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Publisher's Note: Stand Up Paddle Magazine Summer 2011 Suzie Cooney OluKai Race

Summer’s Edition of Stand Up Paddling VOL3N3 2011: Publisher’s Note:

 

 

“It’s summer. It’s Maui. It’s hot. Paddler Suzie Cooney during OluKai Ho’olaulea 2011

 

Suzie won 1st place in age division and is sponsored by Naish International, Kaenon Polarized, INDO Board, and supported by OluKai and others.

Also, see articles written by Suzie regarding this event:  The Magic of Maliko. Written for Makai Ocean Life Magazine

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Maui Third Annual OluKai Ho'olaule'a a Huge Success Event Wrap Up & Race Results

The Third Annual OluKai Ho’olaule’a proved to be a tremendous success and an event that will for sure be even bigger and bigger in the years to come.  I had the pleasure of working with the OluKai Premium Footwear crew in particular Matthew Murasko from Maui, and the fine team that arrived from the mainland. In addition to the SUP and OC1 races, this year’s venue was extra special with the new division offered as the “Ohana Fun  Paddle” that captured over 100 participants before the big races.  ( More event highlights here )

Ohana Fun Paddle Start - Photo provided by Ocean Paddler TV

This alone was an event within the event as folks from as young  as 12 years old up to 75 years young got to experience a 3 mile down wind, non-competitive paddle. Prone paddlers, OC1s and stand up paddlers launched from the Paia Bay Youth & Cultural Center and arrived to at the life guard tower at Kanaha.  I anticipate this number to double for next year!   ( photos coming soon!!)

With about 210 plus participants the SUP Race broke some records from last year and many of the recognized names dominated. The trades were nearing about 15 knots and there was small wind swell which offered very close finishing times. The grueling run on the beach just after paddling your brains out for 8 miles made it for an exciting spectator finish!  We’re begging for a shorter run!??!  

May 14, 2011 – OluKai Ho’olaule’a SUP Race, Top 20 Overall:

Place Time No. Fname Lname Division
1 0:49:01 191 Kai Bartlett Elite Men
2 0:49:18 98 Livio Menelau Elite Men
3 0:51:39 205 Ekolu Kalama Elite Men
4 0:52:31 113 Mark Raaphorst Elite Men
5 0:53:11 118 Jeremy Riggs Elite Men
6 0:55:07 206 Campbel Farrell REC Men 30 – 39
7 0:55:24 129 Zane Schweitzer Elite Men
8 0:55:35 8 Amir Arbel REC Men 30 – 39
9 0:55:42 100 Andrea Moller Elite Women
10 0:56:06 128 Michi Schweiger SUP14 Men 40 – 49
11 0:56:30 97 Junya McGurn REC Men 40 – 49
12 0:58:07 184 Greg Pavao SUP14 Men 40 – 49
13 0:58:20 53 Masao Fukayama Elite Men
14 0:58:32 138 Ron St.John REC Men 50 & Over
15 0:58:44 139 Brian Stockdale Elite Men
16 0:58:55 46 Jack Dyson REC Men 50 & Over
17 0:59:13 13 Travis Baptiste SUP14 Men 17 & Under
18 0:59:16 105 Eddie Ogata SUP14 Men 40 – 49
19 0:59:25 55 Talia Gangini Elite Women
20 0:59:40 20 Devin Blish Elite Women

Complete Results…

May 15, 2011 – OluKai Ho’olaule’a OC1 Race, Top 20 Overall:

Place No. Fname Lname Division Time
1 5 Jimmy Austin Elite Men 47:36.5
2 78 Manny Kulukulualani Elite Men 48:06.4
3 89 Karel Jr. Tresnak Elite Men 48:30.3
4 13 Mael Carey Elite Men 48:45.2
5 79 Kai Bartlett Elite Men 48:56.2
6 80 Felipe Gomes Elite Men 49:14.6
7 77 Kaeo O Kalani Abbey Elite Men 49:31.2
8 94 Tyson Kubo Men 40 – 49 50:07.4
9 88 Kekoa Cramer Men 30 – 39 50:18.2
10 68 Kawika Williams Men 50 & Over 51:11.1
11 67 Asa Ward Men 19 – 29 51:33.3
12 27 Jb Guard Men 30 – 39 51:43.8
13 44 Chad Lima Men 30 – 39 52:01.1
14 22 Rory Frampton Men 40 – 49 52:11.1
15 83 Gregy Pavao Men 40 – 49 52:43.6
16 90 Andrea Moller Elite Women 53:15.4
17 93 Ekolu Kalama Elite Men 53:23.7
18 81 Biggie Lara Men 50 & Over 53:33.8
19 54 Lee Moyers Elite Men 53:54.3
20 41 Keith Keahi Men 30 – 39 54:01.2

Complete Results…

The luau that followed after the SUP races on Saturday was simply over the top. During the musical performance by Paula Fuga, as now becoming tradition; a helicopter hovered over and dropped thousands of plumeria showering the crowd.  The hula dancing and the award ceremony that followed which made for a complete day!  Yours truly got 1st place in the women’s 14ft age division! Whew hoo!

On Monday, after all the excitement The OluKai crew and staff headed deep up into the Honokawai Valley, where they spent the day learning and working the land to help stabilize the rich cultural resources to honor those before us.

This event brought a new meaning in celebrating the ocean and one that will continue to grow and grow.  The Magic of Maliko will now resonate in more hearts than ever as we gather again next year in ohana and ocean adventure.

Mahalo OluKai for making this event even more memorable than the last and bringing to Maui the spirit of giving back.

Suzie Cooney    http://www.suzietrainsmaui.com

To learn more about OluKai go to: http://www.olukai.com/AboutOlukai.aspx  Also check back to here to learn about the Ho’olaule’a soon to air nation wide on and NBC sports broadcast. Check back for date and details

Jenny Ryan Journeys to Maui to Experience the Magic of Maliko and the OluKai Ho'olaule'a

Aloha fellow paddlers and friends!  As we are only one week away from the exciting Third Annual OluKai Ho’olaule’a, I wanted to take a moment to introduce a lovely friend and athlete, who has journeyed all the way to Maui from Queensland, Australia, to experience what many are discovering to be the most exciting down wind SUP and ocean race in the world, Jenny Ryan.

I had the pleasure of doing a few training runs last year with her when she was here training for another event, and asked her to write about why this event, the Ho’olaule’a and why it meant so much to her.   Her story is heartfelt and expresses her thoughts on how Maui and our community here has embraced her, as the ocean and land embraces everyone.  She will inspire you and others to hopefully make the same journey to Maui!

Jenny writes: I can remember as kid I LOVED the beach! We lived so close and my mum would take me almost every day. I can remember playing in the ocean and getting tossed round by the waves never being scared. I can remember very vaguely, around the age of 4 having to go to the doctors. Something was wrong with my ears. Little did I know it spelled the end of my ocean love for a decade..

From the age of 4 to 13, I had several ear infections and grommets all was going okay until I was 7. One grommet came out early leaving a hole in my ear drum – and until it healed. I couldn’t dive, swim, etc. So I was always swimming with my head above the waves. I got to the age of 13 and was old enough to have a skin graph operation on my ear to close the hole. The operation was a success and for the first time in many years I was free to swim again. Until about 2 weeks later where I caught an unknown tropical ear infection. My ear would weep nonstop and this continued for about 12 months. Doctors, specialists, Ct scans, bone scans, referrals; no one knew what to do It wasn’t until my specialist suggested an old wife’s tale of Aluminum Acetate that it stopped in 3 days . I was 14 and had lost 70% of my hearing due to scar tissue, but I had the all cleared and within a month I picked up a surfboard.

I started surfing and loved it straight away and it was freedom. I could leave all my problems at the shore go for a surf.and somehow everything would be better.

I have been short boarding on and off for 10 years and gradually over time would see more and more SUPs. I was curious and a close friend was getting into it. He was telling me how awesome it was. Doubtful and curious I had to give it ago.

It was a 10ft Bonga Perkins. I lost count of the number of times I fell in. Persistence paid off and in a few months I was entering SUP surfs comps. Due to the small number of women entering these events..we were always up against the Men. We continued to enter the events and only recently have women surf sup has its own division in all the main surf contests. It’s great to know that in some way I’ve contributed to the progression of Women’s SUP in Australia alongside my fellow competitors/ friends. My proudest moment was placing 2nd in the first Women’s Australian SUP Title and this result enabled me to be sponsored by Laguna Bay Stand Up Paddle.

As SUP started exploding in oz races were starting to become more frequent. After a small fun race, Phil Gregory (aka Iron Phil) approached me – saying I was a weapon of a paddler and that I should really think about getting into racing. If it wasn’t for Phil that day i don’t know if I would be racing now. I started training with Phil for local races and started to build my confidence and strength.. it was during these training sessions I started to hear about how amazing the race scene is in Hawaii.. and about all the races, the people, and just the sup scene in general..

It was NYE 2010 when I decided that I was going to do the International Naish Race. I had only been training one month barely doing 10km and this race was 16km. I set myself a time of 1:40:00 and decided to go for it. Six months of solid training was my lead up and before long I was heading to Maui.

When I first got to Maui the first thing I noticed was the wind! I couldn’t believe how windy it was all the time. We hardly get over 15knots at home. This was something foreign. I did my first Maliko run. I couldn’t believe the runners. It was an amazing experience surfing the swell bumps, seeing turtles, and taking in the amazing coastline of Maui.

It was so inspiring and I was so excited to keep doing these runs. Race day came round so fast. I was nervous, and excited but enjoying every moment. It really started hitting me. This was it. Everything I had been training for was here and now! The prayers were said before we raced. This tradition is something I really admire. It gave me goose bumps. I felt instantly the energy at Maliko.

The race was amazing. I caught some of the most amazing runners of my life and hit my target time of 1:40:42. To say I was happy was an understatement! For me I learned that if you really put your mind to something you can make it happen. It was after this race that my whole belief system changed. I started to believe more in myself and wanted to come back to Hawaii again.

Continue reading Jenny Ryan Journeys to Maui to Experience the Magic of Maliko and the OluKai Ho’olaule’a

April 30 OluKai and Suzie Cooney of Suzie Trains Maui hosted a second “Practice” Fun Paddle from Paia

Saturday April 30th, 2011, Maui’s beautiful N. Shore attracted 72 paddlers of all ages and levels of experience for our second three mile Ohana OluKai Practice Fun Paddle!  With only two weeks away from the Third Annual OluKai Ho’olaule’a, we welcomed  SUP paddlers, prone paddlers and Heather our OC1  paddler; joined us from Paia Bay to the lifeguard tower at Kanaha Beach Park, in preparation for the New Ohana Fun Paddle @ 9AM, May 14th, 2011.

Peter Swanzy and the kids!

This paddle was our second practice paddle since our first April 2nd, 2011 was such a huge success. Click here to see the video. We wanted to share again and encourage families, new paddlers and those who’ve never done a down winder, to come and build their confidence.

Peter Swanzy and Julianna Prater from Paia Youth and Cultural Center had five youth from 13 to 14 years old join in the practice paddle. The youth have been training with Pete and Julianna over the last month and their training paid off as this was the first time that these youth had paddled this 3 mile distance. A huge sense of accomplishment and pride way to go! We also had paddlers from Sweden, Nevada and England participate.

For some, this was the first or second time ever experiencing a coast run. After everyone signed in, had a little morning coffee and juice, we all gathered as Matthew Murasko, OluKai Hawaii Ambassador,  announced our 3 mile course.

Stretching and Jumping Jacks!

Then the ice chest was turned over to me, and I stood up and asked everyone to join me in some warm up exercises and jumping jacks to shake off any pre-paddle  jitters or butterflies!

The conditions were perfect and inviting. The trades were light at about 10 knots that provided for some fun glides.

copyright Ron Dahlquist

The first group of paddlers arrived to Kanaha in 30 minutes and the last group arrived in 60 minutes. Upon completion paddlers were treated to water, juice, granola bars and Whoopie Pies, a chocolate cake-vanilla ice cream confection handmade by my boyfriend Tommy Callan.

The Finish! Kanaha

Mahalo to the Maui lifeguards ( Tony Colletta ) from Baldwin Tower and Kanaha Tower for PWC saftey…and special mahalo also to Milton Martinson of Haiku for PWC water safety as well as SUP water safety guards, Chris Pagdilao, John Smalley, Joshua Kjorven, Randy Royse. Also lending a hand and expertise, Deb Driscoll and Blair Thorndike.

We’d also like to thank the crews at the Naish Maui Pro Center and Second Wind for providing a few extra boards for the kids from the youth center.

I know this paddle provided many an amazing, life-changing ocean experience. I was touched to see everyone supporting one another out there and on the beach. For others it was a chance to encourage their loved ones and friends to go to the next level. Well done.

Keep up that that training!  The real OluKai Ohana Fun Paddle is May 14 at 9am, same place, same course. Arrive by 8am and Register at OluKai.com. Entry Fee for the 3 mile OluKai Ohana Fun Paddle is $20 and includes one luau dinner wristband.

Aloha and thanks for supporting in community.

Suzie Cooney, CPT  Suzie Trains Maui    SUP Clinic/Director/ Instructor   SUP Team Rider for Naish