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Experience Outrigger Canoe Paddling

with Tanya

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Koa Kai Canoe Club - Honolulu
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KOA KAI - Means Sea Warrior


Why do we do it, paddle for hours, train hard to achieve what we do at regatta's. What drives someone to want to get in a canoe go out in the ocean and not know what lies ahead. Are we mad!!! No we just love the Challenge. Below is some of the action we have taken part in to date old and new photo's of our great racing adventures...

It's not just winning that is a bonus, it's a combination of tradition, culture, spiritual and physically very demanding on the body. It's about friendships and understanding each other here are one of our paddling ~couples~, having a partner that paddles as well as you helps in understanding what drives you.

We love being close to nature the ocean is your master and you have to tame it or be tamed.

2000 was the first time the Koa Kai woman ever competed in the National at Surfers Paradise. The ~Girls~worked really well together. Wendy asks ~which way Robyn~ what a cool shot..

Our~Open Woman's~ some of these girls are first year paddlers

These ~Girls~ are on a mission...watch them closely next year..~Open Women~ here in a sprint at the Nationals in 2001...

We have three mens crews one being the ~ATeam~have been the brides maids 4 years running at the Nationals.. ~BTeam~ teams and our ~3rd Mens~ Exellent shot of these 2 ~Men~

2001/02 this year the women's open team is going all out for it. ~Ta-Vae-Rua~ means 'hard to kill' in Cook Island and there was no doubt we were not going to finish this race first, but after a start where we were pushed in the wrong direction for a few minutes things looked bad. Then we put the power into the blades, set our minds on moving forward and took of like there was no tomorrow. Strong & Powerful all the way home 16km race in 1hour 18min & 30 seconds.

Way to go ~Jacky~ ...way to go team... At the end of every race we congradulate each other and at the same time ~stretch~ each other after a long hard workout...

By the look of these girls you can see how happy they are this one was over what a performance and the power & strenght from the ~Islands~ is felt within...


~Hamilton Island WOW~

First day are the OC1 competitions with a 7am start for the 16km round the Island coming in 2nd for Koa Kai were both ~Bull - 16km 2002~ and ~Tanya - 16km 2002~. With OC1 sprints in the middle of the day and then the 8km OC1 Marathon in the afternoon. Gold for Koa Kai with ~Tanya - 8km OC1~ great achievement after flipping it in her first year in ~2000~ and Koa Kai's 4th medal of the day went to ~Mike - 8km OC1 2002~ in a close 3rd

The ~16km OC6 Marathon~ was the best race of 2000, the conditions were awsome the waves crashing in the canoe loved it..

The ~Koa Kai Women's 2000 Team~ paddled well to get out of the 6ft swells and managed to finish with a sprint home..Good onya..... ~Girls~ well done..

8 canoes ~flipped~ and one sank.

~2000~was a bit different to ~2002~ we entered both an ~Open & Masters~ crew in for this race both placing in the top 10 in their divisions. Both ~Chris & KB~ putting in a great job in the 16k Marathon...

Next we had the~Sprints~ we won our heat but placed just outside of making the final.

~Hamilton Island Cup 2002~

The big race day has arrived and paddlers have come from all over the Pacific to battle it out for the 42km Cup racing to ~Pentecoste~ and back around the Island..

This year we entered 2 ~Men~ teams in the 42km Marathon. ~Koa Kai 42k Men~ great shot and this water shot of ~Neil~ and these shots of the ~42K~ ~Koa Kai~ both teams had a great race, our second men's crew have another story to tell ...flipping the canoe...what a race..

We also entered ~Koa Kai Open Women's team~

What a crew what a team ~these girls~ have been preparing to go to Hamilton Island to see what it was all about since last year. We have no expectations, no Olympic athletes, no big names in our crew but big ~hearts~ with determination and guts you donít come across everyday. 8 of the 10 have never done a changes race before including our steerer. Let's take a look at this ~Crew~ we have:

~Sheridan Gho~ - a junior we had to wait till she was 18 before we could race Hammo she was 18 this year. Sheri is from Fiji paddled with Koa Kai the past 2 years she's a 'freak of nature' at the State Titles this year she races 13 races and by the end of the weekend had 5 gold and 1 silver medal around her neck. She's always smiling.

~AJ Owens~ - 20 years old, she has a cricket background never seen an outrigger till 2 years ago she retired from cricket for her new sport "In Paddling you don't have to go 100% live, eat, breath the sport, everyone is so down to earth, you able to just enjoy the competition" She played cricket with the best in Australia and has allot of potential in any sport she takes up we are so happy to have her as part of our team.

~Zoe Koulouris~ - 23 High Pressure job last week she was in China for a week for work, she started paddling 3 years ago for fun her background is water polo playing at top levels Zoe takes each race at a time happy with any result never complains about anything does her job in the canoe boy does she do it well.

~Alison Collins~ - 26 paddled a Kayak before starting outrigger paddling she can be underestimated but there is a gutsy woman in that body and has been waiting for the opportunity to show us her best.

~Michelle Farrow~ - 31 played basket ball, netball, dabbled in many sports to find outrigger canoe paddling 3 years ago. She will tell you like it is whether you like it or not and that attitude she takes with her in the canoe as well. All she wants in a race is that no canoes pass us once we start, strong and determined.

~Vikki Henderson~ - 33 Cook Islander mother of 4 year old twins. We told her all the best paddlers steer the whole race we didn't tell her no one does that on their first time ever in the Hammo Cup. She said "I thought that was what you do" Yes under our supervision that's what you do. Only started steering this season and pulled of a magnificent job sitting up the ass of Pam Prescotts team the whole way. A bit of Island magic goes a long way in the canoe.

~Jacqui Cook~ - just turned 35, mother of 3 (6 and under). We call her legs, Jacque came back to paddle this season after having the 3rd child last season she's over 6' tall and shaped with a massive V back first time in the 500m sprints ever and placed 4th by a grain of sand in the final. You could say she's a threat to the sprinters out there and that power is needed in the 42km when it's all about sprinting for 15min out for 15 and get ready to sprint another stint.

~Aroha Barlow~ - just 40 a Kiwi mother of an 8 year old, Aroha weighs in at 100 Kilo and proud of it. Every bit of that solid woman goes into her paddle, tell Aroha there is a beer waiting for you at the end and she's there, tell her Harvie is shouting all night and she got into the canoe like it was standing still. Paddling for 2 years big heart.

~Tanya Olive~ - 40 mother of 3, running background then body building, could not swim until she was 30 but had a goal to do the Noosa Triathlon so learned to swim 2 months before it. First paddling in Noosa 11 years ago for 1 season and started with Koa Kai 4 years ago and never looked back. Give her a challenge she'll go out there and show you it can be done, strong mind.

~Jenny Cleary~ - 46 there is only one place for her and that's first in all her other sports she's competed in with that in your mind and when your the senior master in the team of open woman this woman is determined to do her best. 6 years paddle expierence.

Put the whole crew together with a support woman like KB mother of 3 paddled first time this season had everyone in and out of the canoe on time and looked after us better than anyone else could have, then Harvie gets on the support crew to give it to us saying that's not good enough, so we up and upped it and took it home in a time of 4hr 06 in 6th place in the ~Open Women's~ open women's division. Before the race the girls wanted a top ten Harvie was over the moon and paid for it at the bar all night like I said there are no big names in this crew just the names on this page.

...Awesome job.. ~Awesome Team~...watch out for Koa Kai in 2003 ...

It's a mind sport, it's a physically demanding sport, it's spiritual, it's awesome...& Koa Kai is a true family club..... TRAINING TIMES

Training sessions are held at the ~Georges River Sailing Club~ ..

Please check with the clubKoa Kai Canoe Club - Honolulu

All photography by Harvie Allison is with his endorsement


The club likes to have fun during the season of hard training with fundraising events a 70s disco, the kids performing we know how to have a good time, see the link below for the ~Koa Kai Fun Page~ ...


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