Hello Friends!! Team Merrell/Akali’s Carter Johnson is ON FIRE all over California, beating everything and everyone! Check out his event reports, below. W-O-W. He’s my friend. :).
The amount of positive press our team receives from this kid is unbelievable. He’s not only the fastest guy on the water right now, but the nicest and most down to earth. So proud and honored to be playing with him! Xo Robyn
Robin, we are 4 Winter Season races deep and 4 1st place finishes for Team Merrell/Akali. Here are some quick recaps and photos.
Wave Chasers Race 1 – Half Moon Bay 11-05-10: This was perhaps the most brutal race of year so far. The course was a 10 mile out and back and featured 20+ knot winds. The beat into the surf was absolutely terrifying and the rides back to the start will be spoke of at after parties for years to come. The waves were so big I was sure the race director would call the event half way out, but they never did. This type of action is truly what separates Open Ocean Surfski racing from other forms of kayak racing. It was the perfect way to kick off the winter season.
Wave Chasers Race 2 – Santa Cruz 11-26-10: The day started out mild and the lead pack of 20 boats grinded their way out past steamers row north up the Iconic Santa Cruz Boardwalk and California coast line. The top 10 boats rounded the turn buoy all within a few moments of each other, but on the way back, it all changed. The small swell opened up some opportunity for great rides and it felt as if you were either flying or floundering with not much room in-between. The race is held at the heavily populated harbor downtown and gets great exposure due to the tourists in the area. Afterwards we all partied and shared pizza and war stories on the beach.
Wave Chasers Race 3 – Redwood City 12-04-10: This is the only dedicated flat water Wave Chaser race of the year. The idea is to give the competitors an opportunity to mix up boats and get a true gauge of pure fitness level early on in the season. This year saw Huki Surfski’s introducing its new S1-Z flat water surfski. This boat is truly unique with is 12.5 inch water line compared the traditional 15 to 16 inch water line of most surfskis. The race also featured several flat water Olympic style Double and Quad kayaks. It was a brutal pound but the results were spectacular as I was able to put over 6 minutes on the main pack over just 8 miles as well as stay only 20 seconds behind the lead 4 man kayak for a first place solo finish and 2nd over.
Redwood City Rowing Regatta 12-05-10: This is an actual holiday rowing race at the BIAC aquatic center. 2 years back though they opened it up to the 4 man Olympic Kayaks and the results have been devastating thus far. Last year were not sure what to expect, but 4 of us hopped in a boat together for the first time and gave it all we had. Must to our surprise, we were able to inch them all out and take first place over all victory agains all classes. With the bar set we know there would be out to get us this year. No rower wants to be beat by a kayaker every!! As the gun went off we dropped the hammer and never looked back. The water was smooth and with some serious pain we were able to pull it off again! Afterwards almost 200 people from the center partied and shared stores of the event. This is one that I hope to never miss.
Here are the rest of the Series