Marks Diary – GREAT, weather! GREAT racing and attendance! GREAT results for Custom Kayak’s!

Post by Mark Lewin 

Throughout the weekend we have had the most awesome weather. Clear sunny skies, no wind and flat surf. Under normal circumstances I would consider this a bit boring for surfski racing, but for a short tight course starting out ofNewPierBeach,Durban’s home of surfing, you do not want to have extreme conditions. There was a little tester of a wave on a shallow sand bank that could upset you going out through the surf if you were not careful and it was there to have an impact on the result if you were in a close race with anybody. No races are easy. It meant that without much water turbulence in the surf, you did not get very wet, and were very soon hot and dry out in the ocean. With the tight racing there was no time to even stop and splash yourself, so I found it hot and dry going.

Photo by Dennis Walthew of Barry Lewin in the Bullet

309 Paddlers finished the race, across the board from the top elite paddlers to first time out paddlers in the short course. Our Marine SLC development squad were out in force again with all of them finishing the race.

Photo by Dennis Walthew of Barry Lewin in the Bullet

There was a bit of shuffling around in the top 10 finishers this week with the addition of Hank McGregor and Brandon van der Walt. Hank won a close fought battle with Mathew Bouman going down to the wire, and Barry Lewinfinished in a solid third place again. Our BULLET  single ski showing and amazing impact on the results right away, with Barry Lewin(3rd), Brandon van der Walt (4th), Luke Nesbit (6th) and Mark Mulder (7th), packing the top 10 overal with 4 BULLET single ski’s. A remarkable impact that is really going to have an effect on further results into the series as the market share of this new dynamic ski increases.

Photo by Dennis Walthew of Luke Nesbit in the Bullet

Together with masters partner fromRichardsBay,Stretch Struwig, I had a very exciting win in the double ski race on our new APEX 2 double surfski. We were locked into a struggle with a solid fit veteran’s crew of Richard Phelps and Brian Taylor for virtually the whole race. Some serious tactical paddling and good positioning near the end saw us creep on to a good swell which turned into a tricky wave that we had to hold down the face to separate us and give us a win. I was so grateful for the APEX’s ability to get onto small runs and turn a swell into a wave that you can ride easily and for the stability to hold onto a broken wave like we did. With the extra stability and surfability of this ski you can turn a lot of situations to your advantage over other top elite double ski’s. A lot of paddlers miss this subtlety in a surfski, going for what they perceive to be the “fastest” ski, forsaking stability, manoeuvrability and surfability, attributes, which can have an even bigger positive impact on their performance. .

Photo by Anthony Grote of Mark and Stretch in the Apex 2

A great result for 16 year old Paul van Agtenburger, winning the short course single ski race, on our TITAN lifesaving spec ski. This was an incredible result considering that it was his first ever attempt at open ocean ski racing. He really shocked some of the regular winners in this category. He is a top junior swimmer who does not get to paddle that often and unfortunately will not be at all the events. . It will be interesting to see how he progresses. 

I will do a separate blog post, building up to next weeks unique King of the Bay race 3 in the series. 

See you on the water.

MARK

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About CustomKayaksBlog

Owner of Custom Kayaks
This entry was posted in Mark's Diary, Results, South Africa, Surfski, Team. Bookmark the permalink.

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