Paddle: July 2019 | Volume 5, Issue 4

Page 64

Friendly competition, fierce rivalry define

40th Annual Ted Houk Regatta By Tyrean Martinson and Stephanie Schlitz

Twenty-one teams and over 265 paddlers – from beginners to athletes making a bid for the 2020 Olympics – competed at the 40th annual Ted Houk Memorial Regatta in June. Athletes traveled from across the continental U.S., Canada, and Hawaii to race on Green Lake in Seattle, weathering wind, rain, and sun to compete in the hotly contested 500m and 1000m races. Recognized as the West Coast’s largest flatwater sprint event, the regatta drew nearly as many athletes

as the 2018 Sprint National Championships, and host team Seattle Canoe and Kayak Club (SCKC) organized an army of volunteers to help. Event sponsor Nelo USA was also on site to provide expert advice, demos, and lessons.

pic Hopes Regatta, Junior Worlds, U23 Worlds, Open Worlds, and the Pan-American Games. Junior men’s kayaker Jonas Ecker, who paddles with Bellingham Canoe Kayak Sprint Team and is a top contender for a national title at the 2019 Sprint National Championships in August, commented, “Ted Houk has always been one of my favorite events of the season. I love the friendly competition that builds when athletes from across North America come to compete.”

Many of this year’s participants will go on to race in their countries’ respective national championships. Elite juvenile, junior, and senior paddlers will compete at upcoming International Canoe Federation events, including the Olym-

Caddell, Anacleto-Black, Ecker, and Bodine paddle to victory in the Junior Men's K4 1000m. Schonna Lind-Schenk photo

Page 63 | PADDLE | July 2019