SAS Crossing – Advice from Laird Hamilton


Well the training had a bit of a bump at the end of February, up until then it was going really well, if a little boring, due to the amount of time spent in the gym. I had lined up a series of 5km running races in February and March at least give me some motivation to keep going, these went pretty well all things considered, I certainly thrashed myself, but I did not beat my personal best that I achieved four years ago, still I was please with completing the races in around 19 minutes.

Then we had a family bereavement and the training was pretty sketchy for about three weeks, I still managed to get out for the odd run, but all gym work outs ceased. Then I had a couple of fantastic paddles early in the morning and suddenly it was back on. With the clocks going back I think all of us were able to move our training from the gym onto the water. Not a moment too soon. As long as the weather stays good I am able to have at least six sessions per week, with some days a morning and evening paddle and when I can’t get it a session on the concept rowing machine. I have not yet managed to get close to Elliot’s 10km in 38 minutes, I can just about do 5km in 20 minutes, but I can’t sustain that pace over 10km. I will be working on increasing the distance slowly on the concept rowers and trying to maintain the pace, but I don’t think Elliot needs to worry yet.

So what sort of training have we been doing? Mostly distance, just getting out on the water for longer paddles getting the body used exercising for longer periods of time. I have been mixing in some shorter interval training sessions, but the key for me at the moment is distance, not speed.

The equipment has started to show up as well. I now have a fantastic SurfTech Bark 14ft Expedition board, a Kialoa Methane paddle and an Astral buoyancy aid. All has been tested and expect to read more about that on the website soon, but needless to say the Bark and the paddle are fantastic. The difference between using the Gong 12ft surf board for distance last year and using a board that is built for distance is amazing. Next up is a GPS system for the front mount point on the board, so I can check speed and distance. Pimp my SUP.

We have also been given a stack of prizes from our sponsors and we have put them into a prize draw to raise some more money for Surfers Against Sewage. So next up is the BSUPA event at West Wittering. It will be nice to see everyone from last year and to welcome the new folks as well.

Simon’s update

After my recent trip to Maui was extented by the volcano and cancelled flights I had a month of windsurfing and downwinders on a SUP. Training for the channel crossing is still on target and the new bark 14 ft expedition has just arrived, we have been out testing the beast. I have also been checking out some fin options for the board to see what the fastest combination will be.

While I was on Maui-Hawaii we met up with Laird Hamilton at the Oxbow clothing launch in Neil Prydes store. We had a chat about the channel crossing- and he told me he took 7 hours to do the crossing after he ran from london- then cycled to Paris- his parting comments was to watch out for the tankers and ferries. Laird is a real nice guy and had plenty of time to talk loads of people at the Oxbow launch in Maui.

Da kine have delivered me a whole pile of new sup leashes, paddle covers, rashies and back packs. I will get the go pro attached to the board soon so look out for the video footage.