Perth's Prodigal Son One To Watch For The Doctor

Friday, 20 January 2012 10:43 | Written by 
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Ben Allen dicing with Dawid Mocke at the 2010 Dubai Shamaal Ben Allen dicing with Dawid Mocke at the 2010 Dubai Shamaal Credits: www.surfski.info

Perth, Australia: Tomorrow's Rottnest Island to Sorrento Doctor Ocean Ski race could well favour Western Australia's  prodigal son Ben Allen.

The paddling plumber, now located on Queensland's Sunshine Coast, will revel in the hot 12-15 knot conditions according to race director and paddling legend Dean Gardiner.

"These conditions will suit Ben down to the ground that's for sure," said Gardiner, as he and his team from Ocean Paddler prepared to transport almost 400 craft from Fremantle to Rottnest.

"Ben is originally from Scarborough, was born and bred in these conditions and should revel in them.

"The lighter, hot conditions will mean this year's Doctor will be the 'survival of the fittest' - there will be a breeze but it won't be the cranking winds that we know The Doctor can throw up."

Ben Allen

Ben Allen sprints away from Dawid Mocke at the 2010 Dubai Shamaal in brutally hot, flat conditions - can he do the same this year in his home waters?

Allen has been in good form, winning the 25km Woolgoolga to Coffs Harbour International Canoe Federation race last month before finishing second to Jeremy Cotter in last Saturday's 16km Fenn Cup off Sydney's Northern Beaches.

All-star field

But Allen knows he will have to be at his absolute best to hold off what will be an all star field - led by five time Olympian and 2009 Doctor winner Clint Robinson,  defending champion Tim Jacobs, two-time Doctor runner-up and  Fenn Cup winner Cotter and South African brothers, Jasper and world champion Dawid Mocke.

Gardiner has also tipped emerging Sunshine Coast star and world junior marathon champion Billy Bain as the dark horse.

"I have been very impressed with Billy's performances of late and his sixth place  in the prestigious 20 Beaches event in Sydney last year while in heavy work was outstanding," said Gardiner.

The Doctor is part of the International Canoe Federation Ocean Racing World Series and the Ocean Paddler World Series.

Schedule

Tomorrow's race schedule will see the competitors in the Stand Up Paddle category leave Rottnest at 1pm with the Ocean Skis departing at 2pm.

The winning ocean skis are expected to arrive at Sorrento SLSC at around 3.30 pm local time.

Sunday will see the Finn Kayak Coastal Challenge, a teams  and relay event from Fremantle to Sorento with transitions at North Cottesloe, City Beach and Scarborough, starting at 12 noon, with the winners expected to arrive from 1.15 local time.

Surfski.info live commentary

We'll be providing live text commentary, using spotters on the lead escort boat and at the finish...  We hope to have near-real time photos and even some video clips, courtesy of Rambo.  We'll kick off at about 1pm Perth Time (7am in South Africa).


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