Travels with Paddles

a sea kayaking journal

Axel Schoevers (Photo: A. de Krook) Name:
Axel Schoevers
Rijswijk, Zuid-Holland, Netherlands

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Worlds' biggest Cat Race

Annually Texel hosts what they call the "worlds' biggest cat race". About 500 catamarans started at 1 PM for the "Round Texel" and the first one finished 3 hours and 15 minutes later.
For sea kayakers "Round Texel" has it's own meaning. By sea kayak this is generally a weekend overnight trip or, for long distance paddlers, a one-day (11 hour or so) challenge. I paddled my first "Round Texel in one day" in 2003 with Nico and Jan. Since then Nico and Jan have done the day-trip variant regularly. The most challenging sea kayak racing event in the Netherlands is currently the "Elfstedentocht non-stop per zeekajak"; a 200 km continuous race following the same route as the legendary winter ice skating event. The last ice-skating "Elfstedentocht" was held in 1997. Warm winters have prevented another ice-skating Elfstedentocht ever since. Maybe there is a place for an annual sea kayak racing event around Texel, but definitively not on the same weekend as the cat race... I do not want to be in the claws of any big cat!

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