Rob Rojas, an O'Neill-sponsored athlete out of San Clemente, outdistanced a large field of stand-up paddleboarders to capture the overall win by more than 5 minutes in the O'Neill Jam from the Dam on Lake Tahoe this past Saturday.
The race, which was the second of three events on the inaugural O'Neill Tahoe Cup Race Series schedule, couldn't have featured more ideal conditions, with calm waters and temperatures peaking in the mid 80s.
It was quite a contrast from the series opener, which was held in spitting snow and freezing winds on Donner Lake over Memorial Day weekend.
The 6-mile Jam from the Dam was a point-to-point race starting at Commons Beach in Tahoe City and ending at Waterman's Landing in Carnelian Bay. More than 100 competitors took part, with Rojas posting a winning time of 55 minutes and 9 seconds after prerunning the course earlier that morning.
Seth Springer of Malibu finished runner-up in 1 hour and 40 seconds, while Rand Carter of Tahoe Vista posted the top local result, rounding out the top three in 1:01:36.
Lel Tone of Tahoe City was the top woman, as she placed 24th overall with a time of 1:12:35.
Among other local finishers, Jake Lamberth of Carnelian Bay placed sixth overall in 1:03:07, David Defoe of Kings Beach was seventh in 1:03:28 and Ronald Ayres of Truckee was eighth in 1:04:11.
Tommy Thompson of Incline Village placed fourth in the men's Masters division and 28th overall in 1:13:49, and Incline's Whitney Wall finished in 1:34:12.
Julianne Brackett of South Lake Tahoe took the top spot in the youth division, posting a time of 1:15:12 to Truckee runner-up Elijah Delaunay's 1:17:14. Brigid Ehrlich of Incline Village was third among youth competitors and 43rd overall, in 1:17:30.
The O'Neill Tahoe Cup concludes with the 22-mile Fall Classic from Camp Richardson to Kings Beach on Sept. 18. For more event information go to www.tahoecup.org.