Skrea Strand Paddlerace 2023 One to watch: Danish SUP Champion Asger Smidt

Two words: Asger Smidt . We met this die-hard gamer turned SUP athlete, Overall Danish Champion 2023 and Starboard Team Rider in Malmö, Sweden as he was tearing the technical and long distance races up. Ambitious, hungry and tremendously hard working, at only seventeen, Asger brings explosive and elegant paddling style to the SUP racing table.

Photo credit: Infinity Sup Nordic

To witness a talent like that in our sport first-hand is something truly remarkable and we’re stoked to catch up with Asger in the run up to Skrea Strand Paddlerace 2023 presented by Baltic Lifejackets. Held on the 12-13 August, this is Sweden’s largest SUP competition, ICF SUP World Ranking Race and the Swedish Long Distance Championships with both local and international SUP talent competing in Falkenberg.

Photo credit: Infinity Sup Nordic

Hi Asger, welcome to TotalSUP – It was great to see you racing in Malmo! How did you get into the sport of stand-up paddleboarding?

Hi and thanks for having me. I am in my third season of race-paddling, but before that, I really was a true “gamer nerd”. I never left my room and all I did was to play video games. One day my parents said to me that if I didn’t pick up a sport and was active at least 3 times a week, they would cut the Internet connection to my room. About the same time the local sailing club in Hellerup (North Copenhagen) was starting a junior stand-up paddle team. I joined up for a trial practice and from there the rest is history, it was the best decision of my life.

Photo credit: Infinity Sup Nordic

Where are you training and who’s coaching you?

I am training all over the Copenhagen area, but mainly at my local beach which is a 200m walk from my house. I am training with Vincent Guillaume who has also taught me a lot about technique and stamina, but we have also worked a lot with my mental skills.

Photo credit: The EuroTour

Who is your biggest influence in our sport?

I am so lucky to train with a group of very dedicated paddlers. In Copenhagen we are called “Team Red Nose” named after the red nose on Starboard race boards. When I joined this group, I was at the slow end of the team but they kept encouraging me to be who I am today. We are always training and aiming for the next Danish SUP tour stop and that gives the training purpose and diversity, so we are training flat water scenarios, draft trains, buoy-turns and beach starts when it is a technical race. Everybody in the group participates in the races so everyone is engaged and focused on their own particular level. But most of all, they make it fun to train. So this group has a big influence on me.

Photo credit: Surf & SUP Danmark

What in your opinion is needed to grow the sport in your country and encourage young people to start competing.

I hope that we in Denmark can replicate what SUP Academy by Daniel Parres is doing in Spain. It is fantastic and I am very envious and happy at the same time for their success and the future of the sport. It is a “must” with dedicated trainers that follow the athletes from the start and are there when they start racing and speak their path/opinion to the race-organizers.

We’re catching up in the run up to Skrea Strand Paddlerace event. Could you tell us more about your experience with this event and what are your expectations?

Skrea Strand Paddlerace is something for itself. In 2021 this event was my first experience with a racing outside Denmark. It is one of the most well-organized events I’ve ever been to and you can really feel that Tommy Dee Packendorff, Skrea Race Director, and the crew is putting in the work to make it all go as smoothly as possible. My expectations for this event is that I hope to end up on the podium, have a lot of fun and enjoy the international atmosphere these big events are always loaded with.

Photo credit: YASL Photos & Stories

What’s your favourite sup racing format?

My favourite sup racing format is a long tech race with beach starts and beach runs. These races have it all: Explosiveness, stamina, high technique level and buoy turns and sometimes event waves. They always reveal the best and a fully moulded athlete.

Photo credit: Infinity Sup Nordic

What are your pro SUP plans?

This year I am starting a Sports High school and I am really looking forward to it. I hope it will become easier to juggle schoolwork, training and racing. But of course, I want to be the World Champion someday, that’s for sure.

Good luck Asger at Skrea and with all your SUP and academic plans. Go “Team Red Nose”!

Photo credit: The EuroTour

To find out more about the event and to register, visit

Check out our interview with the Skrea Race Director, Tommy Dee Packendorff

To find out more about Baltic, visit Baltic Lifejacket Sweden and follow the brand on Instagram and Facebook 

Follow Asger Smidt on Instagram 

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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