Making big waves in Hawaii

A local paddler is making big waves in Hawaii.

Leanne Stanley took to the blue waters of Hawaii in her outrigger canoe last weekend to race 40 kilometres from Maui to Molokai.

With a time of three hours, eight minutes and 38.35 seconds, the Kelowna Paddle Centre member finished third in the women's 18-39 age group, and was the seventh woman overall to finish the challenging race.

“I’m super stoked with how I performed,” said Stanley. “The fact that I came home with a medal is a bonus.”

The race, which sees participants navigate the channel between the two islands, was a challenging one, featuring large swells, wind and ocean currents.

“Conditions were big. They were fast,” said Stanley. “We also had a few sections where there was an absolute downpour of rain and even starting off we couldn’t see the island ahead of us that we were going to because of the cloud and fog.”

Stanley is only just getting started though, as she prepares for the 51.4-kilometre Molokai to Oahu race on May 4.

“My whole goal going down for this event was to get experience because I didn’t know what I didn’t know. But now I have a better idea of how can I better prepare next time around,” she said. “Finishing the race I still felt strong. I felt I could go longer.”

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