School age paddling champs launched

The Kahawai Paddling Championships – a brand new Canoe Racing NZ event designed to develop the next generation of paddlers – will be launched on Saturday May 8.

The inaugural competition, which will take place on Takapuna Beach, is open to all paddlers of intermediate or high school age.

All equipment and craft will be provided by organisers and the event will adopt the new Kahawai competition format – see more here

It is hoped the competition will attract paddlers from a range of backgrounds; sprint, surf lifesaving, ocean or multisport.

Canoe Racing CE Tom Ashley said: “We’ve been working on this concept for some time now, and we are really excited to launch the pilot Kahawai event in May this year.

“Our vision is to create an exciting and enjoyable competition format that’s accessible to paddlers from all backgrounds, and will provide a great entry point into any discipline of paddling. 

“Nelo is generously providing a fleet of boats for our events, and the racing will be televised as part of our partnership with SKY. We are hoping that the industry will get behind the concept and produce some innovative new single and double boats within the new Kahawai rule.

“The pilot event is just the start. In the next few years we are keen to see events around New Zealand, and develop a healthy schools paddling scene.”

Entry and further details will follow in due course.