Pacific Paddle Games stand-up and prone paddling event set for Oct. 10 and 11 at Doheny State Beach
By Andrea Swayne
Dana Point will host a weekend of world-class pro and amateur competition featuring stand-up and prone paddleboard racing as the Pacific Paddle Games makes its debut at Doheny State Beach.
The SUP the Mag magazine event, presented by Salt Life, will offer what’s being billed as the “largest prize purse in paddle sports history.” According to PPG news releases and the event’s official website, the majority of the winnings will go to the best all-around professional-level paddleboard athletes competing and combining their scores in both distance and technical racing, including junior pro and prone divisions.
Competitors must choose to race in either the Open all ages division—for non-pro athletes—or the Pro/Elite division, not both.
Event organizers announced on Tuesday the addition of a Manufacturers’ Team Challenge event in which teams representing paddling industry brands will compete and a prize of $25,000 worth of print and online advertising will be split among the top four points earning teams.
Registration is open now. Pro and junior pro paddlers must register before Oct. 9 at 3 p.m. as beach entries for these divisions will not be offered.
Pro divisions are available for all ages of athletes including Junior Pro 17U and Grom Pro, both offering spots for boys and girls.
The Pro Technical course is a 0.7-mile course that zig-zags around six turns/buoys. Open Technical racers will navigate three laps on a 1-mile course with five turns/buoys. The Distance race is a triangular 3-mile course, with one lap in the Grom Distance race and two laps in Open and Pro Distance races. A 0.3-mile Beginner Grom course will also be offered. Detailed course maps are available on the PPG website.
For those wishing to learn the sport, instructional clinics will be offered in SUP racing, SUP surfing and paddle stroke techniques. A SUP yoga class will also be taught.
It seems organizers have been keen to ensure that no confusion exists regarding the production of the newly-created event, publishing information clearly stating PPG has no affiliation with Rainbow Sandals Gerry Lopez Battle of the Paddle, an event that was canceled in the spring after a seven-year run at Doheny until moving to Salt Creek Beach for the 2014 event.
News releases and online media for the event include a note to prospective competitors as follows: “The Pacific Paddle Games have no association or relationship with the former event known as Battle of the Paddle owned by Rainbow Sandals.”
To register, or for more information including a full schedule of events, visit PPG online at www.pacificpaddlegames.com.