Opening Ceremony of the IRF’s European Rafting Championships

Rafting Center “Kanyon” in Karanovac opened the IRF European Rafting Championship “Banjaluka-Vrbas 2019” last night, where about 250 rafters from 11 European countries will participate over the next four days. 

The championship was opened by the Deputy Mayor of Banja Luka, Srđan Amidžić, who said that water sports are gaining importance and that rafting is seen as an exceptional opportunity for the promotion of the tourist potential of the city.

“Athletes from all over the world come to us. Vrbas is our great sporting and tourist potential. As far as I know, for all these years, no rafter from Banja Luka went unhappy. Everyone is thrilled with the river, which is most important, but we are extremely pleased when we hear they are also very satisfied with our hospitality, our food and our people, “said Amidžić.

Amidžić said that this city has hosted the biggest rafting competitions in the past 15 years, and that this is the third European Championship held in Vrbas.

“Previously, we were successful hosts of the European Championship in 2005 and 2015. The biggest event was the organization of the World Rafting Championship in 2009, which generated enormous public interest and when, according to estimates, in the Vrbas canyon there were more than 30,000 people who enjoyed the rafting races, “said Amidžić.

Assistant Minister of Sports of Republika Srpska Dragan Jaćimović said that the Ministry of Family, Youth and Sports of Srpska has included this competition in the calendar of events of significance for the Republic of Srpska, BiH, and provided support to the organizers, recognizing the multiple significance of this sporting event.

He said that rafting is expanding from year to year in this region, and that the progress and development of every sport is the success of Banja Luka and Republika Srpska, BiH.

“Everyone who once feels the power and sees the beauty of Vrbas will surely come and be our guests both as athletes and as tourists,” said Jaćimovic. The president of the World Rafting Federation, Joseph Willis Jones , addressed the rafters , who pointed out that the most successful international rafting competition was organized in Banja Luka in the previous years.

The championship, which will last until Sunday, July 7, will feature 36 teams in the men’s and women’s competitions.

The teams from Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Romania, Slovenia, Serbia, Hungary, Great Britain, Russia, Latvia and Bosnia and Herzegovina will have their strengths and skills assessed by the Vrbas River.

The first race races are scheduled for tomorrow at the White Bull track. You can see the program of the competition on the link:

And all Results and Media will be posted here