Newsletter – 23 June 2016


The build up to this year’s FNB Durban Downwind has been one of a community coming together around last week’s Scottburgh to Brighton race to make sure the core focus of the sport stays about “DOWNWIND” paddling. The event date was changed and those that ventured South were treated to an awesome day on the KZN coast.

Keeping with this ethos of making sure you, the paddlers get the best possible conditions we had set aside a two day window period for this weekend’s FNB Durban Downwind. After monitoring forecasts closely and assessing conditions throughout the week, we have made the call on that we will be racing on SUNDAY, 26 JUNE in what looks to be perfect 10 knot, North Easterly conditions.

It certainly wont be the 25 knots we had for last year’s race but there will be bumps going all the way down the course. On race day We will wait for the wind to arrive – expected in the afternoon – so there will be a late start at 13h00 in what we believe will be the best conditions available that day.

Here is all the info you need to know leading up to the FNB Durban Downwind, a World Surfski Series title race.

We are taking safety very seriously at the FNB Durban Downwind and will be databasing the field for our safety team. This means that there is NO on-the-day entry. Instead you need to enter via the following 2 channels:

• Online at – We have extended these entries to lunch time on Friday. Cost is R250 per single and R400 per double.
• Late entry at Registration – 17h00 to 19h00 on Friday, 24 June. Cost is R50 extra per paddler.

We will be at Marine SLC from 17h00 to 19h00 on Friday for paddlers to collect 2 very important items – their FNB race shirt and compulsory race stickers. Please pop down and have a drink at the club and collect these items. The event team will also be on hand to answer any questions and help with any late entries.

Race Day Logistics
We will be having a back line start at La Mercy Beach on Sunday with a 26km course down the coast to Marine SLC. There is a lot of sand pumping going on at Marine at the moment so we will be finishing on the South side of the club, close to the Ushaka Pier, giving the paddlers easy sight of the finish.

Times to take note of:
• 11h30-12h30 – Pound check in & safety kit scrutineering (collect shirt and stickers if you haven’t collected on Friday!)
• 12h40 – Race briefing & roll call (on the beach)
• 12h45 – Water opening for paddlers to launch
• 13h00 – Singles start
• 13h05 – Doubles start
• Prize Giving will take place within 20min of the last paddler finishing at Marine SLC

9 point check list for you to make sure you have everything:
1. PFD
2. Leash
3. Your CSA number on craft
4. Cellphone
5. Tracking application (NSRI app with safety number on your sms list)
6. Whistle
7. Brightly coloured clothing
8. Bright colours on your boat
9. Bright colours on your paddles

A big thanks to FNB who have backed surfski paddling in South Africa in a big way and helped us come up with R40000 worth of prize money to give out across the categories this weekend – check out the full prize template HERE. If you already bank with FNB, thank you for supporting the sponsors who support our sport! If you don’t, give us a shout and we will gladly point you in the direction of a friendly FNB staff member at the event.

As FNB Durban Downwind participants, you will also be scoring 2016 World Surfski Series log points, helping put paddling in Durban on the world surfski stage!

We have had some cool pre-entry prizes to give away thanks to the guys at Thule and Funky pants. What out for some great lucky draw prizes coming from them after the race as well!

Stay in Touch
If you have any further questions regarding the FNB Durban Downwind Surfski Series or want to stay up to speed ‘Like’ us on Facebook (Durban Downwind) or follow us on Twitter (@MarineSeries)!

All that’s left to say is all the best for this weekend. We look forward to seeing at registration on Friday and then again on Sunday at La Mercy Beach for 26 kilometres of South African surfski fun!

Barry Lewin
Race Organiser

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