US Surf Ski Champs


Leaving the hotel at Berkeley dressed in shorts and a t-shirt, we arrived in the Nelo Truck (the biggest car I have ever ben in!) at Fort Baker to fog and wind and freeze! This place… It’s like 4 seasons in one day!

The race organisors had put out a spread of note, coffee, fruit, water and cake. Awesome:) After a comprehensive race briefing everyone got onto the water to warm up.

From the start, we paddled into the wind, but with the current about 6km to a turn can, then back into the current, however the wind seemed to drop. Under Golden Gate bridge again, to the HotSpot near the start, and then on to Angel Island. This section was great, and the runs just got better and better. The run from Angel Island to Berkeley was amazing, dodging sail boats and  surfing runs.

Unfortunately my wrist blew up within the first 10 minutes, and the pain just grew from there. It was excruciating, and I think mentally, this was one of the toughest races I have ever done. Each stroke was like having a knife stabbing into my wrist. The only relief was when I caught a run and could relax. The finish couldn’t have come sooner, and I realised while I was paddling, that there is no way I can continue on my trip. I made the decision that I need to get home and rest my wrist so that it can heal. I can’t explain how disappointed I am. I love Portugal and the next 2 weeks of my trip were going to be amazing. Plus I have 2 titles to defend.

It is what it is I suppose, and I need to focus on the future, and the races that are still coming up.

The organisation and hospitality from the organisors was unbelievable, and this is definitely a race to add to your calendar. Besides the amazing race, there is the city of San Francisco and surrounds. Think: the best sushi ever, loads of touristy things to do and amazing scenery.

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