The Puakea Designs Team is happy to announce a new member to our team! Today, help us welcome Kaihe Chong to the Puakea Ohana as a Puakea Team Rider!
Kaihe (Kai) has an extensive paddling career that started when he was just a kid down at Hui Nalu. He has since grown into one of the top paddlers in Hawaii, competing in a variety of races and crafts. Read more about Kai’s paddling story below and follow his adventures on Instagram at @kaichong08.
“I grew up in Hawaii Kai, Oahu and started outrigger paddling when I was 8 at Hui Nalu, the local canoe club down the road. At 13, I joined the Hawaii Canoe and Kayak team and made it onto the Junior National Team, for Olympic flat water kayaking at 15, the same year I crossed the Molokai Channel on a Surfski. When I was 19 I really started to take up OC-1, and my paddling career slowly started to build. The Maui to Molokai was the first major race that I won, in 2012 when I was 22 and coming in top 4 every year since. That same year I came in 2nd in the Olukai, also placing in the top 4 every year. I’ve consistently placed in the top 10 for the past 4 years in the OC-1 world championships, but still haven’t managed to crack the top 5. Most recently I’ve won the Kanaka Ikaika Molokai challenge, as well as, the M2O Standup Championship with teammate Danny Ching. I’m look forward to this upcoming season and to represent Puakea Designs as best as I can.” – Kaihe Chong
Kaihe, we are stoked to have you and looking forward to what you accomplish in the coming season! Thanks for the photos.