Crazy European SUP Racing season !

Alright… I havn’t been posting many upadtes lately… Most of the news are on my facebook page E.T.SUP but i’t time to play catch up and write about the last – crazy – few weeks …

After the North Point Classic we have stayed in Brittany with Belar.
Next stop was the “Grand Prix de l’école Naval” where some fun races were organised May 11th, the goal being more the promotion of the sport than real competition, we had a good time, it was nice to see all the kids !

May 12-13 was the Trophé Nah Skwell. In 2011 I could not take part in that race as I was at the Battle of the Paddle Hawaii and all my friends told me I have missed a good race… So I wanted to be part of it in 2012.
And I do not regret, the organisation have been excellente thanks to Bruno André, Fabienne D’Ortoli and their team.
I have won the beach race and the long distance that turned out to be a light -but fun- downwind.

There was also a fun race that I have done Tandem SUPing with my mum, fun !

After a full weekend of racing I have held a 3 days SUP Clinic in Brittany with Greg Closier, we shared all we know about SUP Racing and SUP Surfing with an excellent crew of paddlers.

Then it was time to drive down south for the SUP Race CUP 2012 !

The event have been awesome, absolutly everyone was there, the race with the most participants in Europe so far, here is the video.

I have won the beach race without getting in any trouble this time.
In the long distance race I have stayed with the group during the whole race leading a long drafting train. I attacked with the finish line in sight and got the win in front of Gaetan Sene and Chase Kosterlitz.

No time for rest and Monday we were at “l’Almanarre” beach for some demos with the Bic Team !

We spent the week wiht Belar in la Ciotat resting and doing a little bit of paddling.

The following weekend was the 1st edition of the Massillia SUP Race in Marseille. I didn’t feel quite good for that race, I was feeling a bit tired and sick. I have been lucky with the weather as there was a strong wind and this is exactly what I am used to !
I got 1st at the Beach race in front of Casper Steinfath and Gaetan Sene and I got 1st in the 15km long distance race taking 4mn30sec on Gaetan and 5mn on Casper, I didn’t expect that much !

And this was the last race in France… Next one was taking place in Germany, the Lost Mills International race, another of the biggest race in Europe.
I was a concerned about this race on a lake as I knew that my custom 14′ board was not the fastest board when it is flat, I have been praying for wind and chop… the morning of the race there was 10-15knots that seemed to creat some chop on the lake… But as soon as we took the start it was flat and sticky…
I got 2nd behind Chase and I was happy with my race, in the previous 7 weeks I have won 7 events, sometimes with so much advantage that it was not even fun for me. I learn a lot more from getting 2nd than from winning a race.
What I have found disapointing is that I have always wanted to have only 1 board that does it all, I am travelling a lot, I have my SUP surf, my 12’6, my 14…and I can’t see myself carrying more boards than I already do…but I realise that with the competition getting harder it does not always work…

The day after we were in Bavaria for a River Surfing session ! Fun and not easy at all !

And finally after 8 weeks of travelling and racing I have finally made it back to Fuerteventura !!
I really needed a break, I needed to spend time with Anita, I needed to be at home.

I have left my boards and paddles in Germany as the next event is in Belgium at Namur, that will be my last European Race for a long while. The following races will be in Chicago and Hawaii…

So meantime I enjoy paddling my OC1, yesterday I crossed from Lanzarote to Fuerteventura with my friends from “Güisa Action” , 1h13mn of pure downwind !