Poor Knights Crossing - Andrew Mowlem & Teanelle Hatton....


As the echo of a spine tingling waiata was still reverberating from the walls of Rikoriko Cave at the Poor Knights Islands, a nervous fleet of open ocean paddlers charged out of the safety of the world’s largest sea cave to tackle 30km of surging sea at this year’s Poor Knights Crossing race.

Photo credit Malcolm Pullman, Aqualine Photography

The waiata marked the start of what was an epic open ocean race with Auckland’s Andrew Mowlem delivering a stunning performance of endurance and skill to take out the race ahead of a strong and experienced field.

Andrew Mowlem, AKLD/ Garth Spencer AKLD

Mowlem, who is building momentum toward a Oceanski World Championship bid in Hong Kong later this year, hit the front as the fleet emerged from the cave and never relinquished it till he had charged across a challenging 30km dash to the finish line inside Tutukaka Harbour two hours later.


It was quite a performance in very challenging conditions, with the race fleet greeted with a moderate tailwind coupled with a significant sea swell that threw up some big water.


Tenealle Hatton, fresh from success on the world surf ski circuit races in Canada and the USA, was unchallenged at the front of the womens field.


Tenealle Hatton

Hatton was surging with the best of the mens field in the big water section, and kept the pressure on to cruise in for the win.  It had been a taxing run though as Hatton described the event as “a tough grind” and took some time to recover from here efforts.  Fellow Aucklanders Danelle Snowden and Alex Huffadine were some way back in second and third.


Before starting at the world renowned Poor Knights Islands and Marine Reserve then tackling the 30km paddle back to the mainland, paddlers had already been tested during the ferry out to the start line.


Several hit the water feeling worse for wear, some never even got on their race craft as seasickness took hold travelling on one of the fleet of 10 boats that ferried the paddlers and their craft out to the startline.


But once the race started it was all on.


Mowlem was never headed at the pointy end of the pack, nor were Sean Herbert and Amanda Wheatley in the waka ama division or Mike Pirritt in the Stand Up race, but the battle for the minor placings  was keen right to the finish line.

Andrew Mowlem

Local Garth Spencer was a clear second until Australian Todd Boreland charged past to take the silver in the oceanski race.  Jamille Ruka and Richard Pehi were changing places in the battle for silver and bronze in the waka ama mens division while Ngaire Pehi and Hiria Rolleston were never more than a boat length apart either.


Ruka nudged Pehi for silver but only just, then Rolleston won a sprint finish in the womens.


Pirrit put on a masterclass in the SUP race.


“This was a real ocean challenge that tested all the paddlers,”  race organiser Tim Eves said.


“Having the start inside Rikoriko Cave was a privilege and the sight of paddlers in big surging sea swell was inspiring.   Experience on open waters was significant and showed in the results, I tip my hat to all the paddlers, they all challenged themselves,” he said.


“Planning for next year is underway too.  September 1st next year.   I might just tae a break for a week or two though.”     


Te Kohe Tuhaka AKLD

Surf ski
Teanelle Hatton 2hr 31m 31s
Danelle Snowden 3hrs 14m 20s
Alex Huffadine 3hrs 19m 29s
Lynee Patterson 3hrs 47m 43s
Rachel Clarke DNS

Andrew Mowlem 2hrs 10m 53s
Todd Boreland 2hrs 14m 59s (veteran)
Garth Spencer 2hrs 18m 35s
Jeremy Kuggeleijn 2hrs 22m 17s
Jono Reshef 2h 22m 38s
Sam Mayhew 2hrs 24m 27s
Max Riley 2h 29m 02s
Seam Murphy 2h 40m 39s (Veteran)
Paul Gillard 2h 40m 40s (Veteran)
Craig McLeod 2h 51m 49s
Bruce Colebaker 2h 55m 50s
Tony Bateup 2h 55m 53s
Marchand Le Roux 2h 59m 09s
Simon Woods 3h 16m 48s (Veteran)
Shayne Edmondson DNF
Andy Palmer DNS
Nick Roberts DNS
Matt Randall DNS
Michael Venis DNS
Martin Knoche DNS
Neil Taylor DNS

Waka Ama
Amanda Wheatley 2h 55m 56s
Hiria Rolleston 3h 4m 16s
Ngaire Pehi 3h 4m 17s
Nyree King 3h 17m 34s

Sean Herbert 2h 32m
Jamille Ruka 2h 40m 08s
Richard Pehi 2h 40m 18s (veteran)
Tonga White 2h 44m 30s (veteran)
Gordon McKay 2h 45m 20s (veteran)
John Hammond 2h 45m 37s (veteran)
Adrian Horsfield 2h 51m 44s
Kereama 2h 51m 58s
Kraig Cornwall 2h 55m 56s (veteran)
Mike Weiss 2h 57m 52s (veteran)
Nigel Draper and Birgit Meister 2h 57m 54s (OC2 mixed)
TK Tuhaka 3h 0m 49s
Kafoa Latu 3h 1m 40s (veteran)
Matt Kensington 3h 5m 08s (veteran)
Ralph Seed 3h 7m 15s (veteran)
Tom Atkins 3h 14m 17s (Veteran)
Justin Davies 3h 15m 40s (veteran)
Tinikai Rolleston 3h 37m 21s
Will Phillips 3h 39m 46s
Graham Payn DNS
Ian Lawson DNS
Tony Loretz DNS
Mitch Zandstra DNF

Mike Pirritt 2h 55m 57s
Hans Wannemacher 3h 03m 04s
Sam Johnston 3h 05m 45s
Brianna Orams 3h 21m 45s (women)
Hilton Leith 3h 36m 25s
David Cracknell 3h 39m 57s
Jason Clough DNF
Mike Ward DNS
Shane Murrell DNS

Overall (place, name, time, craft) (SS= Surf Ski, OC1=waka ama, SUP=Stand Up Paddler)
1.Andrew Mowlem 2hrs 10m 53s. SS
2.Todd Boreland 2hrs 14m 59s SS
3.Garth Spencer 2hrs 18m 35s SS
4.Jeremy Kuggeleijn 2hrs 22m 17s SS
5.Jono Reshef 2h 22m 38s SS
6.Sam Mayhew 2hrs 24m 27s SS
7.Max Riley 2h 29m 02s SS
8.Teanelle Hatton 2hr 31m 31s SS
9.Sean Herbert 2h 32m OC1
10.Jamille Ruka 2h 40m 08s OC1
11.Richard Pehi 2h 40m 18s (veteran) OC1
12.Sean Murphy 2h 40m 39s (Veteran) SS
13.Paul Gillard 2h 40m 40s (Veteran) SS
14.Tonga White 2h 44m 30s (veteran) OC1
15.Gordon McKay 2h 45m 20s (veteran) OC1
16.John Hammond 2h 45m 37s (veteran) OC1
17.Adrian Horsfield 2h 51m 44s OC1
18.Craig McLeod 2h 51m 49s SS
19.Bruce Colebaker 2h 55m 50s SS
20.Tony Bateup 2h 55m 53s SS
21.Amanda Wheatley 2h 55m 56s OC1
22.Kraig Cornwall 2h 55m 56s OC1
23.Mike Pirritt 2h 55m 57s SUP
24.Mike Weiss 2h 57m 52s OC1
25.Marchand Le Roux 2h 59m 09s SS
26.Nigel Draper and Birgit Meister 2h 57m 54s (OC2 mixed)
27.TK Tuhaka 3h 0m 49s OC1
28.Kafoa Latu 3h 1m 40s (veteran) OC1
29.Hans Wannemacher 3h 03m 04s SUP
30.Hiria Rolleston 3h 4m 16s OC1
31.Ngaire Pehi 3h 4m 17s OC1
32.Danelle Snowden 3hrs 14m 20s SS
33.Matt Kensington 3h 5m 08s (veteran) OC1
34.Sam Johnston 3h 05m 45s SUP
35.Danelle Snowden 3hrs 14m 20s SS
36.Justin Davies 3h 15m 40s OC1
37.Simon Woods 3h 16m 48s SS
38.Nyree King 3h 17m 34s OC1
39.Alex Huffadine 3hrs 19m 29s SS
40.Brianna Orams 3h 21m 45s SUP
41.Hilton Leith 3h 36m 25s SUP
42.Tinikai Rolleston 3h 37m 21s OC1
43.Will Phillips 3h 39m 46s OC1
44.David Cracknell 3h 39m 57s SUP
45.Lynee Patterson 3hrs 47m 43s SS
Jason Clough DNF SUP
Mitch Zandstra DNF OC1
Shayne Edmondson DNF SS
Graham Payn DNS SS
Ian Lawson DNS OC1
Tony Loretz DNS OC1
Mike Ward DNS SS
Rachel Clarke DNS SS
Andy Palmer DNS SS
Nick Roberts DNS SS
Matt Randall DNS SS
Michael Venis DNS SS
Martin Knoche DNS SS
Neil Taylor DNS SS
Mike Van Niekirk DNS SS
Shane Murrell DNS SUP
Nicky Kingi DNS OC1
Micky Kingi DNS OC1
Andrew Roy DNS SS