Greetings Paddlers, Today, August 30th, would have been the 41st Catalina Classic Paddleboard Race… an epic & traditional paddleboard race of world class paddlers that race 32 miles of open water from the Isthmus on Catalina Island to the Manhattan Beach Pier. Unfortunately, 2020 was the first time in 38 years, due to circumstances beyond our control we were forced to officially cancel the race. If the race could have been permitted & safely executed, we would have held it…especially knowing that it would offer encouragement, hope, and a healthy goal for all those struggling to make sense during these challenging times. However, between the importance of standing in solidarity and showing respect for our first responders and the reality that the County made it abundantly clear that no event permits would be issued, we had no choice but to cancel this year’s race. Apparently some individuals chose to paddle the channel anyway and created an unsanctioned event of their own. We want to make it perfectly clear that the “official” Catalina Classic Race organizers did NOT condone or have anything to do with this event. It's our hope that the non-permitted actions of these paddlers won’t jeopardize the future of our County “sanctioned” permitted race in 2021. We want you to know that we’re all anxious to be back next August, stronger than ever , creating the 2021 Catalina Classic , dedicated to Paramedic & Rescue Boat Captain, and all around great human, Steve Troeger . Stay healthy, keep paddling….watch out for one another. Yours in paddling, Buddy
6/2/20 UPDATE: The 2020 Catalina Classic Paddleboard Race has been CANCELLED due to COVID-19. We tried our best to make the Catalina Classic Paddleboard race happen this year, but we’re unable to obtain the necessary permits. It's a huge disappointment for all of us to cancel for the first time in 38 years! Stay strong during these challenging times and be good to one another.We'll post updates about 2021 as it feels relevant. Keep paddling and we hope to see you racing in next year’s race, August 29, 2021!
Race Map 1957 MAY 24, 2020 RACE UPDATE: We continue to be challenged by Covid-19 and are still hoping it may be possible to open race registration for the Catalina Classic by July 1st, 2020. There are many factors that will determine the fate of our race for this year. It is still unclear if we will be able to obtain the necessary County permits. We are committed to running the race if we can ensure that it can be done in a responsible and safe manner. Please be patient in knowing that the Catalina Classic Directors are working on solutions with your best interest in mind. KEEP PADDLING….KEEP YOUR DISTANCE…. CHECK BACK FOR UPDATES.
Greetings from the Catalina Classic Paddle Race Directors, We'd like to let you know that we are closely monitoring the current situation with Covid-19 and remain optimistic about holding the 42nd Catalina Classic Paddle board Race as scheduled August 30th, 2020. That said, with a nod to the unknown .... we need to remain fluid & tread water for awhile in a virtual holding pattern... So we’ve moved the Race Registration window out a month. REGISTRATION is now: from June 1 - June 30th. Meanwhile, we’d like to encourage you all to do your part and support the County recommendations for social distancing and adhere to the guidelines that have been put forth. We’ll update our website as soon as we know more. For now, stay fit, stay well! We’re all in this together! Regards, Catalina Classic Race Directors
The Catalina Classic family will be dedicating our 2019 race this year to legendary waterman, Mike Doyle. Mike Doyle was a true waterman in every way... and a really nice guy too! Mike paddled the Classic in 1960. He was a extraordinary surfer, paddler, Lifeguard, artist, and all around lover of life. Mike inspired so many people to live their lives to the fullest. Our hearts go out to Annie and the rest of the Doyle family and friends. This year, paddler Tom Horton, will be fundraising and paddling to raise awareness of the devastating affects of ALS. There will be " Live to Surf, Surf to Live" T-shirts for sale at the finish line. All proceeds from these T-shirts will go towards defeating ALS. A paddle out is scheduled at the Hermosa Beach Pier on October 20th at 10:30am. Please contact Tom to see how you can get involved. email@example.com
The Catalina Classic Family mourns the loss of Captain Bill. Bill Kindel was a well respected soul for his strength, humor, humility, and commitment to detail amongst the paddling community in Southern California. Those who truly knew and loved him fondly called him "The Professor." We lost Bill Saturday evening- after his herculean effort to battle cancer- including trips to Germany and Australia for treatments not endorsed in the USA. A huge loss for us. Bill loved the Catalina Classic Paddleboard Race and volunteered in many capacities over the years. He was an escort boat captain, a committee supporter, escort boat organizer, safety patrol boat, and for years generously donated the Captain hats for all the escort boats captains. In the Stingray Paddleboard Club, Bill was the eldest in the group and often one of the most powerful despite his age. We will keep him in our hearts forever and will always appreciate and remember his many contributions. He was generous of spirit and enjoyed sharing his love of the ocean with friends. As many have said , we are better for knowing him...he has left an indelible impression on us. Our heartfelt condolences to his family & friends. A paddle out is scheduled on October 6th, 2019, at 8am to celebrate the wonderful life of Bill Kindel. All are welcome to join us at Baby Beach in Dana Point Harbor!
1981 began the rebirth of the International Catalina Channel Paddleboard Race. The Manhattan Beach Chamber Of Commerce Executive, Trudy Smart, gave the original race bylaws and articles of incorporation( from the International Catalina Channel Paddleboard Race) to lifeguard lieutenant Buddy Bohn. Bohn consulted with many of the past competitors and current ocean Lifeguards and ocean athletes. After much encouragement, Lt. Bohn partnered with fellow Ocean Lifeguard and friend, Weldon Gibby Gibson, who had actually competed in the original races. Together they approached the LA County Lifeguard Association Trust Fund for their support and endorsement. All parties decided that the event should be attempted the summer of 1982. All agreed that the new bylaws, rules, and articles of incorporation should be as close to the originals as possible. They would call it what they all felt it was, The Catalina Classic Paddleboard Marathon. The paddle from Catalina to the Manhattan Beach Pier had not been officially attempted in twenty years, and much had changed since 1960. Several paddlers of that period made themselves available and the Lifeguards formed a committee of volunteers to begin the organization. Safety being the number one priority, the committee consulted with our ocean athletes that had been racing the channel during those previous twenty years. The Catalina Channel Swimming Federation was one such group and the National Dory Association was another. Their input was vital, with regard to escort support, communications, navigation, advanced life support, and general organization. The Swimming Federation’s format was the closest fit to the original paddles. The Dory Association’s race was really an annual lifeguard event with a two person crew rowing from Catalina’s Isthmus to Palos Verdes. The Catalina channel Dory race at that time was [...]
Over the years, the paddling community has been inspired by so many extraordinary paddlers. We have been honored to have had most all of them race in the Catalina Classic. They are as follows: Year dedicated: 1999: Brendan Sullivan 200?: Tom Zahn 2004: Jimmy Miller 2007: Gibby Gibson 2009: Jeff Johnson 2013: Bob Meistrell Bob & Bill Meistrell 2014: Mike " Bones" Bright 2015: Mike Eaton 2016: Bob Hogan Bob Hogan the original founder of the Catalina Classic in 1955.
April Fooling aside, registration opens April 1st, 2019, for this year's Catalina Classic Paddleboard Race! As in year's past, if you completed last year's race (2018) within 9 hours, you will Not need to re-qualify, but you WILL need to registration and pay by May 31st, 2019. If you did NOT race last year, you WILL need to register as a non-qualified paddler by May 31st and complete at least one qualifying race. Details are listed on our website. So, start looking for your escort boat & crew..... they can make all the difference in having a successful race! We're looking forward to another challenging, fun, & safe race. See you on the water & keep paddling
Catalina Classic Paddler, Congratulations on your 2018 channel crossing! You have joined an elite group of paddlers who have challenged themselves and accomplished this incredible feat since 1955. This year we had 90 paddlers start, 90 paddlers finish, with much better conditions than last year We hope you are stoked on your finish and look forward to having you race again at next year's Classic on Sunday, August 25th, 2019. Stay tuned to our website for future race updates. Yours in paddling, The Catalina Classic Committee