Thursday, November 13, 2014

Magheroarty, Mexico, Maui & Irish SUP champion!

Oh Lord I've done it again.... I've left a major hiatus in updating this bloggy thing, yikes! Sorry friends! Agh well, sure hopefully it's worth the wait! Here's a bombardment of photos to document the last few months for your viewing pleasure!
Well I guess I've been mostly working, sailing, SUPing, surfing and competing over the last few months!
I have been so unbelievably privileged to have joined the Starboard Dream Team for windsurfing and I've just had a delivery of my 2015 wood quads in 74L and 69L. These babies are AMAZING! I have already had some insanely good trips up North to Magheroarty on them and I am so stoked for a Winter at home training on them. Happy Bunny!
Here are a few photos (thanks for Finn Mullen and Michael Clancy for taking them) from the Magheroarty Classic and some free sailing days!

Poor Quality shot but taking a beating on a monster!

The Magheroarty Classic was an amazing event organised by Tomasz Lotoki and showcased the best of Irish Windsurfing talent in the best of Irish Windsurfing conditions. Such a tour de force of sailors turned out from every corner of Ireland and abroad and made it a very respectable, professional event. Steve Thorp totally ripped and claimed the title from Timo Mullen in a really tightly contested final. Massive thanks to Tom, all his staff and the judges for making it such a phenomenal success with the Irish windsurfing family 2014 reunion!

So then I guess I should mention MEXICO!! Such an inspirational group of women competing at the highest standard possible. The AWT ladies are my best friends and they represent talent at the upper echelons of both male and female sailing tempered with a grace, elegance and kindness which makes them truly unique! I was thrilled to make the final and to take 4th behind Ingrid Larouche 3rd, Sarah Hauser 2nd and Fiona Wylde 1st.

Also on the agenda over the last few months has been competing in SUP. Both racing and surf. The SUP scene in Ireland is growing from strength to strength and I feel very lucky to be a part of a unique community of people who are pioneering our sport in Ireland. I am so very grateful to all the organisers of the National and fun racing and surf events that we have had over the last few months. They generously give of their time and make very professional events happen! I am proud to say my results this year include: 1st Lady Irish SUP Surf Nationals, 1st Lady Irish SUP Technical Race, 1st Lady Irish SUP Surf Classic; Aughris Co.Sligo, 1st Lady Battle for the Bay; SUP survivor race, 1st Lady Battle for the Bay; SUP marathon race. All achieved using my amazing KeNalu SUP paddles and Starboard 8'0 pro and 12'6 raceboards!

Finn won the overall men's title too!

Huge thanks to Emmet O'Doherty for organising the racing in Bundoran!

Huge thank you to Paul Byrne and the crew of the Battle of the Bay

Incredible group of Irish Women taking their SUP skills and Irish Women's SUP to the next level!!
And lastly it has been on to Maui this last week for a chance to catch up with my extended family in my second home. Huge surf has hit this week with Jaws going off and I got to catch some swell of my own at Lanes with some friends and also to party in style with all my AWT Bestie Girls! 

Here's a little nugget I caught at Lanes.... just up the road Jaws was firing!

Hanging out with my AWT/PWA girls at the 2014 closing ceremony, stunners!!

See ya next time!

Friday, August 15, 2014


Aghhhhh!! Finally I can let the world know... I've just been signed to the Starboard International Dream Team!! I am beyond words to describe how honoured and proud I am to now be representing such a stellar windsurfing brand. It literally is a dream come true. Ever since I first started windsurfing I have aspired to sail like the Starboard riders. Without a doubt they have been my greatest windsurfing influences. And so now to be a part of the team leaves me utterly speechless and overwhelmed with happiness. Here's to some epic windsurfing ahead!! Thank you to all at Starboard for making this happen. I am STOKED!!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Voya Days..... and other adventures

Well at least this blog isn't quite as tardy/overdue as my other entries..... Dear diary, it's been 2 months since my last blog post...... not bad by my usual standards!
So where to start... well I guess the biggest news would be in relation to Voya Organic Beauty. Last month I was announced as their new (and first) brand ambassador. YAY!

Here's a collection of the piccies from the photoshoot....

I can't even begin to describe how happy and honored I am to have been chosen as their new brand Ambassador.  Voya is a company that represents all that I love and respect most in life. They are an organic company which is family owned and run, based in Sligo in the West of Ireland, 100% sustainable and carbon neutral.... and most importantly, their core ingredient originates in the wild Atlantic Ocean..... Seaweed!! Having met and worked with Mark and Kira and all the team at Voya I can safely say that there is no other product with which I have felt such an affinity or garnered such a level of respect for. I am so proud to be associated with Voya not only because of their ethos as a company but also because the products REALLY WORK! 
As your typical windsurfer/surfer I have exposed my skin and hair to some pretty harsh conditions.... from the wild, cold Atlantic, to the warm, salty Pacific; I've definitely tested my exterior to the max! A mixture of ignorance and time constraints had up til now herded me away from beauty products and complex beauty regimes.... Oh how naive I was! The last few months I've been using Voya religiously and I am now fully converted to the Church of Organic Beauty care! Contrary to what I would have had myself believe, taking care of my skin and my hair is not the most arduous task in the world.... it's actually great fun :-) Starting my day with a quick facial wash using Cast Away cleansing wash followed by a touch of Me Time Moisturiser sets me up for the day feeling clean and fresh. During the day in the hospital or on and off the water I use Balmalicious for my super chapped lips. Then in the evenings I use Cleanse and Mend to remove my makeup and cleanse at the same time, a quick spray of Ritzy Spritzy toner and then a drop of My Little Hero serum send me to bed with yummy, clean, glowing skin :-) My other 2 saviours are Softly Does It for my legs after the shower or after a long day in the sea and sun and Forget Me Knot conditioner which basically salvages my hair from a dreadlock massacre into a silky smooth tangle-free head of hair :-)
Take a look at the video here from the photoshoot session for a wee gander at what went on behind the scenes... (being pampered and preened is definitely not my usual day-in-the life but something I could definitely get used to!)

So I guess also in other news..... I was also extremely honored and proud to have won Outsider Magazine's Breakthrough Performance of the Year award in December!!! YEWWW! Pretty excited about the win and so unbelievably honored to have been included in the category with such other amazing nominees. It was a savage night and I got to share it with all the Outsider Magazine crew, my amazing Mum and Sister and a bunch of really inspirational, like-minded people who've been pushing Irish adventure and sport over this past year :-) THANK YOU Outsider Magazine!!

In more news I am STOKED to now be the proud owner of this pimp new SUP paddle from KeNalu, Thank You Ed and KeNalu.... this wee sweeping stick is awesome!!

And naturally in between all my new very important beauty regimes I'm still managing to squeeze in some water time..... here's some Magheroarty craic.... bloody cold!

More of the same freezing fun times up North

Did I mention it was cold?!?!?

Like well proper cold!!!

Cheeky screen grab from a video shot up North

And lastly I got to venture over to Cornwall last weekend and catch up with all the crew from the Red Bull Storm Chase for their final mission. It was an insane event with Brawzhino, Leon and Dany going nuts in the hurricane style conditions.... but it was this guy here, the uber talented and fully crazy in the head sailor Mr. Thomas Traversa who took the win. Super nice guy, super talented and a very good friend of Mikey's.... who I know was smiling down on them from above and egging them on to go higher and harder.

Well sin e for now amigos.... don't forget to follow me on Twitter.... far more frequently updated than this old thing!! @katiemcanena

Thursday, December 5, 2013

I Guess I've Been A Liiiiiiiittle Bit Busy; Sorry Mr.Blog!!

Halooooooooha friends,
Eeep, it's been far far too long since I wrote a blog entry, my bad :-( Apologies for being slack on it. I'd blame my new job only I'd be afraid the powers that be might see this and I'd only be hurting their feelings........ so I'll blame myself and my complete inability to multitask.... Doctor + Windsurfer does not = decent Blogger. New Year's resolution; Must try harder!!!
Jeez where to start. These last 5 months have been nuts. Back at work full time as a doctor and trying to squeeze in water-time and comps has definitely meant my social life (and blogging career!) have taken a back seat. Gone are the lazy days of eat, windsurf, SUP, sleep, eat, beer, repeat. I've kept the eat part.....naturally, and the sleep part......standard, but I've replaced all the other fun stuff with work. So today friends I'm going to write a blog all about a day-in-the-life of a junior doctor; so interesting really..... a tantalising read ahead...... work, work, work, work, work, work,
HA! Just kidding, that crap's well boring. I'll just post some photos of me having some epic fun on the water here at home on my brand new custom Moo 72L Quad and Hot Sails Maui Firelights..... yewww!

Magheroarty Sessions August '13
Do you think the boat can see me?? Eeeeep!
In nice and deep ;-)
 Run Katie Run!
 Huge THANK you to Al Bennett for the shots :-)

 Aragh I suppose I did get sooooooome socialising in ;-)......
 DanDan Gardner, my brother from another mother, ripper windsurfer and SUPer

Festivals in Ireland are epic! Especially when its 28degrees and sunny

I've also had some insanely fun sessions up North over the last few months. We had the Irish SUP contest in Strandhill (my new home as of January '14, yeeeeahhhh!). Won by Finn Mullen, and an epic weekend with mates from around Ireland

SUP Buddies for life ;-) HA!

Got my brand new handmade HUKU longboard too..... it's class! Took her for her inaugural spin that day, pretty much my first time ever on a me this thing is FAST! Just ask my right hip which took the brunt of a downhill mistake last week, fully creamed myself, I'm such a kook

Kooksville. Population; me

Had a fun Northerly session in Strandhill too this Summer, bit of fun jumping, mixed with some zero temp hail showers and squalls.... standard Ireland ;-)

No Dougall, that cow is small, this cow is just faaaaaar away

More socialising for Shell's bday.....maybe I get out more than I thought...... ;-)

Then in September it was time for the Magheroarty Wave Classic in Memory of Mikey Clancy. It was an amazing event, hosted by Tom Lotocki and a huge crew of volunteers. The event was insanely successful with 50 people entering and guys coming from the UK to compete, including Timo Mullen who went on to win the event. It was super emotional for everyone involved but particularly for Mikey's beautiful family who came to remember Mikey with us and to scatter his ashes in a stunning ceremony on the beach. The sun came out and we all held hands and walked into the water as Bernie and Sean brought Mikey back to where he belongs. His favorite beach in Ireland, his favorite place in the world. Rest in Peace there Mikey, a part of you will always be there with us now.

Me and Michael Sn. 

Me with Bernie and Michael, Mikey's parents. And Rob Jones (Irish Wave Champ 2013!) and Danny. Sean and Alessio were there too :-) So good to hang out with Mikey's family and share his memories
He is painfully missed 

Here are some photos of me sailing my heats...... thanks to Finn and Stephen for the shots. I love the island in the background.....makes it look fully Irish ;-)

Amigos :-)

I also had a few more media escapades over the last few months. 
Here's the link to the Windsurf Magazine article from Jaws..... really stoked to have been included in the piece featuring my heroes- Brawzhino, Bouji, Ezzy, Katchadorian, Dany Bruch and Kauli Seadi

Here's a piccie of an article Sasha Leitner wrote for Women's Surf Style Magazine about me. Sasha's based on Oahu and rips on the water while doubling up as a bikini designer and journalist on the side, hero! 

I also did an interview with the guys from the What If Adventure Film Festival about the general goings on on my life and my adventures on Maui. Have a listen to the podcast if you have the time;

Then I guess I just kept on the adventuring in Ireland. With the insanely hot Summer we had it meant that the Autumn water temps were sooooo nice! Really balmy :-) As I've always said, I am so fortunate to have been able to travel the world.... but when you have the variety and consistency of conditions on your doorstep and you can share them with your best mates, sure why would you need to go anywhere else?!!
Here's one day in Clare.... wee windsurf in Fanore, then a wee surf at Doonbeg with my besties :-)

Nuts Irish Squall passing by in the distance

Paddle Air Guitar.... The 'Sam Bittner Special'!

Then for a little bit of a 'cultural' experience I went to Israel for a week with my Mum and sister......such an incredible country. Ate my body weight in falafel and hummus (standard) and finally did a trip that didn't involve being on the water, which was really refreshing and totally eye-opening

Taking a dip in the River Jordan

Dinner in Tel Aviv :-)

Then it was off on another mission to try track down the big winter storm that was headed for the south west coast of England....perfectly coinciding with the BWA Cornwall event;
The event was great craic and such a hoot to catch up with all my UK amigos, especially the ladies' fleet which this year was stacked with talent. I wasn't very lucky in my heats but that's contests for ya. Stoked for Debbie for taking the win, Justyna 2nd and Sarah 3rd. Awesome girls and brilliant competition!

Here are some action shots from the big day of comp at Gwithian, Huge thank you to the photographer!

Sequence of me on a biggy ;-)

Trying to jump over Ross! ;-)

The next day I went to Marazion...... and took a beating!! HAHAHAHAHA! Owie ;-)



And then I guess my last most recent escapades have been with my amigo Josh Sampiero who came to visit Ireland and share some green, empty Irish waves with me.... along with some yummy Guinness times

 Me on a cold, sunny peak at Magheroarty.
There's no place like HOME!
Thank you Finn for all the photos and all the adventures..... but mostly, for all the food!

So there ya have it amigos..... I guess life aint so bad at all at all. I'm one lucky bunny to be here at home with all my friends and family and collegues and most importantly, a vast expanse of coast line in my back garden to play with........ And all I need is a fleece vest, 5/4mm wetsuit, hood, booties, gloves...... Ok, maybe I miss Maui a little bit. But only a little ;-)

Till next time friends! Be sure to follow me on Twitter for much more up to date craic and photos! @katiemcanena