Tim Laws | GB Ocean Ski - The 2015 GB Ocean Ski Series starts in just over a month's time, with a great series of five races planned, a clinic from ICF Surfski World Champion Sean Rice and the opportunity to have the use of a ski and paddle for a series race, courtesy of Think Kayaks Europe.
The 2015 Series kicks off at Looe on the 2-3 May, with two days of racing, clinics and the option to try out skis from various manufacturers. A great downwind race with the added tactical complexities of the Looe river and a lap of Looe Island can be expected.
Before the next race there is the Surfski Development Weekend at Bournemouth on the 16-17 May. This is a free event, with the opportunity to try out a huge variety of skis and pick up tips on paddling and wave riding. Even if you're merely curious about skis there will be plenty of boats for all abilities available to demo.
GB Ocean Ski launched a new website in March (www.oceanski.org.uk), which offers more information to those looking to try ski paddling for the first time, and allows quick and easy entry for the 2015 GB Ocean Ski Series events.
The season continues in Dorset with the Weymouth to Lulworth event on the 6 June. This event will play host to Sean Rice, ICF Surfski World Champion, who will be running a paddling clinic as part of his www.yourpaddlelife.com world tour and competing in the event.
The series then moves on to the St Ives Paddlefest (27 June), the ever popular Icon Classic (11 July) in North Devon, and finishing back at Branksome Chine for the Bournemouth Bay race (1 August). However, this is not the end of the fun as the 12 September sees the Doubles Championship, also at Branksome Chine.
In another exciting development, Think Kayak Europe have generously offered GB Ocean Ski one of their new 'Ace' Skis and carbon 'Powerwing' paddles on a loan basis for the 2015 season to help encourage the growth of the sport in the UK. They will be allocated for use at the GB Ocean Ski events and potentially to take home and train with in advance of each race. If you would like to apply, then go to the contact form (http://oceanski.org.uk/contact) on the website and tell GB Ocean Ski about your paddling experience, which event you would like to use the boat for and why you should be racing the Think Ace! The Ski and paddle will be available for use and collection at the GB Ocean Ski event No1 Looe 2 May.