The Waterman League has announced the final schedule for its bold new APP World Tour, the rebranded version of the old Stand Up World Series that comes with a lot of new hype alongside a major new investment round that may finally see the League fulfill the ambitious vision it’s been working towards for more than half a decade.
After a determined but under-funded five years that saw the World Series run on a shoe-string and often encounter financial difficulties, the Waterman League has landed a multi-million dollar investment from a Hong Kong-based private equity firm that will give them a fresh new start and secure the elite circuit for at least the next few years. → READ MORE
These are interesting times for the Waterman League. The fledgling company that’s been trying to establish a professional, global racing tour for the past half a decade is now on the brink. On the brink of finally going big, but also on the brink of going totally bust.
For the fourth year in a row, and despite months of promises to the contrary, the Waterman League has begun a new season without having paid for the last one. Athletes are owed tens of thousands of dollars from season 2015, while there are serious doubts about several of the proposed events on the 2016 Stand Up World Series schedule.
But despite all the problems, the Waterman League is confidently talking up a big future. And in some ways they have a good reason to be. Here’s what we know so far… → READ MORE
The Stand Up World Series is a fascinating part of our sport. Almost five years after it began, the Waterman League’s bold vision of a pro tour for the sport’s top athletes has been both a success and a failure, depending on how you look at it. The franchise has attracted outside sponsors and mainstream media, but continually stumbles by not paying the paddlers on time, canceling events and failing to attract many of the top names.
I want to love the World Series. I really do. I’ve given it more positive coverage over the years than most. But as much as I admire their hard work and resilience, following the Waterman League often feels like watching Bill Murray in Groundhog Day, only nobody’s laughing. The Stand Up World Series is equal parts excitement and frustration for the athletes, the fans, the brands and the media. → 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
I wish I didn’t have to write this post. Nobody likes whinging about money. Elite paddlers don’t race to try and get rich, they race because they love paddling, they love exploring new destinations and they love the camaraderie of the paddling community. They love having fun. If anyone was trying to earn a cosy life from being a professional stand up paddler, they’d obviously be in the wrong sport.
And in fact the vast majority of SUP races don’t even offer prize money. They don’t need to. Most races can attract plenty of paddlers simply because the event is going to be a fun time on the water.
However if an event does decide to offer prize money, whether it’s $2,000 or $20,000, then you’d kinda expect that it would be paid to the winners on time. But no, unfortunately that doesn’t always happen…
While the vast majority of race organisers do a great job, there are still far too many events (including some of the biggest races in the world) that are failing to pay on time or, in extreme cases, not paying at all. This is obviously hurting our sport and needs to be resolved, so the SUP Athletes Association took a closer look at the issue. Their post set tongues wagging on Facebook this morning, however instead of just banging on drums and complaining, SUPAA has actually come up with some logical, reasonable solutions to the problem, solutions that could help SUP racing become a better and healthier sport. → READ MORE