• Add to Collection
  • About

    About

    Interview: Annabel Anderson of New Zealand, the world's top-ranked paddler, takes a hiatus from the sport – Robert B Butler, North Carolina Press… Read More
    Interview: Annabel Anderson of New Zealand, the world's top-ranked paddler, takes a hiatus from the sport – Robert B Butler, North Carolina Press Release Read Less
    Published:
Annabel Anderson Reveals Predictions for 2018 Carolina Cup
World's top-ranked paddler shares in-depth Graveyard Race analysis and predictions for 2018
Annabel Anderson (R) of New Zealand – Contributed photo
April 17, 2018

WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NORTH CAROLINA, USA – Healing from a late-March surgery and a concussion sustained earlier in the year, five-time Carolina Cup elite champion Annabel Anderson of New Zealand remains on hiatus.

In a check-up interview with North Carolina Press Release, Anderson provides an update on her recovery and reveals an in-depth analysis including her predictions for 2018’s grueling 13-mile Graveyard Race.

Anderson’s outlook for both the men and women elite races is uniquely meaningful, based on her empirical knowledge of the Graveyard course plus considerable experience on the course with the world’s top-ranked male and female paddlers.

Undoubtedly one of the greatest athletes of all time in the sport, Anderson won two gold medals in the recent ISA World Standup Paddleboard Championships; is the reigning World SUP Tour Salt Life Champion; Champion of the Pacific Paddle Games; and ranked overall number-one in the world, the only female to achieve this recognition.

The 8th annual Quiksilver Waterman Carolina Cup will draw thousands of spectators and more than 1,000 event participants. Races, clinics, expos, entertainment, and festivities will be in Wrightsville Beach, April 18-22, 2018. All races will begin and end at Blockade Runner Beach Resort, the official resort of the Carolina Cup.

“The Graveyard course is the most punishing single-day race on the international calendar every year,” said Anderson. “It is technically demanding, tactically difficult, and physically punishing, the true test of the complete paddler.”
The starting line of the Graveyard Race – Photo by Laura Glantz
Text of Robert B. Butler’s interview with Annabel Anderson:

First and most important, how are you, and how are your recoveries from surgery and the concussion progressing?

I’m getting there. Recoveries are as much of a mental challenge as a physical one and my concussion has definitely proven that. Some of the post concussion symptoms I’ve experienced over the last couple of months have scared the living daylights out of me and I’m just starting feel like I’m getting back to normal following surgery just over two weeks ago. 

I listen to the signs my body has given me and have taken the foot off the accelerator for a while and am taking baby steps to make forward progress.

Slowly but surely I’m making that progress on both fronts and it’s been a valuable reminder not to take anything for granted. 

You have been on a very competitive fast track for years. How are you handling the downtime?

In some ways I love it, and in some ways it’s really challenging slowing down the pace of life for a while. It’s been nice to take a breath and its been an opportunity to lend a hand playing the support role and helping to pay back a few favors in the process. There’s a lesson in everything. 

Do you miss being on the SUP circuit?

There are elements that you miss with anything if you have been doing them for a long time. For me, it’s about the art of nailing the preparation, the challenge of pulling the plan for one particular day in time.

Are you maintaining your physical conditioning in expectation of a return in 2018?

I came off a massive December and January and I’ve been very quiet on the activity front during the last couple of months doing less and doing things purely for love of doing.

I rode the Belgian Waffle Ride in San Diego this past weekend as a test to see how things are progressing. While it was a major step in a positive direction starting an event like that, it definitely gave me the feedback that I need to give myself more time to inch back to my usual performance benchmarks.  

I’ll continue to set little milestones on the road to recovery to gauge where things are week-by-week, gauging where my head, my heart and my body are, and make decisions on what is next based on this feedback loop. 

If this was a younger version of me, I would have felt a lot of pressure to push the boat out to speed up the recovery and to come back as soon as possible. But, with age and experience you learn to have patience and give things the time they need to heal and recover properly. 

Turning to the 2018 Carolina Cup, briefly describe the 13-mile Graveyard Race and the key challenges facing the elite competitors.

The Graveyard course is the most punishing single day race on the international calendar every year. It is technically demanding, tactically difficult and physically punishing, the true test of the complete paddler. 

The 13-mile Graveyard is SUP’s equivalent of a marathon where you are operating at threshold and above for over two hours. The training and preparation that is required to allow you to do this is immense and highly involved. 

You have to be able to navigate shore break, read bump, negotiate entering or exiting very challenging inlets, battle head winds, be extremely tactical, read current and be able to out-wit, out-last and out-play your fellow competitors on the final leg to the finish. 

If you make any kind of mistake in a technical section of this course you will be tortured for it. You have to be the most complete athlete you can be on race day, as any technical, physical or tactical weakness will show up and be exploited by the course and your competition.

Will weather play a significant factor in the outcome of the race for elite paddlers?

Weather is a major determining factor of the Carolina Cup, and while everyone is served up the same conditions it’s the unpredictability of the weather forecast and how people handle it that makes and breaks people’s days. Often the decision on the direction of the course will not be made until 20-minutes before the race start meaning you need to understand exactly what the wind forecast is doing, what the tide is doing, and how this affects each different section of the course in either direction. 

The course is run to best allow a downwind section on the ocean side of the course – hopefully, a downwind to start and finish the course, which could also be a flat water grind, quartering or straight from the side. But this means it’s 50/50 on what kind of tide you’ll be dealing with through Mason’s Inlet and through the flat waters of the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW).

At present the forecast is for a moderate breeze, but any local will tell you not to bother looking at the forecast days out. Simply see what the wind is doing on the morning of race day given the changing nature of the weather conditions in Wrightsville Beach. 

What we do know is that high tide is 12.32 PM which means it will be an incoming tide for the entire race.

If the course goes north, it will be a slog up the ICW. If there is wind texture on the ocean, those who are masters in the bump can gain a significant early advantage heading into the first major challenge of the race, surfing through Mason’s Inlet with the push of the incoming tide. As paddlers enter the Intracoastal Waterway, anyone who is off the back of the front pack will face burning valuable matches to climb onto the back of the draft train - as inevitably they will not only be punching into a head wind but also paddling against the tide. 

If the race runs south, the shorter distance to the break wall and ICW reduces any early advantage gained in the bump, while the incoming tide will make for a fast back section along the ICW for anyone off the back of the front pack to potentially paddle back on. This will make for an extremely tactical race punching out through the incoming tide of Masons Inlet and picking the fastest line back to the finish in front of the Blockade Runner Resort. 

Regardless of the direction, the race will be won and lost on the final leg of the race from either the breakwater or Masons Inlet to the finish. Expect a tactical and strategic race from both the men’s and women’s fields until this point as it’s from these points that the real race will begin to see who will reign supreme. 

As five-time elite champion at the Carolina Cup, you know the course, the conditions, the obstacles, and the male and female elite competitors. Who are the top contenders in 2018 in the men's elite division for the Carolina Cup Graveyard Race title and what are the competitive advantages of each? 

Like the reading of the weather, the swell and tidal conditions, understanding each athlete’s strengths, weaknesses, equipment selection and preparations are all critical going into the Graveyard Race to truly be prepared for what may be thrown at you. 

Over the past three years we have seen the elite men’s race become a tactical game of cat and mouse where the real race has started at the breakwater or Mason’s Inlet. From there it’s a case of who has enough gas left in the tank to launch an attack and who can gain as much advantage in the ocean from what the water is giving them. Expect to see the same happen in the women’s race. My caveat to this is that one of the girls who does not have the ocean skills of her fellow competitors may attempt to launch such an attack off the front along the ICW. 

It will be a brave man or woman who tries to break off the front in the ICW, but we have seen this happen before as the flat water specialists such at Michael Booth and Seychelle Webster may attempt to put the acid on those who are better in the bump and navigating the Inlet. The challenge of risking an attempt like this is burning too many matches with a significant portion of the race left to paddle and getting mown down by those that come to the fore in open water conditions. 

In the elite men’s race I think you will see some familiar and lesser-known faces play a major part at the front of the race. Traditionally it has been the outrigger exponents such as Danny Ching, Travis Grant and Titouan Puyou rise to the occasion largely due to their Molokai Solo OC1 preparations that have them in exceptional form leading into Carolina Cup. This year you need to add the youngster Ryland Hart, Tahitian Steeve Teihotaa, the Hasulyo brothers to this mix along with the usual cohort of Connor Baxter, Lincoln Dews, Georges Crondstead, Michael Booth, Mo Freitas and the fresh prince from the Air Tahiti Paddle Festival, kiwi Marcus Hansen.

Expect the odd fresh face to be added to this mix as this is a race known for throwing up the unknown and being the first major of the season, anything is a possibility.

Who are the top contenders in 2018 in the women's elite division for the Carolina Cup Graveyard Race title and what are the competitive advantages of each?  

This year I think you will see a fairly tight race in the elite women’s field and it will come down to who is the most complete athlete on the day and who has the skills and preparation to put together the complete race section by section. 

Going on pre-season form, you can’t go past Sonni Honsheid, April Zilg, and Yuka Sato from Japan. Sonni paddled away from a strong field in Tahiti a week and a half ago while Yuka has put in a dedicated off season of training and racing in Australia with the benefits really starting to show. Former Wrightsville local April Zilg made the move to the West Coast and has likely had her best ever off season preparation notching up a number of results both on the SUP and the OC1. All have a well-rounded skill set, are well-prepared and would love nothing more than to add a Carolina Cup victory to their 2018 resume. 

My prediction is that if there is bump to begin the race Fiona Wylde will gain an early advantage but will likely be reeled in by the strength of those behind her. While these shorter downwind legs that start the race don’t seem to give too much of an advantage, SUP is one of the hardest sports in which to bridge a gap and to pass people. To do so will take a huge amount of energy and effort and has the potential to cost you dearly in the latter stages of the race but if there is one person that may find herself in this position it will be Seychelle Webster and may potentially tow anyone who is also off the front back on. 

While these names are familiar, look out for those with pedigree and those that may be underestimated in a race like the Graveyard. And while the men’s field is somewhat predictable as to who will turn up to tow the start line, it’s not always as easy to know who is going to show for the women. 

Other names I expect to be in the mix, should they make it to Wrightsville Beach this week, include Angie Jackson, Terrene Black, Jade Howson, Shae Foudy, Candice Appleby, Kalia Alexiou, Lara Claydon and Olivia Piana.

If it comes down to the final leg from either the Inlet or the breakwater and there is a lumpy ocean, expect Sonni, Fiona, Olivia and April to shine in the open ocean conditions where it will come down to who is physically the best prepared and has the most optimal equipment to capitalize on the conditions.

Based on your knowledge of the course, the athletes, and the long-range weather outlook, who do you think will be the male and female elite champs in 2018?

If I had to hedge a bet, I’d be putting money on Danny Ching and April Zilg. Danny has the pedigree and is currently in the best form of his life heading into Molokai Solo on the OC1, while former-local April Zilg would love nothing more than to win on home turf in front of many of her long time friends and supporters. 

Will you be back on the Carolina Cup course in 2019?

If it feels right and life aligns to allow this to happen I will consider it. For the meantime, I’ll stay focused on the present and resist looking that far ahead. 

Is there a message you would like to send to SUP athletes and fans at the 2018 Carolina Cup?

Have fun and relish the opportunity to participate and be a part of an incredible weekend of paddling be it competing, supporting or simply sharing stories with friends old and new. Wrightsville Beach always knows how to throw a party.

Thank you, Annabel. We wish you a speedy and complete recovery.
About the Carolina Cup:

Returning races on the 2018 schedule include:

•The Graveyard, a grueling 13.2-mile ocean and flatwater race for the elite and professional paddleboard racers;
•The Money Island Open, a 6.5-mile flatwater race designed for the intermediate to advanced paddler;
•The Harbor Island Recreational, a 3.5-mile flatwater race for first-time to intermediate paddleboarders;
•The popular Kids Race for children 7 to 14.

New to the race schedule in 2018:

•The Longboat Graveyard, a 13.2-mile race exclusively for Elite OC-1, OC-2, Surfski and Double-Ski.

Organized by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, affiliated with the newly formed Paddle League, and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA), the Cup will attract paddlers from over 20 countries and virtually every state in the nation. Competitors include Olympians, world-record holders, champions, professionals, amateurs, and first-time paddlers. The Carolina Cup is the first race of 2018 on the WPA World SUP Tour, and the second major race of the season on the Paddle League World Tour.




Contact:
Mark Schmidt
Race Director
Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
P: 910-620-1835
E: Mark@WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub.com
Robert B. Butler
North Carolina Press Release
www.NCPressRelease.org
www.RBButler.com

Permission granted for redistribution

#QuiksilverWaterman #CarolinaCup #WrightsvilleBeach #WBPC #AnnabelAnderson #TitouanPuyo #GraveyardRace #WorldPaddleAssociation #Watersports #Paddleboard #OC1 #OC2 #Surfski #DoubleSki #ProneSUP #BlockadeRunner #NorthCarolina #WorldSUPtour #NCCoastalFederation #DannyChing #AprilZilg
Annabel Anderson, World's Top-ranked Paddler, Taking Hiatus
Annabel Anderson of New Zealand
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA, USA – Annabel Anderson of New Zealand, the fastest and world’s top-ranked standup paddleboard woman each year since 2012, will take a break in early 2018 for surgery to address a “long-term and horrifically painful ailment” and to fully recover from a serious concussion sustained earlier in the year. Anderson disclosed her plans in an interview with North Carolina Press Release to discuss her remarkable 2017 season and the upcoming Carolina Cup (April 18-22), the first race on the World SUP Tour.

Undoubtedly one of the greatest athletes of all time in the sport, Anderson won two gold medals in the recent ISA World Standup Paddleboard Championships; is the reigning World SUP Tour Salt Life Champion; Champion of the Pacific Paddle Games; five-time consecutive champion of The Carolina Cup; and ranked overall number-one in the world, the only female to achieve this recognition.

At the top of her game, Annabel Anderson is 85 points ahead of the nearest competitor in the 2017 year-end rankings, amassing over 300 points for the season. Chris Parker of SUPRacer.com, keeper of the world-rankings, calls Anderson “a work-horse … a tenacious competitor … a battler at heart … winning again, again, and again.” Wrapping a recent article about the top women in the sport, Parker said, “Annabel has pretty much sealed her status as the greatest of all time.”

In the interview, Annabel Anderson talks about her plans, the Carolina Cup, The Graveyard Race, how she maintained her dominance in the sport, the state-of-the-sport, 14-ft. boards for women, equality in the sport, Heavy Water, a glimpse into New Zealand, and more.

Text of Robert B. Butler’s interview with Annabel Anderson:

Annabel, congratulations on FIVE consecutive victories in the Carolina Cup; your string of impressive championships and titles in 2017; and, your #1 ranking in the world! How do you maintain this incredible momentum year-after-year?

“Looking back, 2017 still feels like a blur. There were a lot of curve balls thrown in my direction, I had a lot of things going on outside the sport, yet somehow I managed to take things week by week, to listen to my heart and do what felt right and that worked out pretty well. I think the success of 2017 was largely due to the consistency of performances over the previous seven years of competition. Mentally I’ve had the strength to overcome what ever obstacles that I’ve faced, of which there have been many, to achieve consistency of performance year after year.”

Reviewing your sports career, what is your proudest moment?

“It’s been my ability to overcome obstacles. To persevere when the odds have been stacked against me, to back myself when I’ve had to, and to be consistent over time.”

What is your career plan for 2018, and will you defend your title and go for number SIX in the Carolina Cup?

“You heard it here first. I will not be defending my title in 2018. I’m 36; I’ve been living away from home 10-plus months a year for close to a decade, I’m recovering from a serious concussion sustained earlier in the year, and have surgery at the end of March for a long-term ailment that has been horrifically painful for a long time. I’ve had my best ever season racing bikes at home, but right now life is telling me to look after my body and give others the opportunity to strive for the top step of the podium at Carolina Cup this year. There is more to life than titles and trophies.”

Do you plan to be on the pro circuit at all in 2018 or after 2018?

“At this point, I will be bypassing Carolina Cup to allow my body the chance it needs to recover fully. From there I'll take each week and month as it comes. I know exactly what it takes to win at the highest of levels and if I'm not competing, there are many other ways that I can help others work towards their dreams as well. I have a huge amount of amazing opportunities that are on the table and I plan to take the chance to make the most of some of these as the year plays out. I'll always go with what my head and heart tell me to do. Watch this space!”

From your unique global perspective, what is the ‘state’ of the sport of paddle boarding?

“It’s in a total state of confusion, and outside looking in, it’s more confused than ever. We need to realize that the massive growth of a few years ago is no longer there and we have to give people reasons to paddle, to surf, to go downwind, to run rivers, to participate in events. It’s a natural attrition that the number of events will atrophy, but others will stabilize and strengthen as a result. It’s a natural settling down process and it’s been coming for a while. On the competition side of things, there are a ready and willing group of pro and want-to-be pro athletes and aspiring juniors. The challenge is that there is no definitive pathway to making a career out of the sport, even less so for girls. While both The Paddle League and the APP World Tour both have their merits, time will tell if there is room for both of them and how they may compliment each other. The state of the ISA versus the ICF for governance of SUP is most likely the greatest concern facing the sport right now. The reality is, we need to be brave enough to realize that the sport is established enough to develop it’s own governance structures in the eyes of the International Olympic Committee. But given the history of discord and disagreement that has plagued the higher echelons of the sport for the better part of a decade, this could be wishful thinking. The challenge is for the sport and its participants along with the support of the IOC to independently form a short, mid and long-term strategic plan. Everyone from brands to athletes to events will benefit.”

How does it feel and what is it like to be a global role model for men, women, and children?

“It’s a responsibility that I take seriously and have in the back of my mind with what ever I do. First and foremost I’m a lover of sport and the outdoors and if I can use what I’ve done to encourage more people to develop a life-long love of making the most of what’s on their doorstep, then that’s a pretty awesome thing to be able to do.” 

Seeking equality in all aspects of life is a global issue for all peoples, especially minority and economic classes and women. Three questions:

Is progress being made in the sport of paddling?

“We are making some progress and it’s not all bad, but we still have a very long way to go when it comes to the offering of similar opportunities that will encourage more junior female athletes to see it as a viable long term athletic career as well as more females being able to commit to more higher level competition. We must also realize that not all women want to compete but to be a part of communities with a common interest.”

“And while it’s amazing to see opportunities open up, girls must realize that just because they are a girl and can stand on a board, it’s one thing to be invited to the table, it is another to be worthy of that invitation. The worst thing that could happen is for girls to be given certain opportunities but not be ready to be put into those situations. But I’m confident the current and next generations of female athletes will accept these responsibilities and rise to the challenge to present the female side of the sport in the best light possible, as many other females have demonstrated in other sports throughout the decades.” 

“While some big strides have been made in the paddling world, specifically around the equality of prize money, we still have a long way to go as a sport. My questioning of the lack of invitations extended to girls to compete in the Red Bull Heavy Water event gave us the feedback that in 2017 we simply no longer accept that kind of discrimination. It brought the subject to the fore and caused much-needed conversations that needed to be had.” 

“The reality is that until we have transparency of some of these issues and as a society give girls the same opportunities we give boys, we will not make the progress that we are capable of making. I know how little I received as a sponsored athlete from brands in comparison to boys who were of similar stature and it was a fraction of what they received. It’s the conversation no one wants to have and it’s the type of conversation that needs to begin. So until we give girls the same media attention, out-of-competition opportunities, contractual values and focus, we can paint a pretty picture and say it’s ‘equal’ but it’s not and it’s going to take a societal shift to make it happen.”

Any other comments or thoughts about the Heavy Water incident in San Francisco?

“In 2017, who in their right mind thought it was ok to not invite at least some of the top females to this event? The aftermath of Heavy Water was evidence of just how powerfully women can band together to support each other and how society feels about gender discrimination. I’m proud that I had the courage to raise the question and start the discussion that needed to be opened.”

What are your thoughts about 14-foot boards for women in 2018 and how will this affect outcomes?

“The length of boards is somewhat irrelevant to the outcome of the race, as long as everyone is on the same start line with the same length board when the race begins. The only impact will be that longer boards will move slightly faster over the length of the course. If the smaller girls do not have access to 14-foot boards built to their size, I would consider them to be at a disadvantage compared to the larger girls who ‘fit’ the standard 14-foot production boards which are predominantly designed for men.” 

“The topic of allowing girls to race on equivalent length 14-foot boards in the 2018 Carolina Cup is a step forward, but must be taken in context of where the industry is. While a marathon length course is most definitely suited to a longer board, most 14-foot production boards are designed for medium to large sized men, which is significantly different compared to the size of a lot of women. Given the lead times of design and production, I don’t think we’ll see 14-foot production boards that truly fit most competitive females emerge until 2019 to 2020. The caveat to this is, I think you will see the majority of the top female contenders ride custom equipment to compensate for this in 2018 while the industry plays catch up on R&D.”

“Given that equipment is a relatively cheap, compared to gear in some other sports that require a lot of equipment and servicing, there are types of racing that suit 12’6, that suit 14’, and suit 14’-plus. Juniors will develop better technique and reduce risk of injury if they ride smaller boards during their developmental years. You wouldn’t give a 100-pound kid Danny Ching’s paddle, so why would you put them on the same board?”

“We need to get our heads around that and look at what are the most appropriate tools to get the job done when it comes to equipment, the type of event, who is riding it, etc. In turn, it will help solidify the structures and pathways of the sport, allow paddlers to plan their quiver along with their development and type of paddling they do. It’s also another way to stabilize the industry and assist in the development of the sport long term.” 

Let’s talk about The Carolina Cup, a race you know very well with five consecutive victories. What are your thoughts on the Graveyard course?

“The Graveyard is a true test of a paddler’s skills, both fitness, and mental fortitude. It’s a course that has everything and is notoriously difficult to prepare for. As we have seen over the years, you can’t just have an engine. You have to be the most well-prepared and skilled athlete on race day, not only to conquer the course, but to overcome your competition. Disrespect any of this and you’ll be humiliated on one of the biggest stages of the year. This will be an interesting year to make predictions from the sidelines. In my absence, I predict the women’s race will play out very differently to the previous five editions.”

What do you love and hate about the Graveyard race?

“I never really hated the Graveyard. I loved the challenge of the course, the variety it offered, the changeability of the weather and course direction, and how the race played out every year.” 

What are your thoughts about Wrightsville Beach?

“I’ve always enjoyed Wrightsville Beach and the locals that have welcomed me every year. It’s wonderful how the community has embraced The Carolina Cup and come out to support paddlers around the course. I will miss catching up with good friends this year.”

You have traveled to North Carolina from New Zealand and won the Cup five times? Should we travel to New Zealand?

“New Zealand has fast become the top of many people’s bucket lists. It’s an incredibly diverse country and always depends on what people want to see and do. It’s hard to go past the South Island for the majesty of the Southern Alps, alpine lakes, and national parks. New Zealand’s popularity is exponentially increasing, so I would recommend coming outside of peak tourist seasons to have a truly authentic experience. Rent a car, stay in amazing vacation homes, visit national parks and allow yourself a minimum of two weeks to stay and play.”  

What are your interests when you’re not paddleboarding? 

“My life off the board revolves around the outdoors and sharing these experiences with friends and others. I help mentor a few up and coming sporting rockstars, serve as an ambassador for Stand Up for the Cure, love the chance to share some of the crazy tales of adventures through writing and speaking, and I’ve always loved to cook. I’ve been heli-biking up in the Southern Alps, paragliding, hiking, and in general taking some time to enjoy the scenery and to share it with others.”

Is there anything else you would like to share with your SUP family and fans?

“Never judge a book by its cover, never assume anything, stay true to your values, let your actions speak louder than your words, and remember, it’s not about a race but how you play the game of life.”  

Thank you, Annabel, and best wishes for a successful surgery and speedy recovery.

About the Carolina Cup:

The 8th annual Quiksilver Waterman Carolina Cup will draw thousands of spectators and more than 1,000 event participants. Races, clinics, expos, entertainment, and festivities will be in Wrightsville Beach, April 18-22, 2018. All races will begin and end at Blockade Runner Beach Resort, official resort of the Carolina Cup.

Returning races on the 2018 schedule include:

•The Graveyard, a grueling 13.2-mile ocean and flatwater race for the elite and professional paddleboard racers;
•The Money Island Open, a 6.5-mile flatwater race designed for the intermediate to advanced paddler;
•The Harbor Island Recreational, a 3.5-mile flatwater race for first-time to intermediate paddleboarders;
•The popular Kids Race for children 7 to 14.

New to the race schedule in 2018:

•The Longboat Graveyard, a 13.2-mile race exclusively for Elite OC-1, OC-2, Surfski and Double-Ski.

Organized by the Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club, affiliated with the newly formed Paddle League, and sanctioned by the World Paddle Association (WPA), the Cup will attract paddlers from over 20 countries and virtually every state in the nation. Competitors include Olympians, world-record holders, champions, professionals, amateurs, and first-time paddlers. The Carolina Cup is the first race of 2018 on the WPA World SUP Tour, and the second race of the season on the Paddle League World Tour.




World Rankings – Top-12 Women (source: SUPRacer.com)
1. Annabel Anderson, New Zealand
2. Fiona Wylde, USA
3. Olivia Piana, France
4. Terrene Black, Australia
5. Sonni Honscheid, Germany
6. Penelope Strickland, New Zealand
7. Candice Appleby, USA
8. Angela Jackson, Australia
9. Seychelle Webster, USA
10. Annie Reickert, Hawaii, USA
11. April Zilg, USA
12. Amandine Chazot, France

Complete list of world rankings (top 100 men; top 50 women):

Contact:
Mark Schmidt
Race Director
Wrightsville Beach Paddle Club
P: 910-620-1835
E: Mark@WrightsvilleBeachPaddleClub.com

Robert B. Butler
North Carolina Press Release
www.NCPressRelease.org
www.RBButler.com

#QuiksilverWaterman #CarolinaCup #WrightsvilleBeach #WBPC #AnnabelAnderson #TitouanPuyo #GraveyardRace #WorldPaddleAssociation #IPaddleForEquality #Paddleboard #OC1 #OC2 #Surfski #DoubleSki #ProneSUP #BlockadeRunner #NorthCarolina #WorldSUPtour #NCCoastalFederation #PaddleLeague