Despite the somewhat “schizophrenic” weather Southern California’s been experiencing this Spring, Saturday at Doheny Beach, California dawned with crisp, clear skies and near perfect water conditions for the kickoff to the 2012 Watermans Paddle For Humanity series.
Locals and pros, SUP and prone paddlers alike arrived early to prep for the 5K sprint, and the moderate swell created some great spectating as the paddlers came back toward shore for the beach finish!
With only an hour-long break the participants hit the water again for the Distance Over Time event, featuring a great community format where everyone was given one hour to complete as many laps around a 1.6K left-hand loop. Whether you were first to finish 7 laps or first to finish just one, you had plenty of chances to rank at “the top”.
The competition climaxed with the first ever Chuck Patterson Signature Rally Race, where contestants were thrown the gauntlet of a physically and mentally challenging course designed by Chuck P. himself!
Within the total 7 mile race stretch, each racer had to complete 3 laps around a course that included a 1.6K loop in the water, return to the beach and shag their own boards, run a slalom 6-7 gates along the steepest slope of the sand and come back around for a series of crawling pits and hills. By the middle of the 2nd lap the exertion and anguish was visibly apparent on all of the contestants’ faces, including the pros!
Everyone joined back together for a little R&R to the sounds of Aloha Radio, some grub and a few suds courtesy of Kona Brewing.
Individual event and overall winners were announced, tremendous raffle prizes doled out and smiles were abundant as the sun made its way toward the horizon. Best of all, though, was the unanimous feeling of satisfaction in having spent the day raising money for several charity organizations including the Navy SEAL Foundation, LUNGevity, Best Day Foundation, The Ocean of Hope Campaign for the Sarcoma Alliance and the San Onofre Foundation.
For full results check out http://www.paddleforhumanity.org/blog/?cat=3