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News and views - August 2018

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In this issue, we meet more of our River Family, get ready for the Zambezi River Festival, look back to Yushu (Tibet) for the IRF World Rafting Plateau Championship and look forward to WRC in Australia and before then an inclusive GTE, Rescue 3 and Basic Life Support course in Slovenia.

See you on a river soon,
International Rafting Federation

Experience Co announced as major sponsor of the IRF WRC 2019

Experience Co has been announced as a major sponsor of the IRF 2019 World Rafting Championships to be held on the Tully River, Tropical North Queensland, 13 – 20 May 2019.

Experience Co Limited was listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) in 2015 and currently operates throughout Australia and New Zealand. Experience Co offer some of the most incredible adventure tourism activities, from tandem skydiving and hot air ballooning, to canyoning, sea kayaking, Great Barrier Reef boat and helicopter tours, and of course white- water rafting.

Experience Co focuses their intention on providing the highest quality and most memorable adventure tourism experiences. Their adrenaline pumping activities are always sure to get the heart racing and excitement levels high. The business, which first began with . . . → continue reading . . . Experience Co announced as major sponsor of the IRF WRC 2019

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We are river family – meet Tyler Fox

This week we meet Tyler Fox, one of the original Tribe Rider paddlers, New Zealand raft racer, raft guide, fireman and maple syrup loving Canadian at heart. We started by asking him how he got involved in paddling…. In High School I took an Outdoor Ed class and we learnt whitewater canoeing (in NZ they call it Canadian Canoeing, but in Canada it’s just canoeing). I quickly realised kayaking was way easier and much more fun. This lead me to get a job on the Ottawa River as a raft guide so that I could be on the water everyday rafting and kayaking in all my spare time.

What have you been doing since Tribe Rider? Since Tribe Rider? Tribe Rider for life!! ha ha . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Tyler Fox

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Zambezi White Water Festival – a Class V amateur rafting competition

Livingstone Zambia, Africa, the base of “Mosi-oa-Tunya”, the “Victoria Falls”, the Zambezi River, the middle Batoka Gorge. This is the unique location for what is one of the worlds only class V amateur rafting competitions; the “Zambezi White Water Festival”. This years event is 25 – 27 October.

Conceived as a way for the white water community to celebrate this incredible river, the event is geared towards anyone that has a passion for adventure, the great outdoors and having a great time with like minded people. In an unbeatable location, with so much to offer it is the perfect excuse to visit this spectacular region.

“The mission statement for . . . → continue reading . . . Zambezi White Water Festival – a Class V amateur rafting competition

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We are river family – meet Las Correntinas

One of the newer formed race teams on the international circuit, Las Correntinas of Chile are a lively, funny group of friends who came together to race and have sparked inspiration in the rafting and paddling communities. This week we meet Las Correntinas, winners of the IRF Rafting Spirit Award in the recent IRF Ziyuan Rafting Festival. Their never ending enthusiasm and group camaraderie have earned them friends across the world.

How did you get started in rafting? We studied at Universidad de las Fronteras in Pucón to be raft guides and safety kayakers at different years. In 2016 we started to train slalom kayaking together to participate in national and international competitions. Then in 2017, we formed the team “Las Correntinas” to . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Las Correntinas

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Raft racing on the Tibetan Plateau, has additional challenges for competitors.

The city of Yushu has just played host to the 2018 IRF Yushu World Rafting Plateau Championship which saw 23 teams from 17 countries from four continents gather together to race with friends old and new in stunning and breathtaking race environments.

At 3,600 metres above sea level, the city of Yushu is well above the altitude of home towns for most competitors. Altitude sickness (hypoxia) can pose problems as your body adjusts. It can take two to three days especially for those who are more used to living at less than 100 metres above sea level. Thankfully the city and event organisers are well prepared for this and recommend a few days prior to the competition to acclimatise. This involves rest, eating, sleeping and if . . . → continue reading . . . Raft racing on the Tibetan Plateau, has additional challenges for competitors.

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Safety course Slovenia includes IRF GTE, Rescue 3 Europe and Basic Life Support

This is a great opportunity to do an intensive workshop where you can obtain certifications from 3 different organisations that are recognised worldwide –

WRT – Pro: Whitewater Rescue Technician – Professional, Rescue 3 Europe

IRF GT&E: Guide Training & Education, International Rafting Federation

BLS: Basic Life Support, American Heart Association

Dates: the 31 September to the 7 October 2018, and is being run by the Slovenian Canyoning Federation.

Minimum numbers: The WRT-­Pro and the IRF GT&E minimum number of participants is 4 people and for the (BLS) is minimum 8 people.

Contacts: Miha Mihelič – Rescue 3 Instructor: e-mail: Phone: +38640331195 Fabian Bonanno – IRF Instructor: e-mail: Phone: +38670674008

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We are river family – meet Andrew Kellett

Basing himself in the southern nations of the African continent, Andrew Kellett is no stranger to action and adventure on the amazing rivers of the world. Andrew’s enthusiasm for rafting, especially with regard to training, stems from the ultimate goal of being safe on the water before any other outcome. When he first started rafting, there was very little regulation and control on the river. Since then the market has changed and the industry has had to become more professional.

How did you get started in rafting? I started rafting when I was studying my Graphic Design diploma. Guiding was a great way to get in . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Andrew Kellett

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We are river family – meet Fieke Reijntjes

We continue our River Family series, by meeting Fieke Reijntjes, captain of the Great Britain Open Women’s team (current R4 European Champions and defending R4 World Champions) and member of the IRF Athletes’ Committee. In this series we meet members of our River Family – you! We find out how people got involved, what keeps them motivated and why they stick with it.

We asked Fieke how she got involved in rafting: I worked as a raft guide for a dutch company in the French Alps. Pieter Bekkers, the owner of the company started a women’s raft team I was lucky enough to be part of! I paddled my first international competition with the Dutch team in 2007 in Korea. We were overwhelmed by the experience and the quality of . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Fieke Reijntjes

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We are river family – meet Yann Coppen

With an international background and upbringing worthy of a UN Ambassador, Yann Coppen shares his passion for rafting with us. African born with French, Indonesian and Dutch blood, Yann began his journey in the northern part of Japan. After years of travelling and guiding abroad, he discovered the High Atlas Mountains and started to run trips on the most pristine rivers of Morocco. From here he runs his successful company Berber Rafting Adventures.


How did you get started in rafting? I was studying Japanese in Tokyo for 5 months and had had enough of city life and decided to move back to nature where I belong. I was born in Ivory Coast and grew up like Mowgli which didn’t make sense to live in the city. I was living in . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Yann Coppen

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IRF GTE course in Georgia takes their rafting to new safety levels
By Mark Hirst

The Georgia project had been on the burner for a while. The sport of Rafting is growing in Georgia. Georgia also recently hosted the IRF Euro Rafting Champs last year. USaid had kindly sponsored and paid for a group of 13 self taught Georgian raft guides to attend a 9 day IRF Guide certification workshop combined with a Rescue 3 Europe Whitewater rescue technician course.

The aim of the course was to work with the company owners and senior guides to help them gain IRF certification. Our main aim was to also introduce some safety standards that all of the guides and companies could adopt and start to implement once the workshop was over.

We had been planning the course since March. Myself . . . → continue reading . . . IRF GTE course in Georgia takes their rafting to new safety levels

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We are river family – meet Georgina Preston

Raft guide, raft racer, kayak instructor, environmentalist and river conservationist – there isn’t much that stops Georgina “Georgie” Preston. This is part one of a two part interview as Georgie sets off on a new adventure – we’ll catch up with her on her return. In part one, we find out what motivates her and how we can all get involved.

How long have you been rafting and how did you get into it? I have been guiding for a shocking 18 years now and racing for 12 of those. I started guiding whilst studying at uni to help pay for my course. I was already a kayaker so it made sense to earn a bit of money by messing about on the water!

. . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Georgina Preston

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