For Immediate Release
Weather Challenges Racers in 2014 Coastal Urge Cold Stroke Classic
January 18, 2014
Wrightsville Beach, N.C. - One of the East Coast's longest running stand-up paddleboard races did not disappoint on Saturday, providing extreme conditions for seasoned SUP athletes seeking adventure. With temperatures at 34 degrees and winds 10-20 mph, the 6th Annual Cold Stroke Classic launched with white caps in the channel under clear skies.
Photo by Bill Baggett
Winds, dropping temperatures, running tides and choppy waters added to excitement and complexity, requiring more thought and strategy by participants. Paddlers from all corners of the United States registered for the competition.
The Classic featured a 7-mile elite competition, a 3.5-mile recreational race, and a 14-and-under kids' division. A cash purse was awarded in the elite division, and over $5,000 in prizes in the recreational division.
Jeremy Whitted of Charleston, S.C. and April Zilg of Wilmington, N.C. took top honors in the Elite Men's 14' and Elite Women's 12'6" in their respective divisions.
Here are the top 3 winners in all categories:
Elite Men's 14'
1. Jeremy Whitted, Charleston, SC
2. Ron Gossard, Ocean City, MD
3. Dan Gavere, The Gorge, Oregon
Elite Men's 12' 6"
1. Will Lathan, Wilmington, NC
2. Matthew Nacy, Purceville, VA
3. Tom Wilson, New Bern, NC
Elite Women's 12' 6"
1. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC
2. Kimberly James, Wilmington, NC
3. Miriam Sutton, Wilmington, NC
Recreational Men's 14'
1. Neil Macindoe, Annapolis, MD
2. Bryan Barton, Annapolis, MD
3. William Reece, Chapel Hill, NC
1. Christopher Hill, Surf City, NC
2. Mark Schmidt, Wilmington, NC
3. Gordon Rock (alias Runslo Walksalot), Wilmington, NC
1. James Smith, Wilmington, NC
2. Hunter Hay, Wilmington, NC
Recreational Women's 12' 6" and under
1. Anna Blackburn (14 years of age), Wilmington, NC
2. Julia Nicholls, Morehead City, NC
3. Harmony Dawn, Ottawa, Canada
Recreational Men's 12' 6" and under
1. Eric Kopka, Hamstead, NC
2. Justin Schaay, Charleston, SC
3. Ed Pierce, Wilmington, NC
Acclaimed Cold Stroke Classic Returns January 18
Wrightsville Beach, N.C. will host one of the East Coast's longest running stand-up paddleboard races on Friday and Saturday, Jan. 17-18, 2014. The 6th Annual Cold Stroke Classic features the coldest race conditions of the year in coastal North Carolina.
Over 120 professional and recreational competitors will race, hailing from all corners of the United States and countries as far away as Portugal.
“The Cold Stroke Classic launched the sport of SUP on the East Coast,” says John Beausang, editor and owner of DistressedMullet.com, a leading online paddleboard resource. “It brought early pioneers and SUP ambassadors to Wrightsville Beach, including Chuck Patterson, Byron Kurt, Brandi Baksic and E.J. Johnson. It was the race that launched a hundred races.”
The Cold Stroke Classic began under the visionary leadership of Jeoffrey and Catherine Nathan, founders of Coastal Urge, a Carolina-based lifestyle outfitter. The couple and Coastal Urge also established, and continue to present, the annual Newport SUP Cup in Newport, Rhode Island.
The Cold Stroke Classic features a 7-mile Elite competition, a 3.5-mile Recreational race, and a 14-and-under kids' division. A cash purse will be awarded in the Elite division, and over $5,000 in prizes will be awarded in the Recreational division.
The race will circle Harbor Island via Banks Channel, Motts Channel, and the Intracoastal Waterway. All races begin and end at the Blockade Runner Beach Resort, host of the Cold Stroke Classic. The Blockade Runner is celebrating its 50th Anniversary during 2014.
The race weekend will begin on Friday, January 17, with world-renowned SUP professional Dan Gavere's race and stroke clinic. Gavere will focus on what it takes to have the perfect race day, including a seminar on the choke down stroke technique, the bow draw, and paddling in rough conditions. The clinic features on-the-water training with one complete loop of the Harbor Island race course.
On-water assistance will be provided by the U.S. Coast Guard, Coast Guard Auxiliary, and SeaTow. USCG approved PFD’s and board leashes are required.
The Cold Stroke Classic benefits SUP Cleanup, an organization dedicated to removing trash and debris from littered waterways and beaches throughout the United States.
Race photos and event logos: Click here
Coastal Urge | Cold Stroke Classic
Phone: 800-383-4443 ext. 10
Blockade Runner Beach Resort
Event photographs courtesy of Coastal Urge
Aerial photographs courtesy of Lemonstripe
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