Please select your home edition
Zhik 2018 Hyeres 728x90

Chris Rashley makes his mark on a new sport

by Liz Rushall 12 May 09:00 PDT
Olympic sailor Chris Rashley swaps the Nacra 17 for a SUP in the Battle of the Thames © Geoff Mather

Top level paddle board racing complements Olympic class sailing

It is becoming increasingly understood that more young people and the Millennial generation are choosing to get involved in a variety of active sports. This trend seems to be true for some of our competitive Olympic class sailors too.

As well as training for the Nacra 17 class for the British Sailing Team's bid for the Tokyo Games in 2020, Britain's four times Moth European Champion, Chris Rashley, has been quietly training for another sport over the winter. So, when he's not sailing he's out on his SUP (stand up paddleboard).

Chris has already hit the podium at the Battle of the Thames, part of the GB SUP 2019 series. Starting from Thames Sailing Club in Surbiton the event is held over a ten mile out and back course to Hampton Court Palace.

For Chris this was his first major flat water SUP race, where he finished third overall, ahead of some 200 competitors, after leading the race for over a lap. Chris then took another third place on the podium at the Cardiff 10k GB SUP series race one week later.

From his sailing kit bag, Chris was wearing his Zhik Z-Skin hybrid top, an ultra-thin 0.3mm stretch neoprene that sheds water. Teamed with Hydrophobic Fleece pants, a soft thermal, high stretch fleece with a water repellent outer. Chris comments, "I'm loving the SUP as I can do this when it's too light or too windy to sail the Nacra 17. The athleticism required to paddle, balance and steer a SUP at this level is not dissimilar from the intense activity levels needed for Nacra sailing.

"SUP racing really complements my love of water and develops my sailing skills too. On the board you really have to read the water, appreciate the chop and adjust your balance. It was cold and windy at the Battle of the Thames, so I needed gear to keep me warm, that was low windage, and did not restrict my movement. My Zhik gear was perfect choice for this flat water race."

So now, when it's too windy for Nacra sailing, the SUP circuit need to look out for top competition from the sailing fraternity!

Related Articles

Father's Days gifts from Zhik
Get ready for 16 June with these great ideas For the trapeze sailing Dad, the new T3 Harness has excellent back and hip support, with plenty of adjustment available. We also have gifts for the Dad into paddle boarding, and the environmentally concerned Dad. Posted on 6 Jun
Eco Spandex - The Recycled Rashie
For sailors who care about the environment For sailors who care about the environment, Zhik have added to their ecological performance wetsuit range with the launch of the ECO Spandex Top. Posted on 3 Jun
Zhik's new P1 PFD Performance Vest: USCG Approved!
Designed for active sailing and watersports New in the Zhik range for small boat sailing, frostbiting and watersports is the USCG certified version of their popular performance P1 PFD (personal flotation device). Posted on 29 May
Improved Zhik Deck Shorts for hours afloat
New range is quick dry and easy to wear Zhik's new, improved technical Deck Shorts are for sailors putting in the hours afloat. Whether cruising or racing for long hours, your shorts need to be comfortable, unrestricting and able to deflect water. Posted on 25 Apr
Zhik 2019 range – available now!
Innovation and safety the key drivers Innovating to keep sailors performing their best is one of the key drivers for Zhik in their product design. Posted on 8 Apr
All purpose G1 Sailing Gloves from Zhik
The latest addition to Zhik's growing range of performance sailing gloves The latest addition to Zhik's growing range of performance sailing gloves. Zhik's G1 Gloves are intended for the sailing enthusiast, warm weather and general protection. Posted on 19 Mar
The sailor Made for Water
We speak to Alan Roberts Alan Roberts is a wide-ranging watersports enthusiast, offshore sailor, dinghy sailor, SUP-er and kayaker - someone who uses a diverse range of kit while out on the water. Posted on 13 Mar
Preview Zhik's new breathable drysuit
For Adult and Junior Sailors at the RYA Dinghy Show Zhik are previewing their new breathable Drysuit for adults and junior sailors at the RYA Dinghy Show. Further to Zhik's extensive work on dry smocks with durable neck and wrist seals for ocean racing, the new breathable Drysuit is an obvious next step. Posted on 25 Feb
Zhik's new ECO wetsuits first UK preview
Take a look at the RYA Dinghy Show On show for the first time in the UK at the RYA Dinghy Show, Zhik's new ECO technical wetsuits look set to change the face of performance sailing wear for the future. Posted on 21 Feb
Zhik 2018 Dongfeng 728x90 BOTTOMZhik 2018 Kollition 728x90 BOTTOMZhik 2018 Yacht 728x90 BOTTOM