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Rough surf no match for Lanikai

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Due to the unpredictable summer surf faced by outrigger canoe paddlers in the waters off Waikiki Beach, the Walter J. Macfarlane Regatta is annually classified as an exhibition event.

However, the senior men’s crew from Lanikai Canoe Club still hasn’t received that memo.

Lanikai’s crew of Matt Crowley, Andreas Gaeta, Bobby Pratt, Chauncey Cody, Matthew Mench and Jim Foti claimed the prestigious senior race for the fifth consecutive year and navigated the 1½-mile course in 10 minutes and 54.55 seconds. The winners were flanked by runner-up Kailua (11:11.41) and Hui Nalu (11:14.21) for most of the race, but were able to keep the green-and-white canoe dry, whereas competing canoes were constantly bailing water from the rough surf.

The aforementioned team from Lanikai was one of many hard at work while throngs of spectators packed Waikiki Beach to enjoy Saturday’s Independence Day holiday. Paddlers braved humid conditions, light and variable winds and consistent 3- to-5-foot surf that escalated as the day went on.

The regatta was halted with seven races to go as, according to a private lifeguard hired to assist with ocean safety who declined to be identified, "DLNR and both our guys and city and county (lifeguards) are done. Too many beefs" with "drunks." The race course was lined with a "flotilla" of boats, yachts, surfers and swimmers, many of whom were perched on inflatable rafts and inner tubes — paddlers were not implicated in causing the regatta’s early finish.

"Five straight … I watched the last four years, so it’s great to be a part of one," Mench said. "We’re definitely building momentum."

The perpetual Walter Macfarlane Memorial Trophy and Senior Women’s Bowl were awarded to the victorious crews in the men’s (Lanikai) and women’s (Outrigger) senior races. Both winning crews were presented with the trophies in a post-race ceremony fronting Duke’s, which now stands in the area formerly occupied by the Outrigger Canoe Club’s original headquarters. Following tradition, the winning crew members took sips of champagne from the cups topping both trophies.

"This is such a fun event every year because it’s so hit-or-miss, it’s carnage out there with boats flipping and (outriggers) breaking," said Gaeta, who occupied the power seat No. 3 in Lanikai’s winning canoe. "Everyone wants to win this race, drink out of the cup and get your name on the plaque."

Lanikai navigated the rough waters efficiently and rode the building swells to an overall victory at the Oahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association’s 72nd Macfarlane Regatta for the fifth time in six years. OHCRA’s traditional Fourth of July event was held in the waters fronting the iconic Royal Hawaiian and Outrigger hotels as thousands of spectators looked on from the beach and hotel balconies.

Lanikai’s victory represents the club’s first AAA Division (27-39 crews entered) title of the season on the heels of 10 race wins and 127 points, while Kailua (120 points), host club Outrigger (113 points) and two-time defending OHCRA champion Hui Nalu (103 points) rounded out the large division.

Keahiakahoe claimed the AA Division (14-26 crews entered) crown with 57 points, while Waikiki Surf Club took the A Division (1-13 crews entered) with 29 points.

"There were a lot of fast crews out there, but with a little luck here and there, it’s always special to win this event because of that luck factor," said Lanikai men’s coach Kalani Irvine.

The event serves as the longest continually run outrigger canoe paddling event in the world since first being held in 1943. Outrigger and Lanikai have combined to win the last 22 Macfarlane Regattas, with Lanikai claiming 13 victories in that span.

The Macfarlane Regatta had no bearing on the organization’s cumulative point standings that determine state championship berths, and is traditionally a favorite of paddlers as the course is set up perpendicular to the shore, allowing crews to catch ocean bumps as they race toward the finish line. Races were often won and lost based on catching the right wave at the right time, and many crews used the open steering exemption, which allows experienced steersmen to paddle in as many races as necessary, to help keep paddlers and canoes safe.

Rough surf caused multiple delays as teams fought to get to the starting line and finish races while avoiding the dreaded huli — the flipping of a canoe. A meeting was held just before noon as race rules officials and club representatives voted to shorten the race course to speed the event up, but the motion failed to pass in a majority vote.

One of the day’s exhibition events featured members of the armed forces competing in a special Independence Day race for bragging rights and the opportunity to hoist the USS Arizona Award. Various clubs sponsored military crews that in turn used that club’s canoe and an experienced steersperson. The quarter-mile exhibition featured eight canoes, and the squad from the USS Port Royal — a naval ship based in Pearl Harbor — in Healani Canoe Club’s vessel netted the gold.

OHCRA clubs return to action July 12 at Kaneohe Bay on Marine Corps Base Hawaii for the annual John D. Kaupiko Regatta. The Na ‘Ohana O Na Hui Wa‘a organization is holding its North Shore Regatta on Sunday at Haleiwa Beach Park.

"Uncle Wally" honored at pre-race ceremony

Members of the outrigger canoe paddling community took time Saturday morning to honor one of Hawaii’s iconic watermen, Wallace Frank Froiseth, who died on Monday.

"Uncle Wally," as family and friends knew him, was 95.

Froiseth helped found Waikiki Surf Club in 1948 and was also a big-wave surfing and surfboard-crafting pioneer. The former federal firefighter also helped build the double-hulled voyaging canoe Hokule‘a, which is currently being guided on an unprecedented worldwide voyage.

"This is where Waikiki Surf Club started, it’s where my father learned to surf and make surfboards," said Luana Froiseth, Wallace’s daughter and president of the Oahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association. "Just to be here on the beach…my father will always be here in Waikiki."

Members of Waikiki Surf Club used its canoe, which is appropriately named after "Uncle Wally," to paddle across the race course prior to the Walter J. Macfarlane Regatta held in the waters off Waikiki Beach. The pre-race ceremony featured prayers and an oli, a native Hawaiian chant used to mark important events, including births and deaths.

"We circled from the red flag to the yellow flag (the colors of Waikiki Surf Club) and we scattered flowers in his honor," said Froiseth when recounting the emotional ceremony. "We’re very thankful to Outrigger Canoe Club for allowing Surf Club to have this blessing in my father’s honor."


Oahu Hawaiian Canoe Racing Association

Walter J. MacFarlane Regatta

At Waikiki Beach


AAA—1, Lanikai 127. 2, Kailua 120. 3, Outrigger 113. 4, Hui Nalu 103.   

AA—1, Keahiakahoe 57. 2, Hui Lanakila 42. 3, Healani 41.

A—1, Waikiki Surf Club 29. 2, Leeward Kai 24. 3, New Hope 16. 4 (tie), Waimanalo 15, Anuenue 15. 6, Keola O Ke Kai 11. 7 (tie), Koa Kai 5, Kai Oni 5. 9 (tie), Honolulu Pearl 1, Makaha Canoe Club 1.

1⁄4 MILE

Girls 12—1. Lanikai (Teiana Gonsalves, Kamalani Freitas, Ayla Specher, Helani Aspelund, Peyton Ku, Scott Freitas) 1:50.86; 2. Hui Nalu 1:53.50; 3. Leeward Kai 2:03.06.

Boys 12—1. Hui Nalu (Drake Nohara, Cole Jones, Kawaihoa Loui, Kua‘ana Watson, Keawenui Pedersen, Wyatt Jones) 1:46.59; 2. Outrigger 1:52.61; 3. Waimanalo 2:00.72.

Mixed 12—1. Kailua (Kiana McEwen, Eddie Sloan, Makena Hanson, Kui Cobeen, Hayley Johnson, G-Money Hanoa) 1:42.15; 2. Outrigger 1:46.83; 3. Lanikai 1:52.98.

Girls 13—1. Kailua (Zoe Chisholm, Isabel Rodriguez, Adji Munoz, Roby Soergel, Aspen Rice, Ho‘oulu Holt) 1:42.66; 2. Healani 1:45.22; 3. Lanikai 1:46.67.

Boys 13—1. Leeward Kai (Boedy Noa, Mason Oliveria, Josiah DeFreitas, Kollin Pantaleon-Augustin, Ezekiel Waiolama, Ryan Van Gieson) 1:44.11; 2. Hui Lanakila 1:50.35; 3. Koa Kai 1:55.53.

Girls 14—1. Lanikai (Olivia Klem, Kiki Megorden, Kate Jeszenszky, Lea Seguirant, Kiani Dwight, John Foti) 1:41.86; 2. Keahiakahoe 1:54.21; 3. Hui Nalu 2:07.32.

Boys 14—1. Leeward Kai (Alejandro Garibaldi, Dylan Van Epps-Cavaco, Jeremy Silva-Flood, Isaiah kahuanui, Jake  Silva, Alfred Van Gieson) 1:35.39; 2. Lanikai 1:35.99; 3. Keahiakahoe 1:36.89.

Open Keiki—1. Waikiki Surf Club (Sean Harflinger, Aidan Chun, Timothy Harflinger, Jaron Fernandez, Kaikane Thatcher-West, Hanalei Fujimoto) 1:39.61; 2. Leeward Kai 1:40.65; 3. Kailua 1:52.88.

Women Novice B—1. Lanikai (Avery Munoz, Lisa Cowan, Jennifer Bager, Grace Cheng, Melani Hutchinson, Jim Foti) 1:30.44; 2. Kai Oni 1:42.75; 3. Healani 1:49.33.

Mixed Novice B—1. Hui Lanakila (Ellen Roberts, Jacob Bell, Joleen Pesquira, Adam Dochin, Art Manpathoum, Lori Nakamura) 1:41.41; 2. Lanikai 1:42.68; 3. Leeward Kai 1:53.99.

1⁄2 MILE

Special Armed Forces: 1. USS Port Royal 4:01.04; 2. U.S. Coast Guard 4:03.07; 3. U.S. Army 4:34.16.

Men Novice B—1. Healani (Kyle Aldridge, Felix Huang, Kaleo Kia, Brian Kunioka, Todd Davis, Kea Paiaina) 3:53.46; 2. Hui Nalu 3:58.48.

Girls 15—1. Outrigger (Micaela Kauhane, Maile Heyer, Kiana Sandvold, Leia Deer, Kealoha Scullion, Billy Balding) 4:19.50; 2. Kailua 4:29.37; 3. Lanikai 4:29.95.

Boys 15—1. Hui Nalu (Jacob Savage, Akili Silva-Aweau, Kauila Tengan, Iokepa Seward, Cassidy Cain, David Loui) 4:26.05; 2. Keola O Ke Kai 5:05.85; 3. Outrigger 5:15.07.

Girls 16—1. Hui Lanakila (Kamalani Ganal, Ravane Montero, Stella Martinez, Tiara Martinez, Brooklyn-Bailey Mahiai, Kalama Heine) 3:52.37; 2. Keahiakahoe 4:08.28; 3. Lanikai 4:22.96.

Boys 16—1. Lanikai (Andrew Levora, Malie Keaunui, Bobby Phelps, Jesse Moonier, William Wilson, Scott Freitas) 4:08.18; 2. Waikiki Surf Club 4:14.70; 3. Kailua 4:22.42.

Mixed 16—1. Kailua (Kiki Bailey, Nathan Deyoe, Taylor Chow, Chauncey Holck, Weezy Kaili Singlehurst, Jordan Wong) 4:03.56; 2. Hui Nalu 4:06.99; 3. Keahiakahoe 4:19.26.

Girls 18—1. Hui Nalu (Kelsi Cottrell, Michaela Kemna, Dakota Girdley, Kaui Hoopii, Ohi Lapilio, Heath Hemmings) 4:02.75; 2. Waikiki Surf Club 4:11.83; 3. Kailua 4:17.40.

Women Novice A—1. Hui Nalu (Kalina Calantoc, Marisa Mendoza, Ka‘imi Dey, Deborah Maddox, Katrina Perez, Wyatt Jones) 4:21.33; 2. Outrigger 4:24.15; 3. Kailua 4:33.41.

Senior Women Masters 50—1. Lanikai (Allison Freitas, Michelle Campillo-Peters, Melanie Bailey, Liz  Wallwork, Sandy Leslie, Jim Foti) 4:20.12; 2. Kailua 4:45.88; 3. Anuenue 5:30.53.

Senior Men Masters 50—1. Waikiki Surf Club (Scott McIntire, Kip Mizushima, Squeeze Kamana III, Jake Moore, Carter Kamana, Michael  Lum) 3:36.24; 2. Keahiakahoe 3:36.79; 3. Outrigger 3:37.29.

Women Golden Masters 55—1. Outrigger (Linda Fernandez, Katy Bourne, Kimberley Darling, Debra Ing, Genie Kincaid, Marc Haine) 3:59.90; 2. Lanikai 4:09.21; 3. Kailua 4:20.57.

Men Golden Masters 55—1. Lanikai (David Smith, Toby Morris, Carl Evensen, Charles Sumner, Bruce Stewart, Scott Freitas) 3:32.54; 2. Outrigger 3:33.19; 3. Keahiakahoe 3:33.51.

Woman Masters 60—1. Outrigger (Laurie Lawson, Kaiulu Downing, Barbara Bryan, Alice Lunt, Maile Ostrem, Billy Balding) 4:38.07; 2. Anuenue 4:49.50; 3. Hui Nalu 4:49.79.

Men Masters 60—1. Lanikai (Lars Nashlund, Dave Hafele, Kern Rogerson, Benny Quitevis, Artie Palaualelo, Carson Perry) 3:45.14; 2. Outrigger 3:53.88; 3. Keahiakahoe 4:10.38.

Women Masters 65—1. Keahiakahoe (Margee Ralston, Mauliola Aspelund, Mary Martin, Pamela Monahan, Susie Oakland, Seth Holck) 4:38.26; 2. Outrigger 5:00.46; 3. Anuenue 5:41.56.

Men Masters 65—1. Waimanalo (Harold Akeo, Jeff Metzger, Boy Kalama, Dennis Sallas, Ted Ralston, Raymond Lii) 4:03.53; 2. New Hope 4:25.65; 3. Outrigger 4:26.25.


Boys 18—1. Outrigger (Eric Buckland, Kaimana Gomes, Ryan Martinez, Scott Vore, Kapono Fujitani, Heinere Itchner) 8:08.83; 2. Kailua 8:28.62; 3. Lanikai 10:43.59.

Men Novice A—1. Kailua (Johnny Farfan, Brian Sultzer, Skozilla Pecora, David Taylor, Ian Rummel, G-Money Hanoa) 8:22.09; 2. Hui Lanakila 9:07.09; 3. Healani 9:10.45.

Women Freshman—1. Lanikai (Jiny Kim, Amber Kuhlmann, Jenna Gazella, Tiffany Asuncion, Joey Foti, Michael Dowsett) 9:01.85; 2. Kailua 9:20.44; 3. Keahiakahoe 9:35.26.

Men Freshman—1. Hui Nalu (Makana Darval-Chang, Rick Maurer, Darin Kohara, David Loui, Matt Caires, Patrick Von) 7:56.23; 2. Outrigger 8:09.22; 3. Healani 8:38.73.

Sophomore Women—1. Kailua (Alison Asejo, Paahana Kincaid, Mele Coelho, Savannah Wright, Carolyn Fisher, Jordan Wong) 8:27.95; 2. Lanikai 8:32.16; 3. Hui Nalu 8:48.46.

Sophomore Men—1. Hui Nalu (Kristin Brown, Raven Aipa, Kekai Kamakawiwo‘ole, Kekoa Kahookele-Santos, Mario Mausio, Heath Hemmings) 7:20.58; 2. Kailua 7:33.91; 3. Outrigger 7:42.89.

Women Junior—1. Lanikai (Monica Esquivel, Brittney Keith, Tori Martin, Donna Bareng, Vai Sunaoka, John Foti) 7:56.08; 2. Hui Nalu 9:44.35; 3. Hui Lanakila 10:21.87.

Men Junior—1. Outrigger (Indar Lange, Patrick Shea, Christian Bradley, Arthur Mallet, Sean Kaawa, Heinere Itchner) 7:44.35; 2. Hui Lanakila 8:03.21; 3. Lanikai 8:04.62.

1 1⁄2 miles

Women Senior—1. Outrigger (Jane Mckee, Blair Grant, Traci Phillips, Amy Lawson, Donna Kahakui, Marc Haine) 12:43.50; 2. Lanikai 13:09.07; 3. Hui Lanakila 13:44.67.

Men Senior—1. Lanikai (Matt Crowley, Andreas Gaeta, Bobby Pratt, Chauncey Cody, Matthew Mench, Jim Foti) 10:54.55; 2. Kailua 11:11.41; 3. Hui Nalu 11:14.21.

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