Canoe Point paddlers put in a solid opener

CANOE Point Outriggers opened their 2006 campaign in impressive fashion with a solid club performance in the opening round of the AOCRA Northern Zone Grand Prix Series at Tannum Sands last weekend.

Once again, Darren Humberstone starred in individual competition, winning the masters men's OC1 6km event before backing up to take the open men's title in front of a hot field of contenders including Aaron Kirby and Darryl Thoroughgood of the Malanuka club.

"It was the last race of the day, I couldn't believe it,'' a thrilled Humberstone said on Sunday.

'It was pretty tight until I got one good wave at the end and pulled away from them.'

Also celebrating victory was Bill Jarvis who edged out fellow Canoe Point paddler Chris Grant in a gripping tussle, the pair finishing 1-2 in the senior masters men's division.

George Skiba, in just his second year of competition, made it a Canoe Point cleansweep for the individual men's competition, taking out the golden masters title.

Grant Olds, a masters competitor, proved he could still mix it in the open men's division, finishing third in the short course event.

The masters crew of Humberstone, Grant, Jarvis, Derek Smith, Grant Olds and Adam Stafford continued their hot form from last season, leading from start to win the OC6 12km event in 1hr2min56sec.

They then backed up for the open men's 12km event, with Darren Lyle substituting Olds, to claim second spot behind the much respected Malanuka lineup, finishing in 1:02.49.

Canoe Point's open women's lineup claimed fourth spot in the both the marathon (12km) and short course (6km) events.

The masters women recorded their best Grand Prix performance, finishing fifth in both events.

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