Boost Bitches hit Rose Bay

Roving reporter Janet Small has filed this report from the Tingara Challenge.

On Saturday, Lis and I paddled in the 2019 Tingira Challenge harbour race, hosted by Shark Island Paddlers.  It was Lis’ first paddle on Sydney Harbour and my first ski race.  We called our team, “The Boost Bitches”.

Earlier in the week, we had a test paddle in the amazing Carbonology Boost on choppy Botany Bay.  Lis and I were looking forward to the race and hoping for some bounce.  Parking at Rose Bay was easy and Bruce helped us carry the gigantic ski to the beach.

We assembled for the briefing where the official advised that “Shark Island” and “Shark Bay” were named for good reason and it would not be wise to fall in!  The rain stopped for the race and the overcast sky just made everything look more colourful.

We set off  in the third wave with the short course paddlers.  The 9km course was fantastic.  At the end of Rose Bay, we could see the Sydney Harbour Bridge plus we paddled past a lighthouse.  How good could this get?  Our prayers were answered with choppy water and a swell from the Manly ferries.

We headed towards Watsons Bay for the turn and started overtaking a few paddlers – even guys.  We got a lift from some waves off Nielson Park as we turned for home.  There were more waves to catch in Rose Bay as we motored towards the finish flags.  All the things that usually scare us – waves and boat wash – worked in our favour thanks to the big Boost.  How could it be over so quickly?  

We hoped to finish in 1 hour but made it in 48.43 minutes.  Not bad for a couple of old bitches.  Those waves really helped, plus Lis was good at throwing the Boost around the turns.
There were so many trophies, medals and lucky door prizes that Bruce reckoned the presentation went on longer than the race.  Lucky Lis won a luxurious Zur change towel/ poncho.

So next year, you should think about bringing your ski to the Tingira Challenge.  The course and facilities are excellent and everyone is friendly and helpful.  It is pretty damn awesome to paddle on Sydney Harbour and you might even meet an ex-PM or win a prize.  You can have a hot shower and tuck into some delicious snacks after the race.

Thank you to our friends in the “SSCC training group” who sent messages to encourage us and make us laugh.  You’re the best!  And heartfelt thanks to Mark who loaned us the wonderful, indescribably fantastic, best double ski in the world – the Carbonology Boost.  Thanks to Bruce for minding our stuff, cheering us on and helping with the ski.  And last but not least, my fellow Boost Bitch, Lissie.  Thank you for inviting me to join you.  It was such a great day.