2019-05-01 2019 World R6 Rafting Championships
We have just converged on Tully in northern Queensland, Australia for the 2019 World Rafting Championships. There will be a couple of weeks of training ahead of us as we learn the fast lines on the world famous Tully river. .more...
2017-10-02 2017 World R6 Rafting Championships
After a long flight, and a night in an airport hotel in Osaka, we have made it to Miyoshi city, Japan. Our accommodation overlooks the Yoshino river, and the food is fantastic. more...
2015-11-27 2015 World R6 Rafting Championships
We have arrived! After some lengthy travels for many of us, we are almost all assembled at the venue for the 2015 World Rafting Championships in West Java, Indonesia. Still to arrive are Bill (and most of our paddles), and Jenny our team nurse. All being well, we will see them tomorrow more...
2015-06-07 2015 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
We again headed over to the Rouge river and New World rafting for a very well organised race. The first day was certainly busy, with the first 3 events all happening in one run down the river. The field was the biggest seen in recent years more...
2014-10-19 2014 World R4 Rafting Championships
On Oct 8th, 2014 I started my journey to the south, escaping the soon to be cold of the north yet again. This time however for a much better reason then usual. Myself and a few other Canadian boys were elected to be the R4 national Canadian team in summer of 2013. We trained hard up 'til the date of departure more...
2013-11-08 2013 World R6 Rafting Championships
We are all now in Rotorua, New Zealand, ready to get some training in for the upcoming World Rafting Championships. The team managed to converge on Okere Falls today for a few familiarisation runs down the Kaituna river. For some of us, it was the first time down, and it really is as good as everyone says! more...
2013-06-10 2013 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
The first day of the Canadian rafting championships saw some great racing from the ladies teams. The Petawawa river was the venue for the sprint course, down Lovers and Catwalk rapids. Water levels were good, and provided challenging conditions for all the entrants. more...
2012-09-21 2012 Pan-American R6 Rafting Championships
At the end of September we made our way to Quebec to compete in our first international rafting event; the World Cup/Pan-American Championships. This event was not only our first international rafting competition but it would also act as the Canadian Championships, deciding which team would represent Canada at the 2013 World Rafting Championships in New Zealand. more...
2011-06-04 2011 Canadian R4 Rafting Championships
Fresh from our recent success at Hell or High Water 2011, we were determined to do well at the Canadian championships, our aim being to win and thereby qualify for the 2012 R4 worlds. On arriving at the Jaques-Cartier river north of Quebec city we found a quality run of fairly continuous grade 4 water on the Tewkesbury section. more...
2011-05-07 Hell or High Water 2011
The annual Hell or High Water festival is fast becoming an established Ottawa valley boaters favourite. After having had such a great time at last year's event; Hell or High Water 2010, we put in some training in the week leading up to the race - more...
2010-09-02 2010 Canadian R6 Rafting Championships
This is it! After countless early mornings training hard we were on our way. We had arrived in the Saguenay region of Quebec the previous night after a long drive from the Ottawa. Keen to hit the rivers and get some practice in before our first race against the Qubec teams, we drove up to St Stanislas and the Mistassibi. It did not dissapoint - more...
2010-06-08 The Rouge - Seven Sisters
Fresh from our successful run of the Kipawa, we set our sights on the series of drops on the Rouge river in Quebec. As soon as we could get a team together, a check of the levels confirmed that the waterfalls known as the Seven Sisters were all good to go. This time we bought some kayakers with us to run safety cover. more...
2010-05-07 The Kipawa
After having taken delivery of our brand new raft (thanks SOTAR!), we were keen to get out and run some rivers. The only problem - the driest spring and summer in living memory! With our plans for adventures further afield scuppered, we settled upon a low water Kipawa trip. more...
2010-05-01 Hell or High Water 2010
A fresh Mayday weekend in the Ottawa valley - what better opportunity to get out for the first run of the season? We wrapped up warm and headed to the superb Hell or High Water event. This event usually sees the Petawawa river in full spring flow, and this year was no exception. more...
2017 World R6 Rafting Championships
2017-10-02 WRC2017 - Arrived in Japan
After a long flight, and a night in an airport hotel in Osaka, we have made it to Miyoshi city, Japan. Our accommodation overlooks the Yoshino river, and the food is fantastic.
Photo: Gwyn Ashcroft
The next few days will be spent training on the river, getting to know the fastest lines. The opening ceremony is tomorrow afternoon.
2017-10-06 WRC2017 - Sprint and H2H
After several days of training to get to know the river sections that we are racing on, our first day of competition! We were a few seconds off the pace in the sprint, finishing 14th/17. This was a disappointing result for us, as we have done well in the sprint event in the past.
Photo: Gwyn Ashcroft
After lunch, the Heat to Head races started. We were paired against the USA for our first race, but did not have choice of lanes. The USA team managed to slip ahead of us, and kept the lead to the finish. Again, not what were hoping for. We at least had a fast time, and finished 10th/17.
2017-10-07 WRC2017 - Sightseeing
While the Youth and Junior competitors were competing in the slalom event, the Open and Masters had a day off to go sightseeing. We chose to go and check out the Unpenji Buddhist temple.
Photo: Gwyn Ashcroft
The temple is on a peak not too far from our hotel, so the afternoon was spent walking back, followed by another fantastic meal.
2017-10-08 WRC2017 - Slalom
The Slalom event has not been our strong point in past competitions, as we have struggled in the past to get enough training with gates. This time though, we have been fortunate to be able to train at the Pumphouse in Ottawa, and get some valuable coaching from Anthony, the Canadian Slalom team coach. So we were expecting to improve our performance quite significantly.
Our strategy was to get a good first run in, making sure that we got all the gates as clean as possible, and then try to pick up the pace on the second run. This strategy played out well, with just one touch on each run, and a 4 second time improvement between runs. The number of touches compared well with the other teams - none of the open teams managed to put in a clean run. Our performance put us 7th/17 in the slalom, and 8th/17 overall so far. Our best result ever in the slalom at a WRC put us in a much better frame of mind in the run up to the final event tomorrow.
2017-10-09 WRC2017 - Downriver
The final event, the Downriver is the one that most of the teams concentrate on, as it is worth the greatest number of points. We were starting in the second heat, alongside Argentina, Slovenia, Russia, and Costa Rica.
The start was a bit messy, with many of the teams contacting off the start line. We got tangled up with Costa Rica, and as a result slowed down. Once the field separated a bit, we were playing catch-up for the whole race. Despite several attempts, we were unable to overtake, and once all the results came in, we found ourselves in 12th/17. This was definitely not our best performance in the downriver, and this dropped our overall standing to 12th/17.
Whilst we have not placed as well as in previous World Rafting Championships, the hospitality of our hosts, Japan, and their extremely well run event made up for this in part. The general feeling amongst the team was that the standard of the other teams here was the highest that we have raced against. We have some more work to do in preparation for the next time that we race internationally.
Many thanks to all of the people and organisations that have helped us train and made our journey to Japan possible; Shaggy Designs, River Run rafting, Level 6, Anthony for the awesome coaching and Ottawa River Runners for access to the Pumphouse.
Paddlers: Graham Ball, Lars Romeskie, Jacob Suchorab, Bill Leslie, Gwyn Ashcroft, Andy Hill, Drew Sellen.