Tough time predicted for paddle board racers

| 14/01/2014

(CNS): Competitors in the second ever Rum Run competition which takes place this weekend will be faced with a significant challenge, says the creator of the race in which boarders will paddle across the North Sound. Neil Martin, a local paddle board enthusiast and one of the partners of the Cayman Standup Paddle Company that is organizing the race said, “Strength, balance, endurance and tenacity are all required for the most taxing of the paddle board disciplines, known as the “downwinder” and next weekend’s 2014 Rum Run is going to provide a significant challenge for all the participants.”

Alongside the race, Martin said the weekend event incorporates paddle board clinics to improve technique, paddle board yoga demonstrations, a fun beach day of sprint races for men, women, children and relay teams and will culminate in the 8 mile endurance paddle.

He explained that downwind paddle boarding is a growing sport from the Hawaiian Islands where paddlers brave the open seas to paddle between islands or ride the swells along the rugged coastlines.  Here in Cayman there is potential for the sport to develop further.  

“Last year 13 paddlers took on the 8 mile course, with boat support” said Martin.  “The course was a relatively unknown quantity as we believe it was the first time that anyone had crossed the North Sound on a paddle board.  With the wind at your back it is possible to try and link together the swells as you ride the boards.  The participants all completed the course in under two hours with a huge sense of achievement.” 

As paddle boarding appears to be increasing in popularity in Cayman organisers have created different challenges for this year’s event which is being held on Saturday, 18 January at Public Beach and on Sunday 19 January at Camana Bay.  “With the winds forecast to rise to 20+ knots this weekend, the paddle boarders could be having the downwind ride of their lives,” Martin added.

The race is support by a list of sponsors including Carey Olsen, Miller Lite, Caribbean Canvas Company, Olukai, Cayman Stand Up Paddle Co, Sun Bum, Seven Fathoms Rum, Dukes Seafood and Rib Shack, and Laird Stand Up, one of the industry’s leading shapers and manufacturers of boards, spear headed by the legendary waterman Laird Hamilton. 

Chuck Glynn and Noa Hopper, two pro riders from Laird Stand Up will be running this year’s paddle clinics as well as competing in the main events  "creating a huge buzz amongst the local paddle board community of enthusiasts," Martin added.

Proceeds from theevent go to support ARK Cayman. For more information on the sprint races and the down wind paddle, contact Neil on or check for details on the event website


 10am – 11 am  paddle clinic with Chuck Glynn and Noa Hopper
  11:30 – 2pm  sprint races – categories and prizes for men, women, children,
  2pm – 4:30pm  corporate relay and relay events
  5pm   BBQ at Dukes


11:30am  8 mile downwind crossing of the North Sound
  3pm   BBQ at Dukes

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Category: Sports

About the Author ()

Comments are closed.