Many hundreds of stand up paddleboarders from all over NZ and the South Pacific will be converging on the Bay of Islands in April for a weekend of stand up paddleboard racing, with distance races over 4km, 8km and 16km, along with 200m sprint racing.
The Distance and Sprint Racing Championships are the final two events in the New Zealand Stand Up Paddleboard Championship Series, which has already seen NZ’s best racers battling it out for the National Technical Racing Titles in the surf of Pauanui, and the National Downwind Titles in the testing conditions of Manukau Harbour.
As well as attracting the top athletes, this event is very much about participation, with classes and prizes for all ages and types of equipment (including normal all-round family paddleboards and inflatable paddleboards), along with fun prizes for best fancy dress, lots of spot prizes, etc.
The shorter distances will all be on the sheltered waters of the Waitangi inlet, so well within the capabilities of the recreational paddleboarder.
Each race will have separate divisions for a wide range of age groups.
In the 4km race there will also be classes for 12’6 Raceboard and non-raceboard style paddleboards, along with additional prizes for men and women riding inflatable boards (with separate divisions for non-raceboard-style and raceboard-style).
So whatever type of paddleboard you have, as long as it goes in a vaguely straight line you will be able to enter!The event schedule also deliberately allows a lot of free time for participants to explore and enjoy other activities that the Bay of Islands has to offer. The fabulous Waitangi Mountain Bike park is only 2km away from the race site.
For more information on accommodation and the local area use the links below.