Fish Hoek - Sean Rice threw the race for the Discovery Sunglass Hut Surfski Series title wide open by winning the New Balance Surf Challenge in dramatic circumstances on Sunday.


For the second week running the race was decided in a sprint finish up the beach. This time it was Rice who upstaged Dawid Mockè and Tom Schilperoort to win the title by less than a boat length in a thrilling finale.

Dawid Mock
è, who was race director, had a tough call to make after days of heightened shark activity in the area. He set a course outside the bay, but close enough to the coast line to shelter the paddlers from the predicted harsh conditions. Although a rain squall lashed the area just before the start, the predicted high winds did not appear and the race began in ideal paddling conditions with flat seas and medium winds.

"It was hard and a bit like a marathon event with the top four paddling in spurts and taking breaks," said Rice. "There were a few runs going out to flat rock and all in all it was a good course. Its great to be winning with the two international races coming up soon."

Following the winners in close proximity was series race one winner Jasper
Mockè, followed by Steve Farrell and Gary Cromie.

The women's race was won by Alexa Cole of Peninsula Canoe Club and who has just returned from the World Canoe Marathon Championships , paddling the all new Allwave ski from Italy. Last weeks winner Kim Brugman, was second with race one winner Donia Kamstra third.

Cole was delighted with her win. "The conditions made it a hard race, but I enjoyed it and enjoyed the new ski I paddled," said Cole "Its good to be back in a surfski after a long season of canoeing."

The race was contested by a field of 119 surf ski paddlers, all of whom agreed that it was hard but fun.

The Series moves to the Atlantic Sea board for race four, The Discovery Downwind on Sunday 6 November. This is a mobile start event depending on wind conditions. More details can be found at www.surfski.co.za

SUMMARY OF RESULTS
NEW BALANCE FISH HOEK SURF CHALLENGE,
RACE 3 OF THE DISCOVERY SUNGLASS HUT SURFSKI SERIES:
OVERALL
ELITE MEN
1. Sean Rice (Varsity College) 1:00:18
2.
Dawid Mockè (Fish Hoek SLC) 1:00:19
3. Tom Schilperoort (Peninsula) 1:00:28
4. Jasper Mocke (Peninsula) 1:00:35
5. Steve Farrell (Peninsula) 1:03:15

ELITE LADIES
1. Alexa Cole (Peninsula) 1:09:48
2. Kim Brugman (Peninsula) 1:10:19
3. Donia Kamstra (Strand) 1:13:57

JUNIOR BOYS
1. Dominic Notten ( Wynberg)(U18) 1:04:58
2. Kenneth Rice (Bergvliet)(U16) 1:05:12
3. Craig Flanagan(U18) 1:08:58