Outriggers to put in a marathon effort
TWEED Coast Outriggers has entered three Masters teams for today's Gold Coast Cup ocean marathon.
Up to 60 canoes representing clubs from Sydney to Hamilton Island will start the prestigious 43-kilometre event, with a spectacular ocean start off Point Danger at 8.30am.
Weather permitting, crews will paddle south to Cook Island then turn north, finishing at Southport Seaway three or four hours later.
If there is a strong northerly, organisers can reverse the race direction.
TCO spokesperson Sue Pattemore said the race was one of the biggest events on the outrigger calendar.
The race is classified as a 'changeover' event, with crews allowed to swap paddlers during the race. Each crew is allowed 10 paddlers, with six in the boat and the rest in a support craft.
Crews usually swap two paddlers at a time, with the support boat dumping the relief paddlers in the water ahead of the advancing canoe, then picking up the two retiring paddlers from the water.
TCO has entered two men's Masters crews and one women's Masters crew in the event.
"It's quite a sight with 50 or 60 canoes in all divisions plus that many support boats in the water at the same time," Pattemore said.
? HUGH KEARNEY