written by David Wells of waterhound.com
SAN FRANCISCO, California - The 2011 Battle of The Bay went off in spectacular fashion this past Saturday October 29th with 158 paddlers taking to the water to do Battle for the inaugural Battle of the Bay Title. In the elite division it was Jay Wild and Krisztina Zur who overpowered a strong field of stand up paddlers to take first place.
Under the blessing of a gorgeous Indian summer weather pattern that bestowed brilliant blue skies and a balmy 75 degree air temp the race organizers pulled together what is easily one of the most successful major SUP races ever held in the San Francisco Bay Area.
For a full list of race results go here
Despite the presence of world class paddlers like Chuck Patterson and Dan Gavere it was Wild who simply dominated. Paddling his 12ft 6 Hobie Wild (pictured below right with Chuck Patterson at his right side) quickly distanced himself from the pack and seemed to be growing his lead with every stroke. If Wild was impressive Krisztina Zur was amazing. At times early in the race it looked like Zur had an honest shot at the podium ....in the men's division!
With a stacked field that included Jenny Kalmbach, Morgan Hoestry, Gillian Gibree, and Karen Wrenn, Zur left little to doubt as she navigated the technical course with power and strength that saw her taking the women's division win and the 8th overall placing.
A special note has to be made for the performance of local paddler Ben Sarrazin. Sarrazin's third place overall finish, that saw him getting the better of journeyed waterman Dan Gavere, shows just how far the local paddling fleet has come in the last few years.
Check out the full race report on the Battle of the Bay here