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Canoe Ocean Racing consists of long distance surfski, sea kayak and sea touring races. A surfski is the fastest boat over long distances on ocean swells. The challenges canoe ocean racing can face include large waves driven by the wind, hurricane generated ground swells and paddling in wind speeds of more than 20 knots.

Surfskis originated in Australia in the 1900s when two brothers, Harry and Jack McLaren, used them around their family’s oyster beds on Lake Innes in New South Wales. They would also use their custom-made boats to surf the beaches at nearby Port Macquarie. The speed and versatility of the boats made them ideal for lifesaving, and in 1946 surfski became a part of the lifesaving competition programme.

Surfskis were initially similar to surfboards, laminated in light wood and sometimes covered in fabric, but modern, lighter versions can be made from composite layers of epoxy or polyester resin-bonded cloth such as fibreglass, Kevlar, carbon fibre or a mixture. As races have got longer, boats have become longer with sharply pointed bows and under stern foot pedal controlled rudders. They are usually five to six-and-a-half metres long and only 40 to 50 centimetres wide.

Canoe ocean racing initially started with short races of about 700m, but as these boat designs developed races would begin to go further out to sea. The first canoe ocean racing event took place in South Africa in 1958, with the 46km Scottburgh to Brighton race. Other famous events include the Southern Shamaal, also in South Africa, a 240km race from Port Elizabeth to East London that began in 1972, and four years later the inaugural Molokai Race was held in Hawaii. Canoe ocean racing was the most recent discipline to be recognised by the International Canoe Federation (ICF).

2020 SELECTION CRITERIA SUPPLEMENT

2020 PA Canoe Ocean Racing Team Selection Criteria Supplement – 5/11/2019

2019 SELECTION CRITERIA

2019 Ocean Racing Team Selection Criteria – draft (15/1/19)

Paddle Australia Canoe Ocean Racing Technical Committee (PACORTC)

  • James Tomkins (Chair)
  • Mackenzie Hynard (Athlete Rep)
  • Quona Ross Atkinson (Vice Chair)
  • Anthony Deague (Vice Chair)
  • Stewart Collingwood
  • Roz Barber
  • Jaime Roberts

Strategic Plan for Canoe Ocean Racing in Australia

Canoe Ocean Racing Championships -Official Results

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The 2022 ICF Canoe Ocean Racing Championships will be held from the 6-9th of October, 2022 in Viana Do Castelo, Portugal. Paddle Australia is now calling for expressions of interest for registered Paddle Australia members to participate in the competition.

All athletes interested in participating in the competition are encouraged to review the ICF Rules found HERE

Further information about the event will be posted at the link found HERE

Expressions of Interest will close on Friday, 20th of May 2022

Those wishing to register an EOI to attend the World Championships can do so HERE.