indexMainImage

Paddler Profile – John Willacy

John started out on his paddling career in the early 1980’s. Along the way he has paddled whitewater in Norway, sea kayaks in the Falkland Islands and represented Great Britain in Wild Water Racing and Canoe Slalom. John has paddled across most of the canoesport disciplines and classes, and in many locations: France, Norway, Corsica, Italy, Czech Republic, Germany, Austria, Malta, Tasmania and the Falkland Islands. He is currently based on Anglesey in North Wales, from where he runs the PSK website when he isn't paddling.

2347: Menai Straits paddles


Sea Kayak

John has extensive experience as a sea kayaker. He holds a number of solo sea kayak records and has completed two solo circumnavigations of the UK, the only person to have done so.

2012 UK Circumnavigation - 72 days - Clockwise Kayak Blog.
2015 UK Circumnavigation - 83 days - Anti-Clockwise Kayak Blog.

In 2012 he was awarded the Chris Wheeler Adventure Paddler of the Year award by Canoe & Kayak UK magazine.

Sea Paddling Achievements:


Solo Crossing

Date Type Locn. Route From Elapsed
12015CrossingLundy Wales07:30:00Current Record
22014CrossingIsle of Man England04:41:22Current Record
3CrossingIsle of Man England05:46:14Record
4CrossingIsle of Man Scotland03:34:04Current Record
5CrossingIsle of Man Scotland03:40:25Record
62013CrossingLundy England02:29:19
7CrossingLundy England01:59:12Current Record
82012CrossingLundy England05:13:00
9CrossingLundy Wales08:30:00Record
10CrossingIsle of Man Northern Ireland07:26:00Record
11CrossingIsle of Man Wales10:48:00
122011CrossingIrish Sea Holyhead-Dublin11:19:59Current Record
13CrossingIrish Sea North Channel03:25:28Current Record
14CrossingIrish Sea North Channel04:29:54
152010CrossingIrish Sea St.George's Channel09:57:49Current Record
16CrossingIsle of Man Wales08:21:12Current Record
172007CrossingIrish Sea Holyhead-Dublin13:45:00Record

Circumnav

Date Type Locn. Elapsed
12019CircumnavIsle of Man 12:16:03
2CircumnavHoly Island 03:29:57Team Record
3CircumnavAchill Island 06:29:39
42017CircumnavIsle of Skye XXXFailed Attempt
5CircumnavIsle of Jura 09:55:40Current Record
62016CircumnavIsle of Scarba 01:32:05Current Record
7CircumnavIsle of Man 10:32:58Current Record
82015CircumnavIsle of Arran 09:14:54Current Record
9CircumnavIsle of Wight 07:19:46Current Record
102014CircumnavIsle of Anglesey 09:24:04Current Record
11CircumnavHoly Island 02:55:45Current Record
12CircumnavIsle of Bute 05:34:13Current Record
132012CircumnavWalney Island 03:10:00Current Record
14CircumnavIsle of Anglesey 10:28:38
152011CircumnavIsle of Mull 19:34:00Current Record
16CircumnavIsle of Anglesey 09:54:48Record
172010CircumnavIsle of Man 12:38:03Record
182009CircumnavIsle of Anglesey xx:xx:xxFailed Attempt
19CircumnavIsle of Anglesey 10:24:54Record
202006CircumnavIsle of Anglesey 10:45:40Record
212005CircumnavHoly Island 04:28:00
22CircumnavIsle of Anglesey 11:30:00Record
23CircumnavIsle of Anglesey XXXFailed Attempt

Multi-Day

Date Type Locn. Direction Elapsed
12019Multi-DayWales Circumnav CW15 days= Current Record
22015Multi-DayUK Circumnav CCW83 days
32012Multi-DayUK Circumnav CW72 daysRecord
42003Multi-DayWales Circumnav CW29 days




Competition

First competition: 1984
Competition Discipliness: Canoe Slalom, Wild Water Racing and Long Distance/Sprint Racing
Classes: C1, C2, K1, K2 and K4

Slalom

  • GB Intermediate Squad: 1988-1990
  • British Open C1 Champion: 1989(B), 1990(Slalom Sprint)
  • English C1 Champion: 1990, 1994
  • Welsh C2 Champion (with Geoff Forster)
  • BCU Premier Division C1 Slalom: 1989 - 1997

Wild Water Racing

  • Great Britain C1 Champion: 1992, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008
  • British Open C1 Champion: 1992, 1999
  • Welsh Open C1 Champion: 2005
  • BCU Division A paddler 1991 - 2008

Great Britain Team:

  • World Championships Team: 1993, 1995, 1996, 2006
  • World Cup Team: 1992, 1994, 1995, 1997
  • Bronze Medallist: Masters World Championships 2006



Coaching

John has been involved with coaching for more than 30 years, delivering technical coaching and mentoring to paddlers ranging from club novice through to National Team. He has worked as a coach for the Wales Canoe Slalom Team.

John holds his BCU Level 4 Inland Kayak and Level 4 Sea Kayak qualifications, along with BCU competition coaching qualifications for Slalom, Wild Water Racing and Long Distance Racing.




Kayak Design

John designed, tested and developed a number of sea kayaks whilst working for Rockpool Kayaks:

  • Taran 18
  • Taran 16
  • GT
  • Isel (part design)