Buy the ticket, take the ride...

- Hunter S. Thompson

A lot of the athletes at the 2017 ISA World SUP and Paddleboard Championship came to stand-up paddleboarding by way of surfing or windsurfing, and Australian Shakira Westdorp is no different.

What is unique to her story is the board she learned to SUP on. Ten years ago, Westdorp and her friends crafted a 12-foot homemade stand-up paddleboard based on the boards her friends had seen on a trip to Hawaii. "It was the ugliest thing you've ever seen," Westdorp says. "But we went out there all summer long on it, and got really into it." The rest is history. Westdorp, now 32, has been an integral part of Australia's four World Championships, winning gold in SUP Surfing at last years event in Cloudbreak, Fiji. We chatted on the phone with Westdorp last week, to pick her brain about the Championship, the sport of SUP and life in general. [caption id="attachment_8721" align="alignnone" width="1280"] Shakira Westdorp at the 2016 ISA SUP and Paddleboard World Championship in Cloudbreak, Fiji. Photo: Ben Reed.[/caption] You got into SUP through traditional surfing.

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