The APP World Tour has announced the dates for the 2017 Red Bull Heavy Water competition this October 16th-31st.
This event is arguably one of the most challenging and dramatic standup paddle races on the APP Tour. It promises big wave action as well as open water racing to thrill spectators and athletes alike in an iconic showdown for No. 1
Red Bull Heavy Water: a dramatic course & backdrop
2016 saw the first chapter completed in epic surf conditions. World’s leading athletes took on the treacherous challenge as they raced from Ocean Beach, around the infamous Land’s End, under the Golden Gate Bridge, and into the safety of San Francisco Bay.
“This event gives me the biggest butterflies because not only am I thinking about racing some heavy hitters but the big wave surfing aspect adds a whole new dimension of uncertainty” – Connor Baxter
This iconic location will guarantee 32 of the world’s best standup paddle athletes surf in the 10 foot range and an open course stretching 12km (7.5 mi) through current, surf and wrapping up just past the Golden Gate Bridge.
Connor Baxter returns to defend his Red Bull Heavy Water title
Current World Champ, Connor Baxter (Starboard) claimed the win in this event in 2016 and will be back to defend his title this October. On his heels, looking for redemption from a 2nd place finish last year, will be fiery Kai Lenny (Naish). Kai is on top of his game, having recently won the WSL Big Wave event in Puerto Escondido Mexico. He will, for sure, be chomping at the bit to challenge Connor for the APP World Title.
“Coming back to Ocean Beach for the second edition of Red Bull Heavy Water to defend my title is a great honor,” says Baxter. “This event gives me the biggest butterflies because not only am I thinking about racing some heavy hitters but the big wave surfing aspect adds a whole new dimension of uncertainty to the event.”
Changes for this year’s event include a start line relocation from the beach to outside the surf zone. The objective is to create a dramatic first leg with the line up surging through the surf section together and and maintaining an even field through the first buoy turn.
Waterman Kai Lenny steps up to the plate to contend for title
“I am excited about Red Bull Heavy Water returning for 2017,” says Kai Lenny. “It is without a doubt, one of the most exciting, challenging and fun ocean races I have ever done. No matter what, you can always expect to get some crazy curve balls thrown at you that will keep you on your toes the entire time.”
The extreme conditions of this venue will allow only top competitors in the field to participate. Those competitors include Kai Lenny (HI), perhaps the world’s reigning most accomplished waterman and three-time Racing World Champion, Connor Baxter (HI), the current World Champ and tied #1, Mo Freitas (HI), Casper Steinfath (DK), Lincoln Dews (AUS), Arthur Arutkin (FR), Michael Booth (AUS), Slater Trout (US) and James Casey (AUS).
“It is without a doubt, one of the most exciting, challenging and fun ocean races I have ever done. No matter what, you can always expect to get some crazy curve balls thrown at you” – Kai Lenny
Red Bull Heavy Water Holds Largest Prize Purse in History of the Sport
The prize money for the Red Bull Heavy Water event is $50,000. $20,000 of that goes to the first place finisher which makes this singular event the highest paying standup paddle competition on the planet. That alone raises the stakes for elite athletes and spectators who come to watch.
About the APP World Tour:
The APP World Tour (formerly known as the Stand Up World Series) was established at the end of 2011 as the Official World Championship Tour for the sport of Stand Up Paddling. With events across the Americas, Europe and Asia, the APP World Tour crowns both Men & Women’s World Champions each year as the World’s best come together to battle it out for the World Championship Crown.