2022 Day 3 of the 14th Annual 5-day SUP 11-City Tour

Workum to Franeker

Yesterday it remained restless until the late hours at It Beaken. The weather forecasts were a bit concerning regarding the hard wind and the rain. So, the organization needed to talk through the plan for Thursday to assure the safety and comfort of the athletes as well as all crew members. Since the crew members and athletes were scattered all over the area, because the sleeping boats weren’t able to sail to the intended location, the team faced a logistical puzzle to set up the SUP village this morning. But the crew came together at the crack of dawn to make everything happen as the athletes woke up peacefully.

All set it was time for some happy tunes to start the day. A speaker blasting over the field in Workum and the crew dancing along to the music got the athletes in a good mood as well. The sun even came out to greet us (I bed it was the sun dance of the crew that made this happen).

After the dancing, it was back to business. The two different Tour groups started their journey from Workum to Witmarsum, their first resting place. After the start of the Tour all the other athletes from different categories waited for their turn to start. Because there were time trials today each competitive athlete started 30 seconds after the other. In this time trial the athletes will be challenged to paddle their best to rate their individual qualities. The distance of this time trial, from Workum to Bolsward, was around 12 kilometers.

In the category Open Men Bruno Hasulyo flew over the water strengthening his leading position. In the Grand Masters the number one and two are still super close to eachother. At the moment Pascal Bleys is leading with a couple seconds ahead. For the Masters the time trial gave a better overview of place 1 and 2. The atletes on place 3 til 5 are still close together. Some spectacular batteling took place in the Open Ladies. Due to some determined paddling Tanja Ecker takes over Petronella van Malsen in the ranking. As expected, Hanneke de Jong (Diva’s) and Tineke Merkus (Grand Diva’s) assured their leading position as well. After the finish of the time trial in Bolsward, the athletes restarted their race.

Meanwhile the wind picked up even more. Paddlers needed to face around 20 knots gusts. The tiny bridges over the narrow ditches surrounded by meadow and corn fields were shaking through the wind, almost blowing of the supporters of the athletes of the bridges. To seek shelter of the wind, paddlers of the same category paddle together in a train. This is a smart way to move along under these circumstances.

“Two athletes almost got blown off their boards. If it had happened, they would have crashed into our train wiping us out as well.”

Tanja Ecker

As smart as paddling in a train is, it can also be quite tricky to overtake other trains with this wind. Battling against the strong wind you could see the determination and fearlessness that these athletes have. It is at most admirable!

Bellringing today was done today first in Bolsward and the second bellringing was done today in Harlingen, one of the most authentic cities of Friesland. Harlingen is one of the cities with the highest monument density in the Netherlands. Maybe that is why many athletes tried to make a quick detour around Harlingen?! Fortunately, there was attend crew members who steered the athletes back on the established route. After passing Harlingen the athletes finally had their wind on their side. The big canal at Kiesterzijl the athletes had the wind blowing them forwards instead of backwards. If only they had a sail to make use of….

After all, we had some surprisingly good weather today compared to the weather forecasts. It was windy but sunny. As if the universe knew that almost all athletes finished it started to pour with rain. That means it is time to cozy up inside and refuel for tomorrow. Tomorrow the athletes will paddle from Franeker to Dokkum. Another challenge because the wind will be blowing even harder tomorrow.

Provisional Race results 16.09.22

Open Men

  1. Bruno Hasulyo 4 hrs 29 min 47 sec
  2. Joep van Bakel 4 hrs 32 min 36 sec
  3. Ricardo Haverschmidt 4 hrs 41 min 01 sec


  1. Michiel Keesmakers 4 hrs 49 min 32 sec
  2. Jochum Steur 4 hrs 49 min 46 sec
  3. Andrej Spelic 4 hrs 55 min 03 sec

Grand Masters

  1. Pascal Bleys 5 hrs 07 min 23 sec
  2. Gunther de Bin 5 hrs 07 min 50 sec
  3. Peter Mülhauser 5 hrs 11 min 04 sec

Open Ladies

  1. Tanja Ecker 5 hrs 14 min 24 sec
  2. Petronella van Malsen 5 hrs 16 min 01 sec
  3. Nicoline Rasmussen 5 hrs 26 min 48 sec


  1. Hanneke de Jong 5 hrs 43 min 04 sec
  2. Annelies Loots 6 hrs 19 min 05 sec
  3. Emma Adams 7 hrs 06 min 57 sec

Grand Diva’s

  1. Tineke Merkus 5 hrs 47 min 39 sec
  2. Marion Behrens 5 hrs 57 min 33 sec
  3. Dorthe Nielsen 6 hrs 03 min 24 sec
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