Congratulations to Starboard Dream Team riders Michael Booth for winning the 2018 Battle Of The Bay in San Francisco, with teammate Fiona Wylde taking home the 3rd place podium position.

Boothy was simply too strong in the men’s race, powering away from the field before finishing a minute clear of the highly under-rated Aussie Ty Judson. The Tahitian boys Enzo Bennett and Georges Cronsteadt won a sprint to the line with Connor Baxter, while Josh Riccio and Itzel Delgado were separated by less than half a second.

After finishing runner-up 12 months ago, Seychelle went one better this year. However, she was pushed all the way to the line her young SIC teammate Jade Howson, with Fiona Wylde rounding out the podium in the flat but fun conditions.

2018 Battle of the Bay Men’s Results:

1st: Michael Booth (1:06:14) Starboard/Australia
2nd: Ty Judson (1:07:07) NSP/Australia
3rd: Enzo Bennett (1:07:23) 425/Tahiti
4th: Georges Cronsteadt (1:07:24) 425/Tahiti
5th: Connor Baxter (1:07:25) Starboard/Hawaii
6th: Josh Riccio (1:08:44) F-One/USA
7th: Itzel Delgado (1:08:45) Infinity/Peru
8th: Ryan Funk (1:10:34) Starboard/USA
9th: Matt Nottage (1:10:43) Starboard/Australia
10th: Davide Ionico (1:11:19) Fanatic/Italy

2018 Battle of the Bay Women’s Results:

1st: Seychelle (1:10:49) SIC/USA
2nd: Jade Howson (1:10:54) SIC/USA
3rd: Fiona Wylde (1:11:43) Starboard/USA
4th: April Zilg (1:11:44) USA
5th: Olivia Piana (1:13:57) France
6th: Jenn Lee (1:14:49) NSP/Hawaii
7th: Adel Umannova (1:23:54) 425/Czech Rep.

 


3rd Place Battle of the Bay Recap by Fiona Wylde

 

 

“Today was the Battle of the Bay, 7.5 miles racing around the Golden Gate Bridge from the Aquatic Park in San Francisco.

We were greeted by beautiful sunny weather in San Francisco and not a breath of wind! I was hoping for a little bit more texture on the Bay, but I’m complaining about the brilliant sunshine and the picturesque race course!

I had a good start and right off the bat a tight pack formed with myself, Jade Howsen, SeyChelleHatting and April Zilg. From here, the race flip-flopped many times, different people pulling and different people drafting. At times we would all be spread out, looking for the extra little assistance with the current, and then other times we’d be nose to tail in a train.

Going around the south tower of the Golden Gate was definitely the most exciting part. Even though it was really calm water today, water was moving in every direction and the current accelerated around the tower, making every stroke critical. It’s an amazing feeling to be at the gate, you really do feel that you are at the passing the entrance and there is nothing ahead of you but the big expense of the Pacific Ocean. And that’s what it is! It has a very beautiful, unique raw beauty to it!

Anyways… back to racing! With about two miles to go, Jade and Seychelle put a gap just big enough that I couldn’t close it. From there, it was April and myself battling it out for third. It came down to a sprint from the last buoy. She went a little wide on the corner and I snuck in on the inside. I pulled ahead by half a board length, then she closed the gap, and then I pushed harder to come across the line about a board length ahead of her. Very tight racing, but it’s what racing should be about- giving it your all, regardless of the position you are in, just knowing that you did the best you can on that day. That’s what I did today and I’m happy about that! Congrats to Jade and Sey Chelle and April who all paddled a beautiful race. Also to Micheal Booth who powered ahead and won the men’s.

Huge thanks to Starboard for presenting this race! I was so happy to be on my favourite board today, the Allstar! Also a big shout out to Steve Pughs for all the hard efforts he’s put into the making this race such a success!

I’ve been having a blast here in San Francisco, but I’m getting more and more exciting for the Pacific Paddle Games next weekend! See you all there!”

-Fiona Wylde