The link is somewhat... boney... but has been explained.
It's on for young and old this weekend in Hawaii, with the 16th annual Molokai to Oahu paddling championships.
In what may well be the most anticipated SUP event of the year, the M2O is always an epic tale of hardship, endurance and determination as paddlers battle their way across the Ka'iwi channel between Molokai and Oahu. The channel is pretty hairy as far as passages go. Winds are always strong, in excess of 30 knots at times. Combine that with the large swell and hungry pack of paddlers behind you, you get one of the best races in the world.
Controversial this year, is the event poster (adjacent). The skeletons paddling both a paddleboard, and stand up paddle board seem a little weird for a Hawaiian event, but was further explained by a Seabreeze.com.au user this week on the forums.
"The stretch of water is also known as the Channel of Bones for its centuries old reputation for having claimed the lives of many, including ancient canoe fleets and modern-day fisherman and watermen. At a depth of 701 meters or 2,300 feet, ocean currents and varying swell heights are squeezed through the two islands creating turbulent water conditions."
With that cleared up, attention has now turned to the fact that Jamie Mitchell doesn't seem to be entering the race this year! The 10 time paddleboard champion is famous in this event, and was in form to take the stand up paddling title this year, after making the switch to the fresh new sport last year.
The paddlers to look out for with Jamie out of the game, will be Scott Gamble, Connor Baxter, Dave Kalama and if the wind is light, then Kai Lenny might also be in the running. We could speculate all day, but the real action will be happening this weekend and we'll bring you all the action next week once results are finalised.