ICF 2022 SUP – SPRINTS: Fireworks on day one

ICF 2022 SUP – SPRINTS: Fireworks on day one

The South Africans have stamped their presence on Poland’s ICF World SUP championship with a blazing start in the sprint arena and a good few wins to take the paddling world by surprise!

Our first athlete in the Men’s 40+ lineup today was Murray James. We were impressed at his solid start to international racing. He paddled really well, just missing a spot into the quarter finals. Murray’s time was 1:09:37 (the winning time was 56:74)

Migael Terblanche was our first Junior boy to take the lineup and gave a powerful display of raw power, to win his first heat in 58:07 (by 01:23).

Cameron Tripney stepped up next to confirm the arrival of the South African Junior forces. He annihilated all in his first heat, winning in a time of 52:61 (by 05:36 over the nearest competitor).

Our Open Women’s competitor, Evette Terblanche, just missed a spot through to the quarter finals by taking 7th place in her first heat (she was 13:32 off of the winning time of 1:02:29).

Our team captain, Elmari Renecle entered the Women’s 50+ division, and went on to start with a magnificent win in her first heat. Her time was 1:08:98 (winning by 00:05).

The Quarter and Semi Final rounds 

After a short break the first quarter finals were up – and both our boys featured in the same heat. They did not disappoint the adoring fans back home, Cameron won the race in a time of 53:58, with Migael powering behind him into 2nd place in a time of 58:05 (a difference of 04:47). The support groups online were going crazy and not a stitch of work got done at this point in the morning.

The lunch break was short and sweet, moving us on to the greatly anticipated semi-finals. The quick turnaround at lunchtime did not help the camera crews, and sadly resulted in only single camera footage for the first few races. It was hard to see Elmari’s race finish as the camera angle just missed the line, but she ended up with a 5th place and a time of 1:08:41, only 1:23 off the winner’s time of 1:07:18!

Cameron cruised to a quarter final win of 51:64 (beating his nearest rival by 00.26). The pressure was starting to mount.

Migael faced his quarter final, which was heavily loaded with some very seasoned paddlers, yet he finished with a truly respectable 7th place in a time of 1:01:24 (The winner hit 57:21)!


Hearts pounding all the way to the Finals

Unknown to the local supporters, Elmari had protested her results. We had not seen on screen, but there was interference (skew paddling out of lanes) by a nearby paddler. A great justice was done – the protest was upheld, and we were happy to hear she was through to the final! She had to do a running sprint just before her actual race too, as they only advised her at the last minute that she was in! We are so proud of her 8th place result of 1:09:62 (she was behind the winning time of 1:04:48 by only 5:14!)

The crowning race of the day was our Junior Boy Cameron’s final. Here he set about finishing off his utter domination of the field in a mind-boggling time of 50:25, keeping ahead of the ever-increasing powerful field of boys by a healthy margin of 1.72. There was a stream of joy from the South African family, friends and fellow paddlers to salute this youngster as he achieved a goal he has worked on for the last few years, overcoming so much to GET HIS GOLD!

To all our athletes today – you did us more than proud. We could not have hoped for a better launch to your World Champs entries for all of you. You have been showing your mettle in the international field with stellar results! We salute you!

ICF 2022 SUP – Bags packed, we’re good to go!

ICF 2022 SUP – Bags packed, we’re good to go!

Our athletes have been granted the most incredible gear from such generous sponsors. We’d love to share a bit of what they have packed to take along on their journey.

Upon arrival, they will be getting to grips with their paddling environment, testing out the Baltic waters in Poland on boards they are not used to, but which have been rented from the Austrian and Italian teams which have become great friends through the years of competing together. 

For the opening ceremony the team have a classy green golfer shirt and their national or federation blazers, ensuring that they look the part of ambassadors for our sport.  The incredible Veldskoen have covered their feet for the second year running – and remain a firm favourite – both for comfort and durability when you have a lot of walking around to do. A sweet little detail to finish off the local look are the South African flag socks made by Versus!

Thanks to Nimf Sea Soul and Olympic South Africa, the ladies have colourful printed and plain leggings to wear each day, and the gents have some classic paddling shorts too!

The paddling shirts custom made by Race Pace in all the colours of our national flag will keep the paddlers visible on the water and off.  In fact, last year the same shirts were swapped with other athletes, who loved the look of them.

On the way to the water, the paddlers can protect their feet wearing their sponsored bright red Plakkies – our local word for slip slops and pair it with the striking SA SUP TEAM visor, again, generously sponsored by OlympicSA.

On colder days, they are covered by the stylish Crossing Gear rash vests, the team shirt proudly bears our flag and the tangerine rashie is visible from far across the water – a great option for the long distance race to keep tabs on your favourite paddler.

Olympic South Africa have also ensured that our athletes are covered off the water – with cozy hoodies and sweatshirts, a cap for the sunny days, as well as a pair of socks and trainers for travelling and general everyday wear.

A hearty thanks must go out to Combustion Technology, for providing the national tracksuit. This is such a useful garment – we all know how important comfort is, and it gives our team great uniformity and identity as they travel. Thank you so much!!! 

We wish our team well – they certainly will be catching the eyes of many people as they carry our South African spirit all the way to Poland! Go and paddle up a storm for them TEAM SA!

A massive credit is also due to Billy Ackerman for his photography of our team in their gear! 

TEAM SA paddling in the ICF World SUP Champs

TEAM SA paddling in the ICF World SUP Champs

The SA SUP TEAM pack their paddling gear today as their countdown for the ICF World SUP Championships begins!


They are heading off to the city of Gdynia in Poland for this event, which will take place between the 7th and the 11th of September, 2022.

Here they will all participate in SUP sprint, technical and long distance races in varying categories – juniors, open, and masters 40+ and 50+.


Here is what you need to know before the competition starts.


1. Meet the teamThis page has a brief bio of each athlete and a link to the donations page, if you are able to help cover the last minute contingencies.

Our athletes in the image above are (from left to right) Evette, Elmari, Cameron and Migael and are all from Cape Town.

The image below is our athlete Murray from Durban, who will be joining them in Poland.

Below is the competition site map, where all the heats will be going down!

The competition schedule is shown below, so you can free up some time to cheer for Team SA!

The course layouts for each event are here – sprint, technical and long distance.

Zinkwazi race day in KwaZulu-Natal

Zinkwazi race day in KwaZulu-Natal

Text by Murray James

After two years of absence due to covid restrictions, the annual Zinkwazi Classic SUP race returned for 2022, on Sunday 3rd July.

One of the few SUP-only races on the calendar, it was well attended by the growing group of Durban-based paddlers with 24 paddlers entered in total.

Conditions on the day were perfect, with clear skies and a light westerly breeze.

The men’s 10km race was won by Murray James in a closely fought race, with Matt Swemmer coming in second and John Bray in third place.

Charlotte Atherton won the women’s 10km race comfortably with a four minute lead over second place Lande Williamson and third placed Jacqui de Billot.

The 5km social race was won by Liz du Plessis, with Prasha Doorgapersad in second.

Pure Prone Paddling

Pure Prone Paddling

The Prescient Freedom Paddle is a  magnificent race in a category of its own. Designed initially for surfskis and water craft, the last year or two have seen the inclusion of slower paddlers, like prone and stand up paddle boards, but don’t think that ever stopped the competitors from completing this arduous 27km route!

Last year, prone mentor Kit Beaton undertook the infamous race, but after a delayed start due to fog and some very challenging conditions, he was not sure he wanted to participate in a solo capacity again.

Just like a true athlete, when the news of the race surfaced again for the new year, Kit wanted to race.

He started to think about how to make it possible for prone paddlers to complete the course without the physical strain of paddling 27kms on their knees, with their hands sweeping through the icy Atlantic waters.

How does one get through a difficult task? Why, with a little help from your friends, of course!

This year he devised a new strategy with a twofold goal: helping to encourage more junior entries and allowing paddlers to participate in the full race.  Relay teams of two were formed and the 27km paddling distance was shared between the members. When they were done, they had edged up their total race distance to 30kms after each paddler did two rounds of 7,5kms!

The idea worked really well, enabling some of our upcoming prone paddlers to experience this elite race. The team of Jadon Wessels and Santxo Etcheverry were the winners in this category. Many of the junior lifesaving prone paddlers also entered the 8km course – another encouragement to prone paddling in their  divisions!


By starting the juniors at a shorter 8km distance, the alternating relay sections of 2 x 7,5km around the island seem a lot more within their reach, and will encourage them to enter in the years to come.

Kit models all his prone training on the Molokai race – a world-renowned Hawaiian epic between the islands of Molokai and Oahu, where conditions are generally treacherous. He ensures there is a qualifying event, allowing athletes to see that their fitness and craft are up to task ahead of them. This race demands high standards, and they have certainly been met.

With the support from the lifesaving community, we hope to see much more growth in the prone boarding arena too!

Photo credits: Wayne Grieveson and Billy Ackerman