Bellingham Paddle Grand Prix in review…..

Bellingham Grand Prix start. Photo Credit: Debbie Arthur

Yesterday was the second annual Bellingham Paddle Grand Prix race held on Bellingham bay.  Open to all human power crafts this year, The race nearly tripled in number on racers to 86 races with a strong showing of both surf ski, outrigger, and stand-up paddlers.  Most importantly, the race served as a fundraiser for local kayaker & outdoor enthusiast Marshall Seaman to help with treatment expenses associated with his diagnosis of Guillain Barre.  The best news of the event is the Marshall continues to make a strong recovery and the event was a huge success!

The race turned out to have stronger morning winds than expected and in typical Bellingham ‘character building’ fashion the race course has us going upwind on the surfable sections and downwind in the flats.  The good old drifting start allowed the for some starting line jockeying for position and the race format of four loops around a mile and a half race course allowed an interesting race format with the ability to see all the races during the entire event.

Marshall and Patty Seaman during the post race live auction fundraiser

The two Fenn Swordfish on the water were the talk after the race.  FAST in the upwind, stable in the chop, and easy to link runs in the downwind,, the Swordfish was the perfect boat for these conditions.  Duncan was beaming about how it handled in the mixed conditions.  I jumped in the trusted Fenn Elite and was able to depend on the top end speed to push me ahead of the wolf pack.  Kudo’s to the doubles team Sullivan/Goolsby for taking top honors in doubles in their Fenn Elite Double and Clement/Ecker for taking top honors in the borrowed Elite double!  It’s high time that this town get a few more Elite doubles for more fast tandem action.

Another week of easy surf paddling, a little fun distance, and some long runs with the dogs till I ease into fall conditioning and some technique refinement.  Looking forward to this transition, going to fun!!

Posted on August 28, 2011, in Surfski Racing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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