Surfski race at 101 Surf Sports on San Rafael Bay

The weather gods once again smiled on the fleet of Standup Paddleboard, Surfski, and Outrigger Canoe racers gathered to raise money by using their paddles at this Saturday’s Charity Paddle Race on San Rafael Bay. (Pictured the long course Surfski fleet at full tilt)

The poo gods however were apparently frowning. Just about 4:30 on Friday the San Rafael  Department of Public Works showed up with signs denoting a sewage spill into the San Rafael Canal. The first time in our 10 year history we ever had any issues. The guys dropping off the signs had no information so your panicked race director started pounding the phones to figure out just what was up.(Below Madeleine King sums up the day)

poo poo paddle

Calling around to multiple public government offices at 4:30 on a Friday afternoon can be pretty frustrating. We were lucky however too finally find someone who knew what was happening and as it turned the spill was actually a slow leak. In fact, a slow leak had been going on for over a month. Nice – did we mention the Surfski remount classes we had been teaching  The DPW then was not sure what if any had made to the water so in an abundance of caution was putting up warning signs. It however was not a closure order so we were allowed to go forward with racing. Given they had stopped the leak and already implemented a cleanup effort we felt it safe to go for it and boy are we glad we did. (Pictured below Sheila  Anderson & Troy Prybil)

Tandem paddleboarding san Francisco style

Donate to the Global Medical Relief Fund

This month’s race was set up to benefit the Global Medical Relief Fund that helps provide prosthetics and other support for children and their families who have lost limbs. The group focuses on areas of the planet that are disproportionately impoverished or stricken with conflict.

The day dawned with the sun playing peekaboo with some induction fog; a bit gray and a little on the chilly side. Just about the skipper's meeting, however, temps turned upward and the light North/North East wind moderated as the fog totally burnt off.  For those that don’t paddle here often the NNE cans sometimes set up our long course with some nice bumps for those that make the right call at the Marin Islands. Today however was almost pure glass all the way. With the blue skies and a full moon high tide, we were sending heaps of gratitude to those weather deities whoever they are. (Pictured below the Long Course Stand Up Paddleboard fleet is off!) 

stand up paddleboard and outrigger canoe racing in Marin

The finish of the day went to Leah Ahmed and Violet Ryan. Cowbells were blaring and the impassioned throng of spectators was wildly cheering them on as they came in neck and neck to the finish line. Our finish line is one of those blow-up arches (pictured below with Nicole Harrington bringing it home) so it forces the paddlers to converge a bit which just adds to the suspense. Literally, stroke for stroke the bow positions were changing. It looked like Violet had it but the timing of Leah's last stroke was just right and she nipped Violet at the line. We could not tap our scoring system fast enough to accurately capture the delta but definitely one of the closest we have ever seen. Closer than the .5 seconds in the results that's for sure. 

Starboard SUP Arch

Paddle of the day went to Caetano Walsh. We've watched Caetano grow over the years - both literally and figuratively. As one of the smaller kids on the River Town team, frankly, he was regularly whooped up on the racecourse by his peers. We didn't know it at the time but that ended up being a world-class bunch of paddlers he was running with. Caetano stuck with it - sometimes the hardest thing to do in life is to realize the race is really with yourself. Do that and you can start to grow. Just keep getting better. Results come from being whooped-up-on if you know how to process the whoopings.  Walsh put the work in, ignored the whoopings, learned to smile along the way (great coaching), and bam - second-place finish at this weekend's race showing a massive amount of progression from just last season. Rowan Ferraro took the win but it was a fight to the end finish with Walsh that had us going crazy on the dock, (Pictured below is first overall on the long course - Dylan Anacleto Black and Petri Alva taking line honors)

Surfski racing

Thanks to everyone who paddled and especially for all the generous donations. We ended up raising $2800 while having a good time doing it. See you December 19th where we race for the US Coast Guard Fallen Heroes Fund and trust we will be doing our nightly prayers to the weather gods. This time we'll add the San Rafael Department of Public Works to those prayers too. 

Upcoming Race Schedule

Saturday, December 19th - Benetiting US Coast Guard Fallen Heroes Fund - More Info & Register Here

Saturday, January 15th - Benefiting Rivers for Change More Info & Register Here

Saturday, February 19th - Benefitting The San Rafael Canal Alliance More Info & Register Here

Saturday, March 19th - Charity TBD and Registration coming soon. 



Course Name(s) Category Age Time Rank Division
SUP and OC1 Subtract 1 minute - Andy Toro/Chris subtract 3 minutes            
Long - 6 mi Dylan Anacleto-black, Petri Alva Surfski   Junior 42:21.1 1 1
Long - 6 mi Zachary Alva Surfski   Open 45:15.7 2 1
Long - 6 mi Ben Lawry Surfski   Open 45:16.1 3 2
Long - 6 mi Albert Szilvasy Surfski   Open 46:32.8 4 3
Long - 6 mi Michael Mcnulty Surfski   Masters 47:25.9 5 1
Long - 6 mi John Dye Surfski   Masters 47:43.0 6 2
Long - 6 mi Viorel Popa Surfski   Open 48:15.8 7 4
Long - 6 mi Paul Macintyre Surfski   Masters 49:46.6 8 3
Long - 6 mi John Green II Surfski   Open 49:50.7 9 5
Long - 6 mi Mitch Powers Surfski   Masters 50:13.3 10 4
Long - 6 mi Luke Zolnierowski Surfski   Open 51:26.2 11 6
Long - 6 mi Ian Rice Surfski   Open 51:49.2 12 7
Long - 6 mi Jake Johnson Surfski   Junior 52:12.4 13 1
Long - 6 mi John Green Surfski   Masters 52:59.3 14 5
Long - 6 mi Jody McComas Surfski   Masters 52:59.7 15 6
Long - 6 mi Andy Toro, Chris Mcmanus OC2 Open 58:35.2 16 1
Long - 6 mi Pete Gauvin SUP 14' Open 59:04.2 17 1
Long - 6 mi Steve Axt SUP 14' Open 04:43.7 18 2
Long - 6 mi Chris Spencer SUP 14' Open 07:01.4 19 3
Long - 6 mi Vincent Fallourd SUP 14' Open 08:07.1 20 4
Long - 6 mi Dave Hook OC1 Masters 09:37.5 21 1
Long - 6 mi Tiffany  Cleveland SUP 14' Open 09:52.7 22 1
Long - 6 mi Kenny Nelson SUP 14' Open 10:04.7 23 5
Long - 6 mi Leo Montero SUP 14' Masters 11:19.1 24 1
Long - 6 mi Jeff Broffman SUP 14' Masters 13:36.9 25 2
Long - 6 mi Paul Reichardt SUP 14' Open 15:41.0 26 6
Long - 6 mi Madeleine King SUP 12'6  Masters 17:10.8 27 1
Long - 6 mi Geoff Schwarten SUP 12'6  Open 18:51.2 28 1
Long - 6 mi Vincent Huang SUP 14' Masters 22:31.2 29 3
Long - 6 mi Trey Strickland  SUP 14' Open 24:39.3 30 7
Long - 6 mi Ryder Dalton SUP 14' Junior 26:31.6 31 1
Long - 6 mi Shawn Dalton SUP 14' Open 26:43.0 32 8
Long - 6 mi Rob Heinemann SUP 14' Masters 27:06.6 33 4
Long - 6 mi Shirley Heinemann SUP 14' Masters 28:50.3 34 1
Long - 6 mi Gary Leong SUP 14' Masters 36:30.7 35 5
Subtract 6 minutes for correct short course time             
Short - 2 mi Rowan Ferraro Surfski Juniors 28:03.8 1 1
Short - 2 miles Caetano Walsh Surfski Juniors 28:17.6 2 2
Short - 2 miles Leah Ahmed Surfski Juniors 29:39.3 3 1
Short - 2 miles Violet Ryan Surfski Juniors 29:39.8 4 2
Short - 2 miles Cath Caddell Surfski Open 29:54.7 5 1
Short - 2 miles Audrey Johnson Surfski Juniors 33:05.4 6 3
Short - 2 miles Elizabeth McBride Surfski Open 34:39.6 7 2
Short- 2 miles Tio Griffo Surfski Juniors 36:02.1 8 3
Short- 2 miles Nicole Harrington Surfski Open 38:44.0 9 3
Short - 2 miles Cathy Huang SUP 12'6  Masters 39:40.6 10 1
Short - 2 miles Claudia Breuer SUP 12'6  Open 41:27.1 11 1
Short - 2 miles Sheila  Anderson- Troy Prybil SUP 2 Person Masters 43:29.1 12 1

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