Weekend Wanderer

Wandering the Weekends in California and beyond



HanoHano Ocean Challenge

Despite the dreary and foggy morning…hell it was raining; the Hanohano Ocean Challenge last weekend had a GREAT turnout.  photoTONS of stand up paddlers from around southern California came to compete in the short course. The best was to see the junior paddlers for the SUP Jr. Team sponsored by Rivera out there. They are based out of Dana and is another great program for junior paddlers. NAC had kids competing in the short course as well, all in either oc1’s or oc2’s. Spencer Lujan got first in 19U oc1, Andres Zourelli coming in 2nd in 19U oc1. David Groke came in 2nd for 16U one man Austin Hwin who got 4th 16U who raced short course 1-man. Ryan Fogg and Miles both competed in 14U two-man. NAC also had a big turnout in the longer from NAC. Megan Savisaar and Daniella Carrese raced on a two-man finishing before a lot of women racers and getting 1st in 19U division, Liam Dixon and Lily Chavis racing together in the coed division on a two-man, getting first in their 19U mixed division. Liam had previously raced the short course in an Aukahi, a rudderless canoe by Kamanu Composites. Cade Sharnell (3rd in 19U) and Gunner Logan (4th 19U)  crossed the finish line both in one mans, followed by Kylie Bergan (1st 19U) and Jenny Jones (2nd 19U) both in one mans as well. There were a 103 racers in the long course, the juniors passed a lot of adults. It’s great seeing all the juniors from ALL CLUBS going out a competing against some people that are twice their age (some even more). Even though everyone is in their respectful age divisions, everyone races at the same time.

Well the next race is at the NAC, the Hal Rosoff Classic. Hopefully the kids use their home court advantage for this one…you can follow my instagram: @KelThompson as I am always posting paddling pictures and race pictures if you want more! 🙂


Winter Series Races 2012


We’ve had two races so far this month for the SoCal Ocean Racing Winter Series. The Becky Stuart in Oceanside, California and the Tecolate 5000 hosted by the San Diego Canoe and Kayak Team. Both races had a most of the NAC Jr Kid’s competing in.

The first race took place on a cold Saturday in Oceanside. The 100’s of people at this race are as expected as this is one of the more popular races…and not just because of Molly Bishop’s afterparty:)

What was exciting about this ra6mance was that the Newport Aquatic Center had paddlers that had never raced before, and this venue being their first race is perfect. Not only is launching one mans and two mans easy at this race, they also allow for us to race 6mans for the kids. That allows us to have atleast 12 more kids race, and let about 6 or  7 kids race twice! These winter races are perfect for getting kids out on the water and ready for racing. It’s also perfect for the returning Jr Paddlers who are ready to take the next step up in the sport, for example one man long course. We had about 7 kids going long course, a lot of them for the first time. Jenny and Kylie being the two girls from the team going one man in the 9 mile long course race, while Daniella and Megan went two man. Clay, Spencer, Gunnkellyn and isabellaer and Cade all went one man during the race.

Before that, even short course one man is a feat in its own for a lot of new paddlers. Makena won her division in one man, while Liam won his.


 I can’t wait to see how the start of 2013 will go for Winter Series Racing with the juniors, but I hope it keeps going as successful as its been. But it’s up to them to push themselves during the race, they don’t have a coach out there right next to them encouraging them along the way. It’s all on the paddler, and how hard the paddler wants to go.

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