Named “Napoleon Dynamite” by Surfer Maga- zine, Aaron comes from a long line of famous Hawaiian watermen. The name Napoleon is well known across the country and synony- mous with water sports.
Born and raised on Oahu, Hawaii, Aaron started paddling competitively at age 10. At age 15 he was invited to surf in the Pipe Masters and at age 19, the Eddie Aikau big wave contest at Waimea. Today, at age 45, he is known as one of the best outrigger and stand up paddlers alive. After only being on a SUP board about ten times, Aaron begged contest organizers of the 2008 Quiksilver Edition Ku Ikaika Challenge, the world’s first big wave SUP competition, to let him participate. He placed first in that contest, winning a $4,000 prize, which he donated to the Jr. Lifeguard program in Hawaii. That’s just the kind of person Aaron is -- one of the best waterman in the world and one of the nicest guys you will ever meet.
The secret to Aaron’s success? He never trains and competes just for the pure enjoyment of it. While he likes to win, just having fun and enjoying himself in the water with his bros is more important to him. On days off from his full time construction job, Aaron can be found driving the North Shore look- ing for waves with his 14 year-old son Riggs, the next SUP superstar and all round excellent waterman, just like his dad and grandfather.
Born on the Big Island, Ikaika was hitting the water with his legendary father soon after he could walk. Ikaika’s family tree reads like the who’s who of Royal Hawaiian Waterman.
Honing his skills as one of the best big wave and tow in surfers in the world, he takes all that power and knowledge and applies it to the world of Stand Up Paddleboarding.
To put it bluntly, Ikaika’s a madman. He charges some of the biggest waves the planet has to offer. Whether it’s at home in the Hawaiian islands, or in an Alaskan river riding waves generated by glaciers, you can rest assured Ikaika’s going to charge. He is continuously pushing the limits of big wave SUP surfing.
Fernando started surfing when he was eight years old in his hometown of Sayulita, Mexico and was a professional short board surfer until he switched over to SUP’ing in 2009. Just two years after trying SUP, Fernando won his first SUP competition in San Clemente’s Ocean Fest for both SUP racing and surfing categories. He then went on to win in the Molokai 2 Oahu three-person team, place third in Battle of the Paddle’s long distance race, and first in both the Pacific Paddle Race and Cancun SUP Championship. Most recently, Fernando represented Mexico in the first ISA SUP World Championships in Peru.
In addition to SUP’ing Fernando is a model, surfer and spear fisherman. His goal is to win the World Championships of stand up paddle surfing next year. Fernando rides a 12’6” custom Rogue race board, and a 7’8” Rogue for SUP surfing.
Riggs Napoleon /h1>
Considering that Riggs Napoleon comes from a long line of one the greatest waterman families in Hawaii, it’s no surprise that he is following in his father’s (Aaron Napoleon) and grandfather’s (Uncle Nappy) footsteps. At just 14 years old, he is already known as the child SUP superstar of Hawaii.
At the age of 12, Riggs accomplished what most watermen on the North Shore only dream of. He competed in the kickoff event of the Waterman League’s Stand Up Paddle World Tour. He SUP surfed 8- to 10-foot waves with 32 of Hawaii’s most promising stars, most four times Rigg’s age. Napoleon shocked the crowd with his “no fear” attitude in the big surf - the same conditions his father Aaron competed in.
Riggs was also the youngest person to cross the Molokai channel in the Molokai 2 Oahu SUP Race when he was 12, and the youngest to participate in the Battle for the Paddle “Elite” Race in Dana Point when he was just 10 years old.
When he is not SUP’ing, Riggs competes in one-man canoe races across Oahu, often beating competitors three to four times his age.
Young Riggs also is proving that the coconut doesn’t fall very far from the tree when it comes to his cool, “no-nonsense” demeanor. Uncle Nappy instilled this in all of his sons, and it’s apparent Aaron has passed this admirable trait on to Riggs.
A Tahitian surf legend, Arsene was once dubbed “the Gerry Lopez of Tahiti” by surf journalist Steve Hawk.
Arsene began surfing competitively at age 12. Two years later, he won his first of 15 national Tahitian titles throughout the 70’s and 80’s. He has been featured in nearly a dozen surf movies and videos and is now considered the “godfather” of two of the gnarlyest surf spots in the world, Sapinus and Teahupoo. With ten years of SUP’ing under his belt, it’s fair to call Arsene a pioneer of the sport. Born and raised in Tahiti, his local SUP spots are Sapinus and Teahupoo. His proudest SUP moment? Getting barreled at the SUP World Tour contest last year at Sapinus.
Arsene has competed in the 2010 and 2011 SUP World Tour and looks forward to winning this year. His Rogue quiver includes an 8’0, an 8’6” and a 9’0.
A former professional surfer, Josh began standup paddling after he suffered a surfing injury in 2008. After being told his career as a professional athlete was over, Josh began to SUP as a way to get back in the water where he feels most at home. His doctor expected him to take it easy and rehabilitate after separating his spine and breaking his wrist in a motocross competition, but SUP’ing did not slow Josh down. He was soon leading the charge in SUP surfing with his aerials and other moves you would expect from a short board surfer not a guy on a 9 foot stand up paddleboard. Josh joined the Rogue SUP team in 2011 and has competed in many SUP competitions, plac- ing second in the Oceanfest SUP contest in San Clemente. This year, he will participate in the Select Stand Up World Tour Surfing Events and Flat Water Races.
He has been featured in Stand Up Paddle Magazine and The Stand Up Journal.
Josh’s favorite part about SUP’ing is that it’s a sport he can do with his wife and young son; it promotes a healthy lifestyle; and draws new people who would otherwise never participate in a water sport. For high performance surf, Josh rides the Rogue Riot 8’6” and for flat water racing the Rogue Stocker 14’ or the River Inflatable Rogue Class 5.
Born and raised in Southern California, Brennan learned to surf not long after he started walking. By the age of ten, he had transformed into an all-around young waterman with the potential and passion few possess. Brennan surfed competitively in NSSA events in Southern California until he moved to Hawaii a few years ago and fully committed to stand up paddling. In the past two years, Brennan has competed in over 20 SUP competitions, placing in the top five in over half of those races. His proudest moment was being award “Most Inspirational” in Hawaii’s Battle of the Paddle last year.
Brennan is typically on the Hawaiian waters from dusk to dawn, conducting what he calls his “physical and mental therapy.” He is currently is a SUP and surf instructor at Goofy Foot Surf School in Lahaina. When he is not in the water SUP’ing, canoeing, kayaking, surfing, fishing or diving he is cross training with a mix of running, biking and swimming to stay in optimal shape for SUP competitions. This year Brennan plans to compete in SUP competitions all over the country including the SUP World Championships.
Merrit Island, Florida
As a lifeguard in Florida, Iain is an expert in most water sports. He was an avid surfer, until he stood on an SUP for the first time as part of his lifeguard ocean rescue training, at which point he became addicted to SUP’ing. Since then, Iain has competed in several SUP races and surfing competitions. He won the East Coast Championships in 2010 and took 2nd in the same race in 2011. When Iain is not training for a SUP race, a lifeguard competition, or a Jiu Jitsu tournament, you can find him fishing off his Rogue SUP in Coco Beach. Iain chose to join Team Rogue because they have the “quickest and best looking boards water has been privileged to touch.”
He rides a Rogue 7’10” surf sup and a 14’ Rogue race board.
Kainoa William Hauanio
Kalapana, The Big Island, HI
Born and raised in Kalapana, Hawaii, Kainoa has been a waterman most of his life. Since his early teens he has been a competitive surfer participating in short board big wave tow-in, and longboarding contests. He began SUP’ing about five years ago when a friend had an extra board and invited him to try it. After just a few sessions, he was hooked on SUP’ing.
To date Kanioa has placed in a dozen SUP competitions including: 2nd Place in the Hulakai Trials SUP Surf Contest at Sunset Beach; 2nd Place in the Pohoiki Challenge; and 6th Place in the HIPA O’Shaunessey Paddle Race in Hilo Bay. A fearless big wave surfer, Kainoa placed 3rd in the Nelscott Reef Tow-In Classic and Big Wave Paddle in Oregon.
This year, Kainoa plans to participate in the SUP World Tour, the Battle of the Paddle in California and The Maliko Challenge in Hawaii.
Kainoa's favorite thing about SUP’ing is that he can catch so many more waves in a session.
Originally from Denver, Colorado, Alex tran- sitioned to SUP’ing from river surfing. After crafting his own stand up paddleboard from an old windsurfing board four years ago Alex was hooked on SUP and started competing in flat water and whitewater competitions.
This year Alex plans to compete in every race in Colorado, including the Teva Games and the Gwood White Water, in addition to select races in California, including Battle of the Paddle in Dana Point. When he is not paddling or training with yoga, Cross Fit, running, rowing, rock climbing and other sports, Alex works as an indoor rock-climbing instructor. In winter months he SUP trains with a paddle simulator he invented.
Alex is currently filming an inland SUP film called “Run Off” and looks forward to competing in the SUP Olympics one day.