Paris SUP Open - APP World Tour
The APP Tour hit Paris last weekend for the final leg of the World Tour, with sprint races at Nautic Salon Nautique and an iconic race down the Seine deciding who would be crowned the 2019 SUP Racing World Champions. We were on hand to witness the climax to an epic season…
The event kicked off with some fierce competition in the Sprint event on Saturday at the Nautic Salon Nautique. Competitors raced one-on-one against each other in the pool in a knockout format for the Paris title. There were also crucial world championship points up for grabs on this final APP Tour Racing event of the season.
In the men’s event Denmark's Casper Steinfath and France's Arthur Arutkin started the day both chasing the World Title and picking up points in both this event and in Sunday’s long-distance race was crucial.
In a surprising turn of events, Arutkin got knocked out of the competition earlier than expected and, cheered on by enthusiastic support from Danish fans, Steinfath reached the final against American Connor Baxter. A former World Champion, Baxter had just too much for Steinfath and took 1st place. American Danny Ching from took home 3rd place after victory over Italy's Claudio Nika.
Action in the women’s race did not disappoint, with Americans Seychelle Webster and April Zilig battling it out to claim the World Championship in Paris. A tense final saw the pair face-off, with Webster just edging it over Zilig, and taking home the World Championship crown ahead of Sunday’s Long Distance race. A stunning achievement in her first season on the APP World Tour.
Zilig’s second place in the sprints secured her a second place in the World Championship. After a season battling injury, it was great to see 2018 World Champion Shae Foudy back on form, taking 3rd place. 2020 could see California battling for the title again.
Sunday’s distance race down the River Seine took in some iconic sights including Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower. Not only does this paddle consist of the pro race but this event sees a thousand paddlers take part in a huge SUP through the centre of Paris.
Setting off at the break of dawn, many of the competitors taking part wore costumes and fancy dress and paddled with friends on SUP Squatches (large multi-person SUP boards). There was even music and fireworks to get everyone going, it was a truly incredible spectacle!
In the men’s race Lincoln Dews, Michael Booth, Titouan Puyo and Connor Baxter pushed ahead early on, separating themselves from the pack. As the race went on Australians Dews and Booth really took control and were going stroke for stroke till the end when Booth, saving his best for last, had just a enough to push harder and claim a well-deserved win. New Caledonian racer Titouan Puyo took home third place.
Arthur Arutkin needed to win the distance race be in with any chance taking home the overall World Championship ahead of Casper Steinfath. Starting well, Arutkin kept up with the leading pack for the first half of the race, but seemingly hit a wall and couldn’t keep up the pace, eventually finishing 19th, meaning Steinfath took home his first APP World Championship!
In the women’s event, 2016 World Champ Fiona Wylde put in a stunning performance to claim her first distance win of the season. Biding her time, Wylde saw an opportunity on the final stretch at the Eiffel Tower to power past Lina Augaitis in third and the newly crowned world champion Seychelle Webster in second. This was a great win for Wylde, who has been a consistent performer all season and crowned it off with a hard-fought victory.
Seychelle Webster’s 2nd place in the Distance along with winning the sprint saw her claim the overall Paris title capping off a phenomenal season on the APP Tour. Micheal Booth’s impressive performance in the pool and victory on the river earned him 1st place overall in Paris, his second tour win of the season.
Overall Event results for the Paris SUP Open:
1. Michael Booth
2. Lincoln Dews
3. Connor Baxter
1. Seychelle Webster
2. Fiona Wylde
3. April Zilg
That’s a wrap for the 2019 APP World Tour! You can find out more about the APP World Tour, watch highlights of previous events and live streams of races over at appworldtour.com and keep an eye out for the 2020 season schedule announcement.
Facebook: APP World Tour