Chalupsky and Bouman win 2013 Dolphin Coast Challenge

Saturday, 31 August 2013 16:50 | Written by  Richard Philps and Anton Fouche
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Brandon vd Walt flies down the face of a wave at the finish of day 2 Brandon vd Walt flies down the face of a wave at the finish of day 2 Credits: Lynne Hauptfleisch

The 2013 Stella Kayaks, Citadel Private Wealthcare Dolphin Coast Challenge was the 14th running of the iconic South African event.  Oscar Chalupsky and Matt Bouman paddled together in the new team format, and took the race in a nailbiting finish, outpaddling Hank McGregor and Grant van der Walt who came second.  The surf on both days provided plenty of excitement...

Team Racing

A fresh approach to the format had a two-man team racing in a double on the tougher of the two days and then splitting up and tackling the easier day in singles. The three times combined to decide the victors.

The success of this and other similar events, so often has much to do with the weather playing its part.

This year was no different: there was little wind predicted for the first day but a moderate south-wester was predicted by Windguru for Sunday.  Little wind = a tough paddle!  So the shorter 32km paddle from Zinkwazi to Salt Rock on Saturday was allocated to the doubles.

What's that behind us?

Paddle, paddle, paddle!  (Coming in at Salt Rock) it comes...




Day 1 - Zinkwazi to Salt Rock

As forecast, Saturday was hot with no wind at all.

The entire field got away fairly cleanly through a moderate sea at Zinkwazi, although race favorites Hank McGregor and Grant vd Walt were forced to stop mid-ocean to adjust their equipment before resuming the task of chasing down the rest of the fast disappearing field.

Matt Bouman, partnered by back seat coach Oscar Chalupsky took full advantage and although beaten by McGregor/vd Walt, they managed to minimize their deficit to a mere 40 seconds, thus setting up an eagerly anticipated day-two duel between the two front crews.

Day 1 Start

The conditions may have been mild, but a number of crews took a swim on the way out

There was many a comment on how tough it had been with the majority of the field chasing the elusive runs, using up a little too much energy at the start and leaving little in the tank for the last hour from Jeck's Estate to the finish.  

The Dolphin Coast lived up to its name with plenty of sightings of dolphins, humpback whales and plenty of fish breaking the surface on a glorious day out.

While paddling over the many reefs clearly visible along the route, the likes of Ross Poacher and Richard Philps, both avid divers, were overheard talking of how good the visibility was and how good it would be to be below the surface rather than toiling in their ski.

Day Two - and still no wind?

Day 2 Start

Some big boats out there!

Day Two dawned...  and not a breath of wind was to be seen or felt.  Had WindGuru failed us?

With the start delayed by half an hour a pretty sad looking bunch lined up at Durban's Battery Beach for what looked to be a flat grind to Salt Rock.

How wrong they turned out to be; 08H00 came and the first signs of a glorious SW buster started to show.  Within half an hour the wind was at all time perfection. The sea was running wild and so were the Downwind Specialists.


Occasional sounds of whooping could be heard above the roar of the wind. By then even the ripples had ripples on them. Hank McGregor, with a little help from a quick "Duzi" portage down the beach seconds before the start, won again with Matt Bouman tight on his tail, less than a minute back.

A monumental effort by the 50 year old Legend Oscar Chalupsky saw the big “O” into third place, ensuring that he and teammate Matt Bouman won the event overall. Overnight leaders McGregor and van der Walt came second with Grant's brother Brandon (Stomach) vd Walt and partner Brett Bartho completing the podium positions.

One Bluebottle does not a summer make (or something like that...)

The first of the summer bluebottles turned up mid race, reaching out with those nasty little trailing tails, hoping to snare a paddle or a strong gust of wind to flick themselves up onto an unsuspecting bit of exposed skin or into a footwell to wreak havoc. Bryce Hatton had one such experience, almost swallowing one when it ended up in his mouth. There's a theory that bluebottle venom gets the endorphins going in such a way that it boosts one's energy levels. Can't see too many takers testing this theory though.

Surfing into the finish

Remarkably there was relatively little damage to craft considering that Matterhorn and his Gang of mountainous waves were lying in wait, as predicted, at the Salt Rock finish on Sunday. 

Not looking good

Hmm... This isn't going to end well.

Catching a ride

 Maybe I'll catch a ride in.

The pool deck at the Salt Rock Hotel provided the perfect setting for the prize giving where good food and cold beers were excellently served and enjoyed by all. Big thanks to  team GUEnergy SA and CMH Suzuki for the support .

Congratulations to Derek Hauptfleisch, Rowan Mathews and Nigel Stevens for completing their 10th DCC.

 Derek Hauptfleisch

Derek Hauptfleisch makes it in the beach in one piece

 single broken

Not everyone made it - but there were remarkably few casualties 


Dolphin Coast Challenge 2013

Day 1 - Doubles

  1. Hank Mcgregor/Grant Van Der Walt 2:13:46.44
  2. Matthew Bouman/Oscar Chalupsky 2:14:39.65
  3. Brett Bartho/Brandon Van Der Walt 2:19:14.07
  4. Adam Nisbet/Jean Luc Mauvis 2:22:28.86
  5. Lee Furby/Barry Lewin 2:23:17.28
  6. Gene Prato/Kyle Friedenstein 2:28:19.19
  7. Travis Wilkinson/Nicholas Burden 2:29:08.52
  8. Jason Ekstrand/Rowan Matthews 2:30:43.33
  9. Oliver Burn/Warren Beuster 2:32:39.40
  10. Bryce Hatton/Marc Stanton 2:33:35.61
  11. Allan Hold/Lee Mcgregor 2:34:15.82
  12. Warren Valentine/Ken Collins 2:36:53.07
  13. Anthony Scott/Colin Simpkins 2:37:52.07
  14. Nigel Stevens/Mike Stevens 2:38:13.43
  15. Malcolm Pitt/Greg Worthington 2:39:22.32
  16. Eric Hildebrandt/Geoff Thompson 2:41:15.24
  17. Anton Fouche/Derek Hauptfleisch 2:41:40.77
  18. Derek Hompes/Gavin Searle 2:42:48.13
  19. Danica Bartho/Michelle Burn 2:43:09.12
  20. Richard Philps/Ross Poacher 2:43:47.11
  21. Mark Gevers/Emilio Chiccaro 2:50:09.97
  22. Dave Harker/Vernon O'connell 2:50:43.27
  23. Brian Chedzey/Guy Emberton 2:52:09.04
  24. Andrew March/Wayne Lawrie 2:52:44.52
  25. Dirk Barnard/Warren Smith 2:57:33.79
  26. Lance Howarth/Justin Ross 2:58:02.02
  27. Craig Flanagan 2:58:06.66
  28. Brett Hadiaris/Lauren Felgate 3:01:02.13
  29. Patrick Eley/Nicholas Matter 3:03:44.10
  30. Michel De Rauville/Pierre Carbonel 3:09:53.73
  31. Butch Murray/Julie Cornelius 3:10:13.76
  32. David Gillmer/Peter O'connor 3:10:27.97
  33. Dillon V.Rensburg/Mark Barber 3:11:43.07
  34. Raoul Goosen/Danny Hanf 3:12:44.67
  35. Carl Elkington 3:14:41.33
  36. Mark Johnson/Russell Solomon 3:15:56.79
  37. William Rorich/Matt/Skip/Dogg Botha 3:42:55.64

Day 2 - Singles  

  1. Hank Mcgregor 2:40:00
  2. Matthew Bouman 2:40:50
  3. Oscar Chalupsky 2:42:26
  4. Brett Bartho 2:44:12
  5. Grant Van Der Walt 2:46:36
  6. Brandon Van Der Walt 2:50:40
  7. Oliver Burn 2:51:58
  8. Travis Wilkinson 2:54:49
  9. Quinton Rutherford 2:55:01
  10. Anton Fouche 2:55:31
  11. Craig Flanagan 2:56:09
  12. Warren Valentine 2:58:11
  13. Emilio Chiccaro/Mark Gevers 3:00:08
  14. Gene Prato 3:00:48
  15. Brett Hadiaris 3:01:13
  16. Rowan Matthews 3:01:28
  17. Greg Worthington 3:02:27
  18. Nicholas Burden 3:03:09
  19. Warren Beuster 3:03:38
  20. Richard Philps 3:04:09
  21. Ken Collins 3:04:23
  22. Jason Ekstrand 3:06:01
  23. Malcolm Pitt 3:08:23
  24. Marc Stanton 3:08:33
  25. Guy Emberton/Brian Chedzey 3:08:45
  26. Ross Poacher 3:09:25
  27. Derek Hauptfleisch 3:09:36
  28. Kyle Friedenstein 3:10:51
  29. Julie Cornelius/Butch Murray 3:11:26
  30. Colin Simpkins 3:11:50
  31. Bryan Taylor 3:13:02
  32. Bryce Hatton 3:14:11
  33. Eric Hildebrandt 3:14:37
  34. Nigel Stevens 3:16:20
  35. Vernon O'connell 3:16:31
  36. Anthony Scott 3:16:35
  37. Danica Bartho 3:16:55
  38. Mike Stevens 3:17:01
  39. Lee Furby 3:22:40
  40. Dave Harker 3:23:21
  41. Pierre Carbonel/Michel De Rauville 3:23:31
  42. Russell Solomon/Mark Johnson 3:23:48
  43. Peter Oconnor/David Gillmer 3:25:26
  44. Justin Ross/Lance Howarth 3:25:55
  45. Derek Hompes 3:30:20
  46. Dirk Barnard 3:30:48
  47. Sharon Armstrong 3:32:13
  48. Wayne Lawrie 3:37:17
  49. Andrew March 3:38:42
  50. Carl Elkington 3:43:06
  51. Warren Smith 3:47:47
  52. Lauren Felgate 3:54:33
  53. Geoff Thompson 4:00:24
  54. Patrick Eley 4:02:58
  55. Danny Hanf/Raoul Goosen 4:09:02
  56. William Rorich Matt/Skip/Dogg Botha 4:25:14

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