May 14, 2016
by Christopher Parker (@wheresbossman)

Casper Steinfath, Angie Jackson Victorious at the Victoria Cup vs. All-Star Field (FULL RESULTS)

Casper Steinfath

Casper Steinfath claims the overall title at the 2016 Victoria Cup in Japan (photo credit: Victoria Cup/WML Asia)


Full results have been posted (scroll down below Saturday’s recap)


In brief: Casper Steinfath and Angie Jackson have taken out the sprint races on day two of the 4-star Victoria Cup in Japan, and in doing so have claimed the overall event titles ahead of an all-star field.

Casper, third in yesterday’s distance race, channeled his inner viking to produce raw, explosive speed around the short course and salute ahead of Kai Lenny, Mo Freitas, Jake Jensen, Connor Baxter and James Casey in the final.

With the distance and sprint races combined, the top five becomes Casper, Connor, Kai, Jake and Arthur Arutkin. Though even just making the top 15 was an achievement at this event, with the Victoria Cup producing the second highest level of elite competition we’ve seen so far in season 2016 (behind only the major Carolina Cup).

While there were strong performances from established names and newcomers right down the leaderboard, it was Casper’s day. For the Naish/Quickblade/Red Bull team rider, this will surely be one of the most memorable wins of the his career so far — no doubt the Victoria Cup trophy will go straight up on the wall back home in Denmark alongside Casper’s two gold medals from the ISA Worlds.

Interestingly, and somewhat surprisingly, this is the first time Casper has defeated both of his key rivals (and good friends) Connor Baxter and Kai Lenny in an overall event such as this. However to anyone that has followed the rise of this very well-respected young athlete over the past few years, Casper’s performance today comes as no surprise and will surely signal the start of many more to come.

Others to impress included the dark horses such as Aussie James Casey and the Hasulyo brothers from Hungary, Daniel and Bruno. Local boy Kenny Kaneko gave the home crowd reason to cheer by rounding out the overall top 10.

Yesterday’s distance race hero, Aussie dark horse Michael Booth, crashed out of the sprint competition after an uncharacteristic fall at a critical moment, relegating him outside the overall top 10 and highlighting the fickle, unpredictable nature of the two-race event format. Though I’m certain that Boothy showed enough of his natural talent this weekend to make it clear he’ll be a genuine contender at every big race this season.

It was also a strong reversal from Mo Freitas, who finished 13th yesterday but 3rd today, claiming 6th place overall in the process.

In the women’s, Aussie world beater Angie Jackson reversed yesterday’s 1-2 result with young gun Fiona Wylde, while Candice Appleby once again had to settle for third. Angie clinched the overall title based on a time difference countback (frustratingly for Fiona, this is the second time she’s lost a close event win, having missed out on the 2015 Turtle Bay event title in similar circumstances).

Today’s big win is definitely a just reward for the hard-working Angie, who probably trains harder than just about any other athlete in the sport. The well-liked Aussie is an always-smiling fixture on the international race scene, while her win gives the fledgling board brand “One” – owned by Angie and her husband Paul – a nice boost as well. Rather symbolically, the One race boards were actually designed in Japan not far from where the Victoria Cup was held.

Aussie dark horse Kate Baker was strong again to seal 4th place overall, which should provide her with a good dose of encouragement to tackle more international events in the future. Japan’s national champion, Takayo Yokoyama, rounded out the top five.

Scroll down to read the recap from yesterday’s distance race.


UPDATE: Here are the full results from Japan

Also take a look at the updated SUP Racer World Rankings, with Casper Steinfath climbing to #4 in the world following his heroics on the weekend.

The Victoria Cup was a 4-star event with a 40% Race Index score (the men’s event actually exceeded its minimum to score 43.0%)

1Casper Steinfath31443.00
2Connor Baxter15632.25
3Kai Lenny42625.80
4Jake Jensen641021.50
5Arthur Arutkin571218.28
6Mo Freitas1331615.05
7James Casey1161712.90
8Bruno Hasulyo891710.75
9Daniel Hasulyo714219.68
10Kenny Kaneko1013238.60
11Kody Kerbox915247.74
12Jayden Jensen1212246.88
13Leonard Nika1411256.45
14Michael Booth225276.02
15Paul Jackson1710275.59
16Zane Schweitzer208285.16
17Riggs Napoleon1516314.73
18Vinnicius Martins1617334.30
19Seiji Kashiwagi2217393.87
20Dylan Frick1821393.44
21Bernd Roediger2317403.23
22Ryohei Yoshida1921403.01
23Tomoyasu Murabayashi2417412.80
24Kouichi Matsumoto2125462.58
25Yosuke Fukui2721482.37
26Kenta Kitajima3121522.24
27Yoshiaki Nagamatsu2825532.11
28Kento MItsuishi2925541.98
29Akira Murata2531561.85
30Riki Horikoshi3325581.72
31Shinichi Shimomura3031611.63
32Toshinori Ishikawa3631671.55
33Koichiro Ichikawa3831691.46
34Warwich Gray3737741.38
35Hayato Yamamoto3937761.29
36Yuji Wada3443771.20
37Ko Kosugi4037771.12
38Naoki Marutani3543781.03
39Yuta Iseda4237790.95
40Kouhei Takahashi5531860.86
41Keita Hatano4343860.82
42Kei Komatsuyama5037870.77
43Rai Taguti4543880.73
44Naoki Kogai5237890.69
45Tetuji Haramaki4843910.65
46Kazuhiko Hirata2668940.60
47Pete Kosinski6431950.56
48Kenichiro Yoneshima5643990.52
49Katsuharu Kasai32681000.47
50Daisuke Tanomoki47531000.43
51Hiroyuki Fujishima53491020.00
52Jun Takeda54491030.00
53Taiyo Anai41681090.00
54Masayuki Tsuruta57531100.00
55Shinya Iwasaki62491110.00
56Hisami Nakajima44681120.00
57Norio Aihara63491120.00
58Tomonari Okamoto46681140.00
59Tsutomu Komine49681170.00
60Takaaki Ishii64531170.00
61Katsuaki oki60571170.00
62Motoi Kobayashi51681190.00
63Ryo Takahashi68531210.00
64Yoshihiro Noumi64581220.00
65Yoshiharu Yasuda58681260.00
66Naoyuki Yamada59681270.00
67Sinji Nishi61681290.00
68Hironobu Osawa64681320.00
1Angela Jackson21340.00
2Fiona Wylde12330.00
3Candice Appleby33624.00
4Kate baker44820.00
5Takayo Yokoyama571217.00
6Mizuha Sato661214.00
7Yuuka Horikoshi851312.00
8Megumi Iseda781510.00
9Noriko Urayama99189.00
10Tomoe Yasu1014248.00
11Sumika Minamoto1114257.20
12Makiko Tominaga1214266.40
13Natsuki Sakai1314276.00
14Yuka Satou1414285.60


Angie Jackson and Fiona Wylde

Fiona and Angie celebrate post-race (photo credit: Victoria Cup/WML Asia)

Sprint races

Sprint races at the Victoria Cup (photo credit: Victoria Cup/WML Asia)




Connor Baxter, Fiona Wylde Win Day One in Japan as Dark Horses Stand up (and The “Super Lap” Has Its Big Debut)

Connor Baxter

Connor Baxter leads his Starboard team mates Michael Booth and Leonard Nika around the buoy (photo credit: Victoria Cup/WML Asia)

Connor Baxter and Fiona Wylde have taken out day one of the 4-star Victoria Cup in Japan, triumphing against a red hot field in the land of the rising sun.

Connor showed us all yet again why he’s ranked number one in the world, holding back 20 world-class athletes over the hour-long race, which debuted Paul Jackson’s excellent Super Lap format on the international stage.

But while Connor lived up to his status as the favourite, he was nearly edged out by Starboard team mate and our official dark horse selection for season 2016, Australia’s Michael Booth. Boothy was neck-and-neck with Connor the whole way and very nearly took the win. Look out for this guy at the big races this year — he’s an absolute machine.

Following this weekend’s race in Japan, Boothy, Connor (and many more of the world’s best) head straight to Europe for the EuroTour headline events (St. Maxime, Lost Mills and Bilbao), where they’ll likely continue battling for the podium spots.

The “Danish Viking” Casper Steinfath came home third today, just a few seconds behind the top two. Those three guys formed a breakaway group that made the most of the unique course — the Victoria Cup was the first time Jacko’s “Super Lap” innovation has been used, and from all reports it was a very popular format.

Apart from Boothy, other “dark horse” athletes to stand up at Zushi Beach were the Hasulyo brothers, Daniel and Bruno from Hungary, who finished top 10 against one of the more competitive fields we’ve seen this year. For some context: Daniel finished just eight seconds behind superstar Kai Lenny, who was fourth.

It was a tight finish all the way down the leaderboard, with just 37 seconds separating 4th to 12th as the flat, windless conditions made drafting a breeze. That meant the “Super Lap” became even more significant, with the ability to take a shortcut on any one lap the only real chance to break away from the packs.

Fiona Wylde and Angie Jackson

Fiona Wylde and Angie Jackson finish 1-2 on day one (photo credit: Victoria Cup/WML Asia)

In the women’s race it was a huge performance from Fiona to claim victory against two very fast women in Angie Jackson (2nd) and Candice Appleby (3rd). Candice led early but Fiona and Angie made better use of the Super Lap, taking their “shortcut” a lap earlier than Candice and opening up an insurmountable lead in the process. The two paddled together til the closing stages, where Fiona sprinted away to win by 21 seconds.

After Connor and Boothy went 1-2 in the men’s, Fiona’s win gave Team Starboard a clean sweep of day one, which perhaps comes as no surprise considering the blue boards are runaway leaders on our Battle of the Brands leaderboard.

The dark horse woman of the day was Australia’s Kate Baker, who finished just six seconds behind world number two Candice. Kate is a newcomer to the international race scene, however she trains with Angie back home in Australia and will definitely be one to watch as her paddling matures.

The Victoria Cup is a 4-star, 40% event on our “Race Index” system, meaning the event will play a strong role in the 2016 SUP Racer World Rankings. There are at least 40.00 points up for grabs for the overall event winners (based on the combined distance/sprint race results) — the Victoria Cup wraps up tomorrow, Saturday local time, with the sprint racing.

As we noted in our event preview earlier this week, Japan is on the verge of becoming a stand up paddle racing mecca. In addition to the Victoria Cup, the country will host a second international event later this year, the Japan Cup in September. There are dozens of other great local and regional events around the country, while Japan is also home to several world-class athletes, most notably Kenny Kaneko who finished top 10 in today’s race.

Victoria Cup stand up paddle race Japan

#19 is Ryohei Yoshida from Japan (who paddles for Team Focus I believe)

Victoria Cup paddle race Japan