Rafting Champions of the World

The 2022 Rafting Champions of the World were recently declared on the Tara River, in the Republic of Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The final deciding discipline of Downriver was contested on the beautiful blue waters of the canyon section of the Tara River.

Czechia are the new Under 19 Men Rafting Champions of the World. Wins in the H2H and Slalom ensured they stayed in 1st Overall, with Croatia securing a Gold medal in the Sprint and Downriver.

The young USA Under 19 Women were happy with their performance, especially their Gold medal in Sprint, at their first ever international competition, and gave credit to the new Under 19 Women World Champions, Czechia, saying how impressed they were with their skill level.

The AUS Crocs needed to beat Japan Under 23 Men in the Downriver to secure the Overall title and with a decisive overtaking move near the end of the Downriver they managed to do this becoming the Under 23 Men Rafting Champions of the World, a Gold medal they are proud to add to their 2019 Under 19 Men’s World Champions title. Japan’s 1st in Slalom and 2nd in Downriver held them in 2nd Overall with Czechia taking the final place in Downriver and Overall.

A similar decisive overtaking move saw Indonesia win the Downriver and so become the Under 23 Women Rafting Champions of the World.  Only achieving 4th in the Downriver wasn’t enough to drop Canada out of 2nd place Overall. Japan’s 2nd in Downriver bumped them up to 3rd Overall.

The Czechia Master’s Men are multiple world champions already and clinch that title once again. Hosts and new to the Master’s category, BiH, can be very proud of their achievements and 2nd Overall. The final Downriver and Overall podium position in the Master’s category was Brazil.

It was a close finish in the Master’s Women Downriver with Canada finishing close on the tail of Czechia, with Argentina taking 3rd. Czechia’s win in Downriver bumped them up from 3rd Overall to 1st making them the Master’s Women World Champions! And moving Slovakia and Argentina down one place for Overall.

With a first in H2H, Slalom and finally Downriver the Czechia Open Women proved themselves unbeatable and are the new Open Women Rafting Champions of the World. A disappointing Downriver dropped Australia out of 2nd Overall to 4th, and a consistent performance from the USA women saw them claiming 3rd in Downriver which was enough for 2nd Overall. Japan’s 2nd in Downriver held them in 3rd Overall, but ruing their disappointing Slalom score.

In the Open Men’s category the two leading teams of Brazil and Japan each received 50 second penalties for false starts, but in the end it made no difference as they were far enough ahead. Brazil took the win with Japan hard on their tails by 7.45 seconds. The final position on the podium was a surprising Croatia at 33.41 seconds behind Japan. This pulled Croatia up from 8th to 4th place Overall. Argentina managed to keep their 3rd place Overall with a 4th in the Downriver. Japan secured their 2nd Overall and Brazil once again are World Champions!

A special mention must go to Lucas Paulino da Silva, known to many as Core. Core just became World Champion for the 9th time!!! He was World Champion in 2007, 2009, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019 and 2022. Or maybe it is easier to say since 2007 he was NOT World Champion in 2010, 2011 and 2018! Also a mention is deserved to Antonio José Martim Salvatti who has become World Champion for his 7th time and Saulo Luis Dias Queiroz Quirino for his 6th time, also incredible achievements.

And congratulations to Czechia for scooping up five of the eight World Championships available!

Summary of the Rafting Champions of the World
  • Open Men – Brazil
  • Open Women – Czechia
  • Master’s Men – Czechia
  • Master’s Women – Czechia
  • Under 23 Men – Australia
  • Under 23 Women – Indonesia
  • Under 19 Men – Czechia
  • Under 19 Women – Czechia

Full Results

Past WRC Results