Rice/MacLaren Dominate Western Cape Doubles Champs in Cape Town

Monday, 05 March 2018 10:13 | Written by 
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Kenny Rice and Stuart MacLaren win the Western Province Doubles Champs in Cape Town Kenny Rice and Stuart MacLaren win the Western Province Doubles Champs in Cape Town Credits: John Hishin/Cape Town Sport Photography

Kenny Rice and Stuart MacLaren dominated the Western Cape Double Surfski Championships in False Bay on Sunday, in perfect downwind conditions… Bianca Beavitt and Angie Austin won the Women's title.

Course Change

A few days before the race, the forecast showed that the planned course, from Milnerton to Melkbos, would have very little wind so the organisers switched the race to False Bay where the southeaster duly blasted us from Miller's Point to Fish Hoek.

Conditions were ideal: 20-25kt with small, clean swell.

Starting in the protected area to the north of Miller's Point, the paddlers were sent south to Bakoven Rock, the traditional start of the famous Miller's Run. From the rock they headed north-west past Roman Rock lighthouse to the finish at Fish Hoek Surf Lifesaving Club.


Small Swell

For the first few km downwind, the sea was almost flat, but the waves were far enough apart to be comfortable to catch in a double and as time went on the waves became bigger and the sequences longer and longer…

Kenny Rice and Stu MacLaren blew away the opposition, finishing no less than 1:23 ahead of second placed Mark Keeling and Nicholas Notten. Dawid Mocke and Jono Niemann came third.

"The wind could have been a bit stronger," said Rice, "but it made it playable for everyone.

"The Miller's Run is probably the most technical of all the downwind routes for doubles, because the waves are usually short and steep," he added.  "The conditions yesterday were really good, the swell was clean enough that you could manoeuvre the boat and link the runs.

"Nicky and Mark nearly caught us a couple of km in, but we managed to put together a couple of quick 3.04 and 3:05 splits to get away from them."

Having missed out on an Australian tour due to visa problems ("over two months and visa still hasn't arrived!"), Kenny's next race will be the EuroChallenge in Spain.

Mark Keeling Nicky Notten

Mark Keeling and Nicky Notten came second overall, winning the Under 23 title

Dawid Mocke and Jono Nieman

Third overall, Dawid Mocke and Jono Nieman arrive in Fish Hoek

Women's Race

Bianca Beavitt and Angie Austin, the sole women's crew, came in 20th overall.

Bianca Beavitt & Angie Austin

All smiles as Bianca Beavitt and Angie Austin reach the finish at Fish Hoek

"It was amazing to paddle behind Bianca," said Angie Austin. "It's unusual to be racing and yet to have so much fun at the same time. We just seemed to click together - and Bianca reads the runs so well."

"It was our first time in the boat together," said Bianca, "I swamped her a few times (and myself). It would have been nice to have slightly bigger conditions, but it was clean and we had such fun.

"As you can see in the photos, all smiles!" she added.

Thanks to the Fish Hoek Surf Lifesaving Club for hosting the event - and to the NSRI for providing safety on the water.

"We had a fabulous day out," said race director Richard Kohler.  "It would be great to see more paddlers come out and support these races.  It's one of the least expensive sports to take part in - and one of the most fun!  What's not to like?!"

Great conditions

Summary Results

Click here for the full results


  1. Kenny Rice & Stu MacLaren: 43:13.7
  2. Mark Keeling & Nicholas Notten (under 23): 44:36.3
  3. Dawid Mocke & Jono Nieman: 45:15.3


  1. Bianca Beavitt & Angie Austin: 52:57.9


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