Cape Downwind Series starts with a blast...

Monday, 17 January 2011 21:07 | Written by 
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Millers Run! Millers Run! Credits: John Hishin

... well, not quite a blast. The conditions actually couldn’t have been better  with enough of a breeze to kick up some white horses and keep the pros entertained but gentle enough that paddlers of almost all skill levels could have a go.

Ahhhh – Millers Run

In 2010, for the first time in living memory, there was no weekend surfski racing series planned for the second half of the season.  Catastrophe!  In stepped Gary Kroucamp, intrepid ENT specialist and fearless Millers Run campaigner:   “Why don’t we do a downwind series?”

The series is now in its second year.  The format is simple: six downwind races around the Cape Peninsular (can’t go too wrong at this time of year with the southeaster pumping as I write this); race on Saturday unless there’s no wind when we paddle on Sunday instead.  If Sunday is windless, two spare weekends are scheduled at the end of the series to make up races.  “No wind, no paddle!”

The first race of this series, run by the Paddling Centre aka Dawid & Nikki Mocke, took place on my favourite route: the infamous Millers Run.


15kt SE, white horses in the bay – but not too hectic for the start at Millers Point.  Perfect.

The Race

Visiting K1 UK Marathon star Ben Brown (current world marathon champ) was first around Bakoven Rock, with Dawid Mocke and 90 other skis in hot pursuit.

Cape Town Downwind Series

Cape Town Downwind Series

The race started in Rumbly Bay at Millers Point

Turning downwind, the paddlers were faced with challenging seas – challenging that is in that they were small, messy and difficult to ride.  You had to accept that everyone would be finding it frustrating and tricky, and not tire yourself out paddling frantically into the chop.

As usual though, two kilometres in the waves started to clean up and jack up a little and after that it was just sheer pleasure – run after run after run...

Dawid Mocke took the win seconds ahead of in-form Simon van Gysen (who, sadly, is leaving us to return to his deep sea diving job for the next couple of months).

Cape Town Downwind Series

Dawid Mocke and Simon van Gysen dice into the finish

Cape Town Downwind Series

Gary Cromie and Pieter Kruger paddled the first double across the line

Cape Town Downwind Series

1st mixed doubles: Traut & Broccoli (IanTrautman and Natasca Bracale)

International Entries

Ben Brown, showing his rapidly improving downwind skills (watch out UK paddlers) came in fifth in the singles.  Brown said afterwards that his “training camp has turned into a training holiday, it’s been such good fun.

“I’m supposed to go home next week, but I may extend for another two weeks!”

Cape Town Downwind Series

World marathon champ Ben Brown (UK) styling into 5th place in the singles

Spanish paddler Albert Corominas (K2 Marathon), also currently training in Cape Town, came tenth in the singles, a few places behind Nikki Mocke(!)

Prize Giving

With sponsorship from Hammer Nutrition and the Paddling Centre, all the prizes were handed out as lucky draws...

Cape Town Downwind Series

Complex machinations resulted in pseudo-random prize allocations (I didn't win)

Cape Town Downwind Series

An awesome start to an awesome series...

The next race will be on Saturday, 22 January – Milnerton to Melkbos, 20km of more fabulous downwind.  Registration is at Lagoon Beach from 1pm.  Current wind predictions: 23kt SE!  Bring it on!

Cape Town Downwind Series

For more info on the series, check out the facebook page:


PosName(s) Time
1 Dawid Mocke 45:15
2 Simon Van Guysen 45:18
3 Peter Cole 46:58
4 Gary Cromie Peter Kruger 47:48
5 Adam Bothma 48:24
6 Rory Cole Peter Unite 48:43
7 Rob Hart Garth Watters 48:52
8 Ben Brown 49:00
9 Ian Trautmann Natasca Bracale 49:18
10 Ashley Carstens 49:23
11 Nikki Mocke 49:32
12 Craig Flannagan 49:59
13 Ettienne Rawlilnson 50:09
14 Albert Corriminus 50:47
15 Jamii Hamlin 50:51
16 Kenny Rice 51:00
17 Jono Webb 51:09
18 Peter Jones 51:19
19 Quinton Miller 51:23
20 Beatle Bailey 51:33
21 Gary Kroukamp Guy Lundy 52:17
22 Daantjie Malan 52:23
23 Luke Van Ees 52:29
24 Stephan DuToit 52:41
25 Mike Schwan 52:51
26 Mark Gevers 52:59
27 Andrew Hardy 53:02
28 Rob Mousley 53:06
29 Barry Meiring 53:16
30 Paul Lange 53:16
31 Kyle Nell 53:51
32 Michael Martin 53:38
33 Brendan Currin 53:44
34 Shaun Butler Dale Hunt 53:50
35 Craig Butler 54:27
36 Francois Sisam Gareth Pinkney 54:31
37 Chris Grinton 54:36
38 Fred Creswell 54:45
39 Daniel Schilperoort 54:55
40 Dale Lipstreu 55:01
41 Fouche Whitehead 55:20
42 Mark Beck 55:21
43 Mike Baker 55:40
44 Kirsten Flannagan Candice Murray 55:47
45 Nick Rockey 55:52
46 Mark Voges 55:58
47 Graham Trautmann 56:09
48 Mike English Helene Rabie 56:13
49 Alex Topliss 56:21
50 Andre Jooste 56:29
51 Gary Pepler 56:38
52 Pierre Bester 56:44
53 Trevor Stander 56:44
54 Craig Salomone 56:57
55 Sean Todd 57:01
56 Andrew Ross 57:28
57 Louis Carstens 57:38
58 Brynde Jeffes Jono George 58:07
59 Jason Berry 58:20
60 Rob Maclean 58:23
61 Shandor Cylvan 58:38
62 Stephan Du Toit 59:43
63 Johan De Wett 59:00
64 Heinrich Schloms 59:04
65 Jackie Barnes 59:14
66 Herbert Conradie 59:30
67 Nicholas Notten 59:36
68 Deon Joubert 60:00
69 Ian Hooper 60:23
70 Alistair Roberts 60:29
71 Kevin Brunette 60:38
72 Wayne Knutsen 60:45
73 Tim Biggs 61:59
74 Shanti Fred Wagen 62:25
75 Lorne Farqhuarson 62:39
76 Sean Cardinal 62:49
77 James Moore 63:14
78 Tony Godfrey 63:43
79 Roger Venn 64:26
80 Brett Kelley 64:30
81 Adriaan Hoeben 64:45
82 Alexa Cole 65:44
83 Ashley Carstens 65:55
84 Dawid De Waal 66:40
85 Tyrone Smoulders 64:55
86 Daniel Mc Arthur 68:58
87 Andrew Torr 70:48
88 Jeremy Barnes 71:12
89 Johan Van Rooyen 73:16
90 Bernard Haupt 78:28
91 Tim Parsonson 85:00
92 Vic Schabart  DNF

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