Barrigada, GUAM - The Guam Kayak and Canoe Federation will play host this weekend to the 13th annual Micronesia Cup. Over 30 outrigger canoe teams from Guam, Saipan, Palau, Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, and Hawaii will compete in this year's event. From October 28 through October 30, Guam will witness some of the fastest, toughest outrigger canoe action the region has seen, with both sprint and distance races set to take place over the weekend.
"The Micro Cup has become a rare opportunity to showcase Guam's national sport," says Joe John Mantanona, President, Guam Kayak and Canoe Federation. "These fun and competitive outrigger canoe races have allowed us to share our rich seafaring heritage with the rest of the world. Additionally funds earned from the event are used to cover expenses for the Guam National teams Guam High School league."
The Micronesia Cup was introduced shortly after Guam participated in the first ever outrigger canoe races held on Guam in the 1994 Micronesia Game. As the Guam paddling population became more competitive, the Cup was introduced as a way to have local teams race against other teams in the Pacific.
The event was first organized in guam in 1999 as a Bay-to-Bay race. Starting off at Merizo, paddlers would then proceed to Umatac Bay then Sella Bay and finished off at Agat Bay. When the competition began attracting an international pool of paddling athletes, the Cup expanded into a regional canoe race. Island nations Palau and Saipan came on-board as co-hosts. This allowed visiting teams to experience different race venues and cultures in Micronesia.
The three islands would take turns hosting the event. For its 13th year, the Cup once again comes home to Guam. Historically, Guam is the largest among the three venues. Last year, the event was held in Palau while Saipan plays host in 2012.
The event kicks off Friday, October 28 at the Matapang Beach in Tumon. Opening ceremonies are scheduled to begin at 1:30pm.
Information from a press release.