Penticton paddles way to a national victory

Penticton’s junior paddling crew earned an impressive victory on the national stage in Vancouver Aug. 13.

Jake Black

Jake Black

Penticton’s junior paddling crew earned an impressive victory on the national stage in Vancouver Aug. 13.

Coach Tina Hoeben watched as Reid Noble-Hearle, Matthew Koster, Daylon Tilitzky, Brian MacPhail, Jake Black and Julia Veidt won their age group and heat during the Canadian Outrigger national championship.

“It wasn’t until the turnaround that they made their move and went right in the middle of two crews and took the lead and held it until the end,” said Hoeben of the clever tactic on the 10-kilometre course. “They followed their race plan and won the entire heat and took down some adult crews.”

Held at the Jericho Sailing Centre, Penticton faced its most challenging competition from adult crews. The younger crews didn’t live up to their billing.

“It wasn’t a super strong field,” said Hoeben. “We were really hoping to have some competition for them.”

Field calibre aside, Hoeben didn’t feel that spoiled the win as the six-person crew put together a solid race.

The important thing Hoeben wanted to see her crew gain is knowing they are good. Confidence isn’t a problem. What Hoeben has noticed is that once the crew won races in Penticton, it didn’t seem like a big deal.

“I’m the big fish in the little pond,” she said. “I wanted them to see that on the national scale, they actually are in the running. They can do things when they are against the best in the country.”