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Hector Jessel 1


April 29, 2024

Paul Simmons (Starboard UK) tells us about their recent success at the Head of the Dart SUP Challenge 2024

The UK’s Head of the Dart SUP Challenge is one of the largest in the UK SUP calendar and proved to be one of the classic events this year, blessed with good weather and over 250 participants across both race and leisure fleets. This year’s route started inland in Totnes, with the 13.5km route winding through idyllic South Devon countryside, finishing downstream in the historic naval town of Dartmouth.

Starboard athletes took the honours in the prestigious 14’0” Race fleets with Holly Pye taking a superb breakthrough first victory at national level on her Sprint Zero, with Marie Buchanan fighting through to third place on her Gen-R despite illness.  Holly’s father Steve showed an impressive turn of speed in the inflatable division, taking a superb third place on his Sprint Deluxe mixing it up with paddlers over thirty years younger!

In the men’s 14’0” fleet Hector Jessel dominated from the start, extending his lead all the way to the finish, where he ended up impressively nearly five minutes ahead of his nearest rival. In fourth place was up-and-coming youngster Charlie Wagg, like Hector using his All Star to great effect and proving it’s a competitive board on flat water as well as the ocean.

Paddlers commended the event’s organisation, with tirelessly working Fiona Batson heading up the event management. While some were racing hard, many paddlers in the leisure fleet finished proud of completing the 13.5km route. Inflatable Starboard Sprints and All Star Airlines were the most popular race boards in the both race and leisure fleets and in the composite boards, the distinctive Sprint, All Star and Gen-R orange noses weren’t just race winners but also highlighted Starboard being by far the most popular raceboard brand on the water. Equally pleasing was the number of Lima paddles being used to propel paddlers in all fleets (including several race wins!)

Starboard Results:

Women’s 14’0” Race
1. Holly Pye – Starboard Sprint & Lima paddle
3. Marie Buchanan – Starboard Gen-R & Lima paddle

 Men’s 14’0” Race
1.Hector Jessel – Starboard All Star
4. Charlie Wagg – Starboard All Star & Lima paddle

 Women’s 12’6” Race
1. Sara Maxey – Starboard All Star & Lima paddle
2. Felicity Hurst – Starboard All Star & Lima paddle
3. Sarah Myford – Starboard All Star

 Men’s 12’6” Race
3.Tim Farmer – Starboard All Star

Well done to everyone who helped make the HOTD SUP Challenge 2024 the best one yet and a great launch into the SUP race season for many paddlers.

Main Sponsors
Starboard SUP
Salcombe Gin
Red Paddle Co

Paddle Logger



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