Race Results

Results: OW, OM, MM, U23W, U23M, U19  ; Photos: -1-, -2-, -3-, -4-, -5-, -6-; Videos.

WRC 2017

EC 2017 Overall
R4: WomenMen.
R6: MenWomen

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Queensland Government boosts World Rafting Championships

Tully gears up to host world-class event in 2019

The Queensland Government has thrown its support behind the 2019 International Rafting Federation’s World Rafting Championships on the Tully River.

Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ) will be working in partnership with the Australian Rafting Federation on the world-class event which is forecast to bring hundreds of athletes and thousands of spectators to tropical Far North Queensland in May next year.

Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones today announced the Queensland Government, via TEQ, would provide funding and support for the IRF World Rafting Championships.

“This event is a first for Australia and we are delighted to be hosting it right here in Tropical North Queensland,” Ms Jones said.

“Both locals and visitors will enjoy all the action of the World Rafting Championships against the beautiful backdrop of the Tully River.”

“Competitors and spectators from around the world will attend this event, providing a boost to local tourism industry and economy.”

The Australian Rafting Federation secured the world championship event last May in a first for Australia.

WRC 2019 event director, Tully rafter and cane farmer Graham Maifredi, said having the Queensland Government on board, through TEQ, was a major boost.

“This region has so much to offer – from white water rafting and scuba-diving on the Great Barrier Reef to sky-diving onto tropical beaches, island-hopping and hiking and mountain biking in world-heritage rainforest – and an event like the 2019 World Rafting Championships can shine an international spotlight on us and drive tourism,” Maifredi said.

“We also want this event to create local jobs and boost the economy by increasing visitors to our region.”

“We are honoured to have TEQ working with us.”

The IRF World Rafting Championships will be staged over eight days on the Tully River and is expected to bring up to 700 athletes and thousands of spectators to the region.  The event will feature downriver races and sprints as well as slalom racing and head-to-head race-offs, with national representatives from up to 90 countries ranging from open crew members to masters and youth teams.

The Australian Rafting Federation is also working with Stanwell Corporation, the Cassowary Coast Regional Council and Raging Thunder Adventures as strategic partners and has support from the Wet Tropics Management Authority, Queensland National Parks, the Girringun Aboriginal Corporation and traditional owners, Tropical Coast Tourism and Tourism Tropical North Queensland.

Cassowary Coast Regional Council Mayor John Kremastos said the council was dedicated to supporting major sporting events in the region and was proud to be a strategic partner for the event.

“We congratulate TEQ for supporting this first world rafting championship on the Tully River,’’ Mayor Kremastos said.

The World Rafting Championships are supported by the Queensland Government via Tourism and Events Queensland’s It’s Live! in Queensland events calendar, which is forecast to deliver $780 million in economic benefit to the state in 2018.

The World Rafting Championships website is at and more details can be seen on the IRF’s website and Facebook page.

This event will be preceded by a Pre-worlds and national rafting championships on the Tully River in May this year which is forecast to bring more than 100 paddlers to the Cassowary Coast region.


From Atlantic Ocean to Pacific Ocean – “Regata Ocean to Ocean” Panama Canal

Our great love for paddling motivates us to try other sports where we have a paddle in our hands, so you will see our competitors in between competitions joining other paddling sports and adventures. Our dear Judges too, who are not just passive observers of your paddling, but are very active paddlers, now more than ever.

Guided by that passion for paddling Judge Johana Arguello found herself in a very unusual competition and adventure. Rather than telling you what you already know… here’s an article about the Panama Canal. But  enough about that… let’s hear about about this 50 mile race from Johana.

“The Organizer of the season is called CLUB DE REMOS DE BALBOA (club of paddle of balboa).” – explained Johana – “They have a series of events throughout the paddling season that starts in December and finishes in March, all of the events in different parts of Panama City.

One event per month qualifiers with points to win the spot for the most important race of the season, the ocean to ocean race in March.

All the professional teams start training together with enough time to win the most points they can in the previous races to guarantee their spot on the final (Ocean to Ocean race).”

The organisers always welcome new teams from other countries, because 85% (more or less) of the teams are from Panama.

In our case we asked to participate as “guests”, with no experience in the race before and they said yes!!”

That is fantastic and good news for all those foreigners who are eager for new adventures and want to take part in this specific race. But how did you find yourself in this whole story? – “Well, we always heard about this race and we have a couple of Costa Rican friends who participated a long time ago. Our friends like to paddle outrigger and this race is more for outrigger paddlers, because the technique is very similar…

Accidentally we met a Costa Rican guy that lives in Panama who participated in the race 3 times and we completed our team with him to compete in the race last year.

I found myself in this experience as a paddling fan always looking for great events, with special scenery and definitely this race has ALL this and more: really well organised, an incredible culture of paddling that promotes a huge amount of participants with very special elements as the boats, the paddle and the amazing place as the canal of Panamá.

The level of coordination that the organisers have to do to give us the chance to paddle on the canal, beside the huge ships, surrounded by nature, forests and really really high temperatures, make the full experience really amazing.” That’s what attracted my attention the first time I talked to you.

We know that the Panama Canal is a very engineering specific place itself, a place with multiple Locks, how did you coordinate the movement through the Locks themselves? – “A really important detail is that the race doesn’t cross the Locks.  The logistics is that the race starts after a Lock and finishes before the next one.  This is what happened the third day of the race. The first two days, the route is along the lakes that “feed” with water from the canal and the third day is the one we have to stop before the locks.”

Tell me now something about the teams…?  – “Each team of 4 people has to paddle a traditional cayuco, a kind of boat made of wood originally from the indigenous Panamanians that use these boats as the only transportation they have available to move people and supplies they need for living. Many indigenous still use these boats today.

To be part of a team is important to have enough training to paddle in really high intensity for at least two hours, really good teamwork and feel comfortable on the water. The possibilities for foreign teams is to ask for a “wild card” to participate, also it’s important to find a cayuco boat (some rent their boats to teams to compete) and also a find or buy a panamanian paddle made of local wood !! you cannot compete with a different paddle than this !!”

How did it all get started? – Frank Townsend, of the Panama Canal Authority, encouraged interaction and integration among a group of Boy Scouts of America explorers and the native community of the Chagres River. With these activities, the young Scouts learned the culture and traditions of the indigenous natives. Within this learning was the way to use the cayucos, which was the main means of transport used in this region.

The young scouts were increasingly interested in learning about the cayucos and started organising races with the indigenous people. With the passage of time, the amount of accumulated setbacks and the competition between them more important, for this reason they decided to organise a formal race. This race set the tone and mark the beginning of this exclusive sport of Panama.

At the start the US was running the canal and the race is still going all these years still now, which is AMAZING !!

Today, the sport has grown so much that very important brands have their own teams, such as NIKE, ADIDAS, and RED BULL.

Also you can find teams competing with fibreglass boats, wood of course, and other boats that are made from fibreglass and wood combined, etc.”

Who stands behind the organisation of this competition now? – “The actual organisers are  CLUB DE REMOS DE BALBOA, with collaboration of the Autoridad Marítima de Panamá (Maritime Authority of Panama) the organisation that runs all operations of the canal “

All this sounds fantastic and something that should be put on the bucket list. We are again putting the link: for those who, after reading this interesting story, want to try out for themselves this competition. Adventure is never enough in life, and what is more related to what we love – paddling, then better.

Thank you Johanna for this story, I sincerely hope that next year you will go there again and give us your impressions again.

Updated Race Rules now available

Each year the Sport & Competition Committee works through a number of proposals put forward to improve the race rules, and these are usually finalised by March. Here are the key changes made this year, and then links to the new rules:

  • New format for H2H – this is a major change.
  • Improved rules for better understanding surrounding National Selections for A and B level events.
  • Various smaller changes to fit in with how things are actually done.
  • Small improvements for more clarity.

New Race Rules from March 2018

Race Rules with track changes showing the changes made

Outdoor and Whitewater Festival

Guide training assessments and courses coming up – plenty to choose from!

There are so many IRF Guide Training & Education courses and/or assessments spread around the world that you should be able to find one near you or find one that sounds worthwhile travelling to!

From Wales to Bolivia, Chile to Bosnia, Canada to Bulgaria, Scotland to Romania, Morocco to Austria, Slovenia to Nepal and France.


  • 21 – 24 Mar: IRF Guide & Trip Leaders, Class 2 and 3. Villa Tunaru, Bolivia. Instructor: Fabian Bonnano. Details.
  • 21 – 23 March: Workshop and Assessment Trip Leader class 3 and Rafting Guide Class 3.Río Petrohue – Ensenada – Chile. Organizers: Chile Ríos. Language: Spanish. Instructor: Paulo Cartes Ortiz. Contact.
  • 22 – 30 Mar: IRF Instructor and Rescue 3 combined workshop. Tara River, Bosnia. Instructor: Mark Hirst. Details and Sign up
  • 24 – 28 Mar: IRF/BCROA Raft Guide Training Course, on Chilliwack, Thompson, Coquihalla Rivers (Dependent on spring flows). Course by Thompson Rivers University. Instructors: James Rodger and Tyler Willaimson
  • 24 – 31 Mar: IRF Guide Workshop and Rescue 3 WRT-PRO. Location: Struma river, Kresna Gourge, Simitly-Kresna, Bulgaria. Instructors: Davor Kos, Alexandar Pastir. Hosts: Adventure Net. Details.
  • 30 – 31 Mar: IRF Guide and Trip Leader Assessments. Location: Struma river, Kresna Gourge, Simitly-Kresna, Bulgaria. Instructors: Davor Kos, Alexandar Pastir. Hosts: Adventure Net. Details.


  • 2 – 7 April: Guide training, assessment & Rescue 3 whitewater rescue technician combined course run by Llangollen Outdoors. Based in Llangollen, North Wales, UK. Instructors are Mark Hirst & Josh O Brien. Details
  • 2 – 6 April: Guide course,through the West Highland College in Fort William, Scotland. Instructor: Jamie Macmanaway.
  • 2 – 30 April: (17 days) Class 3 Rafting Guide. Place: Río Trancura, Pucón – Chile. Organizers: Chile Ríos. Language: Spanish. Instructor: Paulo Cartes Ortiz. Contact.
  • 7 – 11 April:  IRF Guide Training course (grade 2 and 3) and assessment, in Nehoiu, Romania. Instructor: Sebastian Larcher. Contact: Mihai Mares +40 722415407
  • 12 – 15 April: Guide and Trip Leader Training and Certification Course, up to Class 4. Vrbas River, BiH. Instructor: Alex Pastir, Davor Kos. Details.
  • 12 – 16 April: IRF GTE Workshop & Combined Rescue 3 Whitewater Rescue Technician PRO.  Ahansal River, High Atlas mountains Morocco. Hosts: Berber Rafting. Details
  • 14 – 18 April: IRF Workshop. River Sava, Bled Slovenia. Instructor: Fabian Bonanno (Class IV, Aljoša Horvat (Class III). 4-day workshop plus 1 day for exam. Details
  • 18 – 20 April and 2 – 3 May. Guide course,through the West Highland College in Fort William, Scotland. Instructor: Jamie Macmanaway.
  • 19 – 22 April: Raft Guide and Trip Leader Training and Assessment, Class 3. Tara and Drina Rivers, BiH and Montenegro. Instructor: Alex Pastir. Details.
  • 21 – 30 April: IRF Guide Training Program and Assessment, Grade 2-3. Location: Salza and Enns River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer, Lukas Strobl. Details.
  • 22 – 26 April: IRF/BCROA Raft Guide Training Course, on Chilliwack, Thompson, Coquihalla Rivers (Dependent on spring flows) Canada. Course by Thompson Rivers University. Instructors: James Rodger and Tyler Willaimson
  • 23 – 27 April: IRF Staduim Guide assessment & Rescue 3 WRT PRO; Venue: LVWWC London, UK. Instructors: Mark Hirst & Richard Allam. Full.
  • 27 April: IRF/BCROA Raft Guide Assessment; Coquihalla River, Canada. By Thompson Rivers University. Instructors: James Rodger and Tyler Willaimson
  • 27 April – 6 May: IRF Guide Training course (grade 3) in Lofer, Austria. Instructors: Sebastian Larcher, Tobias Hitzelberger. Contact: Andreas Voglstatter, +43 6642562899
  • 28 – 29 April: First Aid Training and Exercise. Location Salza River Austria. Instructors Wolfgang Schiffermayer and Lukas Strobl. Details
  • 30 Apr – 1 May: Whitewater Rescue Challenge, Wildalpen, Austria. Details: and Facebook
  • 28 April – 1 May: (Part 1) IRF Guide Training Program and Assessment, grade 2-3. Location: Salza and Enns River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer and Lukas Strobl. Details.


  • 1 and 13 May: Guide Assessment, Location: Salza and Enns River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer and Lukas Strobl.
  • 2 – 4 May: IRF Certification Workshop, Guide, Trip Leader, Instructor certificates, level 2-3-4 and Instructor Updates. Wildalpen, Austria. Assessor: Gaspar Goncz
  • 3 – 6 May: GTE Workshop, Training and Assesment. Soca River, Bovec, Slovenia. Class 3 – 4. Instructor/Assessor: Robert Kazik. Instructor Assistent: Matej Zapletal. Contact for details.
  • 4 – 6 May: (Part 2) IRF Guide Training Program and Assessment, grade 2-3. Location: Salza and Enns River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer and Lukas Strobl. Details.
  • 5 – 13 May: Guide course Class 3 (one day off in between for practicals) Inn River, Austria.
    Other assessments and WRT training on request. Instructor and details: Bijan Arbab,
  • 10 – 13 May: (Part 3) IRF Guide Training Program and Assessment, grade 2-3. Location: Salza and Enns River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer and Lukas Strobl. Details.
  • 11 – 17 May:  IRF SRA Rescue 3 wrt pro Guide Course. Based out of Grandtully, Scotland. Instructor: Mark Adamson


  • 2 – 8 June: IRF and Rescue 3 Workshop. Centron, France. Instructors: Jerome Ghidini and Mark Hirst. Details.
  • 04 June – 15 June: IRF Guide Training Program and Assessment, Grade 3. Location: Isel River Osttirol, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer.
  • 15 June: Guide Assessment, Location: Isel River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer.
  • 24 June: Guide Assessment, Location: Salza and Enns River, Austria. Instructors: Wolfgang Schiffermayer and Lukas Strobl.


  • 24 Sept – 23 Nov: International River Guide Training Academy – an intensive 2 month guide training course in Nepal. Instructors. Mark Hirst & Nim Bahadur Magar. Host Company: Paddle Nepal. Details.

Judges for ERC 2018

If you are an IRF Judge and are keen to work as a Judge at the 2018 Euro Rafting Champs in Slovakia from the 2 to 7 July, in Bratislava – then email IRF Admin to put your name down. The Judges Com will then assess the list of names and select from it who will be Official Judges and who will be Volunteer Judges.

All Judges working at the event will take part in the Judges Workshop (usually half a day) at the start of the event which is designed to get everyone up to date with new rules and to run over the key elements of what the job of judging entails and what is expected of IRF Judges.

A course for new Judges will be run at the start of the event as well – so anyone wanting to become a Judge, please send your name in as well. More details about this course will be posted later.

Two month intensive guide course in Nepal

During the fall season of 2018 Lapin Koskikoulu and Paddle Nepal have teamed up to run their first Himalayan River Guide Training Academy. The course will run over 2 months and is open to anybody wishing to travel & explore the rivers of Nepal and learn to become a professional river guide at the same time. Existing river guides & kayakers are also welcome to join us.

  • Start date: 24 September 2018
  • End date: 23 November 2018
  • Venue: Nepal
  • Instructors: Mark Hirst & Nim Bahadur Magar
  • Host Company: Paddle Nepal

The course will be run in the following format.

Section 1: Core training. 24 September – 6 October 2018 (13 days)

To become a professional guide, you must first receive a solid professional core training. During the first 13 days we will be based at our riverside camp on the banks of the Trisuli River. This will allow us access to a selection of both day and multi-day runs on the Trisuli & surrounding rivers. We will spend each day on the river running practical lessons on various subjects.

Upon successful completion of the core programme all students will be awarded the following internationally recognised awards

  • Rescue3 Europe whitewater rescue technician Professional
  • International Rafting Federation Trainee guide award.

Section 2: Consolidation. 9 – 30 October (22 days)

The consolidation period will allow all students to use the newly learnt skills whilst shadowing commercial guides on commercial river trips run by paddle Nepal. Students will gain valuable experience whilst running some of Nepal’s classic rivers such as:

  • Kali Gandakhi (3 day)
  • Upper seti (½ day )
  • Lower seti (2-3 days)
  • Trisuli (1 day)

During the consolidation period all students will be given regular feedback sessions by the course instructors.

Section 3: Expedition. 1 – 10 November (10 days)

The expedition trip will take us to one of the world’s classic multiday raft & kayak expeditions on the remote Karnali River in the far west of Nepal. The expedition trip will allow all students to experience an expedition and will also let the students practice the skills needed to operate on expedition raft trips.

Section 4: Advanced rescue. 13 – 16 November (4 days)

The advanced rescue section will follow the curriculum needed to obtain the Rescue 3 Europe whitewater Rescue Technician advance certificate (WRTA). The WRTA course is aimed at kayakers and rafters operating on class 4/5 rivers in remote locations where vertical access maybe needed. The WRTA will teach the students advanced rescue techniques using basic river rescue equipment.

Section 5: Final assessments. 19 – 23 November (5 days )

The final section of the course will be based on the Marshyangdhi River. The Marshyangdhi is a classic test piece river. Depending on the students experience they will have the opportunity to be assessed for the following International Rafting Federation awards

  • Raft guide class 3
  • Safety kayaker class 3
  • Trip leader class 3
  • Raft guide class 4
  • Safety kayaker class 4
  • Trip leader class 4

Section 5 will be a series of practical assessments in which the students must pass to gain IRF status.

Read more to find out the cost, what’s included and not included and other details and contact details.

Upcoming events on the IRF race calendar

The racing calendar is filling up quickly with some great events on the horizon:

  • Dracula will be making his first IRF EC appearance in Romania from the 13 – 15 April on the Buzau River. This is a new event on the EC calendar and promises to be a bucket list one for the future!
  • June sees EC R6 on the Vrbas in BiH from the 9 – 10, then EC R4 in Trnavka on the 16 – 17 and EC R6 in Prague, Vltava Troja on the 23 – 24.
  • 2 – 7 July is the Euro Rafting Champs at Cunovo/Donau in Bratislava, Slovakia. This is a familiar location for many as the ERC 2014 was held in the same location. The team information letter has all the details needed to make your plans.
  • China is running two events this year – the first is the International Rafting Festival in Guilin on the Wupai River (late July – dates to be confirmed) and then from the 10 -12 August it will be the World Rafting Plateau Championships in Yushu City in Qinghai. This is a stunning area to visit and a chance to paddle a short piece of the Yangzte! China always puts on a great show at these events. They also will be offering team subsidies (with conditions) once again.
  • The final two EC events of the season are EC R4 & R6 on Devil’s Stream, Lipno from the 25 – 26 August, and EC R4 & R6 on the Soca River in Slovenia from 15 – 16 Sept.
  • 4 – 10 November is the highlight of the IRF racong calendar – the World Rafting Champs on the Aluminé River in Aluminé/Villa Pehuenia in Neuquen, Argentina!

Pre-Worlds in Tully, Australia – all the info you need

The 2019 World Rafting Championships Organising Committee, in conjunction with the Australian Rafting Federation, invites you to the Pre-World Rafting Championships 2018 to be conducted in the World Heritage Listed Tully Gorge located in Tropical North Queensland, Australia. The Grade 4 Tully River with its 30+ year history of white water rafting, is the heart and soul of rafting in Australia and is world renowned amongst professional and competitive rafters.

Important Event Information

The Championship Hub will be based in the township of Tully, with additional team and spectator accommodation options in Cardwell and Mission Beach. The region is known as the Cassowary Coast, and is not only home to the ancient Cassowary bird, but also links other nature based activities in the World Heritage area including mountain-biking through the Misty Mountain Trails, Great Barrier Reef Cruises from Mission Beach and trekking the famous coastal beaches and islands including Hinchinbrook and Dunk Islands.

The competition will take place from the 9 – 13 May 2018, with the following timetable:

  • Wednesday 09 May – Registration and Training
  • Thursday 10 May – Training
  • Friday 11 May – Sprint (morning) and Head-2-Head (afternoon)
  • Saturday 12 May – Slalom
  • Sunday 13 May – Downriver

Competition categories will be for Men and Women in:

  • Open
  • Masters
  • Youth (under 23)
  • Junior (under 19)

Information Package – Tully Pre-Worlds 2018

Invitation – Tully Pre-Worlds 2018

The Australian Rafting Federation and World Championships Organising Committee is looking
forward to welcoming you to the Tully River and Tropical North Queensland in May 2018.

White Water of Siberia – 2018 Forum – schedule is out!

This year will be the third White Water of Siberia Forum (WWOSF) to be held in Siberia – 2016 and 2017 proved very popular and successful (read more about those two events). This should be a bucket list item for all rafters – to go rafting in the Altai region!

The schedule for the 2018 WWOSF is now out so you can set aside the dates and be ready for when they call for participants:

Dates: 20 to 29 August 2018.

On the 20 and 21 August you will be in the Tomsk district for the cultural and sporting part of the forum. The forum’s opening ceremony is in Kopylovo village. There will also be the first introductory and training rafting session, checking participants’ equipment, training of the guide-instructor team, forming the rafting teams from the forum participants, some team building and introduction and assigning of the guide instructors.

Then everyone will participate in the international contest festival “Axe day – 2017” in Zorkaltsevo village. This will be followed by a conference meeting with the legendary Russian traveller – Eugene Kovalevsky. The discussion topic – international tourism and extreme travelling. This is finished off with a Gala dinner.

From the 22 to the 29 August everyone travels to the Altai Republic. Journey through the lake Teletskoe on boats, then the valley of the Chulyshman River where you will raft down the Chulyshman river (Class 4 – 5). You will also take in the Accurum natural border, Katu-Jaryk range, Kurkure Waterfall, Chulchin Waterfall, Kudyrge barrow (the archaeologists revealed a burial complex of more than 60 constructions: fences, stonework, barrows of the 6-7 century AD. The excavations provided a profound material, illustrating the culture and life of the ancient Turk tribes, inhabiting the Chulyshman valley).

There will be a conference about “The ancient history – following the path of the Silk Road.”

Then you will be meeting sportsmen, organizers, spectators and seeing the place of the traditional Russian rafting competition “Ak-Talai-Margaan”, which can be translated as “Challenging the White Water” from Altai language.

There will be a round table of open discussions with the best Russian rafting teams. The main topic of all discussions – Russian sport, and the project of the R6 World Rafting Champs in Russia.

Everyone will then participate in the Russian National Rafting Cup in international rafting teams, formed from the forum participants. Disciplines will be Sprint, Head-to-Head, Slalom and Downriver.

The best part yet – International Friendship Rafting – the final event of the forum, rafting down the Katun River on big rafts from the inflow of the Katun River Ilgumen to the inflow of the Ursul River (3 hours long).

Finished off with a final gala concert, awarding of certificates, gifts and prizes.