SHAW AND PARTNERS WA RACE WEEK TO BE TELEVISED IN GROUNDBREAKING DOCUMENTARY
All of the action from the richest week in surfski history, November’s Shaw and Partners WA Race Week and the iconic finale The Doctor, will be captured in a one-hour television documentary to be broadcast across Australia and internationally.
A five-member production team will track the adventures of the 500-strong field, hailing from all corners of the globe, as they contest the five races of the Shaw and Partners WA Race Week.
With the biggest prize pool ever offered in paddling history – a staggering $265,000 – racing will be intense. The documentary will cover that from all angles, as well as showcase our sport’s unique culture and community, along with its colourful characters – from teenagers through to the old dogs of the ocean.
The documentary is made possible by the investment of Shaw and Partners Financial Services, with event organiser Oceanpaddler partnering with The Paddler Productions to create the TV spectacular.
In a major coup, the show will be broadcast free-to-air on Australia’s Nine Network over the coming summer. International broadcast arrangements are being made to ensure viewers from around the globe can embrace the racing.
“We are so excited about this TV project,” said Earl Evans, co-CEO of Shaw and Partners. “Surfski paddling is a challenging sport to watch as a spectator, so this production has the potential to attract so many new paddlers, fans and ultimately, sponsors.
“Competitors will be racing for $265,000 in prize money, equal for both men and women with the same prize money, same course and same opportunity.
“This production is a major investment for Shaw and Partners but it’s one that we’re thrilled to be making. Paddling is such a great sport and we want to share it with the world.”
The announcement adds to the already enormous plans for the 2022 Shaw and Partners WA Race Week, which begins with the Fenn West Coast Downwinder on November 19, includes two twilight races in the Dr Benjamin Hewitt Sunset Series and Friday’s Dash for Cash on Sorrento Beach.
The Saturday finale on November 26, though, is what the paddlers are eager for – the holy-grail of ocean ski racing, The Doctor.
Now in its 20th year, the 28 kilometre downwinder will see the world’s fittest ocean athletes race from Rottnest Island to Perth’s Sorrento Beach for a sizeable slice of the massive prize pool.
Race director Dean Gardiner said the TV documentary will highlight the skill of the athletes against an exquisite stage – the pristine beauty of the ocean, islands and beaches of Perth.
“The racing will be intense, and viewers will gain a unique insight into the power of paddling and the pace of these athletes, all set against the most magnificent backdrop of WA,” said Gardiner, who was born and raised in Perth.
The Paddler Productions has assembled a team that boasts considerable experience working on the biggest events in sport – the Olympics, Australia’s award-winning Supercars, the Australian Open and the Dakar Rally, among them.
Vision of the racing will be captured from all angles – land, ocean and the air, through the ‘Shaw and Partners Chopper’. Athletes will also share their experiences of the Shaw and Partners WA Race Week in a sit-down interview style format.
“This will be a level of coverage our sport hasn’t seen before,” said Sam Djodan, executive producer and The Paddler Productions director.
“There are so many incredible stories and personalities in paddling. We’ve tried to highlight this through www.thepaddler.news, but this investment from Shaw and Partners means surf ski racing can be showcased on a scale that was previously unimaginable.
“From both The Paddler Productions, and also as a paddler, I cannot thank Shaw and Partners and Oceanpaddler enough for their commitment to the sport.”
Further details of the broadcast will be communicated closer to the event. To stay up-to-date with the Shaw and Partners WA Race Week, follow Oceanpaddler’s social media channels and oceanpaddler.com
Released for the Shaw and Partners WA Race Week, The Paddler Productions, and Oceanpaddler.