Paddler Profile: Herman Chalupsky

Rate this item
(0 votes)

Herman Chalupsky claims that the real reason he aims to finish first at any race is to ensure that there's no one ahead of him in line at the pub.

Herman Chalupsky Dubai 2007
Herman pips brother Oscar in Dubai - 2007 (Pic: Alain Jaques)

It's a good line from a wry man who specializes in cockney rhyme and terrible quips but after hanging out with him far more than I'd care to admit, it happens to be deadly accurate. The only kink in my theory is that the night before his dominating win at Molokai in 2004 he and Oscar downed 10 Miller's each. After the race he consumed twice that number and, well, beer consumption aside, he loves dogs, rugby, coffee, beautiful women, insulting Red Sea Pedestrians and, well, more beer. How does this all relate to the fact that Herman Chalupsky is on the short list of men likely to be crowned the next Molokai champion? I'm not sure other than to say that when Herman "the German" finds something he fancies he pursues it with a quiet, single-minded determination that may help explain why he's one of the greatest surf ski paddlers the sport has ever known. After twenty-five years at the top of the aquatic food chain, Herman's focus and training time may wane but when the bachelor from Durban is fit and properly motivated anyone who aims to beat him to the line in Hawaii Kai better have an insatiable thirst.

Herman Chalupsky Durban World Cup 2007
Herman comes in 7th in Durban, World Cup 2007 (Pic: Gameplan Media)

Age: 43

Height/Weight

6'5"/95kg

When did you start paddling?

Started in a canoe at age 7 in Durban harbour with my father who was the first Springbok Canoeing captain.  I started with Nippers, surf lifesaving, and got into a ski at about age 14.

Were you competing with Oscar even then?

No - I started competing with him at about age 18 - he was twice my size!  (Points towards Oscar) He was that size even then! 

Do you paddle rivers?

Yep, done all the big races in South Africa, won the Berg, won the Sella with Oscar in 1986

What was it like growing up with Oscar in the family?

Difficult!  He really does compete in every single aspect of life...

How come you've only won Molokai twice and Oscar has 11 victories?

He's done twice as many as I have - and I prefer other races - shorter stuff.

Are you going to beat Oscar this year?

I'm going to try to!

Do you also head to the north early on in the race?  How do you navigate?  Will you stick with Oscar at the beginning?

No - you can't see anyone else.  I just set the waypoint on Koko Head and follow the arrow; heading to the right for the first hour or so.

What's you best record?

2 Molo, 20 Beaches; Mayor's Cup; Record Cape Point; World Seakaying Championships in Canada (1999). 

Best: The twenty beaches - around 2001. Beat the Australians in Australia!

What conditions do you prefer?

25-30km, downwind.  The only reason we used to do those long races was that there was nothing else to do

Which means you're unlikely to do another Cape Point?

It's too long - who wants to go slogging all that way into the wind?  They should start it at Platboom - sprint 5km into the wind, turn downwind at the Point and go all the way to Fish Hoek.

Paddle

Epic Mid-wing set to 2.10.  Set it and leave it!

Ski

Epic V10 Elite.

What do you think of the concept of the World Series?

Not bad - there's a problem with the fact that it's easy to score points in some races - like the Caribbean races.  At the moment the guys are going to go where the money is - it'll be more meaningful when there's money for the world series.

What do you do?

Property broker in Durban - commercial properties - we've been doing it for twenty years now.

Herman Chalupsky Durban World Cup 2007
Herman screaming downwind - Durban World Cup 2007 (Pic: Gameplan Media)

 | 
Published in Pacific

Latest News & Reviews

  • CAINE ECKSTEIN: Pull Up or Go Home

    CAINE ECKSTEIN: Pull Up or Go Home The first guard directed me to another guard across the lobby who sent me downstairs to the main dressing room but, wait, the walkie-talkie wielding guard said that Caine Eckstein was in the upstairs Green Room, just past the spacious kitchen set where co-anchor Matt Lauer, his nose freshly powdered,…
  • Skinny Cappuccino wins 1950km endurance race

    Skinny Cappuccino wins 1950km endurance race Durban - Ultra athlete Steve Black completed his 1950km "Coastal Challenge" charity race from Cape point to Durban nineteen hours behind his surfski rival Clyde Barendse exhausted but exhilarated. Like the race winner Barendse, who paddled into the DUC beach at 6:30 on Thursday evening after snatching victory with an…
  • 2000km Extreme Race nears finale in Durban

    2000km Extreme Race nears finale in Durban Durban – Endurance athletes Steve Black and Clyde Barendse are close to completing a gruelling 2000km race from Cape Point to Durban which involved with Black running alongside the shoreline and Barendse paddling a surfski, to raise funds and awareness for cancer sufferer Lettie Heyns.

Quick Search

Latest Forum Topics

More Topics »

Our Social Media Network

Join our Facebook Fan PageFollow us on TwitterSubscribe to our News Feed

Latest Comments