It’s been an explosive start to the NZ SUP race season with this 25 year old pro winning everything he’s entered, including all elite races at the City Surf Series, Takapuna Beach Series and the Orewa Beach Series to date. In the highly competitive Auckland race scene, this perfect scorecard over seven races in varying conditions has rarely been seen, but is all in a day’s work for the Whangarei-based Hansen. Sponsored by NSP international, Marcus had a successful world tour campaign in Europe this year and has unfinished business back on tour in 2018.
We caught up with him after last night’s Orewa Beach Series Race #2.
It’s been great to have you racing here at the start of the season, how’s it been going for you?
It’s been fun. I’ve won a few of the local races and it’s great to see the New Zealanders again after my Europe adventure. We’ve had some varied conditions, including a testing surf day last Sunday at Orewa which was fun, some good beach race conditions and some flat-water grinds as well. I’ve enjoyed it.
Who’s the main local competition this season?
MARCUS: Well, unfortunately Ollie Houghton or JP Tobin haven’t been coming out to play but Gavin and Jeremy, Anthony, Matt, Sam, Hans, Mike and others have been giving it their all. What Auckland’s got is pretty awesome, we’ve got so many quality well-organised races, two or three a week through the summer, a huge bunch of guys and girls who turn up to these races religiously and the standard is really high I think.
What do you reckon could be done to improve the local scene?
I think it would be cool to vary the conditions and mix up the locations a bit; some flatwater river racing, downwinders, more beach racing, we’ve got plenty of harbour racing already.
You’ve been using very narrow, tippy boards this year, what’s the story with that?
The narrower you go, the faster you go as long as you’re still standing. Yeah, the whole world’s trending to narrower boards because they’ve got the speed. As soon as you’re falling off in a race – they’re no good, so you may as well train on a tippy one at least, and hopefully use it with confidence when you can.
So what’s next for Marcus Hansen?
I’m off on Tuesday morning to 5 degrees cold Germany to pick up my boards and drive to Paris, where next Sunday I’ll be racing in the Paris Crossing. It’s a huge event – 1300 people tried to register this year and there were only 600 spots available. So the massive Paris canal with 600 racers on the start-line should be quite an experience!
Well, good luck with that mate! What’s after that?
I’ll be hanging with my German girlfriend Noelani till Christmas, so that will be nice, then heading home to NZ, to Whangamata with family, then back into the NZ racing till April when I’ll hopefully be back to Europe.