Since picking up a paddle, Annabel has left a trail of dominance across the sport of stand up paddling.
From becoming the first (and only) female to win a world cup overall beating her male counterparts by over 6 minutes in France in 2012 she has not only found herself sharing the men’s podium on countless occasions but has dominated the women’s side of the sport with consistency year after year from open ocean to surf racing, downwind to flat water and technical river events.
In 2017 Annabel has continued to be on the tear. From never being off the top of the podium on the water, she has mirrored the same racing mountain bikes on the dirt as well as cutting shapes in the multisport world with a strong showing at Red Bull Defiance a two day, two person multi discipline event in Lake Wanaka, New Zealand.
Coming off her 7th consecutive NZ National SUP title in March, Annabel took out an unprecedented and incredible 5th consecutive Carolina Cup Title in late April, which she backed the following week with victory in her maiden appearance at the prestigious Olukai Ho’olaule’a event on Maui.
Annabel took this momentum all the way to Bermuda and notched up her 3rd major win in 3 weeks not only winning, but winning overall (beating the first male by over 15 mins) at the Devil’s Isle Challenge a 30 miles slog around the Great Sound in 25-30 knot winds that were predominantly from the wrong direction.
The Ghost Ryder Downwinder, a 15 mile downwind race along the coast of Santa Cruz in Northern California notched up Annabel’s 3rd victory at this event as well taking out the overall line honours for the event notching up the 7th time in her career as well as consecutive events that she has overcome her male counterparts for the overall event win.
From the ocean, the end of Spring signalled a switch from the ocean to the mountains, racing moving to the dirt and rivers.
Not one to rest in her comfort zone, Annabel threw herself into everything the Mountain Games had to offer, competing across 11x events in four days across White water SUP & Kayak, trail running, road cycling and mountain biking.
Notching up wins in the SUP Downriver Sprint (her win in the Expert MTB X Country Race was disregarded after an administration error), top 5’s in the Rocky Dog 5k, Apres 5k and Pepi’s Face Off as well as top 10 in the Volvo Road Bike Time Trial saw Annabel agonisingly close to taking out the overall Ultimate Mountain Challenge for the 2017 games, only for her XC MTB Race to be discounted and finish runner up by 1 point. Her performances to compete with the best across all events did not go unnoticed and garnered the awe of spectators and media alike.
Backing up this feat of mountain athletics was a first trip to The Jay Race in Capitola, Northern California where she cemented another resounding win at the 16th running of the annual event that is held in honour of Jay Moriarty for the benefit of the Jay Moriarty Foundation.
At the half way point of 2017, Annabel has a huge back half of the year ahead.
Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Champs in Hawaii beckons at the end of July as well as ISA World Champs in Denmark in early September as well as a number of other major international events during July, August and September across mainland USA, Hawaii and Europe.
You can be sure that one thing is for sure – her prowess on the water and the dirt will continue leaving a wake and a trail of dust behind her.
Some of Annabel’s career highlights include:
- 2017 Current World #1
- 2016 Year End World #1
- 2016 Female of the Year (Supracer.com)
- 2016 Female Performance of the Year
- World #1 Female – since 2012 & consecutively since rankings began
- 5x consecutive victories at Carolina Cup (2013/2014/2015/2016/2017)
- 2x Battle of the Paddle Champion (2012/2013)
- only person to ever complete the double/double Technical and Distance race titles back to back
- 2011 3rd
- 2015 2nd
- 2x Stand Up World Series Champion 2012/2013 – unbeaten throughout
- 7x consecutive NZ SUP Champion (2011/2012/2013/2014/2015/2016/2017)
- 6x King of the Harbour Ocean Race Champion (2011/2012/2013/2014/2015/2016)
- 2x Columbia Gorge Paddle Challenge Champion (2014/2015)
- 1st Female to Stand Up Paddle across Cook Strait, NZ
- 2014 Central Otago Sports Awards – Overall Champion Sportsperson
- Female Athlete of the Year – the SUP Awards 2013
- Female Performance of the Year – the SUP Awards 2013
- Top 3 Female Athlete of the Year – the SUP Awards 2012-2016
- Molokai 2 Oahu World Paddleboard Championships
- 2015 Stock champion (2nd overall)
- 2016 2nd
Not a one-trick-pony Annabel has come to be feared when she switches boards for bikes and in summer of 2016-2017 she hasn’t missed a podium as well as taking line honours in both the CamelBak Big Easy and The Ruapehu Express setting a new course record by over 18mins.