Paddlez Up Gizzy back in bay

PADDLING TOWARDS THE SUN: Waka ama crews paddle towards Gisborne in calm conditions in the bay. Paddlez Up Gizzy, an event for one-, two- and six-place waka ama and comprising 10 races, will be held on Saturday, September 30, along the shoreline if sea conditions suit. Alternative courses will use city rivers if the sea is too rough for racing. Picture supplied

THE spectacle of waka ama racing along the shoreline between Waikanae Beach and the Waipaoa River could be a feature of Paddlez Up Gizzy this month.

Competitive and “fun” races for paddlers aged from 12 to 65-plus will be run over distances between five kilometres and 25km in one-, two- and six-place waka ama.

The event will be held on Saturday, September 30, with registrations taken from 7am at the marina at the confluence of Waimata and Taruheru rivers. That will also be the load-out area for waka.

Should conditions in the bay be too rough for racing, a back-up plan has races taking place on the city rivers.

This will be the third Paddlez Up Gizzy event.

Teams will be male, female and mixed, with a highlight likely to be the five-kilometre six-place mixed “sprint”.

Organisers are drawn from the two city waka ama clubs, Mareikura and Horouta.

One of the organisers, Vesna Radonich, said the event would not only help the development of junior and new paddlers, it would be a good hit-out for crews preparing for the long-distance nationals off Ahuriri and Napier in mid-October.

Out-of-town paddlers and supporters would be welcome, she said.

Organisers envisaged the event encouraging people to visit Gisborne for watersports.

The historical significance of the bay and district rivers, along with the abundance of clubs and people active in watersports, gave the event tourism potential.

The event would also showcase paddling to the Gisborne community.

If conditions suited racing along the shoreline, spectators could watch the action from the beach.

If racing was along city rivers, the riverbanks offered plenty of vantage points.

Ten races are planned for the day.

THE spectacle of waka ama racing along the shoreline between Waikanae Beach and the Waipaoa River could be a feature of Paddlez Up Gizzy this month.

Competitive and “fun” races for paddlers aged from 12 to 65-plus will be run over distances between five kilometres and 25km in one-, two- and six-place waka ama.

The event will be held on Saturday, September 30, with registrations taken from 7am at the marina at the confluence of Waimata and Taruheru rivers. That will also be the load-out area for waka.

Should conditions in the bay be too rough for racing, a back-up plan has races taking place on the city rivers.

This will be the third Paddlez Up Gizzy event.

Teams will be male, female and mixed, with a highlight likely to be the five-kilometre six-place mixed “sprint”.

Organisers are drawn from the two city waka ama clubs, Mareikura and Horouta.

One of the organisers, Vesna Radonich, said the event would not only help the development of junior and new paddlers, it would be a good hit-out for crews preparing for the long-distance nationals off Ahuriri and Napier in mid-October.

Out-of-town paddlers and supporters would be welcome, she said.

Organisers envisaged the event encouraging people to visit Gisborne for watersports.

The historical significance of the bay and district rivers, along with the abundance of clubs and people active in watersports, gave the event tourism potential.

The event would also showcase paddling to the Gisborne community.

If conditions suited racing along the shoreline, spectators could watch the action from the beach.

If racing was along city rivers, the riverbanks offered plenty of vantage points.

Ten races are planned for the day.

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