MANDURAH, Australia - Australia’s Michael Booth (Starboard) has won the 2016 Fiji ISA World SUP Championship, a 17km marathon race from Cloudbreak to Musket Cove in Fiji. Booth will be heading back home to Western Australia shortly to compete in the world’s fastest downwind SUP race, the Stand Up Surf Shop King of the Cut.
Arguably the most prestigious in Australia, the Stand Up Surf Shop King of the Cut will take place on Saturday 3rd December 2016 in Mandurah and has a total prize pool of $17,350 making it the largest prize purse for an SUP event in the country. In an emotional status update, and elated Booth posted:
“This photo (below) explains a lot about yesterday's race. Coming into the finish I was physically exhausted but it just shows how strong your mind can be. It's kinda funny looking at it, because I attempted to claim it but was so exhausted that as soon as I came out of my paddling rhythm I fell off. It was a flat, hot and brutal race where I lost over 4L of fluid. Kudos to all the boys out there yesterday especially @kai_lenny @gcronsteadt & @vinmartins help pulled the train, we really had to work for it. Well done also to @titouanpuyo & @arthurarutkin who pushed me right to the end. Thanks to everyone who has sent me messages of support really appreciate it! Also thanks to my girlfriend, family, mates and sponsors who have been along this journey with me. And lastly thanks to everyone in team AUS lets bring home that trophy! Feels pretty special to say I'm World Champ.”
Photo: ISA / Ben Reed
King of the Cut is set to attract about 150 top local, interstate and international competitors including Booth and other high profile professionals, such as 7-time Champion Surf Lifesaving Ironwoman Karla Gilbert OAM who is also competing for Australia in the Fiji ISA World SUP Championship, and Olympic Gold Medallist and Women’s National Marathon SUP Champion Belinda Stowell-Brett.
Booth, a stand up paddler from the Gold Coast, has a background in many different ocean sports. After competing at an elite level in Surf Life Saving, Kayaking and Ocean Ski in 2016 he turned his major focus to SUP. With an extensive knowledge in paddlesports and an ability to adapt his skills, Booth successfully burst onto the SUP scene in 2016, and within a short time, has been crowned world champion. He has won events in Australia including 12 Towers, Forster Island Paddle, Noosa Surfing Festival, Qld SUP titles and overseas Lost Mills (Germany), Sainte Maxime (France), the SUP CUP (Croatia), Battle of the Bay (San Francisco), The Chigaski SUP Cup (Japan) and The Kalamalka Classic (Canada).
Competing for world tour points or state representation, King of the Cut competitors will paddle 24 kilometres starting at The Dawesville Cut at Port Boulevard and finishing at Secret Harbour. The King or Queen of the Cut title will be awarded to the first paddler across the line, regardless of board class or age, however, only competitors paddling 14 foot boards are eligible for prize money.
Photo: King of the Cut
The event is also the headline act of West Oz Downwind Week, which combines five races in the space of a week. The optimal weather conditions namely the powerful and consistent “Fremantle Doctor” sea breeze makes this fast event a favourite with SUP racers.
Spectators are invited to watch competitors start the race at Dawesville Cut and to cheer them across the finishing line at Secret Harbour. Entry is free.
For further information, visit kingofthecut.com or supwa.com.au