Author Topic: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question  (Read 6842 times)

surf4food

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #45 on: October 03, 2017, 10:49:04 AM »
It says where the real money is, and while Kai may be the biggest name, it's been quite awhile since he was consistently winning the big races. If you're not winning the major races, but can make a lot more money by devoting more time to the aspects of being a waterman that he really loves i.e. big wave surfing, which also equates to making bank with sponsors, then that makes a lot more sense. Stand up racing is not lucrative and there is only a few that actually make a living doing it, and it's largely sponsorship revenue that makes it possible.

As I mentioned before on a separate thread, I think itís kind of a fluke that SUP racing has even gotten as big as it has (and as fast as it has) considering that itís the new kid on the block in the paddle sports world and that its roots are nothing more than a goofing around novel way to surf.  I think if the industry didnít push so hard to make it mainstream it maybe would have settled in along with other types of paddle racing. 

That being said, I truly hope the best for events like the PPG and all the other remaining events.  I always enjoy watching them but completely understand how they would have little to no appeal for a large scale mainstream audience.  My favorite event is still the Hano Hano (every January) in Mission Bay.  Purely aimed at participants and friends and family of the participants.  And maybe curious onlookers.

TallDude

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #46 on: October 03, 2017, 03:04:20 PM »
It says where the real money is, and while Kai may be the biggest name, it's been quite awhile since he was consistently winning the big races. If you're not winning the major races, but can make a lot more money by devoting more time to the aspects of being a waterman that he really loves i.e. big wave surfing, which also equates to making bank with sponsors, then that makes a lot more sense. Stand up racing is not lucrative and there is only a few that actually make a living doing it, and it's largely sponsorship revenue that makes it possible.

As I mentioned before on a separate thread, I think itís kind of a fluke that SUP racing has even gotten as big as it has (and as fast as it has) considering that itís the new kid on the block in the paddle sports world and that its roots are nothing more than a goofing around novel way to surf.  I think if the industry didnít push so hard to make it mainstream it maybe would have settled in along with other types of paddle racing. 

That being said, I truly hope the best for events like the PPG and all the other remaining events.  I always enjoy watching them but completely understand how they would have little to no appeal for a large scale mainstream audience.  My favorite event is still the Hano Hano (every January) in Mission Bay.  Purely aimed at participants and friends and family of the participants.  And maybe curious onlookers.

Paddlebigbear (formally the Big Bear Paddlefest) is trying to survive as well. It's a great event that has been trying to find the magic formula for success. Big Bear Lake, Ca. is such a great get away from LA. The setting is scenic, and the lake is usually warm. The racing and event is very laid back. Their race includes Canoes, Kayaks, Skis, and SUP. I think with the diminishing entrants they need to make sure they hold it on a weekend with no other LA area competing events. Last year it was on the same day as the Santa Monica ocean festival. 

pdxmike

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #47 on: October 03, 2017, 03:22:29 PM »
PDX, I think Sup racing is more comparable to speed walking in terms of spectator interest.

I remember watching the Boston Marathon when I was a little kid. People lined the streets for the entire 28 miles. I haven't watched one since, but I understand the crown is many times bigger.

The biggest crowd I ever saw at a SUP race was the first BOP.
Yes, and running isn't that great itself for most people.  The Boston Marathon may be different, but I think a lot of marathon spectators wouldn't be there if they had to do more than walk out onto the sidewalk in front of their houses.


One thing about watching a marathon that is nice is you're so close to the contestants you can see their expressions and even talk to them.  It wouldn't be the same being even a block away, and that's way closer than you are to standup racers at most courses, and that's at the times you can still see them.  One of the things that I like about the Naish Hood River races for spectating is that the course comes in almost to land.  You can do your open race, then sit or wade at the beach and see the elites. 


Here's a couple photos from a couple years ago.  The Kai photo is slightly zoomed, but the Danny Ching one accurately shows how you experience it, and maybe is even a slightly wide-angle view.  The racers rounded this buoy several times, so every few minutes, and the announcer is right there naming every racer, all creating a much better than typical spectator experience.




Eagle

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #48 on: October 03, 2017, 03:33:13 PM »
Watched the finishes and that was plenty enough.  Maybe a total of 5-10 minutes max.  Without big wave carnage was pretty boring.  Just wanted to see how much AA dominated and if Conner still can hold off his peers.  When the play by play is "this is starting to get exciting" -> I was thinking ... really?!?  :o

http://ppg.supthemag.com/live/
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kayadogg

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #49 on: October 03, 2017, 05:32:08 PM »
I was there all weekend. I participated in the last 2 BOPís and the first 2 PPGís. Thereís some valid points in this thread. As someone who is more interested in the race scene than most, I was pretty bored at various times during the weekend. I think lack of waves contributed to this since during the downtime, you could just go surf. The only ďexcitingĒ times was once they rounded the final buoy and made their way to the beach. The hammer buoy didnít have itís usual excitement due to it being flat.

One thing I would like to see is have them bring back the running around the chicane during each lap. That keeps the action closer to the beach and gives you more waves to watch them surf and also watch their beach starts, which are very impressive.

I hope it continues but Iím fearful itís going to suffer the same fate as the BOP. Iíll admit, I didnít race much this past year and I was on the fence about doing it once I got out there. There wasnít enough incentive given the conditions, the entry fee, etc. Iím glad there are new racers still participating and overall everyone was still stoked though. The webcast is very impressive and I disagree with the comment about Kalama and Parker being bad on the mic. They work well together and Chris knows the race circuit and racers (specifically the international ones) better than anyone. And Kalama is someone I could listen to talk about anything. I really enjoyed hearing them.

viatormundi

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #50 on: October 04, 2017, 11:04:30 AM »
Chris and Kalama did a great job. But the race and many races need some exciting variations such as running on the beach, multiple beach starts, super laps etc to make the race more exciting. Team relay races are always fun too. Unfortunately the trend of races being less popular is something we observe in Spain too. Only elite racers are attending all races and many casual paddlers gave up on races for various reasons.

surf4food

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #51 on: October 04, 2017, 05:45:15 PM »
Here's a four year old article from Steve West.  The two comments below the article are from me so now all y'allz will see my real name and face.
http://www.supracer.com/a-cautionary-tale/

viatormundi

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #52 on: October 07, 2017, 09:03:20 AM »
Here's a four year old article from Steve West.  The two comments below the article are from me so now all y'allz will see my real name and face.
http://www.supracer.com/a-cautionary-tale/

Sorry but it is impossible to read a text written by Steve West. His sentences are one paragraph long ;D I have his book, great information in it but also perfect tool make fall asleep.

comeu

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #53 on: October 10, 2017, 05:33:20 AM »
I read Steve West article 3 times, and don't really get it.
- windsurfing declined long before 2013, but I doubt it's declining since 2010.
- windsurfing is still on, with lots of relatively new brands, making better equipment than ever, especially better than old big brands used to sell
- how can Steve West talk about windsurfing decline without mentioning kiteboarding and other outdoor sports?
- you can't talk about business without talking about the economic situation.

I personally buy a board if it looks like fun to ride, I have enough cash and time for it. I don't care if it's an Olympic sport or not, if its hype or not, neither do I need to define its essence (by the way is windsurfing more surfing or more sailing?)

I'd like to read something about evolution of SUP compared to mountain biking. I guess they have more in common.


surf4food

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #54 on: October 10, 2017, 10:34:04 AM »
I think Steve Westís point of why windsurfing declined (regardless of when the decline started) is something that can happen to SUP.  I often donít agree with him but I think heís pretty spot on as to how the windsurfing industry lost focus on the average weekend sailor and instead concentrated on extreme high performance. 

comeu

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #55 on: October 11, 2017, 08:45:50 PM »
I read Steve West article 3 times, and don't really get it.
- windsurfing declined...

My reply was unclear!

I don't deny there were a severe decline of windsurfing,
I just wanted to say that before to look for similarities between windsurfing and SUPing, we need to know more about "the decline of windsurfing ", we need data and facts!

I searched online, found few messages like "where are all the windsurfers gone?", few articles , mostly about windsurfing coming back (like in 2001 with formula boards...) but very few datas, especially at a world scale.

I found that Kiteboarding went from few 100s in 1998 to an estimation of 1.5 million riders ww in 2012, 180 000 kites sold in 2011 (Isaf),
https://uclue.com/?xq=7627, here I learned there were 8 million windsurfers in the world in 2009, same number of windsurfers in US in 2008 and 2013: 1,3 million.
Wikipedia : The Outdoor Foundation's 2015 Special Report into Paddlesports found that 2.8 Million (or 0.9%) of Americans participated in standup paddlboarding in 2014.

Now we should talk about pro riders, about sponsors like P Stuyvesant @PWA... in the old days.
We could also talk about the 1300 windsurfers racing at the Dťfi wind in south of France... and the Defi wind Mauritius...



comeu

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #56 on: October 11, 2017, 08:51:55 PM »
I think heís pretty spot on as to how the windsurfing industry lost focus on the average sailors.
It was in the late 80s/90s when the trend was sinkers/ needle nose- no nose boards. Since that area everybody will tell you equipment is much easier to use, strong and can be used in wide range of conditions.

TallDude

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #57 on: October 11, 2017, 11:30:54 PM »
I started windsurfing in the early 80's. There were probably 20 dedicated windsurfing shops along the SoCal coast. I built one of them for a friend of mine who managed one in Newport Beach and one in Long Beach (which I built out). I swapped some of the work for a board and rigging. I had an 11' gun by Rainbow. Roto-moulded indestructible low rocker bullet and a 7.2 battened sail. They were just coming out with Camber induced and RAF sails and out of my price range. All the harbors and bay were flooded with people windsurfing, just like SUP. There were rental places, and certified instructors at the hotels. It was booming. The problem with SoCal is lack of real wind.
I spent my weekends driving to Mex or San Pedro just to get so decent wind. Kiting hadn't even been invented back then. I grew out of my beginner equipment, and started demo'ng the shorter boards, and RAF sails. The equipment was getting crazy expensive for a guy in my early 20's. My roommates had Hobie Cats and I started racing with them. It was cheaper and I didn't have to chase the wind... as much ::)
Only the serious and good windsurfers stuck with it. Now you'll never see a single windsurfer in the harbor or ocean in SoCal. Still a handful on some lakes and northern coast, but nothing like the old days.
Board = $1,000.
C.F. mast = $1,200.
Adjustable boom = $250.
Sails = $700. to $800 a piece ( and you needed at least 3), so over $2,000.
Plus Harness and accessories brings you to about $ 5,000 for a minimal rig. 
Windsurfing is an expensive water sport. Did I mention chasing wind everywhere...
« Last Edit: October 11, 2017, 11:32:25 PM by TallDude »

yugi

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Re: Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #58 on: October 12, 2017, 12:13:57 AM »
^yep

Go to any spot with solid wind and you see a sea of windsurfers. Guys that live in spots like that and windsurf a several times a week for most of the year tend to have just one board and sail, and don't bother going out when it isn't perfect.

It's great to see the kids at spots like that. When you see what they do and how keen they are, you don't call windsurfing dead. You just realize you live in the wrong place.

BTW foiling may bring back windsurfing to light wind spots. Kite foiling is soooo fast but I think windsurfing is better for sports where the wind can die. It might still be a drag to get in but at least you aren't swimming it in.

« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 12:25:11 AM by yugi »

comeu

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Pacific Paddle Games at Doheny this weekend..question
« Reply #59 on: October 12, 2017, 05:20:04 AM »
I bought a complete windsurfing equipment (1 Fanatic skate 6 years old/1sail,...) for 900$, second hand. The cheapest 14' SUP I found here (online) is a focus bluefin demo board from 2016 at 2300$. So prices depend on your location.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 05:30:11 AM by comeu »