22 April 2016
The first race of the 2016 Bay Union Surfski Series kicked off in ideal, light south westerly conditions last Sunday and the new course and fun categories went down well with all paddlers! A big thanks to those that dressed up and embraced the day’s theme.
The racing was super hot right from the get-go, with a ding dong battle between Herman Chalupsky and Wade Krieger unfolding in the men’s singles clash. Herman was the first to open up a lead, only to be hunted down and out witted at the finish by the younger, determined Wade who was delighted to take his first win in a winter series race.
The last podium position went right to the line with Gene Prato – paddling for Team Bay Union – edging out Luke Nesbit in the dying stages.
The ladies’ clash was also a tight battle with Hayley Nixon opening a gap early on and then fending off Nicole Russell for the entire 12km course to take the win.
A big thanks to Bay Union for the support of the series and the Bay Union Season Starter. From the awesome prizes that were up for grabs to the great gift of the beanie to all the paddlers, Bay Union have gone out of their way to support the paddling community through their title sponsorship of the series and incredible generosity. Find out more about Bay Union at www.bayunion.co.za.
Race 2 – Bay Union King of the Bay presented by Zurich (Sunday, 24 April @ 9am)
Paddling out of the Durban port’s mouth is a once-a-year experience for surfski paddlers! Starting from the old Stella Canoe Club old base, paddlers follow the shipping channel for 10km and exit out the harbour mouth.
The short course (11km) participants then head straight to Marine SLC while the long course (22km) do a lap of the Durban Bay, taking in the sights of the stadium and the city back drop along the way.
The harbour mouth is normally out of bounds for surfski paddlers however the great relationship that Stella CC have with the port allows this once-a-year experience and so this one is not to be missed!
The race is suitable for every type of paddler as the ‘soft’ flat water start allows novices to easily take on their first race while the racing snakes have a true challenge with 3 very unique legs, each testing the front of the field differently and often leading to someone with all round paddling skills clinching victory.
The race will have a traditional prize template as well as a lucky draw surfski giveaway from Point Watersport’s to the value of R11000, so make sure you tackle this iconic Durban event!
This year the event has two new sponsors. This is the first year that Bay Union will be title sponsors of the King of the Bay after being involved previously as a series sponsor. Bay Union have also brought on board one of their suppliers, Zurich, as a secondary sponsor to the event. A big thanks to both Bay Union and Zurich for their support!
• Registration – every paddler needs to be KNCU registered and have a racing number to race. If you haven’t got a KNCU number please join a local club and follow the registration process. In accordance with KNCU rules, only first time paddlers doing the short course will be able to race on a temporary number! If you have a KNCU number, please make sure you renew your membership with your clubs as the new season already started on 1 April 2016.
• Proficiency – new paddlers also need to complete a proficiency test before doing their first race.
• Entry Fees – Race 2 will cost participants R120 per paddle.
• Race Day Schedule:
7:30am – Registration opens at Marine SLC
8:45am – Registration closes
8:50am – Race briefing
9:00am – Long Course Doubles Start
9:05am – Long Course Men’s Singles
9:10am – Long Course Women’s Singles
9:15am – Short Course Doubles and Singles
9:20am – SUP
• Stickers – our sponsors Bay Union have put a lot of effort and resources into our events and, as such, ALL paddlers MUST ensure they have 2 series stickers on the foredeck of their ski for ALL races of the series! We thank you all in advance for your assistance with this!
• Numbers – please also ensure you have the correct KNCU number on your boat; without a number we don’t know who you are and cannot give you a time! This is nothing new and so please make sure this is a priority for ALL paddlers before the series gets underway this weekend. Numbers will be on sale in the club before the start.
• Safety – as always, all paddlers MUST wear a kayaking jacket or PFD (personal flotation device) as per the CSA rules
• Prizes – the prizes for the series are looking amazing with an awesome R10000 in cash per race up for grabs courtesy of our fantastic sponsors Bay Union, as well as some cool lucky draw prizes! Check out the full prize template HERE.
If you have any further questions regarding the Bay Union Surfski Series or want to stay up to speed with all that is happening, please visit our website (www.pitchandpaddle.co.za), ‘Like’ us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter!
See you on the water,