Based out of Turtle Bay, which sits just down the road from famed breaks such as Waimea, Sunset and Pipeline, the World Series Finals will see a very small but hyper-elite band of young guns battle it out in what could be some very interesting conditions.
One week after the all-time, wave-fueled carnage at Salt Creek, the surf at Turtle Bay looks set to throw up another chaotic weekend of racing. Yesterday the North Shore was tipping a solid 10-12 ft plus (20 ft faces) and while the swell is expected to slightly dip today and tomorrow, I’m confident there will be some entertaining chaos to enjoy. → READ MORE
Check out this very cool little clip from Mo Freitas, highlighting the super elite Distance Race that went down at the Huntington World Series last week. I love the short, sharp, edgy style of the edit. It’s not the longest stand up paddling video you’ll ever see but it actually does a very good job of summarising the entire, hour-long race.
Oh and the clip also includes footage of *that* wave, where the entire elite field was taken out in the first 15 seconds by the punchy Huntington shorey… → READ MORE
The Stand Up World Series @ Huntington delivered some very entertaining moments over the weekend. Despite the roller-coaster nature of the whole World Series enterprise, this event seemed to deliver on all fronts.
One of the areas the World Series has always done a solid job is getting slick videos up on YouTube just hours after the event. So check out these video highlights from Huntington Beach, which feature some great carnage in the punchy HB shorebreak. → READ MORE
Results and recap from the racing half of the Huntington Beach Pro, which finished just moments ago. The event saw a very solid group of young stars hit Southern California for a serious warm-up ahead of the Battle of the Paddle.
This event was the penultimate stop of the always dramatic (quite often for the wrong reasons) Stand Up World Series and, with the BOP just two weeks away, was a great chance to see who’s in form heading into the biggest race of the year.
It was cool to see some powerful and determined performances from some very dedicated athletes, however the weekend belonged to Connor Baxter and Candice Appleby. → READ MORE
Euro Tour. Week #… (I dunno, I’ve lost count). Italy.
I know it sounds crazy, but there was actually a SUP race happening somewhere other than Hawaii on the weekend. While Connor, Travis, Sonni, Jenny and co. were battling it out across the Ka’iwi Channel, all the way over in Rome, Italy there was a very solid crew competing at the Italia Surf Expo’s SUP Challenge.
Despite going up against a talented string of Euro boys, as well as Aussie whipper snapper Jake Jensen, in the end it was the Danish Viking, Casper Steinfath, taking out the crown and capping off a memorable summer of racing in Euro land. → READ MORE
Euro Tour. Week 10. Germany. This weekend it was off to the northern German island of Fehmarn, where the “SUP World Cup” kicked off (see what we did there?) with a small but elite field of talent on display. Saturday saw the sprints while Sunday it was the long distance race, with combined results determining the overall event placings. Despite the small field, there were still a few seriously big names battling it out this weekend.
In Saturday’s sprints the Kai/Connor rivalry clicked into gear straight away, with the two young superstars locked in a duel right to the line. Kai narrowly took the honours on day one, however Connor had other ideas for the distance race on day two. → READ MORE
Euro Tour. Week 8. Finland…
The Euro Tour simply refuses to end. While the traditional European summer racing season runs from mid May til the end of June, this year it looks set to extend for a whole nother month.
Let’s call it the Euro Tour: Encore. → READ MORE
Euro Tour. Week 5. France.
While some of us headed down here to Noja, Spain this week, a bunch of the top guys drove north to France for the Oleron Island Stand Up Paddle Challenge.
On show this weekend are the likes of Eric Terrien, Titouan Puyo, Beau O’Brian, Casper Steinfath, Zane Schweitzer and plenty of other top guys.
Saturday update: Titou shows once again he’s a master in the bumps. Sunday update: Zane steals the sprints and the overall title. → READ MORE
It’s week #4 of the Euro Tour and this weekend we’re in the awesome city of Bilbao, Spain for another big race: The Bilbao World SUP Challenge. The action wrapped up just moments ago and it was Zane Schweitzer and Angie Jackson who claiming the overall event titles.
This event attracted a pretty solid lineup of talent; I’d say there were around 15 paddlers competing who would be on the top level internationally. Set right near the iconic Guggenheim Museum, the event involved sprint racing on Saturday before a 13km cruise through the city on Sunday.
Here’s how it all went down. → READ MORE
A small but elite field of young talent has launched the 2014 Stand Up World Series in Brazil this weekend, with Connor Baxter drawing first blood by making it a clean sweep of both the Sprint and Long Distance races. Meanwhile on the women’s side it was Angie Jackson all the way, with the reinvigorated Aussie proving too strong for a select group of local and international paddlers.
The Connor/Kai rivalry, the recurring theme of the 2013 Series, returned on Day One of the Alagoas Pro, with the two superstars battling all the way to the finish line in the sprints. Connor got the win by half a second, while one wave behind was Aussie Jake Jensen, a paddler that I (and many others in Australia) have tipped to be one of the World Series title contenders this year. Coming home 4th was Zane Schweitzer, while rounding out the top 5 in the sprints was the Danish Viking, Casper Steinfath. → READ MORE
Following an international game of musical chairs and a fair bit of to-ing and fro-ing, the finalised Stand Up World Series schedule for 2014 has now been released. The big news is that the Finals @ Turtle Bay – the Series’ marquee event and the last stop on the tour – has been moved back one week to avoid a clash with the Battle of the Paddle. Other updates include the official move of Hamburg and a potential for Bilbao to get back on the World Series.
However it’s the move to prevent a clash with the BOP that was the biggest and most interesting update when World Series organisers released their latest press release this morning. → READ MORE
Remember that public service announcement we put out a few days ago? The one that said don’t book flights to Hamburg because there was a strong rumour that the event was about to change its previously confirmed dates? Well, unfortunately the rumour is true…
In a decision that can only be described as *facepalm*, organisers of the SUP World Cup (also known as the Stand Up World Series Hamburg) have decided to move their event, both the dates and the location. Instead of their scheduled June 28 weekend, the event will now run on July 19 & 20. And instead of inner-city Hamburg, the race will now be held 1-2 hours to the north, on the sparsely-populated island of Fehmarn. This move comes despite all logic saying it’s a bad idea… → READ MORE
Ok so unless you were living under a rock the past few days, you would have heard about the SUP Athletes Association’s “Ugly Truth About Prize Money” article by now. The story detailed the rarely-mentioned but all-too-common practice of SUP races failing to pay their prize money on time.
Well if you’ve been following the ensuing debate, you’ll also know that the the Stand Up World Series has taken the brunt of the fallout. With fairly good reason too: the Stand Up World Series has failed to pay on time at multiple events, with athletes sometimes waiting 4-8 months to collect their prize cheques. Sure, there have always been reasons (some of them even quite legitimate), however the fact remains that it’s been the athletes who have had to cop it on the chin.
Well now the Stand Up World Series has given us their official response. Will this put an end to the drama? Click to read the full quote… → READ MORE
Just a friendly public service announcement: Don’t book your tickets to Hamburg for the Stand Up World Series event in June just yet, looks like we could be in for yet another date change…
While the World Series schedule was supposedly finalised two months ago, it sounds like a few events aren’t so certain after all. One of those is Hamburg, which, if the date change rumour proves to be true, could seriously mess up the European schedule (and the travel plans of many international paddlers). → READ MORE
The 2014 Stand Up World Series schedule has just been spotted, with next year’s tour looking set to be a slimmed-down affair featuring six stops around the world plus the “Finals at Turtle Bay” that traditionally finish the season. There’s also a new stop set for Australia, which, if confirmed, would join the established events of Abu Dhabi, Brazil, Hamburg, Chicago, Huntington and Turtle Bay.
Seven events is the smallest, most streamlined season the World Series has aimed for since its inception in late 2011. This new lineup of events now provides for an even, six-month “season” between early April and early October, which most paddlers will agree is a good move. → READ MORE
The waves at Turtle Bay delivered a pretty stunning finale to the 2013 Stand Up World Series on the weekend.
We’ve already posted an in-depth recap, videos and a close look at Kai Lenny and “that” wave… so we’ll spare you the trouble of reading anything else and just let these epic pics do the talking. Here are the best shots from Sunday’s sprint races… → READ MORE
Kai Lenny: That event. That race. “That” wave…
As he rounded the final buoy and looked set to clinch the season-deciding race by a clean margin, the wave gods decided to throw one more obstacle at Kai Lenny.
A bomb set. The wave of the day.
A wave designed for boards much shorter than 12 foot six inches. A wave that even the two-time SUP surfing World Champ couldn’t negotiate on his yellow, carbon-wrapped, Naish race board.
Kai went down, hard, and suddenly his race (and season) were in jeopardy. Which made it that much better for those of us watching… → READ MORE
Watch some awesome video highlights from the World Series Finals @ Turtle Bay, where macking surf made for some pretty epic knockout sprint races yesterday. In case you’ve somehow missed the results, photos and recap from the Stand Up World Series Finals: Jake Jensen took out the distance race and the overall event while Kai Lenny won the sprints and the overall 2013 season title. Over in the women’s Mariko Strickland won the distance and the event, Olivia Piana took the sprints while Annabel Anderson skipped the final event of the season but still easily took out the 2013 title.
The highlight was definitely the sprints, where solid waves, combined with totally-not-made-for-waves-of-this-size 12’6 race boards, delivered a fairly spectacular finish to the season. Click through to watch a video recap of both days… → READ MORE
Well that was fun to watch…
Kai Lenny has just taken out the sprints in absolutely macking surf on the North Shore, somehow stealing the overall 2013 Stand Up World Series from Connor Baxter in the process. Australia’s young gun Jake Jensen was the overall winner this weekend though, with a third in the sprints plus his victory in yesterday’s distance race enough to give him both the “World Series Finals” event title and leapfrog him into third place overall for the 2013 season… → READ MORE