Stellar Team

Ian Black

Ian Black completed his first 56 Kilometre Cape Point Challenge at the age of 17 in 2001 with his brother (then 15) in a double surfski. From there on he was hooked on distance racing and after finishing school completed his first 220km Berg River Canoe Marathon. Most comfortable in a surfski, Ian progressed over the years to finish 2nd in the 2007 Cape Town Surfski Series.
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Sandrine Hamel–Meyer

Sandrine a Native of Quebec Canada is an outright fast waterman from K1, Prone to Surfski, she can do it all. Spending time in South Africa learning Surfski she is a serious threat on the down winds and flats alike. We are excited to see how this young padder grows. Sandrine’s love of paddling is contagious, exuding love of the sport and those around it.
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Mike Herbert

Mike Herbert is one of the most competitive paddlers in the US with the greatest of dispositions. Residing in Arkansas, Mike travels far afield in the South and Midwest, making his mark on distance and sprint events alike! We are excited to have Mike paddle our boats and he has many course records to his name with the SEL Ultra. This Mike will also be paddling our Apex 85 ICF K1, so watch out on those calm days
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Joel Pekosz

Another relative newcomer to paddling, Joel an army veteran of the 82th airborne brought his speed from running into his paddling. Joel marched through the ranks quickly with enthusiasm to take the top spot at most regional races. Joels positivity and willingness to help others is unmatched. His desire to learn, compete and improve surely will see him continue to gain speed.
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Janda Ricci-munn

Gloucester Massachusetts native, Janda brings a lot of Elite triathlon experience to the paddling and multisport scene. Janda’s engine is legendary in New England and he quickly acclimated to paddling, coming in 2nd in the 2022 Great stone dam classic racing in an intermediate ski. Janda also won the 2022 Josh Billings Triathlon, helped by his smoking fast cycling and running too. Janda will soon be vying for the top spots at all the kayak races. Living in Gloucester, he will be a force in the ocean too.
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Hollie Hall

Hollie Hall began competitive kayaking in 2018 and was immediately captivated by the sport. In 2018, she took 2 silver medals (women's tandem, women's unlimited) and a gold (women's sea kayak) at the USCA Nationals in Syracuse, NY. Hollie also entered her first Chattajack 31 in Chattanooga, TN, and took first in the women's kayak division. She attended the 2019 USCA Nationals in Warren, PA and swept all three categories bringing home 3 gold medals (women's sea kayak, touring, and unlimited). The USCA also awarded her with the "Outstanding Paddler of the Year Award" 2019, one of their most prestigious awards given. In 2019, Hollie also competed in her second Chattajack and placed third in women's surfski in the Stellar SEA. She's looking forward to many upcoming exciting competitions.
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Zach Alva

My name is Zach Alva. I first started paddling flatwater sprint kayaks in 2015. From the moment I could actually balance the boat, I knew I was going to push my limits in the sport. After 4 years of progressively intense training, I qualified for the k1 1000m and k1 500m spot at the U23 world championships in Pitesti, Romania, where I made the semi finals. After a lull in training to attend engineering school between 2019 and 2021, I re-entered the 2022 season. After missing out on a national team spot at trials, I went on to place 3rd in the senior men's 500m at Ted Houk, and 2nd 3rd in the k1 1000m and k1 500m respectively at the sprint national championships. In addition to improving my sprint performance this year, I am proud to be partnering with Stellar Kayaks in Surf Ski, and am excited to expand my paddling repertoire and to represent Stellar at surf ski races along the west coast this coming season. U23 sprint world championships 2019 Pitesti, Romania. Semi finalist in k1 1000m and k1 500m US sprint national championships, 2022, Clermont Ohio. Silver medalist k1 1000m, bronze medalist k1 500m Ted Houk Regatta, 2022, Seattle Washington. Bronze medalist, k1 500m
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Petri Alva

My name is Petri Alva. I have been paddling K1 and surfski since 2015 with my team, River Town Racers. I have competed on the national circuit in sprint for 4 years, becoming national champion 22 times in the youth and junior divisions. I have also raced internationally with the US Junior National Team for Two seasons, Competing at the 2021 Junior National Championships in Portugal, the 2021 Olympic Hopes Regatta in the Czech Republic, and the 2022 Junior World Championships in Hungary. My top result internationally was a 6th place finish in the U18 mens K2 500 meters in 2021. I am super excited to improve and expand my surfski skills this season with Stellar, after having some great results locally and at the 2021 Hano Hano challenge.

2 years in a row competing internationally at the U18 level (top 6 result 2021), 4 National Championships attended, 34 medals won in various youth and junior divisions, 7 years in the sport thus far for bothj sprint and surfski.
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European Team

Killian Marzin

France - Stellar SEA

Killian Marzin has been paddling for 10 years in Brittany at the Estran Ploudalmezeau Club. He discovered his passion for padding at school and quickly became a competitive paddler. Surfski quickly become a way of life and at 16 years old he won the title of champion of France Cadets.

Unfortunately, in 2017 one week before the French championship he dislocated his shoulder whilst surfing which mean 6 months away from training. However, in 2019 Killian came back strong and was vice champion at the French Junior Championships - an amazing first step on the international circuit wher he is determined to push his limits.
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Tom Suteau

France - Stellar SEA

Tom Suteau paddles is a multi-disciplin kayaker. For 8 years he has been expressing himself in downriver paddling where is his in the top 10 paddlers in France. In 2017 he decided to diversify in order to acquire new skills and then turned to race kayak as well as surfski.

Thanks to his physical form and his downriver training he managed to rank 2nd in U23 on his first national race. Today he continues to focus on both downriver and surfski paddling and finds they compliment each other well.
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Marin Lanee

France - Stellar SEA

French born Marin Lanee moved to French Polynesia when he was 9 years old and it was there that he discovered the pleasure of paddle sports. At aged 12 he began seriously training in the OC canoe and in 2018 became vice world champion in with his brother.

Upon moving back to France he began to focus towards SurfSki and today paddles Stellars kayaks in CEL as well as in Surfski. He has won several French titles and is now part of the National Team. In 2022 he became European Junior Champion paddling his Stellar SEA.
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Olivia Geddes

UK - Stellar Apex K1 & SEA

Olivia was introduced to Surfski paddling in 2017 as a member of Rest Bay surf life saving club and really became hooked on ocean paddling in 2020 after a coaching session with Ben Edom - one of our Stellar dealers in the UK.

Olivia joined Cardiff Bay Kayakers in early 2021 which provided her with a more structured training programme and introduced her to flatwater paddling and was quickly selected for the GB Ocean racing team and placed 7th in her age group at the European Championships.

In 2022 she began paddling a Stellar Apex K1 and achieved many high rankings at the British Marathon Championship & National Sprint Championships also 2nd and 6th in the European & World Surfski Champs in her age group.

Today Olivia is currently studying at Oxford University and training at Falcon Kayak Club. Over the next few years, she hopes to gain more experience in kayak marathon racing, working towards selection for the British team as well as focussing on racing at the next European Ocean Racing championships where she hopes to achieve a podium finish in the U23 women's category.
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