SAN DIEGO, California - 2020 was unlike any other year that we've seen in SUP so far. From the cancellation of just about all races and events to many historic decisions regarding the governance of SUP, 2020 had no shortage of big headlines. So before we head into the new year, we're taking a look at a few of the biggest SUP stories from 2020.
1. Corona Virus Cancels Events Globally
As we all experienced, 2020 was absolutely unexpected and shocking not just in the SUP industry but globally. Entire countries were in full lockdown and the world was affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic caused just about all events to be cancelled for the year causing professional and amateur paddlers alike to stick to their local waterways and have a year off. One cool thing to be introduced in light of all the event cancellations were the pivot to virtual events where anyone around the world could participate. Events like Standup for the Cure, Molokai 2 Oahu, Chattajack and more all came up with virtual event formats so paddlers could still participate in one form or another. 2021 is still yet to be decided if events will resume but if anything, at least we can plan on virtual events to continue in lieu of cancellations.
Brazil's Jessika Matos de Souza and USA's Jade Howson battle it out on the race course. | Photo: ISA / Sean Evans
2. ISA Granted Governance of SUP
If you recall, last year we saw the ISA (International Surf Association) and the ICF (International Canoe Federation) going head to head and clashing over which organization was the rightful governing body of SUP at the olympic and global level. After both parties plead their case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) a decision was made. The CAS Panel decided that the ISA shall be the International Federation (IF) governing and administrating the sport of SUP at the Olympic level.
Read more about the decision HERE.
Opening ceremony at the 2019 ISA Games. | Photo: ISA / Ben Reed
3. Malibu SUP Surfer Arrested
In the heat of the first wave of the Pandemic many beaches and parks were closed in attempt to keep the spread contained. In Malibu, California a Los Angeles man was arrested at a popular Malibu beach, First Point, for ignoring orders from local lifeguards to exit the water after Los Angeles county had closed beaches in response to the Corona Virus pandemic. Before getting arrested on the beach, the SUPer played a game of cat and mouse with the lifeguards and tried getting away but ultimately was forced to paddle to the beach.
Check out the full article HERE.
4. Supconnect Awards 2020 Winners Announced
After more than six weeks of deliberations and intense evaluations we are pleased to announce the winners of the 2020 Supconnect Awards. After nominating 30 or so men, women, groms and blogs per category, and an abundance of brands and shops in the stand up paddle industry we've finally narrowed down the extremely talented pool of nominees to the final chosen winners.
Check out the full list of winners HERE.
Well there it is - a few of the biggest stories of 2020. Which stories of 2020 were most memorable for you? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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