Race Results

WC 2019 Series
Results: OWOM

WC Silokek 
Results: MM, U19M, OM, OW, U23M, U23W

Ibar, Serbia 2019
Results; Video; Photos

EC 2019 Series
Results: R6 Overall; R4 Overall

EC Devil’s Stream
Results; Photos; Video;

EC British Open
Results; Photos

Canada Nationals
Results; Photos: -1-, -2-, -3-. Video H2H.

Pre-WRC, Ziyuan
Results: Men, Women; Photos: Trng, SP/OC, SL, H2H, DR; Videos: D1, D2, D3, D4;

ERC Vrbas, Bosnia
Results and media

EC Results so far
R6: OM; OW. R4: OM; OW.

EC Trnavka
Results: Sprint; Slalom. Photos.

WRC 2019, Tully
Results, Photos, press releases, etc

EC Wildalpen
Results: OM, U23M, OW; Photos

EC Priboj, Serbia
Results; Photos

EC Nottingham
Results, Photos: -1-, -2-, -3-. H2H Video

EC Romania, Dracula Race
Results; Photos

WRC 2018
All results

more archived Race Results

Coronavirus COVID-19 Impacts to IRF Events (Update 4)

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the international sporting world, and the IRF is no exception. With lockdowns being brought into play throughout the world, borders closing and extreme travel restrictions in place, it is evident that it will be a long while before the sporting world gets back on its feet.

How this impacts our upcoming IRF events and activities:

  • ERC 2020 in Czechia – with heavy hearts we have announced the cancellation of our ERC 2020
  • WRC 2020 in Ziyuan, Guilin, China – China has moved through the peak of the pandemic and practically eliminated community transmitted COVID-19 infections, and Ziyuan has experienced zero cases at anytime making it one of the safest venues for rafting on the globe. However, China has closed their borders to all foreigners to prevent the virus from entering the country and reestablishing itself. No date has been given for when this may change. The IRF Executive Committee and Athlete’s Commission have discussed the fact that COVID-19 travel restrictions, quarantines and curfews around the world have made it impossible for many of our athletes to safely train or make preparations to travel to China. The IRF further believes that our sport must not in any way be a factor that could endanger the health and safety of our IRF family or their loved ones. Therefore, the IRF and the WRC Organisers are discussing the very real likelihood that the WRC may be postponed. We are investigating all options at the moment. We will announce a joint decision as soon as we have found a path through this maze of uncertainty.
  • Balkan White Water Safety Summit in Bosnia and Herzegovina – postponed to later in the year.
  • For all other IRF events and activities – please keep a close eye on the following two links which we will update as we receive information from the organisers and make joint decisions on the future of these activities and events:

As always, the health and safety of the IRF family remains our first priority. The IRF will continue to follow the information and guidance of the World Health Organisation (WHO), as the United Nations agency that is leading the world on this issue.

The IRF will act according to the science-based evidence gathered by WHO.  We will not issue blanket proclamations or unilaterally suspend all IRF events.  We support all our event organisers and teams across the globe, and will continue to respond to the pandemic with appropriate measures – without misrepresentation, over-hype, or panic.  Government restrictions placed on event gatherings, which may or may not be based on WHO recommendations, will be followed in accordance to law.

We encourage everyone to keep healthy, get plenty of clean, fresh air, and closely follow the WHO COVID-19 advice for the public. If you are able and allowed to step outside to get onto rivers, please follow WHO’s advice on social distancing and any legal restrictions put in place by government officials.  Let’s remain positive while we focus on our health and safety – the world needs positivity to get us through this difficult time.

Coronavirus Update 4
Coronavirus Update 3
Coronavirus Update 2
Coronavirus Update 1

#RaftersAreAwesome #StrongerTogether #internationalrafting #oneloveoneriver #RiverFamily #WeAreIRF

Ropes for River Use

In this article Rafting Magazine takes a look at rope used for rafting specifically static line. For this article they reached out to both Sterling and BlueWater ropes to get some technical insight on what works best for river rescue use. There is a lot to know and a lot to understand about what rafters need on the river. If you are looking for throw ropes or throw bags you can find more info on that here. They also will be bringing you some of the top contenders for best ropes on the market.

Ropes are a pretty complex topic in the river community. Both static and dynamic ropes find their way into our gear. It’s Important to know what they are and when to use them if you are unfamiliar with the purpose of each type of rope. Another important piece of terminology is what the difference between rope and line is.

What is the Difference Between Rope vs. Line?

A rope is a rope right? Not exactly, as we increase our mastery over a topic, it requires greater degrees of specificity to accurately describe and understand the topic. So the best way to understand this is: a rope is a rope, unless it’s on a boat, then it’s a line. Throw ropes are used on shore, perimeter lines ring a raft, static lines pull a raft off of a wrap, flip lines (which generally aren’t even rope) flip the boat over, but a strap secures gear to the boat. Like any sport as the community has gained mastery we have borrowed some terms from sailing, kayaking, and oceanic navigation, as well as sprinkling in some other terms of our own. So a rope is a rope, until it’s not a rope, but does that make all rope equal?

Static Rope in Rafting

Now that we understand the difference between rope and line it is important to note that not all rope is equal or the same in rafting. There are two main uses for Static line in rafting: perimeter lines and static lines for rescue applications. When rigging perimeter lines some folks prefer ropes and some prefer webbing, largely it is a matter of preference, however Continue reading Ropes for River Use

DISCLAIMER: The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs, viewpoints or official policies of the IRF.

European Rafting Championship 2020 in Czechia Cancelled

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread at an alarming pace, on 12 March, for the first time in its modern history the Czech government declared a state of emergency for the entire country.  On 16 March, Czechia closed its borders, forbid entry of foreigners and issued a nationwide curfew. Most European countries have also closed their borders and travel has ground to a halt.  As shown by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the situation has become severe.

Due to these unprecedented circumstances, and the uncertainty of how this will continue to affect Czechia and the rest of Europe, the Union of Boaters of the Czech Republic (IRF Member Organisation),  and the IRF have jointly agreed to cancel the European Rafting Championship (ERC) for this year.

Cancelling an event like the ERC is a difficult decision and should only be done if completely unavoidable.  It was right for everyone involved to give every possible chance for the ERC to proceed. While it was a tough decision to make, the IRF believes this to be the right decision given the current state of Europe. We’d like to thank the Czech organisers for stepping up and offering such a strong bid to host the ERC, and for their unwavering support of the IRF.  #strongertogether

We wish all of our member federations, athletes, coaches, judges and supporters around the world the best of health during this trying time. The rivers will be waiting for us when we get the chance to get out and enjoy them together again – all of them most likely looking a lot cleaner and healthier!

#weareirf #RaftersAreAwesome #irferc

Boating Business – Coronavirus and Economic Slowdowns

Boating Business - Coronavirus and Economic Slowdowns

How will Coronavirus affect hospitality?

Coronavirus is a hot topic at the moment and rightly so, after all, at the time of writing this piece we have seen a huge impact to stock markets and global supply chains. These effects will ripple across the market and especially impact the tourism and hospitality sector. Senator Joel Villanueva, chair of the USA senate labor committee said “We think the tourism sector will bear the brunt of our government’s travel ban due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The government should spur domestic tourism to assuage the impact of decline in foreign tourists,”

The senator’s statements show an interesting shift in the mentality of tourism during periods of economic uncertainty. Fears about pandemics and recessions create a situation where average spends on travel and tourism decrease dramatically due to financial uncertainty. Fears about a Coronavirus pandemic though are not just about the actual virus affecting people though. Coronavirus has silently begun to cause supply chain disruptions and investment income which have ripple effects on how much people can spend on non-essential activities like outdoor recreation.

Historical effects of financial uncertainty in tourism

To understand what happens during times of financial uncertainty the US Bureau of Labor produced several statistics on US average annual spend on travel during the last economic downturn. When we compare the year over year percentage change we can see a serious contraction in annual spending bottoming out in 2009

Tourism Trends.jpg

This trend is also mirrored in a Boston and Cambridge look at the average occupancy of hotel rooms during the last financial crisis.

B & C Study.jpg

All of this combined shows a major contraction across the tourism sector with leisure travel being the hardest hit. The bottom line is that during times of economic uncertainty more people are staying home.

Domestic tourism during financial uncertainty

One of the most reliable measures of demand in tourism is numbers of travelers. So clearly financial uncertainty has a negative relationship on the demand for tourism, but this approach only looks at the big picture of trends in the US using the above data. When we look at the rafting industry during times of uncertainty we actually see a counter intuitive pattern emerge. Here is the use data compiled by America outdoors on East Coast Rivers:

Continue Reading Boating Business – Coronavirus and Economic Slowdowns

 

 

Coronavirus COVID-19 Impacts to IRF Events (Update 3)

Contrary to rumours being released by IRF detractors, the IRF is still actively pursuing our WRC, ERC, ECs and WCs this year along with our GTE activities.  The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the worldwide international sporting calendar, and the IRF calendar is no exception.  Our immediate concern is for events coming up in the next 8 weeks as government and health authorities react in various ways to contain or mitigate the spread of the virus with protective measures.  The situation is changing daily. Nobody today can say what the developments are tomorrow, what they are in one month, and certainly not several months into the future. The IRF will not be making irresponsible decisions to change our competition calendar based on speculation.  We urge all competitors to stay in touch with their National Federation and to keep watch for updates to this post and to our published calendar.

  • Balkan White Water Safety Summit in Bosnia and Herzegovina – still proceeding according to plans.
  • WRC 2020 in Guilin, Ziyuan China – China (population 1.4 billion) is typically reporting less than 20 new COVID-19 cases a day (all from travelers from abroad). Chinese authorities are now more concerned about infected foreigners entering the country than community spread cases within China.  Ziyuan County, site of the IRF World Rafting Championship (WRC) event, has told us they have zero infections because the virus has never entered their county, making it one of the safest rafting event locations in the world.  We are considering different contingency scenarios, but the IRF WRC is unlike our other events and many other sport championships in that it is scheduled five months away. Local officials in Ziyuan report that they are moving forward at full speed to prepare for the competition as planned!
  • ERC 2020 in Czech Republic – is scheduled for June, when the peak number of COVID-19 cases in Europe are expected to be past.  We will be monitoring the situation carefully, in concert with event organisers and local health authorities.

Continue reading Coronavirus COVID-19 Impacts to IRF Events (Update 3)

Save the Karnali – Nepal’s last and most pristine free-flowing river

by Megh Ale and Karen Bennett

The mighty Karnali, Nepal’s longest, largest, and least known river system is in peril. Of the three major river basins emerging from the Nepal Himalaya—the Koshi, Kali Gandaki, and Karnali—the Karnali is the only river that remains free-flowing. All others have been dammed for hydropower generation reflecting an increasingly intensive pattern of hydropower development across Nepal. There are currently three mega hydropower dams planned for the Karnali River with 28 more sites being surveyed. Construction of any one of these dams will forever change the essence and flow of the Karnali River. The construction of all three will devastate the river system and the cultures, endangered species and economies that depend on it. A dedicated group of people are working to protect the free-flowing Karnali. In spring 2018, a group of scientists, river adventurists and a film crew undertook a 44-day expedition along its entire length. Together, they documented the river’s values and used what they learned to educate the public and decision-makers about the importance of protecting the Karnali – Nepal’s last and most pristine free-flowing river.

The Karnali River starts near Holy Mt. Kailash on the Tibetan Plateau as do three other great Holy Rivers of Asia, the Indus (Sutlej) into Pakistan, the Ganges through India and the Brahmaputra to Bangledesh. Hundreds of thousands of worshipers travel to Holy Mt. Kailash each year for a spiritual renewal.

Continue reading Save the Karnali – Nepal’s last and most pristine free-flowing river

2020 IRF Race Rules now available in Serbian

The 2020 edition of the IRF Race Rules is now available in Serbian.
Thanks to Jasmina Marčok for the invaluable assistance in translations and review.

Having the race rules translated into multiple languages allows us all to share the love of raft racing even further. You can view all current and recent versions of the race rules on our website here.

It would be great if we can get Czech, Russian, Spanish and Romanian versions this year. If you are able to assist in translating the current (2020) race rules into your language, get in touch and let Sean or Sue know if you are able to help: media@internationalrafting.com

#AreYouReady #RaftersAreAwesome #rafting #StrongerTogether #internationalrafting #RiverFamily #WeAreIRF

Should We Be Classifying Rafts?

This article is a reprint from our friends at ‘RAFTING MAGAZINE’

Kayaking has taken an interesting trend over the years by classifying boats. Given the crossover of many paddlers between these sports it is surprising that rafting hasn’t picked up the stratification of boat classes into broad categories. As we get more experienced with a topic we require greater degrees of specificity to describe similar yet functionally different concepts. So, we thought we would take a crack at some boat classification for rafts.

How does classifying rafts help?

We get a ton of questions about what boat to take out in which river. Different boats have very different performance characteristics. Everyone has their preference for style of boat and different regions will see greater popularity from different designs due to local conditions.

One of the more particular parts of our industry is that boat design and popularity varies regionally since rivers in different geological zones are slightly different despite the fact that water tends to create similarly predictable features in general. A good thing to pay particular attention to is how the locals boat and customize their boats.

Raft classifications

It’s important to note that not every raft fits perfectly in each category. While you can certainly get down a big water section of river in a play boat, it may not be the most enjoyable experience as something like that can leave you pretty exposed. Here are our thoughts on how to categorize rafts generally. You can click the links below to take you to the gear shed to see more about what’s out there on the market.

Boats.jpg
  • Play boats

  • Creek Boats

  • River Runners

  • Big water boats

  • Gear boats

Outside of these categories there are a few specialty categories that we haven’t covered like J-rigs and sweep boats as they tend to be less common, especially for the average boater. Also we are not covering catarafts in this piece as we would like to cover those crafts in a separate article.

Continue reading Should We Classify Rafts?

DISCLAIMER: The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs, viewpoints or official policies of the IRF.

A New Member Joins the IRF Family – Ukrainian Rafting Federation

Recognising that we are stronger together, the Ukrainian Rafting Federation (URF), founded in 2009, are the most recent member to join the IRF rafting family. The URF joins the All Ukraine Rafting Federation (AURF) as our second provisional member federation from Ukraine.  The IRF will be working with the two rafting federations to help unify rafting in Ukraine as we continue to unify rafting worldwide. We wholeheartedly welcome URF to the IRF Family!

The URF now conducts National Championships each year in the categories of Juniors, Open and Masters and have been competing in international competitions for a number of years.  In preparation for meeting IRF membership requirements, the URF has added clauses to its organisation statutes, which among other additions, states that the URF recognises, “the International Rafting Federation (“IRF”) as the world governing body of rafting”.

Ukraine has a great range of rivers and rafting locations along with a fast developing tourism industry. Internationally recognised and respected IRF GTE Workshops have been run in Ukraine since 2016, increasing the standard of river safety for all.

However, the forefront and leading work URF are best known for is their pioneering work in para-rafting. They started developing para-rafting in 2017 and in 2018 and 2019 they organised an international Para-Rafting competition in Kiev, Ukraine.  Among the IRF’s core objectives enshrined in our Bylaws, is to promote rafting as a Paralympic sport.  For the past two years the IRF has been working closely with para-athletes and other international sport federations involved in para-sports, to create a well designed and carefully crafted management plan for whitewater para-rafting competitions.  Our objective is to roll out a safe para-rafting structure that incorporates a wide range of disabilities, conforms to International Paralympic Commitee (IPC) guidelines, and stays true to rafting’s origins and history as a thrilling sport conducted on whitewater.  We are delighted to include the URF among our body of experts working on this ambitious project, and welcome their experience and advice as these plans continue to develop.

Ukraine team racing at IRF Kashmir Cup, India in 2008

Oleksandr Bakanychev, President of the federation, tells us the development priorities of the URF are:

  • Strong preparation for the IRF World and European Championships;
  • The reform of rafting;
  • Providing a qualitative and clear system of sporting equipment purchase;
  • Building modern sporting infrastructures for conducting international competitions and involving rafting athletes;
  • Building new sporting facilities in the places that are suitable for conducting rafting competitions;
  • Creation and implementation of the competition system of school children’s and student’s leagues;
  • Realisation of the pilot project  “Money walks after a child” at children’s and youthful sporting school in Scole, Lviv region, Ukraine;
  • Digitisation of sporting sphere: creation of unified electronic registers of competitions, coaches, athletes and sporting facilities;
  • Development of tourist rafting in Ukraine;
  • Training for guides and instructors
  • Training for coaches and judges

We will report more soon about their recent project of developing rafting amongst children aged 10 to 15 years old.

We look forward to meeting all the Ukrainian teams at our upcoming European Champs, World Champs, as well as Euro Cups and World Cups.

IRF’s 2020 Race Rules now available

The IRF Sport & Competition Committee have concluded the annual updating of the Race Rules. The new rules come into effect from the 1 March.

The majority of the changes are under the H2H section, which is not surprising as this new format is still getting a few crinkles ironed out. The changes can be seen in the following document which shows where the changes have been made – IRF Race Rules – March 2020 with track changes. The key changes are listed below:

  • Definitions of “Inside the raft” and “Sportsmanship” have been added.

H2H:

  • The Team with the faster time in the Sprint is awarded the choice of Start Lane. So times in H2H races no longer dictate choice of start lane.
  • Under H2H safety – competitors are not allowed to intentionally exit their rafts at any time during the H2H race except under the following situations:
    • Their raft is firmly grounded on a rock or other obstacle and cannot be ungrounded by other means.
    • Exiting their raft is necessary because of a clear and obvious safety hazard.
  • There is now a 50 second penalty instead of disqualification for disregarding the H2H safety rules.
  • Teams will be disqualified if they take longer than 15 mins to do the entire course. This time can be shortened by the Jury if needs be.
  • Rules around sustainability have been added as well. The inappropriate discard of rubbish during an IRF Event is considered unsportsmanlike behaviour bringing the sport of rafting into disrepute and so can be penalised.

See you on the race courses!

#RaftersAreAwesome #AreYouReady #internationalrafting