CONGRATULATIONS Annabel Anderson and Danny Ching: 2014 Champions

2014 SUP Champions Tour Crowns Annabel Anderson and Danny Ching as inaugural Champions

Six months ago several of the top male (Travis Grant, Connor Baxter, Danny Ching, Georges Cronsteadt, Lincoln Dews, Jaime Mitchell, Chase Kosterlitz, Matt Becker, Chuck Patterson and many more) and female SUP racers (Annabel Anderson, Jenny Kalmbach, Lina Augaitis and others) sat down in a room with the goal to unify the future of professional SUP racing around the world. We believed that by banding together, agreeing to meet at certain races and race each other, we could establish the beginnings of a world ranking.

There are currently at least 3 entities that claim they crown a world champion; WPA, World Series, and ISA. Each one of these boast claims to a world champion, however none of them have the support of all or even most of the athletes and they are all restricted to a particular board class and style of racing.

The Champions Tour was established with one main goal in mind… Help grow the sport through racing. The only thing we as racers could do is agree to prepare ourselves to show up at a certain time, in a certain place and perform as best we could, in hopes of making an event bigger, better, and more marketable to the masses. With that thought in mind we as athletes wanted to support the biggest and best events that we have already been to, and that we thought deserved our support.

The questions we as athletes personally wanted to answer were:

1. Does bringing all the top competitors to an event help grow the sport?

2. Do the pros showing up to events help grow the event and make the event better?

3. Where do I truly rank at the end of the year based off of my race results at the best events, against the best racers?

This year we decided to pick seven races and attend as many of them as would fit in our busy schedules and would encompass a wide range of racing styles and board classes. For the men we would score the top five races (since that’s what most of the men could attend) and for the women we would score the top four race (same reasoning).

After a long debate and laying everyone’s already busy schedules together we came up with six events (seven races total, with BOP Elite and Distance counting as two separate results) that we thought would best accomplish this goal.

Every event on this short list was debated by the athletes for its past history, time and location and whether or not we thought that by supporting it we could help grow the sport of SUP racing.

Based on results in each of these unique events, which include a variety of race conditions and board classes, we set up a ranking among the top men and women in the world.

The events were:

Carolina Cup (Elite Graveyard Race – winners Danny Ching / Annabel Anderson)

OluKai (line honours – winners Connor Baxter / Andrea Moller)

The Lost Mills (Distance Race – winners Eric Terrien / Lina Augaitis)

The Ultimate SUP Showdown (Qualifying ‘Y’ race – winners Kai Lenny / Shakira Westdorp)

The Gorge Paddle Challenge (overall results – winners Connor Baxter / Annabel Anderson)

Battle of the Paddle Elite Race (winners – Kai Lenny / Candice Appleby)

Battle of the Paddle Distance Race (winners – Danny Ching / Lina Augaitis)

The tie breaker this year was a count back to a paddler’s best result, in order to reward consistent finishes.

There were some amazing races this year. We would like to personally thank all the athletes that spend their own time and money to support these events, and we would like to thank all the race directors that made this possible. It was an investment into the future of the sport that we love so much. Thank you all!

View the final 2014 SUP Champions Tour Rankings Leaderboard to see how the season finished

Annabel Anderson Danny Ching

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What is the SUP Champions Tour?

Combining the world’s biggest races with the world’s best paddlers, the SUP Champions Tour is designed to give back to the sport of stand up paddle racing and promote it from a grassroots level.

The Tour aims to bring together the world’s best paddlers every month to support the sport and provide a platform for all paddlers to compete at the highest level.

In 2014 the Champions Tour includes seven of the biggest races in the world, from the Carolina Cup to the Battle of the Paddle. These events were chosen because they host excellent, well organised races that cater to all levels. These are the great events that have built our sport and which drive the SUP industry, so we feel the community should give back and support them.

It’s not just about the elite guys and girls either; the SUP Champions Tour is open to all paddlers. You don’t need to qualify. You don’t need to be a household name to be included. All you need to do is train hard and have a serious love of paddling…

And this is only the beginning: In 2015 and beyond the SUP Champions Tour will grow into a worldwide tour showcasing the world’s best paddlers in every corner of the globe.

 

Why the SUP Champions Tour?

By the end of 2013, several of the world’s best paddlers had become frustrated with the current state of SUP racing. There were so many great events out there, however there were so many mediocre races as well. The sport was becoming so fragmented and disorganized that it risked breaking apart.

So a group of elite athletes decided to take the initiative and create the SUP Champions Tour. By basing a tour around the already-existing events that had proved themselves to be world class, the SUP Champions Tour instantly created a legitimate, well organised series for the world’s best paddlers to showcase their talents.

The Champions Tour is all about promoting stand up paddling at a grassroots level, giving back to the great events that built this sport and recognizing the amazing athletes who train hard, race hard and contribute so much to this great community of ours.

Support the sport. Support the SUP Champions Tour.

THE WORLD’S BEST PADDLERS, THE WORLD’S BIGGEST RACES

THE SCHEDULE

The 2014 SUP Champions Tour features seven of the world’s biggest and best races.

These events were chosen because they attract not only the world’s best athletes, but hundreds of amateurs and first time paddlers as well. These are the “mass participation” events that have helped build our sport and fuel its industry. Each and every one of these races also does a great job of looking after all competitors, no matter whether you’re an elite star or a total beginner.

For all these reasons and more, these are the seven races we want to support and work with in order to help grow this amazing sport of ours.
 

 

Race #1: Carolina Cup
- Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, USA
- April 26th
- 13 mile course
- Flat water + ocean
- 14′ board class for men, 12’6 for women
- Official event website
- RESULTS

Race #2: OluKai Ho’olaule’a
- Maliko Gulch, Maui, Hawaii, USA
- May 10th
- 8 mile course
- Downwind
- Line Honours (all board classes are included)
- Official event website
- RESULTS

Race #3: Lost Mills
- Brombachsee, Bavaria, Germany
- June 21st
- 10 mile course
- Flat water
- 14′ board class
- Official event website
- RESULTS

Race #4: Ultimate SUP Showdown
- Waikiki, Oahu, Hawaii, USA
- August 17th & 18th
- Course race
- Waves
- 12’6 board class
- Points calculated from the “Qualifying Y Race” not the “Showdown Finale”
- Official event website
- RESULTS

Race #5: Gorge Paddle Challenge
- Hood River, Oregon, USA
- August 23rd & 24th
- Double downwinder + course race
- Downwind and flat water
- 14′ board class
- Official event website
- RESULTS

Race #6: Battle of the Paddle Elite Race
- Salt Creek, California, USA
- October 4th
- 4.5 mile course
- Waves
- 12’6 board class
- Official event website
- RESULTS

Race #7: Battle of the Paddle Elite Distance Race
- Salt Creek, California, USA
- October 5th
- 9 mile course
- Ocean
- 14′ board class
- Official event website
- RESULTS

GIVING BACK TO THE GREAT EVENTS THAT HAVE BUILT THIS SPORT

WHO?

The Champions Tour is run by an open collective of paddlers that simply want to give back and help grow the sport from a grassroots level.

The SUP Champions Tour is not controlled by any one person or organisation. We are not trying to make a profit or take over the sport, we simply want to see SUP racing grow in a strong and healthy direction.

Though while nobody “owns” the SUP Champions Tour, many of the world’s best known paddlers are spearheading the initiative.

PROMOTING STAND UP PADDLING FROM A GRASSROOTS LEVEL

SUP Champions Tour Leaderboard

The SUP Champions Tour is based on seven of the biggest races in the world.

Points are awarded for the top 50 places in each race. 100 points for the winner, 75 for 2nd place and so on, right down to 1 point for 50th place.

The SUP Champions Tour uses SUPracer.com’s Points System, which was designed specifically for the unique world of stand up paddle racing. Click here for a complete explanation of how and why the points system works.

You can view the current Top 10 below or CLICK HERE for the full Leaderboard.

 

Men’s Leaderboard

Best 5 out of 7 results
Current standings after final event (Battle of the Paddle – Distance)

1Danny Ching7395.0100.042.575.060.050.060.0100.0
2Travis Grant6345.060.075.075.060.018.075.0
3Connor Baxter6345.016.0100.060.042.5100.042.5
4Georges Cronsteadt5225.075.025.075.09.050.0
5Kai Lenny3201.5100.01.5100.0
6Jake Jensen4178.511.050.042.575.0
7Chase Kosterlitz5155.350.030.030.02.842.5
8Eric Terrien3155.0100.025.030.0
9Slater Trout5116.025.030.022.522.516.0
10Beau O'Brian3114.350.04.360.0

VIEW THE FULL MEN’S LEADERBOARD

 

Women’s Leaderboard

Best 4 out of 7 results
Current standings after final event (Battle of the Paddle – Distance)

1Annabel Anderson5335.0100.060.0100.060.075.0
2Lina Augaitis6335.060.0100.022.535.075.0100.0
3Sonni Honscheid7235.050.075.060.025.042.525.050.0
4Candice Appleby3210.050.060.0100.0
5Jenny Kalmbach3192.575.075.042.5
6Angela Jackson3185.075.075.035.0
7Fiona Wylde4185.025.050.050.060.0
8Andrea Moller2116.0100.016.0
9Kelsa Gabehart4110.535.035.018.022.5
10Talia Decoite4110.060.016.014.020.0

VIEW THE FULL WOMEN’S LEADERBOARD

RECOGNIZING THE AMAZING ATHLETES THAT DRIVE OUR COMMUNITY

THE FUTURE

The 2014 SUP Champions Tour is only the beginning. In 2015 and beyond, the Champions Tour will showcase the world’s best paddlers at the world’s biggest races in every corner of the world.

Plans are already in motion for the next season of the Champions Tour. Our goal this year is to prove this concept is legitimate and to help pave the way for a much bigger and more exciting world tour in the future.

We are an open “Paddler’s Collective” that wants to promote stand up paddling from a grassroots level, embrace the mass participation nature of our sport and help SUP racing to grow in a healthy, positive direction.

Nobody owns this sport and nobody owns the SUP Champions Tour. Everyone is welcome. So if you want to be involved then get in touch: hello@supchampionstour.com

 

SUPPORT THE SPORT. SUPPORT THE SUP CHAMPIONS TOUR.