Austcham Paddle Club races Outrigger Canoeing (OC). Outrigger Canoeing are based on a traditional Polynesian design which have a hull (va’a) connected to an ama by two iakos. The most common classes of OC to race are the six, two and single seaters, popularly known as OC6, OC2 and OC1.
OC racing happens all around the world, but is especially popular in Hawaii, Tahiti, Cook Islands, New Zealand, Southern California and North-East Australia.
Typical race distances are from 500m sprints to 44km marathons, although some multi-day races can cover over 400km. OC6 races are either “iron” where the one crew remains in the boat or “change” where a team of 9 or 10 crews the boat, swapping in the water from a support boat as the canoe is moving.
Austcham Paddle Club has been regularly competing in local Singapore OC races since 2008, and in 2010 sent teams to the Australian National Championships, Gold Coast Cup and Hong Kong Around the Island Race. In 2013, the team again sent two 10-crew teams to Hong Kong and in 2016 won HK ATIR mixed category.
OC is held at Sentosa, with weekday training both early in the morning and late in the afternoon, as well as weekend sessions, when we head out on longer paddles around some of the offshore islands.
Paddlers who are interested in having a go in the outrigger should contact the club directly before coming down. New participants will be given a simple five-minute swim test, which they may complete with or without a life jacket.