The Kanaka Ikaika Oahu Champs delivered conditions that tested a paddler’s skills. The wind had been intensifying all week building up to the race, whipping the seas into an agitated state, churning, heaving the water into rowdy waves. Backwash from cliffs added to the turmoil. On race day the winds had calmed down, but it’s effects on the course were scary-to-epic. The first leg, long course, started between Makapu’u and Rabbit Island. From there to Alan Davis was a churning washing machine. Near Sandy Beach, the waves were lining up, creating some epic conditions all the way to the finish at Kaimana Beach where there was a bit of a surprise waiting at the finish. Surf was up!
Complete results are at Kanakaikaika.com. The top finishers were awarded cash prizes: Long Course, 16-miles, in the OC-1 Division, Pat Dolan in 1:44:17 took top honors, 2nd was Bobby Pratt, 1:46:02, and 3rd, Jimmy Austin III, 1:46:32. Amongst the women, Amy Woodward was first in 2:00:47, incidentally finishing 31st overall out of the 91 that raced. Second place went to Angie Dolan, 2:13:26 with 3rd going to Nahoku Keala, 2:13:40.
In the Short Course, 9-miles from Hawaii Kai to Kaimana Beach, there were 54 entered in OC-2, OC-1, Surfski, SUP, Prone and V-1. First to Kaimana were on an OC-2, Peter Van Ribbink and Nicole Madosik were on the beach in 1:04:16. Second place overall was riding an OC-1. Noa Kerner (under 18 category) finished in 1:04:23 and Travis Grant, on a 14-foot SUP, was 3rd overall 1:05:48. In SUP division there were 23 paddlers vying for the first place and a ‘purse’ of $720. Travis Grant took those winnings home. Riggs Napoleon was 2nd in the SUP, 1:09:14, and placing 3rd was Kaihe Chong 1:10:40.
The ‘Oahu Champs’ was part of Kanaka Ikaika’s ‘Island Air Ocean Racing Series’ and this race is also part of the Maui Jim Waterman Series — ‘Race #5 for SUP’ with money on the table for the winner. Overall winners also collected cash: 1st place overall; $200 men – $120 women, Second place overall; $100 men – $60 women; and 3rd place overall; $50 men – $30 women. More ‘cha-ching’ and gold coins from Scott Hawaii will be awarded in upcoming races. Check out Kanaka Ikaika’s website for more on their racing series.