2016 USLA National Championships

August 15, 2016
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Preparing for the start of the Rescue Paddle Event

The four-day United States Lifesaving Assocation (USLA) conducted their 29th annual individual and team championships from August 10-13 in Hermosa Beach, California. It was the first time since 2013 that the contests were held in Southern California, the last one being in Manhattan Beach.

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Rescue Paddle finish

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Solberg, Kemp

In the final individual scoring event, the Paddle Board Rescue, Jenna Solberg and Coral Kemp, shown above and left images, took runner-up finish to Kelsey O’Donnell and Diane Graner-Gallas in the “A Final.” The multiple event points amassed by Solberg, including 1st in the Open IronWoman, 2nd in both the Board and Surf races, and 3rd in the Rescue Swim race, vaulted her to the top as the US Women’s Open Lifeguard All-Around Champion over rookie Kelsey Cummings. (B~note: Cummings was in this Rescue Paddle event “B Final” with Tiana Pugliese, both of who’ll surely be looked to in the future for high-points.)

 

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Graner-Gallas, Kemp, O’Donnell, Solberg

Recent past individual US Open Lifeguarding All-Around Champions include O’Donnell (2014), Kemp (2013), and Graner-Gallas (multiple previous years).

On the team side, the Los Angeles County Surf Lifesaving Association (LACO SLSA) is back on top of the national scene recapturing the USLA National Team Championship as well. Hats off to the Men & Women of LACO and runners-up California State Parks!


Hawai’i goes with new Format for Paddle Competitions

May 6, 2012

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Recently, while in Honolulu, O’ahu, I was able to visit the South Shore for the triangular course series of the Waikiki Paddle Festival for both Stand Up Paddle (SUP) and prone Paddle Board competitions. The course the organizers put up was close to shore, which afforded spectators many opportunities to witness the events (more up close and personal) and cheer for their athletes (almost always in earshot) — it was really cool! That was Day 1, Saturday.

Many thanks to Steve Foster of Pacific Sport Events & Timing — he cued me in on all the happenings real time!

Waikiki Paddle Festival Day 2, Sunday, featured the Outrigger Canoe singles, doubles, etc., along with the SUPs and Boards in the Long Distance ~8 miles, Hawai’i Kai to Fort DeRussy (Waikiki Beach near the Hale Koa Hotel). It was fun for all!

 Great weather and great scenery promises great Paddle Races for this summer!