Pittwater Life February 2017 Issue

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Boating Life

Champion’s tips

for SUP field

It’s on again – the for-all-ages

weekend water celebration

that combines serious

competitive paddling with

just-for-fun participation – the

2017 Sydney SUP Festival.

Held on the weekend of

February 18-19 and once again

hosted by the Royal Motor

Yacht Club at Newport, the

two-day festival (this year

marks its fourth staging)

incorporates the Pittwater

Classic downwind marathon.

There are major cash prizes

to be won by avid paddlers

– although organisers, who

are expecting around 120

participants on each day,

stress it’s also very much

about fun racing for everyone,

with four races and events

over the two days, plus a SUP

Expo and supervised demo

area where novices can try out

the hugely popular pastime

and take lessons on technique.

The weekend aims to

provide a community and

family event with a major

focus on a healthy, active

lifestyle for all.

Local MP Rob Stokes, who

acts as event patron, is a

huge supporter and will be

participating again.

The Pittwater Classic 10km

marathon from Barrenjoey

to Newport commences 8am

on the Saturday – the course

is assisted by a NE wind and

in reverse (from Newport to

Barrenjoey) in a southerly,

which happens to be one of

Sydney’s best downwind runs.

(The race is boat and shuttle

supported.)

View the latest gear and

accessories at the SUP Expo

on the Sunday, when the 6km

Scotland Island race (and

fun 3km short course) kick

off from 8am (kids under 12

must paddle with an adult).

Plus there’s Naish One Design

Sprints, live entertainment and

a jumping castle for the kids.

Pittwater Life approached

the winner of last year’s 10km

Pittwater Classic marathon

and 6km Scotland Island Race,

25-year-old James Casey, to

provide some tips for this

year’s field.

James, who won’t be

defending his title as it clashes

with the opening event of the

2017 APP Tour in Hawaii – in

which he was crowned overall

champion in 2016 – says it’s

important for participants to

pace themselves.

“Choose the right board,

and not something too narrow

as Pittwater can get quite

choppy,” said James, who grew

up in Mona Vale. “Stability is

more important than speed,

so a broader board is better

– you don’t want to be falling

off and losing time and energy

getting back on.

“Also, find someone with

similar speed and work

together; often there can be

no wind, so ‘drafting’ is a

good idea – slipping behind

someone and swapping every

few minutes.” – Nigel Wall

More info and registrations

www.royalmotor.com.au

Boating Life

FEBRUARY 2017 33

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