PADDLE 4 PRESENTS got the day off to a nice start collecting a big pile of presents for charity. If you missed the opportunity to brighten up a less fortunate child’s Christmas you can support The Little Optimist Trust by going to  www.thelittleoptimist.org and buy a kids inspirational book by Greg Bertish… you’ll feel all the better for it. Trust me I did and my grandkids all have a copy of The Little Optimist.

The Starboard Open Day had some great support and both Chris and Gunter were busy introducing aspirant SUP paddlers to our sport on their allrounder class of Starboard SUPs. Very nice to see a group a fit young ladies trying out SUP and later they showed what they were capable of in an impromptu Sprint race. Mary-Anne Mottram streaked away at the start but the bouy turn turned out to be the decider and a powerful paddle back to the finish by the newcomers saw them take the top spots. Well done ladies sorry I didn’t get your names but we hope to see you next time.

The first heat of 100m Sprint Knock Out Race took off at 15h00. The start was furious and Gunter took a swim early on and after a fierce fight round the Starboard bouy and back to the finish we saw Chris, Guy, Gunter and  Shawn finish in that order and go through to the A Final. The next heat was just as furious and  Corne, Ian, Jarrod and Ryan went through to the A Final. The rest went through “immediately” to the B final in which Tony finshed 1st, 2nd was Dave, 3rd Gareth and 4th Mark. Then it was time for the “hot shots” in the A Final and Chris immediately showed his international racing experience as he went into the turn bouy in first place ahead of the pack where a fast and furious battle was playing out. Chris took 1st Gunter 2nd , Corne 3rd and Shawn 4th . Well done guys!

The 3KM Fun Race started with the fun boards, inflatables and Anya, the only lady on a Starboard Sprint setting the pace. As they turned at the 200m bouy the race board scratch set off and thereafter the rest of the race board crew set off at start delays calculated and guesstimated by our handicapper Shawn, using past race times as the base. The more times we can capture the better as this will make Shawn’s job easier and whole lot more accurate, nevertheless we all finished within a few minutes. A great race format that puts everybody under pressure;

Results:

Fun Class  – 1st Gert, 2nd Rudd

Ladies Class – 1st Anya

Overall – 1st Jarrod, 2nd Dylan, 3rd Anja, 4th Gareth, 5th Corne, 6th Gunter, 7th Chris, 8th Guy, 9th Shawn, 10th Ian, 11thRyan, 12th Dave, 13th Tony and 14th Mark who apparently got T boned as did Guy. Great race guys, 18 boards out on the water, see you next time.

The day ended with a little presentation to Chris in recognition of his great performance and for representing the “Gauteng Navy” on the Euro Tour and at the ISA SUP Worlds. Chris was presented with a framed photo of the opening flag ceremony at the Copenhagen Worlds and an A2 block mounted canvas print of him at the Worlds on his Starboard 12’6 Sprint.  The “Chris Couve Celebration BRING and BRAAI” got rained out by one of those old fashioned Transvaal thunder storms and the stayers were dashing about getting everything packed away before the heavens opened up.

Thanks to all participant, thanks for turning up and for making it a great day, we hope to see you all at the next event.