GBROC 2020 + mini G
Celebrating 10 years of salt, sweat and tears
It’s hard to believe it’s been 10 years since Hekili OCC put forward a bold, new event on the Australian race calendar. We wanted to test paddlers, physically and mentally, in a way they’d never been challenged before – and so, the Great Barrier Reef Ocean Challenge (GBROC) was born. At 45 kilometres, it remains Australia’s longest, most gruelling iron event along one of the stunning stretches of coastline from Yorkeys Knob, Cairns to Four Mile Beach, Port Douglas. What a pity most paddlers don’t have time to take in the scenery!
In the past decade GBROC has pushed more than 1000 competitors, including some of Australia’s most elite paddlers, to the limit. Most have completed the course but even those who didn’t can be proud to say they had a crack! Yes, there has been tears… but mainly of joy when you sight the palm-fringed beach at Four Mile and know the finish line is finally in sight!
Now, in 2020, Hekili OCC is celebrating the achievement of TEN YEARS OF SALT, SWEAT AND TEARS with GBROC 2020 – followed by a big party in Port Douglas and mini G (18km). This year the changeover format is open to all craft (OC6, OC1, OC2, OC3, ski, SUP) – with own support boats – as well as the iron event which is supported. Recently, some have raised concerns about crocodiles and stingers. It’s true our part of the world is considered a crocodile habitat. But the reality is, the majority of our paddlers who train three to four times a week have NEVER seen a croc, let alone encountered one on the open ocean. Box jellyfish frequent our water between November and May – there is zero risk in August – and stinger protection is second nature for paddlers during the season. Safety is our first priority. But experience tells us managing hydration and fatigue are far more pertinent considerations for paddlers in this event!
Most of all we want to make paddling in paradise as easy and trouble-free as possible. Contact Us or Sue Lockwood on 0438 129 575 for more information. Importantly, August is ‘peak’ season in Port Douglas so book your accommodation now. We don’t want you to miss the action, or fun, of GBROC 2020!