Champions are crowned at the European Cup, Brazil withdrawn, while Japan and US Open are set to make waves
This past week saw the dramatic conclusion of the European Cup, a dynamic series of events that spanned the European Continent and provided a very comprehensive challenge to the attending athletes, with diverse conditions across all 3 stops and some memorable performances from some of the World’s very best racers.
- Stop 1: Barcelona marked the opening of the 2015 Stand Up World Series, and provided an exciting new venue, right at the heart of the City. With the World’s best in attendance, the pressure was on at this iconic venue, as we saw Connor Baxter (Starboard) & Candice Appleby rise to the challenge to take bullet wins in both the long distance and sprint racing disciplines and thus the overall win.
- Stop 2: Finland was next, as the athletes journeyed from the bustling City life to the country for a complete change of pace and a real breathe of fresh air. However, the racing was as intense as ever, as Casper Steinfath (Naish) and Celine Guesdon (Bic SUP) took the bull by the horns by winning both the long distance and sprint racing, propelling them to the top of the leaderboard on the European Cup.
- Stop 3: There is no better way to conclude the European Cup than at the Italia Surf Expo in Rome: a true celebration of lifestyle sports and the European Summer, the event brings together World Class Stand Up Paddling, with surfing, skateboarding, off-road obstacle courses in Jeeps and a social schedule like nowhere else. Last year’s European Champion Zane Schweitzer (Starboard) came right back into contention to take the win overall, with Casper Steinfath and Dylan Frick taking the long distance & sprint wins respectively, while in the women’s it was Ane Zulaika Aranburu (Bic SUP) who secured victory in the sprints and overall, with Manca Notar (Naish) taking the distance win.
That means that this year’s well deserved European Cup Champions were Casper Steinfath (Naish) from Denmark and Ane Zulaika Aranburu (Bic SUP) from Spain, who posted strong performances across all of the events to be crowned Champions.
There were however note-worhy performances from Leonard Nika (Starboard) from Italy, who looked to be in position to take the event and European Title on the final day, but wasn’t quite able to get the result he needed to surpass the Viking, as well as Celine Guesdon, who looked unstoppable until this final event, having to settle for 2nd overall for 2015. Congratulations to all our competitors from this year’s European Cup.
Make sure to check out the highlights from the final event by CLICKING HERE
After the postponement of this Grand Slam event back in March, it was with great disappointment that we were forced to cancel this year’s stop in Brazil, with another request for postponement late in the day, leaving us no choice but to cancel for 2015.
After 5 years of spectacular events for the World Tour & Series in Brazil and having witnessed the sport’s exponential growth in the country and the rising of great Champions (such as 2012 World Champion Leco Salazar, 2x Vice World Champion Caio Vaz and up and coming race talent Vinnicius Martins to mention just a few), it is particularly disappointing to have to take this decision, not to mention the inconvenience caused to athletes and organization.
Moving forward, stricter guidelines for global partners that will require an unbending adherence to commitment timelines and not allow for exceptions, no matter how worthy the cause, will help us to avoid these unfortunate incidences for all concerned.
What this means for the World Series Racing Championship Title scenarios for both men and women in 2015 is that the athletes will have the right to one discard out of the 4 events this year, meaning that their top 3 results will count towards the overall World Title in 2015.
The confirmed events remaining in the 2015 World Series Racing Calendar are as follows:
- Victoria Cup Hayama Pro Japan: 4th – 6th September
- US Open of Stand Up Paddling, Huntington Beach, California: 2nd – 4th October
- World Series Finals at Turtle Bay: 16th – 18th October
For the Surfing World Tour, athletes will also be allowed one discard out of the 5 events this year for the men and one discard from 4 for the women, meaning that the men’s top 4 results and women’s top 3 results towards the overall World Title in 2015.
The events remaining in the 2015 World Tour Surfing Calendar are as follows:
- US Open of Stand Up Paddling, Huntington Beach, California: 26th Sept – 1st October
- French Open of Stand up Paddling, France: 24th October – 1st November
- Location X Finals, Morocco: 7th – 14th November
Stay tuned to www.watermanleague.com for the latest from both the World Series & Tour
Next up is a welcomed return to Japan for the 2015 Victoria Cup Hayama Pro that will run from the 4th – 6th September in a new location in 2015: Hayama Harbor. Just 45 minutes outside of Tokyo, this central and high profile location will provide a perfect showcase for the sport in this massively growing Stand Up Paddling hotspot in Asia.
With $25,000 prize-money at stake and the World’s and Asia’s very best paddlers stepping up to do battle, this will be a pinnacle weekend of racing for the 2015 season in the land of the Rising Sun.
Entries are now open online at: http://watermanleague.com/events/2015-hayama-pro-japan check web address and check out the trailer for this epic stop on the 2015 Stand Up World Series in Japan by CLICKING HERE
While we won’t be producing a full LIVE broadcast, we will be bringing you live updates across all social networks, Round recaps and highlights as well as produced post shows from what will be an epic event in Japan at www.watermanleague.com
The US Open of Stand Up Paddling will be without doubt the most comprehensive showcase for the sport taking place at the heart of Surf City USA in Huntington Beach California from the 26th September – 4th October.
Kicking of with World Tour Surfing and an Open Trials event that will provide the platform for budding US and international athletes to earn their place on the global stage, we will then move onto the Main event, featuring the World’s very best Stand Up Paddlesurfers, battling it out just south of the Pier.
From there, we will move onto World Series Racing on the second weekend of the holding period (2nd – 4th October), that will consist not only of the top fleet World Series competitors, but also Open / Amateur racing, youth racing, prone paddle racing and open ocean swimming. We will also be holding a special Na Kama Kai clinic to provide a unique ocean sports and education opportunity for Huntington Beach’s youth.
With $45,000 prize-money at stake and vital ranking points towards the 2015 World Titles, it will be a week to remember in Surf CIty USA. Entries are now open at: watermanleague.com/events/2015-us-open-of-stand-up-paddling-huntington-beach
This coupled with an expo right on the beach just south of the iconic Huntington Beach Pier will make for a week to remember as the world’s best stand up paddlers come together for a global showcase for the sport in all its glory, from surfing, to racing to recreation. The whole event will be broadcast LIVE at www.watermanleague.com, with post produced TV to follow on premier networks worldwide.
There is no better way to end a year of action packed racing than on Oahu’s fabled North Shore at Turtle Bay Resort, as the World Series will once again return home for its prestigious and iconic Final event of the year.
Marking the start of the winter surf season, but still benefitting from the Hawaii tradewinds in the Fall, the World Series Finals provides the ultimate challenge for the World’s very best racers, from a gruelling 13 mile downwind run from Turtle Bay to Haleiwa to the dynamic and dramatic World Series Sprints held right in front of the Pool Bar at the Resort.
It will once again be a weekend to remember, as World Titles will be decided and some of the most exciting action of the year will go down on Oahu’s fabled North Shore.
It is not just a weekend for the very top pros however, as Turtle Bay are hosting an extremely prestigious clinic featuring 2 of Stand Up Paddling’s most revered personalities: namely the legend himself, Gerry Lopez (Naish) and 4x Surfing World Champion, 2x Racing World Champion Kai Lenny (Naish).
Make sure to reserve your spot at this exclusive clinic at: GerryLopezRetreat.com and come witness all the action of the World Series Finals go down for yourself at Turtle Bay Resort.
But don’t worry, if you can’t make it, the event will be broadcast LIVE at www.watermanleague.com, so make sure to stay tuned for the build up and live coverage from this truly extraordinary event.