CA Jr Paddlers: World Championships
These athletes know they are lucky to able to have their opportunity to train and practice with some of the best paddlers in California while also earning a spot on the top junior team for Tahiti. But they will need a little help getting there with expenses. With the help of the community, we can rally together and help get them to Tahiti in June! The team will need assistance with accommodations, race fees and travel expenses. Our vision is big and our goals are large, but nobody will work harder to accomplish their goals than these juniors. Any donation counts, and any donation makes a difference!
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These last few months of training have been very physically tiring but also a great asset to what we're going to be doing. I can vouch for the boys down in Redondo training out of Lanakila that we have been getting on the water from 4-7 days a week and sometimes a few times a day. The weekends that we do not have a race we have been doing long practices to increase our endurance and blend more togeather. On race days we blend our whole club for the short course but put our California outrigger team together to compete with some of the best men in California. During our races, we have been finishing consistently within the top three boats across the line, The other weekend after our race in Marina Del Rey, both Tahiti junior teams left that Sunday and had a grueling 55 mile paddle toward Newport Harbor landing there in about 8 hours. that experience will help us so much in Tahiti which is 16 miles. All around I feel that we have been training hard to reach our goal and excited what's going to happen.
This experience has actually changed my life. Before I was on the team, paddling was a fun hobby and sport, but there was no driving factor or motivation to make me really commit. Having this huge goal and having the honor to represent something greater than myself has exponentially increased my training. Now I paddle 5-6 days a week, I talked to a professional about nutrition, and I constantly think about how I can improve. I really feel that I love my team and that that will really keep us going in Tahiti. Thank you to everyone that has helped this journey!
It is crazy to think we are only weeks away from the World Championship race. So thankful to be part of an amazing group of young athletes, especially the girls I have had the opportunity to train with. Despite the huge distance we live from each other, we have all come together to train as a crew, from late night practices in NAC and a very early am paddle workout in Redondo Beach. As for me, I am thankful to learn how to be a better outrigger paddler, which would not be possible without the hours of mentorship from the great coaches of the many SoCal Outrigger Clubs. Also thankful to be part of a dedicated group of athletes, Parents who feed us delicious food plus the patience of our many Coaches especially Josh, Dave, Kelly, and Malia plus many more! Lastly, thankful for the all support we have received from our community. Thank You!
Team Borm also had a Fun filled 3 day event at Fiesta Hermosa. Enjoyed giving many canoe rides, team bonding and great family plus community support!
Thank you @toyotasocal and @puakeadesigns for all the support you've given us! ❣️#puakeadesigns #toyotasocalmakesiteasy
It is an amazing opportunity and elevating the experience to train for World Champs and represent California. The support and invaluable coaching while training has pushed us each to grow as athletes.
My favorite element of the girls' crew is the diversity of backgrounds, from different clubs to different ages. We are more than 100 miles away from each other, spanning from Los Angeles to Oceanside, and manage to meet three times a week for practice. Our weekends are packed with sunrise and sunset practices, dinner meetings, lots of sleepovers, and probably as many hours on the road as on the water.
The environmental and cultural bond within a crew is something that I think sets outrigger apart from any other sport. This may be the hardest I have trained for anything and I am extremely blessed to be sharing in this journey with these juniors.
Thank you to all of those who have supported me, and the Junior and Keiki program as a whole, throughout the years. Mahalo to all the coaches, parents, aunties and uncles we will be carrying with us in spirit to Tahiti and across the finish line.
~Jillian Kaimalie Wong