Hamo’s Clash of the Pad­dles goes global

Whitsunday Times - - SPORT -

In a ma­jor coup for the Clash of the Pad­dles, the surf and ocean ski event has been in­cluded on the World Surf Ski Se­ries, to be recog­nised along­side events in Hawaii, Mau­ri­tius, Canada, Tahiti and San Fran­cisco.

Com­peti­tors in the 25km down-wind event will now by vy­ing for points as well as prizes, with the top four re­sults from the se­ries con­tribut­ing to the crown­ing of a World Surf Ski Cham­pion.

Surf skis are a new ad­di­tion to the Clash of the Pad­dles, join­ing the Out­rig­ger Cup pro­gram four years ago.

Dur­ing that time the pro­gram, man­aged by Surf Life Sav­ing Australia, has flour­ished with more than 100 com­peti­tors alone ex­pected for the 25km down-wind event.

Tra­di­tion­ally held from Lin­de­man Is­land to Hamil­ton Is­land, com­peti­tors are taken to the race start aboard the re­sort’s barge be­fore head­ing home.

De­fend­ing cham­pion Michael Booth will be back to de­fend his ti­tle this year, while four-time Olympian Clint Robin­son and ocean rac­ing guru Dean Gar­diner head­lined the field last year.

But you can ex­pect sim­i­larly big names at this year’s event, es­pe­cially now that the Clash of the Pad­dles is part of the World Surf Ski Se­ries.

In ad­di­tion to the blue riband 25km event, 3km and 7km races will also be held as well as a unique ‘dash for cash’ with teams drafted based on the afore­men­tioned races.

For more in­for­ma­tion or to reg­is­ter visit www.hamil­ton is­land.com.au/sports-events/ clash-of-the-pad­dles.

STARS OF THE SPORT: Michael Booth and Jeremy Cot­ter dur­ing last year’s Clash of the Pad­dles.

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