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    More than 300 paddlers from Canada and the East Coast of the United States will participate in North Carolina's Surf to Sound Challenge Nov. 3-5,… Read More
    More than 300 paddlers from Canada and the East Coast of the United States will participate in North Carolina's Surf to Sound Challenge Nov. 3-5, 2017, in Wrightsville Beach. Presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is hosted by Blockade Runner Beach Resort and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA). Robert B Butler | PR www.RBButler.com www.ncpressrelease.org Read Less
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2017
World Ranked April Zilg Seeks 3rd Surf to Sound Challenge Title
World Ranked April Zilg of Wilmington, NC – Photo by Leigh Campbell
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – North Carolina’s only world-ranked standup paddler will pursue her third consecutive Surf to Sound Challenge championship in Wrightsville Beach, Nov. 3-5, 2017. April Zilg, currently ranked 11th on the global Top-50 Women's index by SUP Racer, is from Wilmington.

“Most of my life I was not in good shape,” said Zilg. “Now, at age 31, I can honestly say I’m in the best shape of my life, and I owe it to paddling. I tried running, kayaking, and biking. I tried it all, but nothing made me want to get up in the morning and do work that would make me fit. Paddling and standing on a board and seeing the water and wildlife are magical. It makes me want to get up and go out.”

North Carolina’s 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge begins on the beach with elite paddlers sprinting into the Atlantic Ocean, battling in the open sea to Masonboro Inlet, churning through the inlet’s roiling waters, and finally grinding at top speed in channel currents to the finish line at Blockade Runner Beach Resort.

“I like being here because I can paddle in the ocean, the inlet, and waterways, all in the same run … you need to be well-rounded,” said Zilg. “That’s unique to Wrightsville Beach, Carolina Cup, and Surf to Sound Challenge.”

Surf to Sound Challenge is a weekend of family activities, paddle clinics, vendor displays, and end-of-season races designed to include all skill levels.
Surf to Sound Challenge defending champion, April Zilg of Wilmington, NC – Photo by Corey Curtis
New to the racing schedule:

–The Froth, an 11-mile longboat ocean canoe (OC) and surfski endurance event combines soundside and ocean racing, traversing Bank’s Channel, Masonboro Inlet, the Intracoastal Waterway, and Mott’s Channel.


Returning favorites include:

–The scenic 4-mile Harbor Island Outer Loop, a beginner to intermediate race circumnavigating Harbor Island.
–The 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, an endurance challenge for experienced paddlers. 
–The celebrated Kid’s Race, for children 7 to 14. 
–The 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge for elite paddlers.

Zilg will race in the elite 6.5-mile race on Saturday, and Sunday’s 9-mile flatwater championship. “I want to see how far I can take this sport and dedicate my time to training,” said Zilg. “There is a lot of training. Many days, it’s twice a day. In the last year, I started focusing on nutrition. That made a big difference.”

Zilg posted an impressive 3rd-place finish in September’s Battle of the Bay in San Francisco, then captured 9th-place in October’s Pacific Paddle Games, considered the world championship race in standup paddleboard.

Regarding 2018, Zilg’s favorite race of the year is the West Marine Carolina Cup, ranked one of the top three paddle races in the world. “That’s the race I put the most emphasis on all year. I train hard for the Carolina Cup and put forth my best performance,” said Zilg. “I would also like to add a couple of stops on the Euro Tour in 2018, and hopefully, my first Hawaiian race.”

Zilg plans to step-up her training and sports career with a move to California in mid-November. “I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to train year-round with the world’s best professionals,” said Zilg. “Although I do plan on moving back home to North Carolina.”

Presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is hosted by Blockade Runner Beach Resort and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).

North Carolina Coastal Federation, supporting a healthy coast, is the designated charity for Surf to Sound Challenge.




Contact:

Mark Schmidt, Race Director
Phone: 910-620-1835

Robert B Butler
Communications | PR

Permission granted for redistribution – photo credits required

#StandupPaddleboard #SUP #OC-1 #OC-2 @SurfSki #Kayak #S2S2017 #SurftoSoundChallenge #TheFroth #BlockadeRunner #FlatwaterChampionship #HarborIslandOuterLoop #WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub #NorthCarolina #LarryCain #April Zilg #MarkSchmidt #NCCoastalFederation #WPA #Chattajack #PacificPaddleGames ​​​​​​​
World-ranked April Zilg of Wilmington, NC – Photo by Corey Curtis



Olympic Gold Larry Cain Returning for Surf to Sound Challenge
Olympic Gold Medalist Larry Cain – Courtesy of Warren Won
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – Larry Cain is a paddle monster. At age 21, Cain captured the Gold medal in sprint canoe for Canada in the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic games. Today, at age 54, Cain is three-time and reigning standup paddleboard champion in the 31-mile Tennessee River Chattajack, and winner four of the past six titles in the elite 6.5-mile North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge.

November 3-5, 2017, Larry Cain returns to North Carolina to defend his 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge Championship in Wrightsville Beach.

The Challenge begins on the beach with elite paddlers sprinting into the Atlantic Ocean, battling the open sea to the mouth of Masonboro Inlet, navigating through the inlet’s rushing and unstable waters, then grinding through channel currents to the finish line at Blockade Runner Beach Resort.

“It’s like a condensed version of the Graveyard Race at the Carolina Cup in the spring,” said Cain.

Surf to Sound is a weekend of family activities, paddle clinics, vendor displays, and races designed to include all skill levels. “Every race, whether you’re paddling inside or outside, throws unique obstacles to test you – waves in the ocean, inlet waters, wind, tides, all kinds of interesting and fun challenges,” said Cain. “Wrightsville Beach is such a beautiful place to paddle and the water is better than virtually anywhere I’ve ever seen.”

Other races on the weekend schedule include the scenic 4-mile Harbor Island Outer Loop, circling Harbor Island; the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, challenging the endurance of experienced paddlers; the 11-mile Froth Race, a new soundside and ocean race designed especially for experienced ocean canoe and surfski racers; and the popular Kid’s Race, for children 7 to 14.

“I started training seriously for sport when I was 14 years old and have followed a training program since that time,” said Cain. “I got to the highest level in my first paddle sport, and never let myself go when I retired. My first standup paddleboard race was the Cold Stroke Classic in Wrightsville Beach in January of 2011. I feel best when I’m active and moving, so I’ve been able to maintain that level of fitness to a large degree that I built up as an Olympic athlete.”
Olympic Gold Medalist Larry Cain – Courtesy of Warren Won
A science and sports teacher for 18-years and trainer of the Canadian national kayak team before the Rio Olympics, Larry Cain now coaches and trains a global school of 320 paddlers through an online subscription service. In addition to Cain, the coaching staff includes OC-1 World Champion Travis Grant of Australia; six-time World Surfski Champion Teneale Hatton of New Zealand; and Olympic strength coach, Chris Chapman of Canada.

A paddleboard clinic taught by Cain and open to the public will be soundside at Blockade Runner on Thursday and Friday before race weekend.

“It’s a privilege to travel all over the world and compete with people of different ages and backgrounds,” said Cain. “I love paddling and enjoy meeting everybody and sharing this common experience with them. I’ve always been on the water, and wake up every morning thankful that I found this sport.”

Presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is hosted by Blockade Runner Beach Resort and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).

The North Carolina Coastal Federation, supporting a healthy coast, is the designated charity for Surf to Sound Challenge.



Contact: Mark Schmidt, Race Director
Phone: 910-620-1835

Robert B Butler
Communications | PR

Permission granted for redistribution – photo credits required

Keywords: #StandupPaddleboard #SUP #OC-1 #OC-2 @SurfSki #Kayak #S2S2017 #SurftoSoundChallenge #TheFroth #BlockadeRunnerFlatwaterChampionship #HarborIslandOuterLoop #WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub #NorthCarolina #LarryCain #April Zilg #TamasBuday #MarkSchmidt #NCCoastalFederation #WPA


Olympic Gold Medalist Larry Cain – Courtesy of Warren Won
2016
Canadian Men Dominate Surf to Sound Challenge – USA's April Zilg Repeats Women's Division Championship
Larry Cain crosses the finish line six seconds before Tommy Buday, 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge, Courtesy of Samantha Black
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC - A scant 6-seconds at the finish line separated Canadians Larry Cain and Tamás Buday Jr. in their exciting rematch at North Carolina's 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge. Cain, an Olympic Gold Medalist and inductee into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame, regained the men's championship from fellow Olympian Buday, posting a time of 1-hour 12-minutes 35-seconds in the 6.5-mile ocean to sound elite paddleboard competition.

Cain has captured the Surf to Sound Championship four times with Buday winning twice.
Larry Cain and Tommy Buday cross the finish line in the 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge, Courtesy of Samantha Black
Larry Cain, Tamás Buday Jr., April Zilg, and Stephanie Shideler also captured the top two slots in the men and women divisions respectively, of the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship.
Tommy Buday crosses the finish line in the 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge, Courtesy of Samantha Black
April Zilg of Wilmington, NC, ranked 10th in the world on SUP Racer's list of Top 50 Women, effortlessly defended her women's elite championship with a 14-minute lead over second-place finisher Stephanie Shideler of Long Beach, NY. Julieta Gismondi, from Yonkers, NY, stepped up to elite status from 2015's Harbor Island Loop and captured third-place in the elite Surf to Sound Challenge.

Choppy water with winds 10-20 mph tested paddling skills and stamina on Saturday, calming down considerably for Sunday's races with variable winds mostly five mph. Sunny skies and high temps in the 60s and 70s prevailed on both days. All races and activities were based at host hotel Blockade Runner Beach Resort.
2016 Surf to Sound Challenge, First and Second Place Women's Division, April Zilg and Stephanie Shideler, Courtesy of Karen Pennington
Larry Cain leading Tommy Buday to the finish line in the 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge, Courtesy of Bill Baggett
Surf to Sound Challenge Elite 6.5-mile Results:

Men 14' Division
1. Larry Cain, Oakville, ON, Canada
2. Tommy Buday, Montreal, QE, Canada
3. Brandon Van Elslander, Oakville, ON, Canada
4. Terry Smith, Myrtle Beach, SC, USA
5. Corey Taylor, Charleston, SC, USA

Women 12.6 Division
1. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Stephanie Shideler, Long Beach, NY, USA
3. Julieta Gismondi, Yonkers, NY, USA

Harbor Island Loop 4-mile Results:

Men 14 Division
1. David Young, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Morgan Crawford, Raleigh, NC, USA
3. Matt Kenney, Raleigh, NC, USA
4. Archie Chase, Oakville, ON, Canada

Women 12.6 Division
1. Jenna Blackburn, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Kristi Falco, Wrightsville Beach, NC, USA
3. Leanne Vella, Wilmington, NC, USA
4. Jamie Moir, Ottawa, Canada
5. Saylor Emmart, Wilmington, NC, USA

Women 14 Division
1. Jessica Kennedy, Hampstead, NC, USA
2. Katherine Elzer-Peters, Wilmington, NC, USA
3. Nicki Bloomer, Wilmington, NC, USA

Prone Stock-Harbor Island
Men Division
1. Greg Fix

Women Division
1. Kristen Sheldon, Charlotte, NC, USA
2. Kimberly James

OC-6 
1. Cameron Deisroth Team, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Emily Deisroth Team, Wilmington, NC, USA 
Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship 9-mile Results:

Men 14' Division
1. Larry Cain, Oakville, ON, Canada
2. Tommy Buday, Montreal, QE, Canada
3. Kodie Peekstok, Waterford, ON, Canada
4. Brandon Van Elslander, Oakville, ON Canada
5. Steve Phillips, Myrtle Beach, SC, USA

Women 12.6 Division
1. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Stephanie Shideler, Long Beach, NY, USA
3. Juliette Brault, Montreal, QE, Canada
4. Tracey Finlay, Toronto, ON, Canada
5. Karen Wilson, Wilmington, NC, USA

OC-6 Teams
1. Cameron Deisroth, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Emily One Deisroth, Wilmington, NC, USA
3. Emily Two Deisroth, Wilmington, NC, USA

The Kraken 25-mile Results:

Surfski
1. Eric Hay, Wilmington, NC, USA

Jenna Blackburn, 4-Mile Harbor Island Loop Women's Champion, Courtesy of Karen Pennington
Surf to Sound Challenge, held every November in Wrightsville Beach, is a weekend of family activities, paddle clinics, vendor displays, and races designed to include all skill levels from beginner to professional. The races include the beginner to intermediate Intracoastal 4-mile Harbor Island Loop; the elite division 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge; a Kids Race; the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship; and the monster 25-mile Kraken endurance race, circumnavigating Harbor Island at Wrightsville Beach and nearby Masonboro Island.

Presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is hosted by Blockade Runner Beach Resort and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).

 Click here for photos, press materials, and race results
Contact: Mark Schmidt, Race Director
Email: Mark@wrightsvillebeachpaddleclub.com
Phone: 910-620-1835
Canadian Olympians Rematch in NC Surf to Sound Challenge, Nov 4-6
“Race conditions are expected to be near perfect”
Olympic gold medalist Larry Cain, Courtesy of North Carolina Press Release
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – An exciting rematch is shaping up this weekend, Nov. 4-6, for the 2016 men’s championship in North Carolina’s Surf to Sound Challenge. Olympic gold medalist Larry Cain of Burlington, Ontario, and Olympic sprint canoer Tamás Buday Jr. of Québec City, Québec, will be in the field of elite competitors.

Cain, known as the “paddle monster” in the sport of standup paddleboard, captured the Surf to Sound Championship three times with Buday winning twice. No one else has snagged the title.

Equally thrilling, the top three 2015 women’s elite winners have signed up to compete again this year, including champion April Zilg of Wilmington, NC, second-place finisher Stephanie Shideler of Long Beach, NY, and Tracey Finlay of Ontario, Canada.

Ranked 10th in the world on SUP Racer’s Top 50 Women, Zilg is favored to repeat the women’s elite championship.

April Zilg, 2015 NC Surf to Sound Women's Champion, Courtesy of North Carolina Press Release
“Race conditions are expected to be near perfect with a sunny sky, temps in the low 70s, light winds, and moderate water temperatures,” said Bill Baggett, owner of the host hotel, Blockade Runner Beach Resort.

Surf to Sound is a weekend of family activities, paddle clinics, vendor displays, and races designed to include all skill levels from beginner to professional. Events commence on Friday, Nov. 4, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with paddle clinics taught by professionals Larry Cain and April Zilg, followed by a Surfside Shrimp Boil at 5:30 p.m., with proceeds benefitting the North Carolina Coastal Federation.

Saturday, Nov. 5, paddlers can compete in the beginner to intermediate Intracoastal 4-mile Harbor Island Loop or the elite division 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge. Races begin at 8:30 a.m. and 8:45 a.m. respectively, with a Kids Race on the sound side at 11:30 a.m.

On Sunday, Nov. 6, paddlers who want to test their speed on a longer flatwater course will register for the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater SUP Championship, now in its third year.

Also on Sunday, and new in 2016, ultra-distance paddlers can take on the monster 25-mile Kraken endurance race, circumnavigating Harbor Island at Wrightsville Beach, and nearby Masonboro Island, a protected wildlife refuge.

“Originally, we wanted to set up a distance race that would appeal to OC-6 [six-man outrigger canoe] paddlers,” said race director Mark Schmidt. “But then we thought, ‘Why restrict the distance to one type of craft?’ So, we have solo paddlers registered as well as OC teams.”
OC-6 racing at Wrightsville Beach, photo by Karen Pennington
Following Sunday’s Kraken, six-man canoes will be on display and visitors can ask questions and learn more from the paddling teams. The Surf to Sound Challenge awards ceremony is scheduled Sunday at 1 p.m.

More than 300 paddlers from Canada and the East Coast are expected to participate. Surf to Sound Challenge is one of the nation’s last major gatherings of the paddleboard season.

Presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is hosted by Blockade Runner Beach Resort and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).




North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge 6.5-mile course – Courtesy of Aerial Images ILM and Peter Newman
Contact: 
Mark Schmidt, Race Director
Phone: 910-620-1835
Robert B Butler
Communications | PR

Permission granted for redistribution – photo credits required

Keywords: #StandupPaddleboard #OC-6 #SurftoSoundChallenge #S2S #Kraken #SUPEnduranceRace #HarborIslandLoop #AprilZilg #BlockadeRunnerFlatwaterChampionship #LarryCain #TamasBuday #GabBeauchesne-Sevigny #MarkSchmidt #NorthCarolina #SUP #WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub #WPA
North Carolina's World-Ranked April Zilg to Defend Surf to Sound Challenge Championship
April Zilg, photo by Jeremy Whitted
April Zilg, photo by Jeremy Whitted
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – Steadily climbing in the SUP Racer World Rankings, ninth-place April Zilg will defend her championship on home surf in Wrightsville Beach at the 2016 Surf to Sound Challenge, Nov. 4-6.

Zilg, spending much of the past year competing around the globe as an elite Hobie Team Rider, including the European Series in Spain and France, has a new appreciation for the unique challenges of her home waters in North Carolina.

“There’s more art to the Surf to Sound Challenge than many of the international races,” Zilg said. “Most [international races] are in protected flatwater. Here [in Wrightsville Beach] we have current, tide, wind and ocean swells. You have to understand how to read the water and work with Mother Nature to advance your position. Surf to Sound Challenge is more technically fulfilling.”

More than 300 paddlers from Canada and the East Coast are expected to participate in clinics and races, all based at Blockade Runner Beach Resort. Surf to Sound Challenge is one of the nation’s last major gatherings of the paddleboard season.

In addition to the weekend races, Zilg will teach a paddle stroke and race strategy clinic Friday. Other clinics will feature Canadian Olympic gold medalist Larry Cain with tips on advanced paddling, and whitewater veteran Dan Gavere’s introduction to ocean paddling.

Larry Cain, Tommy Buday, and Gab Beauchesne-Sevigny, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, photo by Jenny Yarborough
Canadians Tommy Buday of Quebec City, Larry Cain of Burlington, Ontario, and Gab Beauchesne-Sevigny of Quebec City finished first, second, and third respectively, in the 2015 Men’s Elite Surf to Sound Challenge. All are expected to compete in 2016.

Saturday, racers can elect to paddle the Intracoastal 4-mile Harbor Island loop, a course that, while on the shorter side, can be quite challenging as the wind, current and tides combine. More arduous, the Surf to Sound Challenge, a 6.5-mile elite course, launches from beachfront into the surf, traversing south in the open Atlantic Ocean, west through Masonboro Inlet, and finishing on the sound side of the barrier island of Wrightsville Beach.

For those who aren’t content to only race Saturday, or who want to test their speed on a fast flatwater course, there is the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater SUP Championship, now in its third year.
April Zilg, Tracey Finlay, Stephanie Shideler, NC Surf To Sound Challenge, Courtesy Jenny Yarborough
Also on Sunday, and new in 2016, ultra-distance paddlers can take on the monster 25-mile Kraken endurance race, circumnavigating Harbor Island at Wrightsville Beach, and nearby Masonboro Island, a protected wildlife refuge.

“Originally, we wanted to set up a distance race that would appeal to OC-6 (six-man outrigger canoe) paddlers,” said race director Mark Schmidt. “But then we thought, ‘Why restrict the distance to one type of craft?’”

Schmidt said they have solo paddlers registered, as well as teams. Ultimately, he said, “We want to encourage the growth of OC-6 paddling, which is team-oriented, and thus an entirely different experience than standup.”

Following the Kraken, six-man canoes will be on display and visitors can ask questions and learn more from the paddling teams.

“Our hope is for Wrightsville Beach to become part of the Outrigger team race circuit,” Schmidt said.

Presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is hosted by Blockade Runner Beach Resort and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).



Contact: Mark Schmidt, Race Director
Phone: 910-620-1835
Robert B Butler
Communications | PR

Permission granted for redistribution – photo credits required

Keywords: Standup Paddleboard, OC-6, Surf to Sound Challenge, S2S, Kraken Endurance Race, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, Harbor Island Loop, April Zilg, Larry Cain, Tommy Buday, Gab Beauchesne-Sevigny, Mark Schmidt, Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, North Carolina
2015
Start of Elite 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge Race – NC Surf to Sound Challenge – Photo by Jenny Yarborough
Canadian Men Sweep Surf to Sound Challenge
USA’s Zilg Win’s Women’s Division Championship
 
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – Canadians Tommy Buday, Larry Cain, and Gab Beauchesne-Sevigny swept the men’s competition in both the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge and Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship in Wrightsville Beach. April Zilg and Stephanie Shideler of the USA, and Tracey Finlay of Canada won the top three spots in the women’s division.
 
And, what a difference a day made for standup paddleboard race conditions. “Yesterday I was wearing my bikini, today I’m wearing four layers,” said women’s champion April Zilg, of Wilmington, NC.
 
Saturday’s race conditions featured temperatures in the low 80s, with low wind, lots of sunshine, and relatively flat surf. The only weather obstacle was morning fog with a minor race delay for burn-off.
 
Sunday ushered in a cloudy sky, temperatures in the 50s, morning winds at 15-20 mph, choppy flatwater conditions, and a wind-chill factor in the upper 40s.
 
“It was a blast racing here in North Carolina,” said men’s champion Tommy Buday. “We enjoy the diversity of the sport with the waves, the wind, and the rough conditions. I come from Montreal. We don’t have oceans, so to come here and participate in both ocean and flatwater racing is exciting.”
 
Buday, Cain, and Beauchesne-Sevigny are Olympic flatwater athletes. April Zilg is ranked 13th in women’s World Rankings by SupRacer.
 
Surf to Sound Challenge Elite 6.5-mile Race Results:

Men Unlimited Division:
1. Tommy Buday, Quebec City, Canada
2. Larry Cain, Burlington, ON, Canada
3. Gab Beauchesne-Sevigny, Quebec City, Canada
4. Michael Tavares, Apex, NC, USA
5. Kevin Rhodes, Wilmington, NC, USA
 
Women 12.6 Division
1. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Stephanie Shideler, Long Beach, NY, USA
3. Tracey Finlay, Ontario, Canada
4. Anna Blackburn, Wilmington, NC, USA
5. Anya Yurchenko, Excelsior, MN, USA
 
Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship:
Men 14' Division
1. Gab Beauchesne-Sevigny, Quebec City, Canada
2. Larry Cain, Burlington, ON, Canada
3. Tommy Buday, Quebec City, Canada
4. Billy Miller, Manteo, NC, USA

5. Chris Stringer, Mississauga, ON, Canada
 
Women 12.6 Division
1. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, USA
2. Stephanie Shideler, Long Beach, NY, USA
3. Tracey Finlay, Ontario, Canada
4. Julia Nicholls, Morehead City, NC, USA
5. Juliett Gismondi, New York, NY, USA
 
Harbor Island 4-mile Recreational Race Results:
Men Unlimited Division
1. Steve Phillips, Murrells Inlet, SC, USA
2. Stephen Dees, Carolina Beach, NC, USA
3. Steve Capps, Wrightsville Beach, NC, USA
4. Matthew Nacy, Purcellville, VA, USA
5. Rock Wells, Wilmington, NC, USA
 
Women 12.6 Division
1. Miriam Sutton, Beaufort, NC, USA
2. Jeanna Bunting, Wrightsville Beach, NC, USA
3. Juliett Gismondi, New York, NY, USA
4. Jamie Moir, Ontario, Canada
5. Jenna Blackburn, Wilmington, NC, USA
 
Weekend races for the 5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge covered 18-miles, including the elite 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge, the 4-mile Harbor Island Outer Loop, the 7-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, and a Kids’ Race. All races started and ended at the host hotel, Blockade Runner Beach Resort on November 7-8, 2015.
 
The 5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge was presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the prestigious Carolina Cup, and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).
 
Contact:
Mark Schmidt
Race Director
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
Phone: 910-620-183
Email: Mark@WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub.com
 
Robert B Butler
Hashtags: #Surf2Sound #WBPC
Larry Cain, Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist, Three-time Surf to Sound Champion, Photo by Jon Clarke
Canadians Rematch in NC Surf to Sound Challenge
 
5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge – Nov. 6-8
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – “The real battle in the men’s division is between Canadians Tommy Buday and Larry Cain,” says standup paddleboard authority John Beausang, when asked about the upcoming 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge. Last year, Buday unseated three-time champion, Larry Cain. Both have registered for the 2015 races in Wrightsville Beach, November 6-8.
 
Jessica Rando, women’s division champion for the past two years agrees. “I think it will be another good show between Tommy Buday and Larry Cain,” says Rando, from Ontario, Canada. “Last year on the men’s side, we saw Olympic Gold Medalist Larry Cain duking it out with three-time Olympic paddler Tommy Buday. An exciting competition to say the least.”
Jessica Rando and Tommy Buday of Canada, 2014 Surf to Sound Champions, Photo by Del DaSilva
Rando believes April Zilg of North Carolina is the one to watch in the women’s division. “April has some very impressive results on the international circuit and will be a force to be reckoned with,” says Rando.
 
April Zilg, now listed in the top 15 women in World Rankings by SupRacer was runner-up to Jessica Rando in last year’s grueling 6.5-mile elite competition. Rando will not defend her championship in 2015, but plans to return next year. “I really focused my efforts this summer on continuing to build and grow my business in SUP instruction,” says Rando. “It turned out to be an incredible season.
April Zilg of Wilmington, North Carolina, Ranked in the top 15 women in World Rankings by SUPRacer, Photo by NCPressRelease
Weekend races for the 5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge will cover 20-miles, including the elite 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge, the 4-mile Harbor Island Outer Loop, the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, and a Kids’ Race. All races will begin and end at the host hotel, Blockade Runner Beach Resort.
 
“What I see this year is almost equal registrations for Saturday and Sunday races,” says Mark Schmidt, 2015 Race Director. “There can be big surf, and the beginning of Saturday’s 6.5-mile race can be very challenging. So, last year we added the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater race on Sunday. Some paddlers are racing in both, and other people want the distance but not the conditions in the ocean.”
 
In addition to exhibits, equipment demonstrations, and a menu of races for all skill levels, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge offers opportunities to learn from big hitters in the sport of SUP.
 
Friday, November 6, Cain, three-time Surf to Sound Challenge Champion will teach a clinic covering advanced paddle techniques. April Zilg, winner of 2015’s 12-mile Key West Classic, will tutor a class in paddle technique and strategy. Clinics are limited and require advance registration.
 
Schmidt expects significant growth for the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge races, possibly doubling in size over last year depending on weather conditions. “The races are regional, primarily attracting participants from the East Coast and Canada,” says Schmidt.
 
The 5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the prestigious Carolina Cup, and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).
 
“Racers are wrapping up the year and looking for that last race before winter. North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is a good wrap on the season,” says Schmidt.
 
 
Contact:
Mark Schmidt
Race Director
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
Phone: 910-620-1835
Email: Mark@WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub.com
 
 
 
 
 
Robert B Butler
 
 
 
 
USA-Canada Rivalry Resumes at NC Surf to Sound Challenge
5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge – Nov. 6-8
 
 
 
April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, Top 25 Women in World Rankings by SUPRacer.com and 2014 runner-up in NC Surf to Sound Challenge 
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – Every year in the men’s division, and the past two years in the women’s division, Canadians captured the top standup paddleboard victories in the punishing 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge. Now celebrating its fifth anniversary, the family-friendly USA-Canada rivalry resumes in Wrightsville Beach, NC, November 6-8, 2015.
 
“The Canadians excel in part due to their strong Olympic canoe paddling backgrounds,” says April Zilg of Wilmington, NC, one of the top 25 women in World Rankings on SupRacer.com and 2014 Surf to Sound runner-up. “They also build a strong base by cross training in their [longer] off-season. They’re excellent technical paddlers and always hold their own.”
 
Larry Cain, an Olympic gold medalist and a member of Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame, agrees. “Canoe experience definitely helps. Most of the Canadians who race at Surf to Sound come from a canoe background,” says Cain, a coach for the Canadian Canoe Kayak Team in the Pan Am Games, World Championships, and World Cup events in Europe.
 
Larry Cain, Ontario, Canada – Three-time winner of NC Surf to Sound Challenge – courtesy North Carolina Press Release
Mark Schmidt, 2015 Race Director, expects significant growth for North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, possibly doubling in size over last year depending on weather conditions. “The race is regional, primarily attracting participants from the East Coast and Canada,” says Schmidt.
 
“Surf to Sound Challenge is more of a family of paddlers getting together,” says Schmidt. “I don’t believe people really think about this as a rivalry. Racers are wrapping up the year and looking for that last race before winter. Surf to Sound Challenge is a good wrap on the season.”
 
Weekend races cover 20-miles including the 6.5-mile Surf to Sound Challenge, the 4-mile Harbor Island Outer Loop, the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, and a Kids’ Race. All races will begin and end at the host hotel, Blockade Runner Beach Resort.
 
“[Saturday’s] ocean-start is the most difficult part of the weekend,” says Schmidt. “There can be big surf and the beginning of the 6.5-mile race can be very challenging.”
 
“Last year we started a 9-mile race on Sunday, The Blockade Runner Flatwater. What I’m seeing this year is almost equal registrations for Saturday and Sunday races,” says Schmidt. “Some paddlers are racing in both, and other people want the distance but not the conditions in the ocean. Adding this race to the schedule is a big plus.”
 
In addition to exhibits, equipment demonstrations, and a menu of races for all skill levels, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge offers opportunities to learn from big hitters in the sport of SUP.
 
Friday, November 6, Cain, three-time Surf to Sound Champion will teach a clinic covering advanced paddle techniques. April Zilg, winner of 2015’s 12-mile Key West Classic, will tutor a class in paddle technique and strategy. All clinics are limited and require advance registration.
 
“I haven’t raced much since the Carolina Cup [in April],” says Cain, who spent much of the year coaching. “I still managed to train very hard on my board and expect to be in good shape at Surf to Sound.” Surf to Sound Challenge will be Larry Cain’s first race outside Canada using Starboard equipment.
 
The 5th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the prestigious Carolina Cup, and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA).
 
 
 
Contact:
 
Mark Schmidt
Race Director
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
Phone: 910-620-1835
Email: Mark@WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub.com
 
 
Robert B Butler
 
 
Keywords and hashtags:
 
#SurftoSoundChallenge #S2S2015 #SurftoSound2015 #WBPC #WPA #SUP #SUPSurf #WrightsvilleBeach #BlockadeRunner #LarryCain #Olympics #Canada #PanAmGames #AprilZilg #SUPRacer
2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge ocean start, Jessica Rando, photo by Del DaSilva
Weather conditions at start of 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge 6.5-mile, ocean to sound, Elite competition. Photo by Chris McQuiston, Local Sessions
Canadians Tommy Buday and Larry Cain battle for Men's Championship in the 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge. Photo by Chris McQuiston, Local Sessions
April Zilg, USA, Jessica Rando, Canada, battle for Women's Championship in 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge. Photo by Chris McQuiston, Local Sessions
Larry Cain, photo courtesy of Jon Clarke
2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, Jessica Rando and April Zilg battle for the lead. Photo courtesy of Chris McQuiston, Local Sessions
Coming in for the victory. Jessica Rando, 2014 Women's Champion, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge. Photo by Del DaSilva
Canadian Jessica Rando approaching the finish line for the 2014 Women's Championship, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge. Courtesy Del DaSilva
2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Women's Champion Jessica Rando. Photo by Chris McQuiston, Local Sessions
2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge Women's Champion, Jessica Rando of Canada, and runner-up April Zilg of NC, USA. Photo by NCPressRelease
Larry Cain, photo courtesy of Jon Clarke
Larry Cain, Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist, Three-time Men's Champion North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge. Photo by Jon Clarke
Courtesy of April Zilg of North Carolina
April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, Top 25 Women in World Rankings by SUPRacer.com and 2014 runner-up in NC Surf to Sound Challenge 
April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, Top 25 Women in World Rankings by SUPRacer.com and 2014 runner-up in NC Surf to Sound Challenge 
2014
Jessica Rando and Tommy Buday, both from Ontario Canada, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy Brittany Burdine
Larry Cain sprints to the finish – 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
Larry Cain, a true world champion! Three-time winner of the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, Canadian Gold Medal Olympian, Olympic coach for Canada 2016 – just to name a few...
Lifeguard stand #9, 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, Blockade Runner Beach Resort, Wrightsville Beach, NC
Host hotel for the 2014 Surf to Sound Challenge, Blockade Runner Beach Resort, Wrightsville Beach, NC
Boards arriving on Friday, Seminars underway at Blockade Runner for the 2014 Surf to Sound Challenge, Wrightsville Beach, NC
2014 Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship Start, Wrightsville Beach, NC, courtesy NCPressRelease
2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Start, Wrightsville Beach, NC, courtesy NCPressRelease
Tommy Budah, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy Bill Baggett
Larry Cain and Tommy Buday, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy Bill Baggett
Larry Cain and Tommy Buday, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy Bill Baggett
Larry Cain and Tommy Buday, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy Bill Baggett
Larry Cain and Tommy Buday, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy Bill Baggett
Jessica Rando, Canada, and April Zilg, Wilmington, NC. Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship. Courtesy Brittany Burdine
Miriam Sutton, Beaufort, NC, 5th-place in the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship. Courtesy NCPressRelease
Dave Baker of Wrightsville Beach – Checking out suspicious characters at the 2014 Surf to Sound Challenge?
Barry and daughter Anna Blackburn, of Wilmington, NC, finishing #7 and #3 in the grueling 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
Nicolas Montoya and team, Blockade Runner Beach Resort, Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina
Pre-race, 2014 Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship
Dr. Bob Arnot, former NBC TV medical correspondent, participant in the 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge and Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship
Jeremy Whitted, Charleston, SC, finishing #4 in the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, and #1 in the 12'6" Men's Division, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, courtesy NCPressRelease
Kate Lewis, New Bern, NC, 2012 Women's Elite Champion, NC Surf to Sound Challenge
A Friday night trick or treater ... joining the Halloween festivities
Mike Howes, Toronto, Ontario, Prone Stock NC Surf to Sound Challenge, 4th-place finish Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship. Courtesy NCPressRelease
Andrew Skeoch, Mississauga, Canada, 5th-place finish, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, 7th-place finish North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge. Courtesy NCPressRelease
Katie interviews Tommy Buday, 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Champion
April Zilg, Wilmington, NC, finishing second place in both contests: 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge and Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship
November 2, 2014
 
Canadians Dominate North Carolina Paddleboard Competition 
Weather remains factor in weekend races
 
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, N.C. - Canadian standup paddlers Tommy Buday and Jessica Rando extended their domination of paddleboard competition in North Carolina on Sunday, claiming elite victories in the male and female divisions of the 9-mile Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship. Yesterday, Buday and Rando scored titles in the grueling North Carolina Surf to Sound Championship.

Also repeating Saturday's results, Larry Cain of Ontario, and April Zilg of Wilmington came in second, with a breathtaking photo finish between Rando and Zilg for the Elite Women's Championship. Cain and Buday exchanged the lead multiple times, battling distance fatigue, an incoming tide, and heavy winds. 
 
Cain, an Olympic Gold Medalist and inductee into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame, is working with Canada's high-performance paddle team leading up to the 2016 Olympics in Rio. 

Weather remained a major fitness and strategic factor. Although skies were sunny, water temperatures were 68 degrees, air temperature in the 40s, with gusty and difficult to manage NW winds at 15-25 mph. Dr. Bob Arnot, a race participant and former NBC medical correspondent said, "Today's conditions are excellent - excellent for New Englanders."
 
"It's great to see so many people from all over the country," said John Beausang of Distressed Mullet. "We might as well have a sister city in Toronto, because we had 20 people come down here to race." Weekend participants traveled from Canada, The Netherlands, and states from Illinois to Georgia.

The East Coast Paddle Surf Championship, delayed due to poor weather on Saturday, was cancelled today, "due to side offshore winds and an incoming tide," said Jarrod Covington, contest organizer. "Surfing skills cannot be appreciated with today's conditions."
 
Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship Winners:
 
Top 5 Men Elite Division 14ft.
 
1. Tommy Buday, Ontario, Canada
2. Larry Cain, Ontario, Canada
3. Billy Miller, Manteo, NC
4. Mike Howes, Ontario, Canada
5. Andrew Skeoch, Ontario, Canada
 
Top 5 Women Elite Division 12ft.6
 
1. Jessica Rando, Ontario, Canada
2. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC
3. Karen Wilson, Wilmington, NC
4. Danielle Goldston, Charleston, SC
5. Miriam Sutton, Beaufort, NC
 
Top 5 Men Blockade Runner Flatwater 12ft.6
 
1. Jeremy Whitted, Charleston, SC
2. Justin Schaay, Charleston, SC
3. Andrew Kellar, Stratham, NH
4. Dylan Morley, N/A
5. Sean Stack, Arlington, VA
 
The Fourth Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, a Series Event sanctioned by the World Paddle Association, is presented by Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the Carolina Cup. 
 
Contact:
 
Katie Elzer-Peters
Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
p. 317.313.8366
Katie@thegardenofwords.com
 
Brittany Burdine
Blockade Runner Beach Resort
p. 910.256.2251
Brittany.Burdine@blockade-runner.com
 
 
Robert B Butler | PR
 
Stormy morning skies for the 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, courtesy NCPressRelease
Tommy Buday and Larry Cain battle for the Elite Division Men's Championship, courtesy Bill Baggett
Tommy Buday of Ontario, Canada, 2014 Elite Men's Champion, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, courtesy NCPressRelease
Larry Cain, Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist and three-time Champion of the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, courtesy NCPressRelease
Jessica Rando, Ontario, Canada, 2014 Women's Champion, North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, courtesy NCPressRelease
Thanks, John Beausang ... Distressed Mullet ... Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club ... 
More 2014 NC Surf to Sound Photos!
Here is a link and a brief recap from Emmy Errante, Lumina News, Wrightsville Beach 
http://luminanews.com/2014/11/buday-rando-win-surf-to-sound/
Also, a link to the Wilmington Star News photo gallery
Media Advisory
 
Canadians Sweep Elite Victories in NC Surf to Sound Challenge 
Photo finish between Buday and Cain
 
Wrightsville Beach, N.C. - Canadian paddlers Tommy Buday and Jessica Rando swept the 6-mile Elite Championships in the male and female divisions of the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge in Wrightsville Beach.
 
"Surf to Sound conditions were probably the most difficult in the entire history of the race," according to John Beausang of Distressed Mullet. "We had very hard northeast winds, with a storm system moving in from the south. Not only did the winds increase - the temperature dropped. Navigating the inlet was very challenging, and the final leg to the finish line was very tough paddling into heavy winds."
 
Tommy Buday and three-time Surf to Sound winner Larry Cain, both of Ontario, Canada, battled the entire distance for the coveted elite men's division championship, changing the lead three times. Buday beached his board and ran to the finish line less than one-second ahead of Cain. Buday and Cain will face-off again tomorrow, Sunday October 2, in the 9-mile, advanced long-distance, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship. 
 
Cain, an Olympic Gold Medalist and inductee into Canada's Sports Hall of Fame, is working with Canada's high-performance paddle team leading up to the 2016 Olympics in Rio. 
 
Hilarey Netsch of Kitty Hawk, NC, captured the Women's Championship in the four-mile, Harbor Island Outer Loop. Stephen Dees of Carolina Beach, won the Men's Championship, 14-foot category, and Sean Stack of Wilmington, won the 12.5-foot category. 
 
Standup paddleboard races continue on Sunday, October 2, with Buday and Cain facing off in the 9-mile, advanced, Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship. Meanwhile, oceanside, paddle surfers will compete for the East Coast Paddle Surf Championship. A Kids' race is scheduled soundside. 
 
All activities begin and end at host hotel, Blockade Runner Beach Resort.
 
NC Surf to Sound Challenge Winners:
 
Top 5 Men Elite Division
 
1. Tommy Buday, Ontario, Canada
2. Larry Cain, Ontario, Canada
3. Billy Miller, Manteo, NC
4. Jeremy Whitted, Daniel Island, SC
5. Andrew Glidden, Wilmington, NC
 
Top 5 Women Elite Division
 
1. Jessica Rando, Ontario, Canada
2. April Zilg, Wilmington, NC
3. Anna Blackburn, Wilmington, NC (note: 15 years of age)
4. Kate Lewis, New Bern, NC
 
Top 5 Men Harbor Island Loop 14'
 
1. Steven Dees, Carolina Beach, NC
2. Phil Dorroll, Wrightsville Beach, NC
3. Will Schiller, Ontario, Canada
4. Matt Kenney, Raleigh, NC
5. Jon Vos, Wilmington, NC
 
Top 5 Men Harbor Island Loop 12'6"
 
1. Sean Stack, Wilmington, NC
2. Dion Waters, Hampstead, NC
3. Corey Draughon, Durham, NC
4. Jamie Penland, Hampstead, NC
5. Eric Nelson, Wilmington, NC
 
Top 5 Women Harbor Island Loop
 
1. Hilarey Netsch, Kitty Hawk, NC
2. Vicky Lowe, Avon, NC
3. Lynne Atwill, Ontario, Canada
4. Kim Pedersen, Wilmington, NC
5. Valerie Netsch, Kitty Hawk, NC
 
The Fourth Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, a Series Event sanctioned by the World Paddle Association, is presented by Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the Carolina Cup. 
 
Contact:
 
Katie Elzer-Peters
Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
p. 317.313.8366
Katie@thegardenofwords.com
 
Brittany Burdine
Blockade Runner Beach Resort
p. 910.256.2251
Brittany.Burdine@blockade-runner.com
 
Robert B Butler | PR
 
Media Advisory
 
Weekend Itinerary: North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
 
 
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – The Fourth Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, a Series Event sanctioned by the World Paddle Association, and the East Coast Paddle Surf Championship are attracting national and international standup paddleboard competitors to Wrightsville Beach, Oct. 31 – Nov. 2.
 
Highlighting the weekend, Olympic Gold Medalist Larry Cain, and World Champion dragon boat paddler Jessica Rando, return to defend their respective men’s and women’s elite division championships. Cain and Rando are from Canada.
 
This year’s three-day family weekend starts on Halloween, offering SUP clinics by Cain and Rando, a beginner course for standup paddle surfers, storytelling and s’mores for kids, and SUP races for every skill level on four unique race courses, a total of 20 miles, covering open-ocean and inland waters.
 
Weekend Itinerary (subject to change):
 
Friday, October 31
8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.: Fitness Onboard Certification Day 1 (WPA Certification day)
12-4 p.m.: Beginner SUP Surf Clinic
10:00 a.m.-12 p.m. and 1-3 p.m.: Jessica Rando Clinic Breaking Down the Race Course
10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.: Larry Cain Clinic Advanced Paddling
4-8 p.m.: Check in and packet pickup (Late registration)
5-7 p.m.: Family trick or treat and face painting
Costume contest: Best adult and best child awarded prizes from Coastal Urge
7:15 p.m.: Storytelling and s'mores for Kids
 
Saturday, November 1
Costume contest for all participants - Prizes from Coastal Urge
7-7:45 a.m.: Late check-in 
7 a.m.: Pre-race yoga with Wilmington Yoga Center
8:00 a.m.: Harbor Island Outer Loop race meeting (sound side beach)
8:30 a.m.: Harbor Island Outer Loop race start
8:45 a.m.: NC Surf to Sound Challenge race meeting (ocean side beach)
9:15 a.m.: NC Surf to Sound Challenge race start
11:30 a.m.-5 p.m.: Board and equipment demonstrations (sound side and ocean side)
11:30 p.m.: Kids’ Race (sound side)
12:00 p.m.:  Lunch (sound side)
11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Day of registration for East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
1:00 p.m.: Preliminary heats in East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
5:30 p.m.: Pig Pickin' and barbecue ($15 tickets available onsite)
6:00 p.m.: Awards Ceremony for NC Surf to Sound Challenge, Harbor Island Outer Loop, and Kids’ Race
7:30 p.m. (or immediately after awards): H2mexic0 Movie premier
 
Sunday, November 2
7-8 a.m.:  Late check-in for Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship 
8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.: Fitness Onboard Certification Day 2
8:15 a.m.: Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship Race Meeting
8:45 a.m.: Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship Race Start
Awards for Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship after race
11 a.m.-3 p.m. Lunch on-site ($13 Sandwich, chips, pickle, drink)
11:30 a.m.: East Coast Paddle Surf Championship heats start
 
Awards for East Coast Paddle Surf Championship after surf contest
 
Participants, families and fans are invited to the Wrightsville Beach Chamber of Commerce Second Annual Oyster Roast on Sunday, 4-7 p.m., surfside on Oceanic Pier. The menu features fresh local oysters, shrimp plates, sides, sauces, hushpuppies, deserts, drinks, and optional bar. Tickets are $30 per person, and available at Robert’s Grocery, South End Surf Shop, or online at: www.Wrightsville.org.
 
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is presented by Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the Carolina Cup.
 
Contact:
 
Katie Elzer-Peters
Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
p. 317.313.8366
Katie@thegardenofwords.com
 
Brittany Burdine
Blockade Runner Beach Resort
p. 910.256.2251
Brittany.Burdine@blockade-runner.com
 
Robert B Butler | PR
www.RBButler.com
 
Wrightsville Beach attracts contenders during annual standup paddleboard challenge
 
Jessica Rando, photography by Terrance Black
Jessica Rando photo gallery and interview
2013 Women's Elite Champion
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
 
(Jessica Rando will defend her NC Surf to Sound Challenge Elite Champion title, Oct. 31 - Nov 2, 2014, in Wrightsville Beach, NC)

Achievements by Jessica Rando:

  Standup Paddle Boarding

  Highlights
  2014 Canada Cup SUP Race, Pickering, ON - 1st Elite Female
  2014 Ultimate SUP Challenge, Ottawa - 1st Elite Female
  2014 Toronto Icebreaker - 1st Elite Female
  2014 Ontario SUP Series Grand River, Ottawa, Toronto - 1st Elite Female
  2013 Surf to Sound Challenge - 1st
  2013 Lobster SUP Cup, Penobscot Bay, Maine - 1st 
  2013 Yukon River Quest 715km Canoe Race - Outward Bound Team
  2013 Outer Harbour Spring Classic - 1st
  2012 Mammoth Marathon SUP Race - 1st
  2012 Canada SUP Cup - 1st
  2012 Boardworks Show up and Blow Up Weber River Race - 3rd
  2012 H20 Overdrive Summer Series Elite - 4th
  2012 Eastern Canadian SUP Championships - 2nd
  2012 Florida State Paddle Board Championships 11mile - 1st age group / 2nd Overall
  2012 Toronto Outer Harbour Spring Classic 5K - 1st Female Overall
  2011 Eastern Canadian SUP Championships - 1st Female Overall
  2011/12 Battle of the Paddle California Elite Competitor
  2011 Hennessey World SUP Championships Elite Finalist

  Dragon Boat - Team Canada Premier Women  

  Highlights
  2007 World Championships Sydney, AUS - Gold in 200m, 500m, 1000m, 2000m
  2005 World Championships Berlin, GER - Gold in 200m, 500m, 1000m
  2004 World Championships Shanghai, China - 200m gold, 500m 4th, 1000m bronze

 Sprint Canoe

  Highlights
  2005 Pan American Canoe/Kayak Championships - Gold 1000m C2, Silver 500m C2
  2002-2009 National Canoe/Kayak Championships, Medals in multiple boats

 
Jessica Rando, photo by Jennifer Mackey Meacham
Jessica Rando, 2013 Canada Cup SUP
Jessica Rando, Ultimate SUP Challenge, Ottawa, Canada
Jessica Rando, Madawaska River, Ontario, Canada
Jessica Rando, French River SUP Expedition
Jessica Rando, French River SUP Expedition
Jessica Rando, Madawaska River, Ontario, Canada
Jessica Rando, Ultimate SUP Challenge, Ottawa, Canada
Jessica Rando, Ultimate SUP Challenge, Ottawa, Canada
Jessica Rando, Ultimate SUP Challenge, Ottawa, Canada
Interview with paddle sport champion Jessica Rando
Robert B. Butler, www.NCPressRelease.org
 
Tell us a about yourself and where you live?
I’m 31 years old and was born and raised in the GTA (Great Toronto Area). I’ve lived on the shores of the Lake Ontario my whole life which has been such a blessing as it’s what helped me discover my passion for paddling. I love competition and have competed in various paddle sports for over 14 years. Outside of paddling, I’m definitely an all around outdoor enthusiast and love to snowboard and cross country ski in the winter and rock climb, backpack and camp in the summer. I like sunsets and long walks on the beach……just kidding. That’s me in a nutshell I suppose! Oh…..and I love chocolate.
 
Were you interested in water sports as a child / how did you get into paddle sports?
Yes absolutely! My parents got me into swimming when I was just a guppy and I paddled canoes and kayaks all through my summer camp years. After that I did quite a bit of canoe tripping in Northern Ontario which I have my sister to thank for! I feel very fortunate as Ontario's Northern wilderness is speckled with inland lakes and water ways and has an abundance of stunning water trails to explore. I discovered the sport of sprint canoe in high school as my school bus passed over the Credit River (home of the Mississauga Canoe Club) every morning and evening all year so I would look up the river and see the competitive paddlers training. That summer, I decided to join the club and give the sport a real go. I had no idea that I would be competing in the sport for the 10 years to follow.
 
How did you get into SUP?
After retiring from sprint canoe, I actually trained in an outrigger canoe for awhile, which as it turns out, was very beneficial to my SUP down the road. In sprint canoe you are always paddling on one side and I was a left, so I basically had to train myself to be able to paddle on the right! I had just gotten used to paddling on both sides when SUP hit the mainstream here in Toronto. From the day I tried it, I fell in love! (I actually tried it for the first time in Hawaii…pretty fitting.) I found out there was a competition scene so naturally bought myself a race board and started training!! What I love most about SUP is that where there is water you can paddle! Whitewater, surf, open ocean, flatwater; all can be tackled on a SUP.
 
I understand you served in the Canadian Navy. Was this choice due to love of water and water sports?
Yes I had the honour of serving my Country in the Royal Canadian Navy and feel privileged to have done so. I joined the Canadian Forces for probably the same reason most do; to serve my Country and make a difference on a global level. When it came time to choose my element, Army, Navy or Air Force, my passion for the water was certainly my reason for choosing the Navy. It’s the environment I understand the most and where I feel most at home.
 
How many months of hard winter do you have where you live in Canada?
11. Just kidding. Each year is a bit different. Last year we had a particularly long and hard winter where we were literally iced off the water for about 3 months. Paddling was just not possible. Most paddlers are off the water mid-November until about late April so approximately 6 months. Some of the best surf (yup, you read that correctly! The Great Lakes do get surf!) rolls in during the fall/winter so with the right gear and no ice, you can be out there almost all winter, but I suppose that would fall into the “hard winter” category.
 
How do you stay on top of your game (wintertime) in paddle sports?
I am in the gym almost daily working through a proper weight training program. I also run outside all year long (I LOVE running in the snow!) and have more recently taken up cross-country skiing as cross training which many competitive paddlers use in the winter in place of paddling. Last year, with it being so cold, I was fortunate enough to walk out my front door, walk 100m, clip into my skis and ski up the Credit River, the River I have trained on for so many years of my life. Through my business, I organize and run a spring SUP training camp down in Florida every year so when I’m not coaching, I get out on the water and do my own training. It’s a nice kickstart to the season and some much needed sunshine! Generally when we get home from camp is when the paddling season back at home begins.
 
What are your most satisfying sports highlights? Accomplishments?
Having the opportunity to represent Canada in competition has to be the highlight for me. Representing Canada in sprint canoe at the Pan American Canoe/Kayak Championships in 2005 was particularly unique as, at the time, this was the only International competition for women in our discipline. It was not only an incredible experience but an honour to be a part of the development of women's canoe alongside so many other amazing female athletes. I’m also pretty proud of becoming the first female in Canada to be a Certified River SUP Instructor.
  
You’re planning to return to Wrightsville Beach to defend your North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge title?
Yes absolutely! Looking forward to the race! Another one to watch is local April Zilg. She was a fierce competitor last year and has been doing amazing this season!
 
What attracts you to this particular race?
Surf to Sound makes our off season feel not quite as long as it offers a bit of an extension on summer and on the race season. Six months is a long time to be away from racing so I personally like that this race is in November and keeps my race skills fresh a little later into the season. I also love the variety of conditions that the course offers and that outside of the racing, I have a weekend on the ocean that I can use to do a bit of sup surf training. There’s usually a solid contingent of paddlers that head down from the Toronto area, which there will be again this year, so it ends up being not only a weekend of racing and surfing but a fun road trip with friends.
 
What is the most challenging part of the race?
For me, the beach start is always the unknown. Living on the Great Lakes we do not get waves nearly as powerful as on the ocean and very rarely as big (although we can get some big ones!) so it’s hard to practice ocean beach starts.
 
What are your future plans in paddle sports and SUP?
I would really really love to compete in the Molokai to Oahu Paddleboard World Championships. I have lots of plans in both business and racing, but probably not enough room to write them all down!
 
Your company, The Paddle Coach, sounds like a great way to blend passion and career. Tell us about The Paddle Coach.
I feel very lucky to have been able to take my passion and make it my career! I have owned and operated my own business for over 7 years and over those years, stand up paddleboard has become more and more the focus of the business. The Paddle Coach now has a 5 person coaching staff in the summer and we offer everything from intro lessons to race specific coaching, to stroke clinics to full-on training camps. It’s pretty amazing to see how it has grown over the years and everyday I am thankful for such a wonderful group of clients who make it all possible! For more info and to see what we do check out our website. www.thepaddlecoach.com
 
Is there anything you would like to add?
I would not be where I am today with out my dedicated coaches of the past and I certainly would not be where I am today with my business without the help, support and generosity of Mike and Dav Fekete at Kayak Sport Canada (local shop in Toronto) and the dedication and enthusiasm of my clients. They have all helped me and continue to help me live my dream.
 
Thank you, Jess ...
 
Jessica Rando's sponsors include:

Kayak Sport Canada
Starboard SUP
Ocean Rodeo
Vega Sport
Kim Gym Training Studio

 
Robert B Butler | PR
Jessica Rando and team, National Canoe/Kayak Championships
Jessica Rando, National Canoe/Kayak Championships
Jessica Rando, National Canoe/Kayak Championships
 
4th Annual North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, October 31-November 2, presented by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
 
WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC – Nationally and internationally ranked standup paddlers share the water with amateurs and families traveling to Wrightsville Beach – the tiny town ranked among the top surf destinations in the country by National Geographic – for the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge, Oct. 31 through Nov. 2.
 
Showcasing the town’s unique barrier island geography, the 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge entices watermen, waterwomen, and waterchildren to register for elite, intermediate, and novice divisions to test skill levels on one or more of four courses, a total of 20 miles of open-ocean and inland waters circumnavigating the beach strand and picturesque marsh islands.
 
The three-day weekend kicks off on Halloween, presenting an afternoon of hands-on clinics, designed to improve basic, intermediate, and advanced SUP skills. Storytelling and s’mores highlight the agenda for younger athletes Halloween eve.
 
Braving seasonal winds, inlet chop and, occasionally, uninvited elements before crossing the finish line, elite contenders stroke through the surf zone, rounding an ocean buoy in the toughest leg of the 6.5-mile signature race that maps ocean, inlet, and flatwater distances, says returning champion and Olympic gold medalist Larry Cain, the three-time men’s 14-foot elite division winner.
 
Canadian Jessica Rando, Women’s elite Champion, will defend her title and lead one of several pre-race clinics. Rando specializes in a variety of paddle sports, winning world championship titles in dragon boat competition and gold medals nationally and internationally in sprint canoe.
 
The intermediate, 4-mile Harbor Island Outer Loop race glides around Wrightsville’s calm inland waters: Banks Channel, Motts Channel, the Intracoastal Waterway, and Lees Cut. A kids’ race begins and ends on Blockade Runner’s sound-side beach.
 
Now in its fourth year, the 2014 North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge christens its new 9-mile, advanced, long-distance course, called the Blockade Runner Flatwater Championship, in honor of the host hotel. Sandwiched between beaches on the Atlantic Ocean and Banks Channel, Blockade Runner Beach Resort is headquarters for four major East Coast SUP events each year, culminating with November’s Surf to Sound Challenge.
 
Downtime during the weekend features the east coast premiere of filmmaker Brent Deal’s H2MexicO, named 2014 Movie of the Year by SUP The Mag.
 
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge is presented by Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, organizers of the Carolina Cup.
 
Contact:
 
Katie Elzer-Peters
Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
p. 317.313.8366
Katie@thegardenofwords.com
 
Brittany Burdine
Blockade Runner Beach Resort
p. 310.256.2251
Brittany.Burdine@blockade-runner.com
 
Robert B Butler | PR
Katie Elzer-Peters ... a wonderful organizer and master of ceremonies ... keeping everybody on track for the weekend
2013
 
 
 
 
 
 
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Jessica Rando, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
2013 Elite Division Women's Champion
North Carolina Surf to Sound Champion
Wrightsville Beach, NC
photo courtesy of Jessic Randa
Photo courtesy of Jessica Rando (2014 Canada Cup SUP)
Miriam Sutton, Beaufort, NC
First Place, Women's Division, Harbor Island Loop
Photo by www.ncPressRelease.org
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Danielle Goldston, Charleston, SC (left)
Second Place, Women's Division
Harbor Island Loop
Chandler Bold, Mount Pleasant, SC (right)
Third Place, Women's Division
Harbor Island Loop
Photo by www.ncPressRelease.org
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Emerson Smith, Annapolis, MD (right)
First Place, Men's Division
Harbor Island Loop
Photo by www.ncPressRelease.org
Neil Macindoe, Annapolis, MD (center)
Second Place, Men's Division
Harbor Island Loop
Corey Taylor, Charleston, SC (left)
Third Place, Men's Division
Harbor Island Loop
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Assistant Race Director and Paddleboarder "Woofer"
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
James Bain, Wilmington, NC
First Place, 18-49 Elite Division PRONE
Photo by www.ncPressRelease.org
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Kate Lewis, New Bern, NC
2012 Women's Elite Champion
2103 4th Place Women's Elite Division
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
Photo by www.ncPressRelease.org
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Jarrod Covington, Wrightsville Beach, NC
First Place Men's Division
East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
Wrightsville Beach, NC
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
April Zilg, Wilmington, NC
First Place Women's Division
East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
Wrightsville Beach, N.C.
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Wrightsville Beach Longboard Association
Hard at work!
East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Jarrod and April, the 2013 Champs
East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Champ Jarrod Covington with Reggie Barnes
Reggie finished second place 
2013 East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
Wrightsville Beach, N.C.
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
What a fun weekend in the water!
North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge
East Coast Paddle Surf Championship
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Photography by www.NCPressRelease.org
Aerial View
See the "Elite" North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge Course
All aerial photography by Lemonstripe
All aerial photography by Lemonstripe
Jarrod Covington
2013 Director of  the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge and East Coast Paddle Surf Championship, ALL Waterman Champion by WBLA, two time Champion Wrightsville Beach Biathlon, Second Place Elite in the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge 
Photography by Lumina News | Emmy Errante
Interview with Jarrod Covington, 2013 Race Chairman
 
What are your thoughts about the 2013 Surf to Sound?
 
We are excited about the Surf to Sound Challenge and East Coast Paddle Surf Championship coming up because of the perfect paddling weather WB has this time of year along with the combined growth in the sport locally and abroad. We have an intense group of local competitors ready to bring the victory to WB.
 
What insight can you provide about seasonal race conditions?
 
November is predominately NW-NE winds with occasional Nor’easters that can provide some challenging conditions for ocean (large waves) and sound (high winds and short period chop). SUP conditions are usually good with warm water and a brisk refreshing air temp with the exception of the occasional NorEasters that will bring intense chop, wind and waves. With so much diverse water to paddle in WB, you can always find somewhere that is fairly calm regardless of conditions. Don't rule out a low pressure just yet that could send long period swell perfect for Surf conditions.
 
Is the likely winner for Men’s Elite Larry Cain?
 
Larry Cain has proven to be the man to beat and rightly so. He is an incredible paddler and inspiration throughout his career. Look for some local boys to be hungry. Kevin Rhodes of WB, Chris Johnson of WB and of course Dan Gavere are all good bets. Be on the lookout for each to perform best in their element. Larry is an unstoppable train in the flats.
 
Are there new items on the agenda this year?
 
A new item includes the East Coast Paddle Surf Championship on Sunday, November 17 that will challenge racers to step out of their element and perform on a skill and technique level instead of strength and endurance. There will also be a prone division in Surf to Sound races taking SUP back to its roots. Man and board.
 
Tell us about the Waterman Expo.
 
The expo will be a two-day event, noon till 6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Many of the top SUP and watersports vendors will be on site showcasing everything from custom artwork to hand shaped surf and paddle boards. 
 
Is the sport of SUP still growing rapidly in North Carolina? Nationally? 
 
The sport of SUP is certainly growing quickly. Word has spread quick and many people are educated about what "SUP" is or have seen it before. But, there are many who have yet to give it a try leaving plenty of room for growth in the intro and retail side of the sport.
 
Why is Wrightsville Beach a top pick for SUP leisure and competition?
 
If you have ever been to WB, you will never wonder. The paddling diversity between marshes, creeks and waterways allows premier flatwater learning, racing and leisure. The unique barrier island setup allows WB to be a focal point for decent ocean swells. The inlets and surrounding islands provide alternate wind and wave options. Combine all these with the bustling town center and local businesses, SUP and Stay amenities like the Blockade Runner and year-round summer vibes and you will see why Wrightsville is a mecca. 
 
 
 
Larry Cain
Olympic Gold Medalist, Canadian Sports Hall of Fame, 
NC Surf to Sound Challenge Elite Champion 2011 and 2012
Photography by Joshua McClure
Photography by Joshua McClure
Photography by Phoebe Fox Blankenship
Q&A with Larry Cain, Men’s Elite Champion 2011 and 2012
 
Will you be returning to Wrightsville Beach and defending your elite title in 2013?
 
I hope to be able to return.  I am 80% certain I will be there but do have to make arrangements at work to travel on the Friday.
 
Why are you attracted to the North Carolina Surf to Sound Challenge?
 
Great place to race as there are a variety of conditions to face in every race: beach start, ocean downwind, inlet, flat water.  Also I've made a lot of friends there and it is fun to return and reconnect with them.  Lastly the Blockade Runner is a cool hotel to stay at and Tower 7 has the best tuna burritos I've ever had.
 
What is the most challenging part of the elite division race?
 
For me the most challenging part is the beach start, followed by the ocean leg.
 
What are your upcoming plans in the sport of SUP?
 
I'd like to do more racing next year, perhaps doing some racing in Europe and maybe a leg of the Stand Up World Tour, and definitely do more racing on the ocean.  I'd also like to do more clinics and am working on setting up an on-line video analysis service and doing some on-line coaching.
Courtesy of Larry Cain and John Beausang
 
 
Look closely.... It's Kate Lewis, 2011 Elite Women's Champion!
Paddling in from New Bern!
 
 
John Beausang
DistressedMullet.com, one of the top paddleboard sites in the world (with its home base in Wrightsville Beach)
Organizer and Co-Chair of the Carolina Cup
John and daughter Stella, a future Elite SUP Champion. Photo supplied by proud papa.
A chat with John Beausang, Distressed Mullett and Co-chair of the Carolina Cup
 
What are your thoughts about the the upcoming S2S challenge at Wrightsville Beach?
 
The Surf to Sound is one of my favorite events because it's an opportunity to paddle just before we all turn to wetsuits and booties. It's the kind of race you battle through, then gather around a frosty pint and some chili to tell race war stories and reconnect until we meet again. 
 
What insight can you provide about November race conditions --- both elite and sound-side?
 
Typically, the ocean-side race is challenging for the elite race, with more calm sound-side conditions for flatwater and beginner paddlers. For the ocean, it's a balance between finding a board that's stable enough to manage the shore break and jetty maelstrom, but narrow enough to fly in flat water. On flat water, it can still be windy, but there is always shelter somewhere from the conditions on the loop course.
 
Is the likely winner Larry Cain?
 
Larry is always a threat especially since he's elevated his ocean paddling. However, the average age of the elite competitors is dropping and some of the younger elite paddlers are comfortable in the ocean and incredibly fit and technically competent paddlers. With the right break and a lead out of the ocean, someone might have a shot this year, but in the end, my money is on Larry.
 
Is the sport of SUP still growing rapidly in North Carolina? Nationally? 
 
The sport is still growing in North Carolina as a feverish pace. From inflatables for people who don't have the room for storing a 14-foot board, to stacks of lock-able boards for rental houses, there's still a lot of interest. For people near the water, standup paddleboards are the new bicycle. Everyone will have at least one for their house or family. 
 
Why is Wrightsville Beach a top pick for SUP leisure and competition?
 
Wrightsville Beach has a unique combination of flatwater and ocean conditions meaning it caters to all levels from beginner to elite. Its water culture has fostered an amazing paddle and surf community. And hotels like the Blockade Runner Beach Resort have invested in the sport and the community, becoming a one-stop resource for paddlers who want to visit this unique and wonderful town.
 
 
 
 
Flatwater racing at Wrightsville Beach
Photography by Joshua McClure
The finish line --- soundside...
Photography by Phoebe Fox Blankenship
Inaugural Year Video - 2011
 
See Press Release here... (for inaugural year, 2011)
 
 
 
 
Robert B Butler | Marketing | PR
Public relations for public good