The 2019 London SUP Open kicks off tomorrow. This is stop number 1 on the APP World Championship Tour for Racing. The atmosphere will be electric and will provide something for everyone. The event is run in partnership with the UK’s single largest Festival of Fitness: The Hackney Festival of Fitness! The list of elite paddlers present is enormous, everyone is present to battle it out on the first stop on the APP World Tour!
London has long been a melting pot for international sporting spectacles, and this weekend, it is the London Borough of Hackney, just down the road from Olympic Park that will host World’s very best SUP athletes from over 20 countries Worldwide, as they battle it out at the Opening stop of the 2019 APP World Championship Tour. But the London SUP Open welcomes all paddlers and enthusiasts to participate and rub shoulders with the world’s best in the unique environment in Hackney for a weekend to remember.
This year the confirmed athletes are for the men’s race are Michael Booth from Australia, the Hasulyo brothers from Hungary and Titouan Puyo from New Caledonia, while in the Sprint Racing, Casper Steinfath from Denmark, Mo Freitas from Hawaii and the Nika brothers from Italy. However, it doesn’t stop there! 3 times World Champion Connor Baxter, Current World Champion Arthur Arutkin and a major new contender on the APP World Tour, Lincoln Dews, will certainly be names to watch out for in London, as the season kicks off in style.
Also to watch out for is Fiona Wylde from Hood River, Oregon, one of the most dominant figures in the sport, particularly in any form of distance racing. Others to look out for are two US stand outs, April Zilg and Seychelle Hatting, along with the young Hawaii talent, Annie Reickert and the powerhouse from Japan, Yuka Sato! The list doesn’t end there! Super women, and mum Lina Augaitis has flown in direct from Canada to battle for position. SIC paddler Seychelle Hattingh is fresh back from injury and will be raring to go. British riders are also present ready to lay down the sword and battle on their own territory with up coming paddler Ginnie Betts lining up at the start!
Unfortunately we have 2 injuries coming into this first event, so we will not be seeing the current World Champion Shae Foudy in the line up, nor will we see the young talent from Slovenia, Manca Notar. We hope that they both recover quickly and can be back in action by New York. Also the 2017 World Champion Terrene Black is unable to make this first event due to important commitments back home, but will be present through the remainder of the 2019 season.
With courses catering to Pro-Am and experienced Open participants in the 6 KM and 9 KM range, to more entry level courses in the 3 KM and 1 KM range, Saturday will provide open participants the opportunity to take part for themselves from 2 pm UK time in the company of the World’s very best athletes.
In addition, on Sunday morning from 8 am, Open and Junior Sprints will provide the opportunity for participants to race the same course as the Pros and experience the excitement of fast paced sprint racing from themselves as an opener to the APP Tour Sprint Racing that will kick off at 11am.
The London SUP Open will consist of two key racing disciplines:
1) Distance: Athletes will compete in the 13 KM course from the Tower of London to Putney, aptly named the ‘Race from the Tower’. Passing the majority of London’s most recognizable landmarks on their way down the Thames, the World’s best will be looking to navigate their way down the tidal waterway central to London’s inner workings for Centuries and be the first to arrive in the renowned Rowing town of Putney in SW London.
2) Sprints: This fast paced, arena format of SUP Racing will provide a real show to the Hackney Festival of Fitness, with non stop action from 11 am – 3 pm, as the World’s best will take on the 220m Sprint course in an elimination format that will see the strongest sprinters take charge on a full day of action in Hackney.
Athlete Clinics and Events!
It is going to be a full weekend of action, participation and entertainment at the London SUP Open as part of the Hackney Festival of Fitness, from introductory Clinics with Paddle Barbados and Bluefin, Paddle and Nutrition Masterclasses with April Zilg, exploratory paddles with Lizzie Carr and Plastic Patrol to demo paddles with Decathlon, there is every opportunity to get your feet wet and experience the SUP Lifestyle in London.
The Weekend’s activities and main events will focus on 3 primary components of the APP’s unique City Paddle Festivals approach
3 pm – 7 pm: Event Opening, Hackney Festival of Fitness Pool and Canal sessions with the APP.
9:30 am: ‘Race from the Tower’ for APP Pros at 9:35 am (Live Broadcast),
From 2 PM Pro-AM & Open Racing on the Canal in Hackney
Hackney Festival of Fitness Pool and Canal Sessions with the APP throughout the day together with Lizzie Carr Plastic Patrol adventures, Q&A and Movie Premiere
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