While Team Bradley proved that they still dominate the Kaiwi Channel in Sunday’s Na Wahine O Ke Kai race, Team Boomski from the Wa’akapaemua Canoe Club on Molokai showed that they can paddle with the best women crews in the world.
Team Boomski, Molokai’s only entry in this year’s race, finished in 10th place in a time of 6 hours, 46 minutes, 11 seconds. It was the club’s first top-10 finish in the race commonly considered the unofficial world championship of outrigger canoe racing.
The #62 boat from Team Boomski finished just behind the Lae’ula O Kai-Red team from Maui, which had a time of 6:45:54. Last year, Team Boomski finished in 14th place out of 71 boats in a time of 7:02:46. This year, a total of 66 boats completed the race that leaves Hale O Lono Harbor in the morning and finishes 41 miles later in Waikiki.
Team Bradley won its eighth Na Wahine O Ke Kai race in the past nine years in a time of 6:12:23. The only year Team Bradley lost, in 2011, the team was beaten by the Waikiki Beach Boys. For the past two years, the Beach Boys have placed second, this year in 6:19:46. Team Bradley members are: Lauren Spalding, Mahealani Botelho, Lori Nakamura, Noelani Sawyer-Auger, Alena Goo, Kristin Foster, Nicole Wilcox, Andrea Moller, Claire Townsend and Arlene Holzman.
Team Bradley finished five minutes faster than last year when the race was marked by rough conditions, crosswinds and boats going huli in the face of overhead waves at the start. Team Bradley set the course record of 5:22:05 in 2008.
Other than Team Bradley, the other top finishers included Offshore Outrigger, from California, in the Koa Canoe category, 7:09:17; Hui Nalu-Mike Revolusun from Oahu winning the Master 40+ group in 6:32:23; and Team Aussie Aunties from Australia, winning the Master 50+ class in 6:51:40.