Schweitzer Claims Overall Lead at The Ultimate Waterman

Ultimate Waterman
Zane Schweitzer (HAW) ©The Ultimate Waterman/Cory Scott Imagery

Hawaiian athlete Zane Schweitzer has claimed his third discipline of the 2016 Ultimate Waterman in a thrilling head-to-head duel with defending champion Daniel Kereopa of New Zealand.

The longboard discipline was held at Piha Beach, Auckland today in clean waves of less than 1.0m.

The win has catapulted Schweitzer well out in to the overall lead with a near 800 points over his closest rival Daniel Kereopa.

Schweitzer’s win came at the expense of Kereopa as the two surfers were separated by only 0.10 points – Schweitzer scoring 14.43 to Kereopa’s 14.33.

“I remember this event going on last year and I was hurting watching it because I wanted to be a part of it, this is what I have trained for all of my life,” Schweitzer said after today’s discipline.

“My mindset today was to surf to the criteria, speed, power, flow plus style and grace. It is hard when the surf is that small but I had a few fun rides and I got to play with the waves.” he added.

“I feel grateful to move up the rankings. I have been sitting in fourth place the entire event so to get to the top of the leaderboard is the best feeling.”

Kereopa and Schweitzer both nominated the longboard discipline as their double whammy so the runner up finish for Kereopa elevated him to second on the overall standings, but the gap between the two surfers has extended.

Brazilian Caio Vaz looked polished in his performance finishing in third place with American Danny Ching placing fourth in a surprise result that will help his overall placing.

Ching is expected to be a frontrunner for the final discipline, the 16km Standup Paddleboard Endurance along with double whammy surfer Connor Baxter (HAW).

This evening the new discipline of Underwater Strength Run and Swim takes place at the National Aquatic Centre. The athletes will be going into unknown territory and the individual results will be crucial for those chasing Schweitzer as the frontrunner.

Schweitzer first claimed the Prone Paddleboard discipline last weekend before heading south and winning the Standup Paadleboard on Wednesday.

Forecasts for the finals day tomorrow are for 25 knot winds from the easterly quarter. The strong onshore winds will require the athletes to be transported out to Motuihe Island for a straight downwind 16 km race.

Official Results – Longboard Surfing
1st Zane Schweitzer (HAW)
2nd Daniel Kereopa (NZL)
3rd Caio Vaz (BRA)
4th Danny Ching (USA)
5th Mark Visser (AUS)
5th Connor Baxter (HAW)
7th Manoa Drollet (PYF)
7th Kala Alexander (HAW)

Overall Results (after 5/7 disciplines)
1st Zane Schweitzer (HAW)*
2nd Daniel Kereopa (NZL)*
3rd Danny Ching (USA)*
4th Mark Visser (AUS)*
5th Caio Vaz (BRA)*
6th Manoa Drollet (TAH)*
7th Kala Alexander (HAW)*
8th Connor Baxter (HAW)

* = double whammy discipline has been completed

Source: The Ultimate Waterman

Schweitzer Claims Another Win at The Ultimate Waterman

Image: Cory Scott

Hawaii’s Zane Schweitzer has stung his Ultimate Waterman opponents with back-to-back wins, this time in the Standup Paddleboard Surfing discipline held in Southland today (Wednesday 16th March).

Schweitzer remains in fourth place overall but still has his all-important double whammy discipline of Longboard to go.

Californian Danny Ching retains his lead in the overall points race over Australian Mark Visser but both Schweitzer and today’s runner up Caio Vaz (BRA) have closed the gap. The next discipline will mark the half-way point of the event and the points table is guaranteed to evolve.

The Ultimate Waterman competition continues this week with another discipline set to be contested on Thursday with a good chance that will be shortboard surfing.

Schweitzer posted a 15.2 point heat total for the win. His last wave scored a heat-high 7.60 points out of a possible 10 awarded for three big forehand turns. That wave was enough to turn the heat and push double whammy surfer Vaz in to second.

“We had an epic helicopter ride to the location this morning, we were literally on top of the world at one point and now I am really on top of the world after winning,” Schweitzer said after the competition.

“We had some good competition in the final. I was nervous, I was sitting in second and had to compose myself then I relaxed and got that wave,” he added in reference to the 7.60 point ride.

“I have committed a lot of time to standup paddle in the last few years. But more than anything I am a surfer who plays in the ocean, I am not just a paddler, I am an ocean enthusiast, that’s why I love this event so much and that’s why these wins mean so much to me.”

“I am stoked to rack up points and keep going. I want to win the longboard and make top two in shortboard and then top three in the SUP Race which should put me in a good place to challenge for the overall win.”

Placing second today was World Champion Caio Vaz who had the win taken from his grasp in the last three minutes of the final. It will be a blow for the youngest competitor in the event with the Brazilian missing the win in his chosen double whammy discipline.

New Zealand surfer Daniel Kereopa won the Standup Paddleboard in 2015 but had to settle for third today unable to find the quality waves that Schweitzer and Vaz picked off.

Kereopa sits in sixth place overall with the Longboard discipline shaping up to be a make or break discipline for him as his double whammy.

Placing fourth in the final was Connor Baxter (HAW) who replicated his result from 2015.

Official Results – Standup Paddleboard Surfing

1st – Zane Schweitzer (HAW)
2nd Caio Vaz (BRA)
3rd Daniel Kereopa (NZL)
4th Connor Baxter (HAW)
5th Manoa Drollet (PYF)
5th Kala Alexander (HAW)
7th Danny Ching (USA)
7th Mark Visser (AUS)

Overall Results (after 3/8 disciplines)

1st Danny Ching (USA)*, 3258
2nd Mark Visser (AUS)*, 2978
5th Caio Vaz (BRA)*, 2918
3rd Zane Schweitzer (HAW), 2670
4th Connor Baxter (HAW), 2058
6th Daniel Kereopa (NZL), 1896
7th Manoa Drollet (TAH), 1693
8th Kala Alexander (HAW), 1533

Source: The Ultimate Waterman

The Ultimate Waterman – Prone Paddleboard Race + Video

©The Ultimate Waterman/Cory Scott Imagery

Hawaiian athlete Zane Schweitzer paddled his way to a significant win in the Prone Paddleboard race held at Piha Beach, Auckland today.

The 6km Prone Paddleboard Race was the second of eight disciplines being held in the 2016 Ultimate Waterman event which runs from the 12 – 20 March in New Zealand.

The 22-year old from the island of Maui maintained his place at the front of the lead pack for the entire race before breaking away on the last leg of the final lap to take the win by 2:36 minutes in a time of 41:58.

After two events, Schweitzer has now jumped to third place on the overall rankings behind Danny Ching (USA) who won the Outrigger Canoe Race and Australian Mark Visser.

Schweitzer was charged full of energy after the race.

Can’t see video? Click here.

“This race was way more fun than yesterday, today is a race of technique and ocean awareness, reading the ocean and choosing the right path,” Schweitzer said after the race.

“I am super stoked to come out on top, this result will play a huge role in my overall result. Plus I learnt a lot, it was a blast!” Schweitzer said.

“This race was really different for all of us because nobody specializes in this discipline. In fact seven of eight athletes had not tried our Dolphin Surf Craft boards until 30 minutes before the race. There was a lot to think about and strategy developed on-the-go,” said Schweitzer.

Today’s race runner-up was double whammy surfer Mark Visser who targeted this event to receive double points. Visser was in the leading pack for the entire race before Schweitzer pulled away for the win. Visser now sits in second place on the overall rankings.

©The Ultimate Waterman/Cory Scott Imagery
©The Ultimate Waterman/Cory Scott Imagery

Placing fourth today was Brazilian Caio Vaz who had another battle with New Zealand’s own Daniel Kereopa who finished in fifth.

Manoa Drollet (TAH) finished in sixth place while Hawaiian Connor Baxter placed seventh.

Baxter was looking like one of the form paddlers before a big set of waves washed through the bay, one of which ripped his board from his hands leaving him with 100m swim to shore to pick up his board and dashing any hopes of a top finish.

Kala Alexander (HAW) placed eighth in the race and was one of several athletes who are starting to feel the strain of this grueling event.

A travel day is scheduled tomorrow to find the optimal conditions. The focus turns to wave riding with the shortboard, longboard, standup paddle surf and big wave surfing disciplines scheduled to run. Forecasts are now showing a powerful storm forming under Australia. The storm has already delivered big swells to Western Australia and continues to track east under New Zealand providing several location opportunities for the surfing disciplines.

Official Results – 6km Prone Paddleboard
1st – Zane Schweitzer 41:58
2nd Mark Visser 44:34
3rd Danny Ching 45:02
4th Caio Vaz 45:59
5th Daniel Kereopa 46:01
6th Manoa Drollet 46:07
7th Connor Baxter 52:25
8th Kala Alexander 57:14

Overall Results (after 2/8 disciplines)
1st Danny Ching (USA)*, 2730
2nd Mark Visser (AUS)*, 2450
3rd Zane Schweitzer (HAW), 1670
4th Connor Baxter (HAW), 1388
5th Caio Vaz (BRA), 1198
6th Daniel Kereopa (NZL), 1166
7th Manoa Drollet (TAH), 1110
8th Kala Alexander (HAW), 950

Source: The Ultimate Waterman

Do You Know Why Jobe Aero SUPs are so lightweight?

Image: Jobe

Jobe Aero SUPS are one of the lightest boards on the market. They are making use of the latest construction methods and production techniques. To make the boards extra strong, the bottom and upper layer consist of two actual layers of PVC. One would think this would make the board two times as heavy, but not the Jobe boards!

The reason for that is that when the board is inflated, the first two layers are held together by hundreds of nylon threads. This method is called the drop-stitch technology, because the nylon threads are stitched in the first two layers of PVC. These threads give the SUP-board its form.

On top of the two PVC layers that hold the nylon threads, the second PVC layer is applied. Jobe Aero SUP-boards are unique in that these two layers are pressed together by a machine, a new innovative technique! Normally this is done by hand and it takes many extra glue. Jobe boards therefore contain less glue. The weight of glue for a total board can be up to 2KGs! The result: a much lighter board. Check out the size table below to see the weight of the Jobe boards!

SUP Board weight (incl. fins)
Aero SUP 9.4 7.2 KG
Aero SUP 10.0 8.0 KG
Aero SUP 10.6 9.0 KG
Aero SUP 11.6 9.3 KG
Aero SUP 12.6  9.5 KG
Aero YOGA SUP 10.6 10.0 KG

Source: Jobe

Jobe’s specially designed SUP clothing

Image: Jobe

The Jobe discover series is special clothing designed for both on and off your SUP board. No need to pack a bag with extra clothes. The Discover sportswear series has a casual look, making it perfect to wear during every kind of leisure activity. Start off your day by grabbing a quick coffee at that new barista in town, spend the rest of the morning on your SUP exploring the city’s canals, then go for a well deserved lunch at your favorite lunch room and spend the rest of the afternoon by SUP on that beautiful lake just outside town. All of that in just one outfit!

Jobe is the first SUP brand that releases a special clothing range for SUP. Not only does this technical-advanced clothing look good, it has some awesome features. The most important one is the quick dry function on this clothing range. Once you start looking closer you will also notice it is different from what you have seen before!

Normally the quick dry function will become less effective when you wash it or start sweating in it. The quick dry will last a while but will lose its effectiveness during the season. But not our Discovery Clothing! It has special Quick Dry threading which is sown throughout the clothing, making it impossible to wash out!

As from March the Discover Series will be available on, but you can already pre order.

Source: Jobe

Johnson and Paul Claim Titles at NZ Longboard and SUP Open

Gabrielle Paul (Piha). Image: Col /

Mangawhai surfer Glen Johnson claimed his first career win at the Coast Papamoa New Zealand Longboard and SUP Open held at Papamoa Beach today (Sunday 21st February).

Johnson was joined by another first time winner in young Piha surfer Gabrielle Paul who won the Women’s Longboard Division.

The surf remained around the 1.0m mark all day with moderate cross-offshore winds at Papamoa Domain. Varying tides made for an array of conditions ranging from long peeling waves on the outer banks over the low tide to short and sharp beach break waves on the full tide.

Johnson went one better than the 2015 event where he finished runner up to another finalist today, Owen Barnes (Mnt). Today it was Johnson that chose to surf down the beach from his competitors and capitalised on the empty waves to notch up an 11.5 point heat total for the win.

The stylish natural foot surfers picked off some perfect runners on his forehand managing to get to the nose on several occasions despite the incoming tide making conditions tricky.

Gisborne’s Sam Johnson placed second in the final, less than a point behind Glen with Paul Culpan (Auck) in third and 2015 winner Owen Barnes in fourth place.

Glenn Johnson - Image: Col /
Glen Johnson – Image: Col /

Piha’s Gabrielle Paul claimed a tight win in the Women’s Longboard Division pushing defending champion Alexis Poulter (Waihi Beach) back in to second place despite a late charge for the lead which came up short by less than 1.0 point. Paul finished with a 7.87 point heat total to defeat Poulter, Kiri Binnersley (Mnt) finishing in third and Kelsi McKenney (Mnt) finishing in fourth.

The senior experience of Shane Murrell (Auck) saw him clinch a last minute victory in the Starboard Men’s SUP Division. Murrell placed third at the National Championships in January and continued his excellent form with a win at today’s event. Murrell was sitting in third place for much of the final before he edged over a set late in the final where heat leader Karl Aarsen (WGM) could not. Murrell went on to score a 6.33 point ride which was enough to elevate him to first, bumping Aarsen back to second. Ollie Houghton (Auck) placed third in the final with Murrell’s son Oscar finishing in fourth.

Like 14-year-old Paul, Gisborne’s Stella Smith, who is only 13, won the Starboard Women’s SUP Division. It was Alexis Poulter that again played bridesmaid gunning for a late win but coming up short by less than 0.50. Smith is an all-round waterman having only last week taken back-to-back national wins on her shortboard as well as successfully competing in surf lifesaving events. Auckland’s Pea Strickland placed third in the final ahead of Naiomi Madeiros (Auck) in fourth.

Previous to Owen Barnes finishing fourth in the Open Men’s Division final, he defended his title in the Over 40 Longboard Division. Barnes crushed his competitors in the final posting a 13.17 point heat total out of a possible 20. Orewa surfer Brendon Callaghan finished in second place ahead of Mal Brady (Mnt) in third and James Atutahi (Mnt) in fourth.

It was another local surfer in Jeremy Williams that claimed the On The Way RV Over 50 Longboard Division title. Williams defeated Mark Hoyle (Orewa) who finished in second ahead of double finalist Brendon Callaghan in third and Peter De Mooij (Mnt) in fourth.

Thomas Kibblewhite (Red Beach) won the Logger Expression Session.

Ollie Houghton (Auck) won the Starboard King of the Waves race which comprised three laps of the 1.0km course in and out of the waves. Houghton opened up a massive lead of the first leg which he held throughout the race. Armie Armstrong (Auck) finished in second place ahead of Jeremy Stephenson (Auck) in third.

The Coast Papamoa NZ Longboard and SUP Open brings together longboard and stand up paddleboard surfers from around New Zealand eyeing wins across the eight divisions contested over one day.

This is the third year the Open has been held at Papamoa Beach.

Coast Papamoa Beach development manager Kranish Reddy says it is a fantastic event for surfing and for Papamoa.

“We are proud to sponsor an event that embraces the spirit of this wonderful beachside community that we live in. As a popular surf beach, Papamoa is the perfect location,” he says.

“It is a great opportunity for locals and visitors alike to enjoy some action on the water, while soaking up some beautiful Bay of Plenty scenery.”

Coast Papamoa Beach is a premium, masterplanned, coastal development, at Papamoa, spanning 24 hectares.

Please see below for final results from the Coast Papamoa Beach NZ Longboard and SUP Open completed at Papamoa Beach today (Sunday 21st February 2016).

Men’s Longboard Quarterfinals
Heat 1
Owen Barnes (Mnt), 12.5, 1, Sam Johnson (Gis), 11.9, 2, Thomas Kibblewhite (Auck), 11.2, 3, Bruce Shortbridge, 1.53, 4
Heat 2
Zen Wallis (Piha), 12, 1, Paul Culpan (Auck), 6.7, 2, Branko Vela (Auck), 6, 3, Andy Collins (Mnt), 4.43, 4
Heat 3
Glen Johnson (Auck), 8.27, 1, Matt Hands (Mnt), 6.9, 2, Michael Gray (Auck), 2.17, 3, Charles Vujcich (Napier), 0.5, 4

Men’s Longboard Semifinals
Heat 1
Sam Johnson (Gis), 15.67, 1, Paul Culpan (Auck), 12, 2, Zen Wallis (Piha), 8.47, 3
Heat 2
Owen Barnes (Mnt), 13.33, 1, Glen Johnson (Auck), 8.87, 2, Matt Hands (Mnt), 6.27, 3

Men’s Longboard Division Final
Glen Johnson (Auck), 11.5, 1, Sam Johnson (Gis), 10.7, 2, Paul Culpan (Auck), 9.67, 3, Owen Barnes (Mnt), 9.43, 4

Starboard Men’s Stand Up Paddleboard Division Quarterfinals
Heat 1
Armie Armstrong (Auck), 9.6, 1, Leigh Hawes , 4.57, 2, Stuart Holland (Rag), 4.43, 3, Jeremy Stephenson (Auck), 3.73, 4
Heat 2
Shane Murrell (Auck), 12.5, 1, David Storck (Auck), 5.93, 2, Bryan Evans (Auck), 2.47, 3, Lynden Kennings (WGM), , N/S
Heat 3
Ollie Houghton (Auck), 8.73, 1, Gavin Houghton (Auck), 6.53, 2, Shaan Miller (Auck), 5.93, 3, Jack Evans (Auck), 5.53, 4
Heat 4
Oscar Murrell (Auck), 12.33, 1, Karl Aarsen (WGM), 10.17, 2, Mark Jones (Mnt), 6.53, 3, Cormac McCulloch, 3.43, 4

Starboard Men’s Stand Up Paddleboard Semifinals
Heat 1
Karl Aarsen (WGM), 14.77, 1, Ollie Houghton (Auck), 14.73, 2, Armie Armstrong (Auck), 13.6, 3, David Storck (Auck), 6.13, 4
Heat 2
Shane Murrell (Auck), 10.97, 1, Oscar Murrell (Auck), 7.57, 2, Gavin Houghton (Auck), 7.33, 3, Leigh Hawes (Auck), 4.27, 4

Starboard Men’s Stand Up Paddleboard Division Final
Shane Murrell (Auck), 12.4, 1, Karl Aarsen (WGM), 11.2, 2, Ollie Houghton (Auck), 10.7, 3, Oscar Murrell (Auck), 5.07, 4

Duck Point Wines Women’s Longboard Division Final
Gabi Paul (Piha), 7.87, 1, Alexis Poulter (Waihi Beach), 6.9, 2, Kiri Binnersley (Mnt), 6.23, 3, Kelsi McKenny (Mnt), 5.33, 4, Marguerite Vujcich (Napier), 4.6, 5

Starboard Women’s Stand Up Paddleboard Division Final
Stella Smith (Gis), 8.6, 1, Alexis Poulter (Waihi Beach), 8.37, 2, Pea Strickland (Auck), 8.33, 3, Naiomi Madeiros, 3.6, 4, Katie-Marie Jervis, 1.6, 5

Over 40 Men’s Longboard Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Owen Barnes (Mnt), 15.7, 1, James Atutahi (Mnt), 10.6, 2, Andy Collins (Mnt), 5.43, 3, Tatana Heke (Mnt), 5.27, 4
Heat 2
Brendon Callaghan (SAF), 13.2, 1, Mal Brady (Mnt), 9.1, 2, Whare Heke (Mnt), 8.43, 3, Guy Rencher (Mnt), 7.83, 4

Over 40 Men’s Longboard Division Final
Owen Barnes (Mnt), 13.2, 1, Brendon Callaghan (SAF), 7.5, 2, Mal Brady (Mnt), 5.63, 3, James Atutahi (Mnt), 4.1, 4

On The Way RV Over 50 Men’s Longboard Division Semifinals
Heat 1
Brendon Callaghan (SAF), 10.7, 1, Mark Hoyle (Auck), 10.17, 2, Bruce Shortbridge (Mnt), 8.83, 3, Mal Brady (Mnt), 7.9, 4, Marguerite Vujcich (Napier), 1.07, 5
Heat 2
Peter De Mooij (Mnt), 6.83, 1, Jeremy Williams (Mnt), 5.77, 2, Paul Halford (TGA), 5, 3, David Storck (Auck), 3.15, 4

On The Way RV Over 50 Men’s Longboard Division Final
Jeremy Williams (Mnt), 12.7, 1, Mark Hoyle (Auck), 9.37, 2, Brendon Callaghan (SAF), 8.43, 3, Peter De Mooij (Mnt), 7.1, 4

Starboard King of the Waves Race
1, Ollie Houghton (20:10), 2, Armie Armstrong 21:55, 3, Jeremy Stephenson (22.54)

Source: Surfing NZ

Sunset Beach stars at SUP World Tour Opener

Photo: Brian Bielmann / Waterman League

It was a day to remember at Sunset Beach today, as the World’s best were able to get a taste of this iconic break at its very best. The morning greeted us almost flat, with no swell to speak of, but the buoys indicating a major swell on its way, meaning that the Ocean was clean and groomed. By the time the swell started to show as we past the 8am mark, it was clear we were in for something special.

By 11am, the sets were some of the most beautiful and groomed looking walls imaginable, as barrels were becoming common place, as were scores in the excellent range. By 1pm, it was on fire, with a solid 6 – 8ft Hawaiian scale swell running with the occasional bombing 10ft set to keep the athletes on their toes, as we witnessed a day to remember, and according to many sources, one of the most memorable contest days at Sunset in history in terms of the caliber of conditions.

This opening shot is Noa Ginella’s (Naish) 9 point ride and showcases the beauty that was today’s conditions at Sunset, as he threaded this all the way through, with a clean carve to finish, making it one of the standout waves of the day. Noa looked in his element today, and there is no doubt that he is someone to look out for as we come into the quarterfinals when the competition picks back up again over the coming days.

There will be no contest tomorrow as it is a national holiday here in the US (President’s Day), but competition will resume as early as Tuesday, if not Wednesday morning with the quarters thru finals of what has been nothing short of a spectacular event so far.

While James Casey (JP Australia) is not the newest face on Tour (having competed over the last few years across many of the events), it seems that 2016 has seen him step his performance up to a whole new level as he has clearly established himself as one of the standouts of the event here at Sunset.

With the surf suiting his style of power surfing perfectly, James was also masterful with his wave selection, picking off the best sets and milking them with a mixture of power turns and even barrel rides. His 9.73, the highest score of the day exemplified his form, as we look forward to see how this up and coming Australian fares when we pick competition back up with the quarters thru Finals.

Mo Freitas (Focus SUP) once again put together a flawless performance today at Sunset Beach with an 18 point heat score total and a 9.67 ride that, had he made it out of the barrel on the inside, would have secured him a 10 point right without a doubt.

Many said that his performance today was a benchmark of SUP surfing excellence, as Mo continues to be one of the major driving forces in high performance stand up paddling, and there is no doubt that his full rail power surfing approach is so ideally suited to Sunset Beach’s unique arena.

Masa Motohashi is one of Japan’s great hopes on the Surfing World Tour as we have seen him feature and stand out at many events over the last few years, as he leads the charge for a growing field of Japanese athletes entering into the global scene. However, this year at Sunset, he came into his own, and there is no doubt that it is a sign of things to come, as Masa dominated his heat to advance on into the quarterfinals amidst a wealth of World Championship Tour talent.

We are excited to see how Masa fares when competition resumes, as he will come up against 2015 World Champion Caio Vaz (Art in Surf), local legend Kala Alexander and the young upstart who made waves today at Sunset Beach, Marcio Grillo from Brazil.

We have mentioned just a few of the performances from today that stood out, but the fact is that there were stand out performances heat after heat that continued to raise the bar for performance Stand Up Paddlesurfing at its very best, with Sunset Beach offering up the ideal ingredients to make it all come together.

Defending World Champion Caio Vaz (Art in Surf) continued his assault on the 2016 World Title Race with another solid performance, as did 4 times World Champion Kai Lenny (Naish), who always looks so at home here at Sunset Beach. Ironically, these two athletes are two of three athletes to have ever taken victory at this iconic World Tour Opener, so will clearly be ones to watch out for as we head into the Final Day of action.

Meanwhile, other stand out performances came from contenders who were perhaps not on everyone’s lips coming into this event. We have mentioned Masa Mothashi above, but coming all the way from Denmark and more known for his racing skills, Casper Steinfath (Naish) put on a couple of memorable performances today proving that he is a real double threat and is now sitting in the quarterfinals.

Marcio Grillo from Brazil was also one of the major surprises from today’s spectacular day of competition, finding a string of beautiful barrels to earn his spot in the quarterfinals, while Giorgio Gomez (Infinity) found his groove out at Sunset, picking off some of the best waves of the day to advance alongside Mo Freitas (Focus SUP).

Source: Waterman League

Izzi Gomez wins the 2016 Turtle Bay Pro

Izzi Gomez. Image: Waterman League

Izzi Gomez (Starboard) is 2x World Champion and until now, has put an unmistakeable mark on the sport of Stand Up Paddling having at some point won every single event on Tour, that is except for Hawaii…

While the Hawaii leg of the Stand Up World Tour has somehow been a stumbling block for the young Floridian talent, in 2016, Izzi showed no signs of any weaknesses at this year’s Turtle Bay Pro, putting on an impressive display of high performance surfing and demonstrating that time spent in the islands pays off as she takes the well deserved victory of the season at Turtle Bay.

Izzi’s powerful and progressive style once again not only wows the crowds and judges alike, but keeps her on top of the World after Stop 1 of the 2016 Stand Up World Tour.

As one of the USA’s leading Stand Up Paddle athletes, Fiona Wylde (Starboard) continues to go from strength to strength and position herself as one of the sport’s leading Ladies, having finished the season on a high last year on the Stand Up World Series in second place and then putting on a stellar performance again here at the Turtle Bay Pro to finish runner up at Stop 1 of the Stand Up World Surfing Tour.

Like Izzi, Fiona is another one leading the way with her progressive style and critical surfing, demonstrating that there is real talent in the sport and that the performance level amongst the girls continues to sky rocket. Drawing on her multi-sport background, Fiona’s committed, and driving bottom turn in particular draws parallels with the likes of Kai Lenny (Naish), Zane Schweitzer (Starboard) and Bernd Roediger (Naish), who’s windsurfing background has provided phenomenal fundamentals for Stand Up Paddling that were clearly evident here at Turtle Bay.

This year’s Tour is full of impressive talent, and there is no doubt that it is going to be the most competitive yet as we are excited to see it all unfold.

There is no doubt that Shakira Westdorp (Starboard) from Australia made her presence felt here at Stop #1 of the 2016 Stand up World Tour at Turtle Bay, posting the single highest score of the contest and continually posting scores in the excellent range throughout.

While it looked as though she was destined to make it to the Finals once again, as she did in 2015, it was not to be this year, as she came up against Fiona Wylde (Starboard) in the semis who was just able to edge ahead of the talented Australian Surfer.

However, there is no doubt that Shakira Westdorp will be one to look out for in 2016 with her radical and aggressive surfing style. She has started well and demonstrated that she is set to be one of the biggest threats on the Women’s Tour, finishing in 3rd place here at the 2016 Turtle Bay Pro.

2013 World Champion Nicole Pacelli from Brazil feels right at home here at Turtle Bay, having won 2 out of 3 of the events here on Oahu’s Fabled North Shore and spending much of the winter out here training in the powerful Hawaiian surf.

This year was no different, as she has once again upped her game and is looking better than ever coming into the 2016 season, with strong performances throughout the day on her way to the semi finals, just falling short to the current World Champ Izzi Gomez (Starboard), leaving her having to settle for 3rd.

While she will be disappointed not to regain her Turtle Bay title, a 3rd place finish is a good start to the year for this Brazilian talent, as she sets her sights on recapturing the World Title in 2016 and continuing the Brazilian surge on the World Tour.

Source: Waterman League

Hanohano Huki Ocean Challenge to kick off WPA Race Season

Image: SIC Maui

SIC Maui will be in San Diego as Hanohano Outrigger Canoe Club and Huki Outrigger/Surfski present the 20th Annual Hanohano Huki Ocean Challenge. The Hanohano challenge will be held on Mission Bay down in San Diego, CA on January 23rd, 2016.

The SIC team will be at the event offering demos out of our tent from 7:00AM-2:00PM on a first come first serve basis, so come out early if you want to try an X-Series, Bullet Series or F-14 board.

Hanohano Huki Ocean Challenge, a WPA sanctioned points race and flagship event for the SoCal Winter Racing Series, is one of the Longest Running Paddlesport Races in California offering access to all paddle crafts including OC-1 & 2, Surfski, Traditional Paddleboard, Standup Paddleboard and Kayak. The Hanohano Ocean Challenge attracts top level professional athletes and beginners from ages 7-80.

The Hanohano Ocean Challenge kicks off the 2016 WPA race season and will also offer double points to all competitors that are accumulated by region for WPA rankings. All points earned in the short course also will be included towards the WPA National Race series and the points earned in SUP 14’ Men and SUP 12’6 Women will count towards the 2015 Salt Life Cup (points earned from the WPA National races in 2016) and bonus money to the season’s top point earners.

For more about the Hanohano Huki Ocean Challeng, click here.

Source: SIC Maui