Shell VA'A crosses the most important line of all!

09/14/2022 08:12 AM By sales

Catalina Crossing,” the venue for the 2022 US Outrigger Championships, had to take a slightly different turn this year, literally, due to storm warnings over the island. But the races still provided plenty of excitement, with both the start and finish at Newport Dunes and a turn near the middle of the channel.

The storied Shell Va’a crossed the finish line 1st in the men’s open race, several minutes ahead of the 2nd-place finisher, Ka Lahui Kai, with NAC finishing a very respectable 3rd given the heavy Tahitian and Hawaiian presence. Lanakila, which finished 4th, had five canoes in the top 30. (Complete race results:

Shell Va’a steerer and captain David Tepava, who led his team in their first-ever Catalina Crossing, said: “It was an impressive performance of paddling, and I want to thank my guys as well as the other talented crews in the race.”

The Big Winner

Shell Va’a may have come here to win. But the day’s big winner was West Coast paddling, with the exposure to the world’s premier outrigger team. Hopefully this will be the first of many continuing visits from Shell Va’a, which enjoyed the waters off the California coast and the shopping malls on land, while staying in the comfort of a home provided by ARE Outrigger World, which helped bring the team here with SCORA.

“Shell’s presence will only strengthen the paddling community in the US,” said ARE Outrigger World director, Joey Alvarez. “I know US teams will learn from Shell Va’a, which doesn’t waste a single stroke, and continue to improve their own paddling.”

SCORA race organizer Bud Hohl echoed these sentiments. “Shell Va’a really feels at one in their canoe and with the ocean,” he said. “Even beyond their excellent stroke technique, they really know how to catch the swell on the open waters.”

The Tahitians may not have coconut palm trees here in Southern California, but hopefully they wll feel at home here and be back in the future.

For more information on ARE Outrigger World, visit the ARE Outrigger Website:

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