Colorado River Competition Season-First Three Weekends
May-June is runoff time in Colorado. The rivers are running, birds are chirping and Team Badfish is dominating all the early SUP events in Colorado.
The season got started in Golden, Colorado at the Golden Games. In the surfing competition Badfish Grom Miles Harvey dominated throughout the competition landing the highest scoring rides of the day and stomping a pop shuv-it, 360 spin on the nose revert, pop shuv-it combo that no one (including Miles) had seen before. Miles’ grom teamate Bodhi Harrison finished second with a pop shuv-it landed at the buzzer in his last ride.
In the races the inflatable hole shot was the board of choice as Bradley Hilton swept the downriver sprint and cross race. Bodhi Harrison continued his strong start to the season placing second in both races as well.
Over memorial day weekend the Team rallied to Buena Vista, CO for CKS’ Paddlefest. Paddlefest is a great event that combines educational clinics with competition and a big sale in CKS’ Buena Vista location.
The weekend started with a river surfing contest at the Staircase wave. With technical tricks like 360’s and pop shuv-its Miles Harvey once again took the win. It was a clean sweep for the River Surfer with Mike Tavares taking second and Spencer Lacy in third. In the women’s division new Team Rider Vanessa Taylor took the win with powerful turns, Team Manager Brittany Parker in second with her usual smooth surfing and Natali Zollinger, usually known for her racing prowess taking third with hugely improved surfing.
The SUPHILL/DOWNHILL race became more of a traditional SUP cross this year, but what didn’t change was Badfish athletes on the Podium. In the men’s field it was all Hole Shot Inflatables. With Bradley Hilton taking the win ahead of Spencer Lacy, Mike T and Bohdi Harrison. In the women’s field Natali crushed the field winning all of her heats handily on the sliMVP. Here’s a video from Mike T’s FB page showing athletes coming into the first turn:
Last weekend the crew headed to Durango for the Animas River Days. The Animas was pumping affecting all the planned race events. The whitewater park at Smelter Rapid was big water class III/IV making SUP cross not realistic. The races were replaced with a downriver sprint and a fun event called last man standing. For the last man standing athletes had to catch a tough eddy in Smelter, surf across the wave and make it through the thumpy “corner pocket” hole without falling. Competitors got a time bonus if they could make it through on their feet. Only two paddlers managed to do so with Spencer Lacy making it through on his second run and 17 year old Bodhi Harrison showing that youthful athleticism making through with the fastest time.
In the women’s division Natali continued her dominance winning both races.
The surf event was held on the Ponderosa wave which at nearly 4,000cfs was a rowdy, big-wave type of feel. In the shortboarding division Badfish co-founder and shaper Zack Hughes showed the skills he developed in a lifetime surfing out of his hometown of San Diego winning with powerful cut backs. Miles came in second showing great touch on a wave that was overhead for the 14 year old.
In the SUP division of the surf contest it was another Badfish River Surfer sweep with Mike Tavares taking the win in the men’s division with an impressive combination of power turns, switch riding and 360’s. Zack and Spencer rounded out the podium.
In the women’s division Vanessa once again took the win on her hometown wave. The new 6’11 River Surfer is proving to be a powerful tool for the Colorado river surfing season.
We’re proud of our athlete’s accomplishments so far and how well the boards are performing under pressure. With the GoPro Mountain Games up next and the Colorado SUP Championships as the climax event there are still plenty of chances for our crew to keep racking up hardware.