Maxi Mocke dominates in the Carib
Dawid Mocke continued his dominance of world surfski racing by claiming victory in the Defis Kayak event in the French Caribbean Archipelago of Guadelope over the weekend. “Maxi Mocke” as the local French Press have now dubbed him, showed class in very hot and fair wind conditions to finish the event ahead of other paddlers from South Africa, France, the USA and Caribbean nations (St Marten and Martinique).
Of the race itself Dawid said: “I would’ve enjoyed a bit more wind as this is generally a very windy time of year in Guadelope, but it was still an amazing event which has the potential to be one of the best races in the world. This archipelago of islands is amazing and well worth the visit.” The race was held in two stages, the first stage a 26km channel crossing from Desirade Island to the tourist town St. Francios. The next stage was a 21km paddle along the coast from the fishing village of St Anne to the capital Pointe-a-Pitre.
The weather patterns seemed to toy with the event organisers as the wind in weeks prior to the race had wind and ocean conditions in excess of 25 knots; while predictions for the week after the event show similar patterns. “I can’t believe that this is the week the wind decides to die down” said event organiser Olivier Tanton. “We could have the best ocean conditions in the entire world, but unfortunately not this week.
Disappointing for Tanton was the lack of top international paddlers attending the event despite amazing organisation. The event was fantastic. It had US$32 000 in prize money on offer as well as sponsored accommodation, car hire and meals for traveling paddlers. All they had to do was get there. Says Mocke, (especially excited about the coffee on tap): “At the event HQ there are drinks and snacks all day long as well as coffee on tap! I was very excited about that. They even catered breakfast before the start of both stages.”
In between the two stages, held on subsequent weekends, as well as training sessions, paddlers have been reveling in the beautiful mountains and surrounding islands doing downwind paddles, surfing, hiking and diving.
Certainly taking up the offer was South African U21 star Jayden Alford-Loots who accompanied Mocke on the trip. “I could see that it was going to be a great event and there was good prize money for the U21 category so I thought why not. I’m missing loads of varsity work though, so going to have to knuckle down when I get back.” Not that the Varsity College student is complaining; the smaller field meant that he had a shot at the open category as well and he took the opportunity with both hands. He finished in an astonishing third place ahead of some of France’s best ocean paddlers in the first stage and then had an amazing race to take second place in the final stage. His combined time gave him the overall second position in the Open Category as well.
The event is set to take place again next year. The next race on the World Surfski Tour is the Euro Challenge in Alicante in Spain. Mocke is the defending World Series Champion.