Pedal Boat Olympics Results | Kayak Angler Magazine | Rapid Media
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Shakedown the top pedal boats. Roberto Westbrook

Late last fall seven anglers brought seven of the most popular pedal-powered kayaks to a public launch ramp in Virginia Beach. As the athletes prepared their boats, Kayak Angler editors stood by ready to put them through their paces and test their kayaks for speed, power, handling and a half dozen other categories, which may or may not be at all relevant to catching fish. The competition was fierce but friendly. We put the boats in head-to-head events such as sprints, rigging speed and an epic tug-of-war. At the pedal drive Olympics closing ceremonies held of course on truck tailgates, the athletes agreed it was fun, but thought Kayak Angler readers needed more conclusive evidence.

Three months later the anglers met again at the same beach with the same boats, this time with stopwatches, tape measures, GPSs and more clipboards. We raced the boats against the clock, in controlled environments, with three different anglers performing each test. We averaged the times. The results were surprising. After the salt spray cleared and the numbers crunched, this fun two-day event went down in the kayak fishing history books as the first ever Kayak Angler Pedal Boat Olympics and Shootout.

We've included the final results of the second day of testing. We had three anglers perform each test in each boat. The average score is recorded on the right hand side.

For turning radius we tested with the boat tilted and horozontal. We marked a starting point on the beach. Then had the tester pedal the boat while turning the rudder hard right. We marked where the boat returned to the beach.

2018 Kayak Angler Pedal Boat Shootout    
Turn Radius Tilted/Tightest in feet      
Boats/Tester Tester 1 Tester 2 Tester 3  
  Tyler Wallace Jay Brooks Mark Wheeler  
Hobie PA14 19 19 21  
19.67
Jackson FD 28 30 29  
29.00
Ocean Kayak Malibu 27 33 30 30.00
Old Town Predator 30 31 31  
30.67
WS Radar 34 35 42  
37.00
Perception Pescador 36 36 41 37.67
Native Slayer Propel 39 38 45 40.67

Same test without leaning the boat.

2018 Kayak Angler Pedal Boat Shootout    
Turn Radius Flat        
Boats/Tester Tester 1 Tester 2 Tester 3  
  Tyler Jay Mark  
Hobie PA14 19 20 19  
19.33
Jackson FD 21 22 22  
21.67
WS Radar 28 28 35  
30.33
Old Town Predator 31 34 29  
31.33
Ocean Kayak Malibu 33 29 37 33.00
Perception Pescador 40 39 46 41.67
Native Slayer Propel 45 41 49 45.00

All out, haul butt down the beach. We gave each tester a GPS and told them to pedal as hard as possible for fifty yards. We took the top speed from the GPS. Average speed is posted on the right.

2018 Kayak Angler Pedal Boat Shootout    
Top Speed Forward        
Boats/Tester Tester 1 Tester 2 Tester 3  
  Mark Billy Tyler  
Old Town Predator 6.1 6.3 6.2  
6.20
Ocean Kayak Malibu 5.8 5.9 6.1 5.93
Hobie PA14 4.8 5.5 5.9  
5.40
WS Radar 5.3 5.1 5.4  
5.27
Native Slayer Propel 4.9 5.4 5.3 5.20
Jackson FD 5.1 5.1 5  
5.07
Perception Pescador DNF DNF DNF DNF

Same test in reverse. Some of the boats had trouble steering in reverse. The Hobie PA14 suffered a mechanical breakdown due to improper usage and was not able to complete three tests. 

Top Speed Backward        
Boats/Tester Tester 1 Tester 2 Tester 3  
  Mark Billy Tyler  
Ocean Kayak Malibu 4.5 5.4 5 4.97
Old Town Predator 4.7 5 4.9  
4.87
Hobie PA14 DNF 4.3 4.6  
4.45
Native Slayer Propel 4.4 4.2 4 4.20
WS Radar 4 4.3 4.2  
4.17
Jackson FD 2.8 2.7 2.3  
2.60
Perception Pescador DNF 1.8 DNF DNF

 

Timed 100 yard sprint.

2018 Kayak Angler Pedal Boat Shootout    
100 Yard Dash - Pedal        
Boats/Tester Tester 1 Tester 2 Tester 3  
  Kevin Ryan Billy  
Ocean Kayak Malibu 17.77 18.86 20.19 18.94
Old Town Predator 17.69 19.32 20.22  
19.08
Native Slayer Propel 19.6 20.52 21.49 20.54
Hobie PA14 20.72 20.59 21.56  
20.96
WS Radar 19.77 21.31 22.5  
21.19
Perception Pescador 20.53 21.7 22.18 21.47
Jackson FD 20.34 23.25 22.97  

22.19

Paddle performance is an important part of any kayak's features. Who knows when you might need to churn and burn.

2018 Kayak Angler Pedal Boat Shootout    
100 Yard Dash - Paddle        
Boats/Tester Tester 1 Tester 2 Tester 3  
  Kevin Ryan Billy  
Perception Pescador 21.89 22.5 20.87 21.75
Old Town Predator 21.59 22.89 21.31  
21.93
Native Slayer Propel 21.15 21.49 24.86 22.50
Jackson FD 22.61 24.13 24.27  
23.67
WS Radar 21.71 26.79 24.79  
24.43
Hobie PA14 24.06 24.49 24.8  
24.45
Ocean Kayak Malibu 28.87 25.67 22.33 25.62

 

 

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