Paddlesurf Ireland - Ranking Comp 1, Spanish Point
And so the season has started once more.
Our first 2017 ranking comp, and third comp where points are eligible for the 2017 World Surf Kayak Championships was held at Spanish Point in Clare.
One wouldn't have thought it was February as we were blessed with relatively warm temperatures, the sun remained most of the day, and as a bonus, we had big waves and light winds. Wooohooooo!
As the tide started to drop, the comp got underway, it was clear to see who had spent the winter in the waves. Gone are the days where cut backs and classic surfing rule the comps. Tail whips, Slash Turns, looking for that lip or ramp in the wave. You could see people watching, hunting for the holy grail of surf kayaking, the AIR!
Its fantastic to see the progression, and watch people really showing what they've got. It also makes for exciting competition.
General good humored banter, wild ideas, commentating on the competition waves, all made the waiting between heats that bit more entertaining, there was a nice fun vibe all day.
And smooth operation from the organisers meant it was stress free. One of those comps that is just a real good time.
After Short Boat, Long Boat and Waveski had battled through the day.
Heats, Repechages( A heat where someone who does not initially qualify for the next round gets a second go ) and Semi Finals,
Tired and Weary Finalists took to the water for a final battle.
The waves had started to cleanup even more, with the occasional cleanup set to entertain the crowd.
The finals were hard fought with some radical surfing on display.
Here's Guillaume and Mick about to get smashed.
CleanUp Set = a few rogue waves way bigger than the average wave coming in, they generally catch everone off guard and obliterate them much to the spectators amusement
The day was judged expertly by Peter Conroy from the Irish Tow Surf Rescue Club.
Peter also donated a first aid kit to the club, many thanks Peter.
These are the guys on the Jetski's, training and Rescuing the big wave surfers on Irelands monsters. Check them out:
At the end of the day, after the finals,
We had a quick prize giving, and then it was off to watch the rugby.
Great day! Many thanks to the Organisers, the Judges, and all who competed and made it great craic.
1st Guillaume Desprez
2nd Mike Barry
1st Mike Barry
2nd Jordan Collins
3rd Anthony Coyne
1st Mike Barry
2nd Anthony Coyne
3rd Aisling Griffin
Catch ye all at the next event :)
On the day,
I wore my warmer weather gear,
It was nice and light for the comp, and I was lovely and warm.
A Palm Kaituna TopDeck I had made 2 years ago, and is still going strong despite almost constant use.
Palm Kaituna 3/4 Length Pants, These are amazing in the boat, long enough to stay warm, nice and light, and because they come over the knees, they are great in a composite boat, no knee rash from the fibreglass.
On the wish list for colder days: