Antonio Morio Finishes First In Men’s Open Category Of Inaugural India Paddle Festival - Eastern Mirror
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Antonio Morio finishes first in men’s open category of inaugural India Paddle Festival

6091
By IANS Updated: Mar 09, 2024 8:15 pm
Antonio Morio
Photo: IANS

MANGALORE — Antonio Morillo of Spain emerged as the champion, while Denmark’s Christian Andersen finished second in the men’s open category in the Long Distance Technical SUP race of the inaugural India Paddle Festival, here on Saturday. Top seed and World No.2 Spaniard, Fernando Perez finished third.

The highlight of the day, the finals of the SUP Technical Long Distance in the men’s open category saw a thrilling finish with the top three separated by a margin of a few seconds. Antonio Morillo finished first with a total time of 56:59 minutes while second-placed Christian Andersen fell short of first place by just a second and a half (57:00.151 minutes). Top seed Fernando Perez finished third with a total time of 57:28 minutes.

Former world champion, Daniel Hasyulo finished fourth with a total time of 59:10 seconds while national champion, Sekar Patchai finished fifth with a total time of 1:01:06 hrs.

Speaking after winning the Long-Distance Technical Race Men’s Open category title, Antonio said, “It was definitely one of my best races under challenging conditions and I am glad that I could finish at the top in such a close finish. I am very impressed with the Indian stand-up paddlers and with such a robust infrastructure they have in hand and such beautiful weather conditions, I am confident that I’ll meet quite a few of them at the international level very soon.”

National champion Sekar Patchai after his fifth-place finish in the men’s open category said, “It was a great experience racing against the world’s best. It was inspiring to witness that despite a rough ocean, the international athletes fought their way through. We learnt a lot from them as far as techniques are concerned and I am hopeful that more such international completions should be held in India throughout the year for us to have a real-time competitive experience.”

The women’s open category in the Long-Distance Technical SUP race saw Spain’s Esperanza Barreras walk away as the champion while Irin of Thailand finished second. Junior SUP champion from Italy, Bianca Toncelli finished third.

World No. 2, Esperanza Barreras from Spain walked away with the winner’s trophy with a timing of 59:38 minutes. Thailand’s Irin N. finished second with a total time of 1:05:23 hrs, while SUP Junior Champion, Bianca Toncelli from Italy finished third with a total time of 1:08:21 hrs.

Speaking after winning the Long-Distance Technical Race Women’s Open category title, Esparanza said, “I am super happy to win the title at the India Paddle Festival. This is my first time in India and I’m very impressed with the conditions here in Mangalore and I enjoyed competing here.”

Asked about her views on other competitors and the Indian Stand-up paddlers, she further said, “The competition was strong, and the Indian girls have a lot of potential and are very competitive in nature. I am confident that in due course of time with the right infrastructure and training that is being provided by Surfing Swami Foundation, these girls will start leaving a mark internationally.”

The second day began with the heats of the SUP Technical Long Distance (10 km) race for the men’s open category. From a total of 20 athletes from two heats, a total of 10 (5 from each heat) made their way to the finals. The finalist also included two Indians viz; India No. 1 Sekar Patchai and Manikandan D. The other finalists included Antonio Morillo, Daniel Hasyulo, Natapat Koman, Septenandow Horomati, Fernando Perez, Christian Andersen, Han Sung Ho, Zaki Hibrizi.

The day progressed with the finals of the SUP Technical Long Distance (10 km) race for the women’s Open category which saw a total of seven participants from Spain, Italy, Thailand, South Korea and India.

The final day of the India Paddle Festival will feature the community race final while the women’s sprints will take place onwards followed by the men’s sprint.

6091
By IANS Updated: Mar 09, 2024 8:15:34 pm
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