In the above photo by Chase Kosterlitz, Brody Welte is in clear violation. Boards will now have to be labeled with solid lines, 6 12, 18, 24, 36, and 48 inches from the tip of the board. Any racer who drafts another racer can legally put his board up to but not exceeding 48 inches. Brody clearly exceeds the 48″ threshold as indicated by the lines on his Boardworks Infinity Cutthroat, (the only production board in the industry to comply with the new WPA design requirements.)
There have been a few complaints about these new rules, including one anonymous paddler who commented, “They want this to be an exciting sport, but don’t want anyone up in their grill. I say all hands on deck. If you want to draft and having your board on top of their board makes you faster, then do it.”
According to the WPA rules, the person who is being violated is required to sit down on the nose of the violator’s board until such time as race officials can separate them. Usually with a hose and cold water.
Photo credit: Santa Monica Pier Paddleboard Race
The Cutthroat: only board currently in compliance.