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In search of the next household name in the world of SUP? Meet SIC Maui Rider Trace Ostrowski

Watch this space as the name “Ostrowski” is about to become a powerful SUP brand and the sibling duo behind it – a force to be reckoned with on the racing circuit! After catching up with the 16-year old SIC Maui Rider and Youth Development Team rep, Alex Ostrowski, we were stoked to chat to her brother, 15-year old Trace Ostrowski, and an up-and-coming young SUP athlete whose relaxed and driven by passion attitude to competing will take him far without losing what’s important in our sport – The fun!

Photo credit: SIC Maui Columbia Gorge Paddle Challenge

Hi Trace, welcome to TotalSUP! Could you tell us more about yourself and how did you get into the sport of stand-up paddleboarding?

I live in Sayulita, Mexico and have been here since I was four years old. Sayulita is known for stand-up paddle boarding and the athletes that come from here. I tried SUP as a new after-school sport and a year later travelled to go to races like the Pacific Paddle Games and SIC Maui Columbia Gorge Paddle Challenge. After those first big races and seeing other kids my age I was hooked on getting better. I have been paddling for almost seven years now.

Photo credit: SIC Maui Columbia Gorge Paddle Challenge

What are your favourite SUP disciplines?

I longboard, SUP surf and race. I do pretty much anything that involves the ocean since I can walk five minutes to the beach. It is always there waiting for me whenever I can get there. I think I like ocean SUP technical races the best. The more waves the better. Those races are the most fun, interesting and challenging. I need to use so many paddling, racing and surfing skills in addition to going fast which I love.

Photo credit: SIC Maui Columbia Gorge Paddle Challenge

What’s your local SUP racing scene and the SUP community like?

SUP racing locally is a dedicated group. A lot of Mexico’s best SUP athletes are people we see around town and in the water all the time. They support us younger SUP racers and we look up to them. They will even join our training group sometimes. They know we are keeping the SUP racing tradition strong in Sayulita.

I train with the Sayulita SUP Society. It is a group of local experienced SUP racers and SUP surfers who have a desire to compete not only here in Mexico but also internationally. SUP training and racing in Sayulita is lots of fun especially with ocean and waves creating really challenging conditions and we have had some really talented guest paddlers come train with us.

SUP racing returned to Sayulita this year with the Sayulita SUP Open. The event brought lots of people and energy to the beach for two days of races and it was cool to see so many paddlers in my hometown having fun.

Who inspires you in the world of stand-up paddleboarding?

Bicho Jimenez. He was my first coach and won the silver medal at the ISA SUP Distance race right here in his hometown of Sayulita in 2015. He got me excited about SUP racing and took me to my first big competitions.

Also, my Coach, Fernando Amaral Lorenzo. I train with him on the water and in they gym. He pushes me really hard but we still have fun. He is the current Mexico National Champion so I challenge myself to beat him every time we train.

And then Fiona Wylde. She is a world champion and has to manage her diabetes at the same time. What is not inspiring about that?

How do you prepare for SUP racing competitions?

I like to keep things loose and relaxed before races. I like to have a laugh or two and not stress too much. Eating well the night before is important, rest and then eating what basically just sounds good the morning of the event. I will talk to my coach before the race if he is there or watch heats or races before my event to see if I can catch something that might help me in my race.

It must be hard to juggle school, training and time you’d like to spend with your friends. How do you stay motivated to train and compete?

I try to get gym time in before school so when school is over I can paddle, surf or go to the gym again at night. It is easy for me to get to school, the water or gym since I can easily walk to everything in 5-10 minutes. I don’t waste a lot of time waiting to have my parents drive me places. I see friends at school but after school I don’t really see them much since they do other sports so they go off in different directions and do their training as well.

Trace with sister, Alex and dad, Christopher Ozzy Ostrowski

Could you share your three top tips for young, aspiring SUP racers?

Make sure you have passion for the sport and have fun with it. It makes it a lot easier to work hard. Have a Coach that you like, respect and can have fun with. Find the right equipment. If you have gear that is holding you back from seeing result then that isn’t fun

What’s your SIC Maui set up?

I currently ride a SIC Maui RS 12.6 and 14 depending on the race requirements. Quality equipment options here in Mexico are not always easy to find. Our family was fortunate to have a friend who was a SIC Maui rep living in this area part time and suggested the SIC RS to us as my first race board. Such a good board that has been with me since 2018 and I use it in all conditions here in Sayulita. I love that board!

What are your professional SUP plans and dreams?

I just turned 15 and have barely joined the Junior ranks. I really want to see how I stack up against the competition out there for a year or two before making any grand plans to be professional. I have met some of the coolest pros from all over the world. For now I am super stoked to travel, compete and meet new people thanks to SUP. I can’t wait to get to Europe someday soon and race there.

Thank you for your time Trace and good luck with the rest of the SUP racing season!

To explore SIC Maui quiver, visit www.sicmaui.com and follow the brand on Instagram and Facebook

Follow Trace Ostrowski on Instagram

*Images courtesy of Trace Ostrowski 

About the Author

Anna Nadolna

Anna is the Founder of SUPer Whale, a Cambridge(UK!)-based emerging watersports brand and a stand-up paddleboarding community. She is a certified SUP Flat Water Instructor accredited by International Surfing Association (ISA). Anna is also a digital marketing, storytelling aficionado and a growth hacking enthusiast.

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