SUP, San Diego - NBC 7 San Diego

SUP, San Diego

Event's winner move onto championships in Hawaii



    SUP, San Diego
    Brian Bostrom
    The racers drew looks from other people on the water and on the shore.

    Stand-up paddleboard racers turned out in droves for the flat-water race in Mission Bay on Sunday, with the race starting at 11:30 a.m. at Bonita Cove in Mission Bay.

    Naish, a paddleboard manufacturer, ran a series of races this summer around the U.S. in partnership with a group of local retailers. The Top 3 finishers -- men and women -- in those races were invited to San Diego for Sunday's series championship.

    "I think it went really, well," Matt Willett of Naish said about the Mission Bay race. "Participation was higher than I thought it was going to be -- especially impressed with the open race, which was something we just threw together with the local retailers down here, and they brought out a good 20 people."

    More than 50 paddleboarders turned out in Mission Bay for a perfect day on the water. One of the competitors said the sport has gotten much more popular.

    "As far as racing goes, it seems to get bigger and bigger each year, and the boards keep evolving," said Richard Schroeder, who was a top finisher. "They get faster and faster, and now we're pulling in some of the longboard surfers."

    The winners of the races will head to Hawaii for the 5th annual Naish Paddle Championships in Maui next June.