a fun suggestion

Steve Wells

This is from Doug Kidder of Maas Boat Company. What do you think?

Yesterday was the Berkeley Paddling & Rowing Club time trial. Four heats, each heat consisted of a lap of the Aquatic Park (roughly 2700 meters). I decided to smack talk a bit and put up $200 to anyone who could beat me on combined time for one lap of each: 1x, surfski, OC-1, SUP. There were only three others who took me up on it, but that race was the most fun than I've had racing in a long time. Our normal races get a bit stale. If I show up at a rowing event and Dan is there, I know he's going to win. (He'd probably win this too, but that's another matter.) If I show up at a paddling event and Omar is there, I know Omar is going to win. But this was a complete free-for-all. There was only just enough time to change boats before heading out for the next heat and we were mostly doing different boats at different times so it was never clear who was in the lead. In the weeks prior to the race I borrowed a SUP from a friend and learned how to do that. Another guy who is a really great paddler, jumped into a rowing shell (Aero) for the first time in his life and managed to complete the course. Now he was slow, but it was the most impressive bit of novice rowing I've ever seen. There was another guy who destroyed me on rowing time, but couldn't come close to me on the SUP.

All in all, I HIGHLY recommend putting a race like this together. There were a lot more people at the time trial than just the four of us doing all four. Most of the rest raced in teams that were put together at registration. People did one, two, three or four heats – some in the same kinds of boats, some in a few different types. But it got all the communities together.


p.s. I held on to my $200.

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