Special thanks to team paddler, Eli Fischbuch for the report from the Tofino Surf SUP Race!!
On the weekend of July 20th and 21st was the Tofino Surf Sup race. This race is part of the Vancouver Island Sup series and the BC Sup Cup series too. The race was a surf style race which was different than the other flat water races that I have done this summer.
The first day was the long race. We had to paddle in the open ocean for half of the race. It was very hard because there were swells. I really liked this race – it was a challenge but it was pretty awesome to be in an ocean race. The course was two 5.5km loops – the youth and surfboard racers did one loop and the 12.6 and 14 ft men and women did two loops. There were 3 youth racers (13-18yrs) and one grom (under 13). It was good to finally have some other kids to race! These kids were all really good paddlers and I had to work really hard to stay with them. I think I paddled harder in this race than I ever have!
On the Saturday night there was a salmon barbecue at the TIN WIS resort. After we ate there was a fun game of limbo with some Hawaiian music. Everybody had a great time.
On the second day we paddled the short course. this race was more sheltered than the other one and had more turns in it. The course consisted of three right handed turn and one left turn, it also had a beach run. In this race the groms went first and they did 2 laps. There were quite few under 13 year olds which was neat to see. When they were racing most of the other racers went out and paddled with them and cheered them on. The youth and surfboard class went next doing three laps and the men and women did 4 laps. Since this race had three right turns I was a little worried because I can’t turn as well on the right side as I can on the left. My turns went ok but even though I worked hard the other youth racers pulled ahead of me and I ended up third. It was super fun to race some other youth and it makes me want to get out there and work harder for the next race.
There was also a fun relay race after Sundays race. The groms did their relay with a starboard 16’ inflatable board – each lap they would pick up another kid – by the end of the relay they were all paddling on it together! That looked pretty fun for them.
This weekend was super fun and a very good experience for me too. Really great to have a SUP race in the ocean! The race venue was on MacKenzie Beach right in front of the Tin Wis Resort – I camped right next door at Bella Pacifica Campground with my family for the week which was awesome. I also managed to get in a couple of days surfing at Long Beach.
Thanks to every one at SurfSUP for putting together such a great event – I’m looking forward to next years already!
**Eli's paddle of choice is the Werner Paddles 2 pce adjustable Nitro**