I can't believe that it has been nearly 18 months since I entered my last stand up paddle board race, I am not sure where the intervening months have gone. After a Saturday of bright sunshine and light winds Sunday dawned somewhat differently. Overcast with a penetrating southerly wind of about Force 5. It would have been easy to bail out but I had committed myself to going.
Bonne Nuit looked calm when we arrived but the cats paws moving across the water was an indication that there was a bit of wind about and so it wasn't going to be that easy a morning.
Wet suits and racing vests on we were ready to go. The events are organized by the Jersey Paddle Club, which has a really active membership with people out on the water most days.
As a sea kayaker I have considered what are the advantages of getting out on a paddle board and in no particular order the reasons include:
- General fitness
- Paddle and blade awareness
- Better understanding of the dynamics of waves
- Ease of access. 30 minutes on a SUP is worth it whereas kayaking seems to need longer.
So as the next few months pass and we head towards summer why not consider giving it a go besides being really enjoyable it may have benefits for your general sea kayaking
Myself and Chester from Absolute Adventures getting ready to race. I was naively relaxed at this point.
The start was just under the pier entrance at Bonne Nuit
Some of the paddlers heading east towards Giffard Bay and the first turn
The first leg was to the rocks on the far side of the bay, complete a short leg out to sea followed by a long run back to Bonne Nuit, a short leg back towards the pier and then start lap 2!
At the end of lap 2 there was a shorter circuit around the Cheval Rock before returning back to Bonne Nuit. This addition meant that although we were quite spread out, it was possible to see many of the other paddlers. Somehow being out there didn't seem quite as lonely.
5.5 kilometres completed in about 50 minutes, pretty satisfied considering it had been 18 months since my last race. What is clear is how fast the board designs have evolved in that time. Entering races again may have some serious cost implications