Monday, November 30, 2020

Coronado Outrigger Club Makes a Winning Splash in Hawaii

Outrigger race participants swap places throughout the race to share in the paddling efforts Photo provided by James Lee

On Saturday, September 14th members of the Coronado Outrigger Club traveled to the Aloha State to compete in The Pailolo Challenge, a 26-mile inter-island channel crossing canoe race that spans the distance between the island of Maui and the island of Molokai.

- Advertisement -

The Outrigger Hoe Wana’ao Junior Mixed Team take first place in The 2019 Pailolo Challenge in Hawaii. Photo provided by James Lee.

The Coronado Club known as “Outrigger Hoe Wana’ao” was represented in the international race by an adult women’s team and mixed juniors’ team of boys and girls aged 15-18. The race, organized and staffed by the Hawaiian Canoe Club, attracts competitors from across Hawaii, the USA, Canada, and Australia. This year, the competition saw 82 canoe crews competing in the race.

The Outrigger Hoe Wana’ao women’s team. Photo provided by James Lee

Coronado club member James Lee, whose wife Janice and son Micah both participated in the race, supported from the ‘sidelines’ which in the case of outrigger canoeing is the accompanying escort boat.

“The race is known as a 9-man challenge,” explains James. “Even though there are only six seats on the boat, because the race is so long, the team has the option of switching people out periodically. When a change happens, the new paddler has to jump off the escort boat and catch and climb aboard the canoe while it’s still moving. The paddler being replaced jumps out of the canoe just moments before their replacement jumps in. The paddler then waits to get picked up by the escort boat.” See video below:

Without the aid of mechanical devices or attachments for powering or steering, the teams relied on teamwork and grit to paddle the distance for almost five consecutive hours.

The Outrigger Hoe Wana’ao Junior Mixed Team for the 2019 Pailolo Challenge Photo provided by James Lee

The Coronado junior division team took first place in the competition with a total race time of 4:42:01. The women’s team finished tenth in their division with a time of 4:51:24.

The Outrigger Ho Wana’ao Club was founded in 2014 by a group of paddlers who shared a vision to establish a program for children and adults that:

helps to instill the values of Respect, Loyalty, Responsibility, Trust, Friendship, Fairness, and Teamwork which all come with paddling outrigger. We strive to teach and perpetuate the cultural significance of outrigger canoe paddling and are committed to both our members and the community at large. We believe that paddling together builds a strong sense of purpose and friendship that is hard to find elsewhere. –

The club is located at the Coronado Boathouse on Glorietta Bay and is a member of the Southern California Outrigger Racing Association (SCORA).



Support Coronado Journalism

Your support will help to expand coverage of the issues, people and events happening in our Coronado community. Local news matters!
Support The Coronado Times

Keep it civil. Comments may be removed or closed if they violate Terms of Service.

Aimee Richer
Aimee Richer
Aimee was a ‘nado Navy baby in the 1970s, where her love for adventure and travel began. After growing up and finishing college in the Midwest, Aimee spent more than a decade living and traveling overseas. She returned to the US in 2009, and made her way back to Coronado to raise her own baby – now a first grader at Village Elementary. Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to:


Use Our Money to Improve Our Lives

Submitted by Barry & Susan AustinIn the Eagle last week, Councilmembers Heinze and Sandke asked for feedback about how some of our...

Election Integrity

Submitted by Frank CorahIt is vitally important in this contentious Presidential election that the American people, regardless of their political persuasion, trust the election...

Fate of The Ferry Landing Marketplace at Risk

Submitted by Marilyn FieldBad news for those who appreciate the quirky charms of The Ferry Landing Marketplace buildings: their fate is hanging in the...

This Isn’t Coronado

Submitted by Carolyn RogersonRecently Coronado has been in local news and national social media for a sad, shocking reason. Those who would not like...


City of Coronado Partners with CSU Long Beach’s Shark Lab to Tag Sharks

The City of Coronado is partnering with CSU Long Beach’s shark lab to learn more about the local shark population. This comes after an...

Meet Annika Laughlin – Emerald Keeper of the Month!

If you want to feel hopeful about the future, spend a few minutes chatting with Annika Laughlin, Coronado High School graduate, class of 2020!...

Coronado Teen Publishes Book of Short Stories: “The End of Heaven”

Coronado local and high School junior Jamie Piearcy spent quarantine time writing her first book, The End Of Heaven: Explore the Depravity of True...

Coronado’s Amanda Russell Makes the Holidays Shine Brighter with Christmas Giving

A child needs new eyeglasses for school, but his parents can't afford them. A father can't drive to work because the family car is...

Home in Coronado for the Holidays

There is no place like “Home in Coronado for the Holidays” and the City is working on plans for free activities for the entire...