For the second consecutive day the George Bass Surfboat Marathon was forced inland due to dangerous surf conditions.
Marathon organiser Andrew Edmunds said conditions were not favourable for a race at sea.
“Narooma Bar, Bermagui Bar and Moruya are not ideal for support boats to cross and (there was) messy, dangerous surf at Coila and Narooma beaches,” Edmunds said.
Instead of the usual Tuross to Narooma leg, a 22-kilometre race was conducted on the Wagonga Inlet at Narooma.
Edmunds said organisers never like going inland, but looked for a number of options and a race at sea on Tuesday was just not possible.
Defending champions Bulli, who had previously started the marathon strongly surrendered a valuable lead to the Moruya Vikings.
The Vikings won the open men’s leg in two hours, five minutes and 11 seconds, pipping Coogee by 45 seconds and Long Reef by two minutes.
Race referee Greg Johnston said that result keeps the whole race wide open.
“It will mean at this stage anyone can still win the 2016 marathon,” Johnston said.
“That is great news with four days to go, with challenging and testing conditions and a long way left to row.”
The composite Moruya/Long Reef crew had a hat-trick of wins edging the Broulee Capitals by less than a minute.
Pambula won its third consecutive masters’ women’s leg and the Broulee Bats held off Anglesea for second.
Defending men’s masters’ champions Narooma won back-to-back legs, edging North Cronulla and Tallebudgera and Narooma ski paddler Nick Ziviani claimed second in his class.
Wednesday’s conditions unfortunately do not look any better, but will be closely assessed in the morning.
“We’re not sure what the course will be just yet for tomorrow just yet. We need to see what the sea is doing,” Johnston said.
“If conditions abate we will run normal course from Narooma to Bermagui, or if need be an ocean course from Bermagui.”
“Our inland options remain available with Corunna Lake being a potential alternative.”
George Bass Marathon Day 3 Results
First – Moruya Vikings 2 hours, 5 minutes and 11 seconds.
Second – Coogee 2 hours, 5 minutes and 56 seconds.
Third Long Reef – 2 hours, 7 minutes and 11 seconds.
Fourth – Bulli 2 hours, 8 minutes and 28 seconds.
Fifth – Pambula 2 hours, 17 minutes and 14 seconds.
First – Moruya/Long Reef 2 hours, 15 minutes and 25 seconds.
Second – Broulee Capitals 2 hours, 16 minutes and 7 seconds.
Third – Met Caloundra 2 hours 26 minutes and 41 minutes.
Fourth – Wollongong City 2 hours, 30 minutes and 13 seconds.
First – Pambula 2 hours, 21 minutes and 04 seconds.
Second – Broulee Bats 2 hours, 26 minutes and 04 seconds.
Third – Anglesea 2 hours, 26 minutes and 20 seconds.
Fourth –Warriewood 2 hours, 31 minutes and 34 seconds.
First – Narooma 2 hours, 4 minutes and 59 seconds.
Second – North Cronulla 2 hours, 6 minutes and 2 seconds.
Third – Tallebudgera 2 hours, 9 minutes and 18 seconds.
Fourth – Yeppoon 2 hours 10 minutes and 51 seconds.
Fifth – Tathra 2 hours, 11 minutes and 40 seconds.
Sixth – Bulli 2 hours, 11 minutes and 53 seconds.
Pambula/Tathra 2 hours, 17 minutes and 58 seconds.
First Stu O’Regan 2 hours and 24 seconds.
Second Nick Ziviani 2 hours 4 minutes and 08 seconds.
Third Will Hardman 2 hours 8 minutes and 59 seconds.
Fourth Craig Vipond 2 hours 10 minutes and 10 seconds.
Fifth Andrew Stone 2 hours 12 minutes and 23 seconds.
Sixth Chris Ryan 2 hours 15 minutes and 31 seconds.
Seventh Ed Gwynne 2 hours 21 minutes and 19 seconds.