Via Chase Kosterlitz of Watermonkey.com
Last week I found out that another one of our Fanatic International
Last week I found out that another one of our Fanatic International SUP team riders was going to be in Florida.
Charlie Grey is on the Fanatic team representing the U.K. It was perfect timing as I was just getting ready to go to the other coast to do a Fanatic demo in Jupiter and race in the Paddle For Humanity. Charlie met me here in St. Pete and then we were on the road!
We arrived in the afternoon the day before the race in time to get some kiting and windsurfing in. After a short session in Pompano it was off for a carb loaded pre-race pizza dinner. The conditions for the race on Saturday were breezy and choppy. The race started in the intercoastal and made it’s way out to the ocean for two laps. I felt like I had a great lead coming out of the inlet until I hit the incoming tide ripping through. With no one to follow, I took the middle passage. This turned out to be the worst choice I could have made as I soon found myself moving backwards. My lead coming into the ocean was significantly decreased.
After two laps in open water I was able to gain it back and finish comfortably ahead. This is the beauty of racing. Each race is different and you are constantly learning and improving. Needless to say, next time I will not take the middle on an incoming tide.
The wind was still up after lunch and awards so it was time to get back out on the water. Myself and two other paddlers did a 6 mile down winder in the waves. It was a great run with warm air and crystal clear water. Saturday turned out to be a full day in the ocean!
On Sunday we headed up to Jupiter for a Fanatic demo and race clinic. Upon arrival, a local kid and his 8-legged friend greeted us near the shore. The kid was much less scared of the slimy octopus than I was. After our encounter with the area marine life we got ready for the clinic. It was awesome to see over 20 paddlers come out and enjoy the morning on the water. We even had a few first time paddlers attend!
After 3 days on the road it was nice to get back over the Skyway Bridge and back home. Charlie was fried from the Florida sun so I know he was glad to be back too. During the trip we were able to make initial plans for our European road trip this winter. Stay tuned for the adventures of Charlie and Chase, Euro Edition!