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News and views - October 2018

In this issue, our condolensces to GAISF for the loss of their President, we meet more of our River Family, have reminders about Race Rules updates and up-coming bids, hear about "White Water of Siberia" conference, mourn the loss of Frankie Kowaas, talk about guide job offers, announce 2019 ERC location, remind WRC participants what not to forget, as well as what to see, do and eat in Argentina, and look at the 2018 Euro Cup Series champions.

See you on a river soon,
International Rafting Federation

2018 Euro Cup Rafting Series comes to a close

With the final event of the series recently being held in Slovenia on the Soca River near Solkan, the 2018 European Cup Series has drawn to a close.

There were 6 events in the R4 series with some locations opting for R4 so teams planning to attend the ERC or WRC this year had opportunities to race against each other. Some federations also use these events as their National Selections.

Raft Club Gimpex Straza 1 of Slovenia took the 2018 Euro Cup R4 Men’s Series title with a convincing win of 3 disciplines at the Solkan event, the H2H at EC Wildalpen and Slalom at EC Vrbas – so a well deserved win! RK Hodonin of Czech attended and performed well at EC Wildalpen, Vrbas, Lipno . . . → continue reading . . . 2018 Euro Cup Rafting Series comes to a close

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IRF mourns the passing of GAISF President and IOC member Patrick Baumann

The International Rafting Federation are very sad to hear of the untimely and sudden loss of Global Association of International Sports Federations (GAISF) President, Mr. Patrick Baumann last Friday. The IRF would like to offer all staff, and members of GAISF our deepest condolences. Our thoughts are with Mr. Baumann’s wife, children and family.

By all accounts, Mr. Baumann was widely considered one of the most influential sports leaders of his generation; an inspirational leader whose vision, drive and enthusiasm characterised his work on behalf of GAISF, the IOC, Fiba, and sport worldwide. It is difficult to imagine what a shock this must be to all who knew him personally.

The IRF recognises him as the driving force behind the transformation of GAISF following his . . . → continue reading . . . IRF mourns the passing of GAISF President and IOC member Patrick Baumann

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We are river family – meet Steve Nomchong

No stranger to racing, guiding or safety training, this week we meet Steve Nomchong. Steve grew up in southern reaches of Australia, experienced rafting at a relatively young age and got hooked. Steve was too young to vote in 1983 when a proposed dam that would have flooded the Franklin River in Tasmania became a major issue in that year’s federal election. It took a few years but he got the chance to raft the Franklin in early 1986 and see what all the fuss had been about. That trip changed the course of his life.

What motivates you to keep paddling/rafting? It used to be about exploring the world, testing my physical and problem-solving skills, and introducing new people to the beauty . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Steve Nomchong
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Argentina – what to eat, see and do in Neuquen

Now that flights and accommodation are booked for the WRC it is time to look at Argentina and specifically the Neuquen province in more detail!

Villa Pehuenia

Most of the teams and officials will be based in the tourist town of Villa Pehuenia and there the favoured activities are rafting and kayaking or boat tours down Aluminé, Ñorquinco, Moquehue and Pulmarí rivers, or sport fishing in Aluminé, Litrán, and Nompehuén lakes, as well as horseback riding, climbing, big game hunting or trekking excursions through green trails that wander between mountain ranges and forests like the centenary pehuenes forest.

Eating and drinking

Food is a big social focus in Argentina. It is an opportunity to get together and socialise and this can be seen in their Asado’s and drinking yerba maté.

Asado (grilled meat) is like a barbeque and is very popular not only for . . . → continue reading . . . Argentina – what to eat, see and do in Neuquen
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WRC 2018 participants – don’t forget your…

We hope you’re looking forward to this event as much as we are! Below are a few reminders to make your championship memorable for all the right reasons!

Registration fees If you have not paid that to the Argentina Organisers yet I suggest you do that urgently! It is OVERDUE and they will start adding extra on for late payments now.

Planning for your trip Take a read of this article – Important travel tips.

Visas Citizens of most European nations, Australia, Canada and USA don’t require visas for travel to Argentina – however, it is best to check now and apply for a visa now if you need one!

Travel insurance Make sure you have it!

Water – Reduce | Reuse | Recycle One . . . → continue reading . . . WRC 2018 participants – don’t forget your…

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We are river family – meet Lucas da Silva

A face familiar to all on the raft race circuit, this week we meet Lucas hailing from Brotas, Brazil – winner of many IRF World Rafting Championship medals. Lucas started rafting in 1999 at Empresa Vaca Nautica, in the city of Brotas-SP, through an invitation from a friend to do guide training. After three months of training, he was approved and started work as a raft guide. After six months working as a guide, he started to train for rafting competitions.

Why do you keep rafting? Besides being a sport practiced in nature, it does very well health, physical and mental. Rafting motivates me every day, because through this sport, I was able to meet many countries, cultures and make many friends.

. . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Lucas da Silva

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ERC 2019 to be held on the Vrbas, BiH

You love it. We love it. We’re going back to River Vrbas in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina for the IRF European Rafting Championship 2019.

Hosts to the World Rafting Championship in 2009, Euro Rafting Championships in 2009 and again in 2015, this popular stretch of river regularly sees teams from across the globe come together as one river family to test their skills. As if hosting these large scale events isn’t enough, Rafting Klub Kanyon also play host to the Branka Štulić Memorial Euro Cup on an annual basis.

The picturesque steep walls of the Vrbas canyon will again see all the action . . . → continue reading . . . ERC 2019 to be held on the Vrbas, BiH

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Trentino Wild are looking for IRF Guides for next season

Trentino Wild, one of the biggest rafting companies in Italy, are looking for IRF certified guides to work for them on the Noce River next season. They run trips on a class IV river and sometimes they run class V too. They are also a river rescue school, so the rescue part is essential for them. Their season is very long, it starts half way through April and finishes half way through September.

They are looking for:

GOOD guides, with a good river sense, and a good curriculum, good river rescue skills (they are a river rescue school) Guides that are professionals of the river (IN the river and OUTSIDE the river) They must have a knowledge of the Italian language, and with Italian or European . . . → continue reading . . . Trentino Wild are looking for IRF Guides for next season
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We are river family – Frankie Kowaas

With great sadness we share with you the passing of Frankie Kowaas, but share with you the unstoppable passion and adventures he has inspired in so many. Frankie was the founder of Manado Adventure & Waraney Rafting. It was down to Frankie’s determination and hard work that he established the 1st branch of the Indonesian Rafting Federation (FAJI) in North Sulawesi, Indonesia (Pengprov FAJI Sulawesi Utara) and the 1st Rafting Operator in North Sulawesi (Waraney Rafting).

It was under Frankie’s direction that Indonesia competed for the first time at the 2001 IRF World Rafting Championship in West Virginia, USA.

Not resting with rafting alone, Frankie also established a mountain trekking . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – Frankie Kowaas

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Keen to bid for the 2021 World Rafting Champs

If you are planning to bid for the IRF 2021 World Rafting Champs then read on …

Intention to Bid Forms are to be returned to IRF Admin by 31st October 2018. This form does not commit you to bidding but does help by letting us know that you want to bid. In this way we can assist you with various parts of the bidding process.

This is an R6 event and so is ideal for natural rivers and big water.

The due date for the FULL bid to be in is 31st December 2018. Please email IRF Admin for the latest bid documents.

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We are river family – meet Julie Munger

Rescue 3 provider, raft guide, raft racer, original Project RAFT participant and holder of several very recent long distance outrigger accomplishments, this week we meet Julie Munger. Her first raft trip was when she was 15 years old, 40 years ago. Now she crosses vast ocean stretches between Hawaiian islands and runs her own rescue services company whilst somehow squeezing in the time to still compete in the USA Women’s Raft Team.

How did you get involved in rafting? We did family trips throughout my teenage years on rivers such as the Tuolumne and Middle Fork of the Salmon. I loved where rivers would take . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Julie Munger

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We are river family – meet Bhupi Singh

Fate determined Bhupi’s white water career – he was fortunate enough to grow up in the small village ‘Sirasu’ based on the side of India’s holiest river, the mighty Ganges in Northern India. The time was right and since he’s rafted across the globe. This week we meet the globe trotter that is Bhupendra (Bhupi) Singh.

When he was a kid, rafting and kayaking in India was picking up. When someone told him that these raft guides and kayakers actually got paid to play on the river, he was sold. Later he realised that there was a much bigger world out there than he could have ever imagined.

“Back in the days my village only had school up to 5th grade so we had to . . . → continue reading . . . We are river family – meet Bhupi Singh

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Siberian white water enticed rafters from across the globe

Another very successful «White Water of Siberia» rafting forum has taken place with new skills, new friendships and a truly international bonding of rafters across the globe. This was the third annual International Cultural and Sports Forum (White Water of Siberia 2018). Participants from Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina (Republika Srpska), Belgium, India, Italy, Israel, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Mongolia, Netherlands, Serbia, Uzbekistan, and Russia all gathered in Tomsk on the 15th of September and spent the last week testing and trying new skills.

For 9 days participants were acquainted with the cultures, creativity and people of Siberia. They visited many of the natural wonders of the area including outdoor explorations and the cultural heritage of the area displayed in architecture, museums and monuments. As with all . . . → continue reading . . . Siberian white water enticed rafters from across the globe

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Race Rules – proposing an update

The IRF Sport & Competition Committee assesses and updates the IRF Race Rules at the end of each year. This year it is being done much earlier due to the 2019 WRC happening early in the year (May).

So proposals are to be in by 20 October. Any proposals after that cannot be guaranteed to be included.

The process is as follows:

Rule proposals may be submitted only as one of the three possible options. 1) Eliminate a rule, 2) change a rule, or 3) add a rule. When suggesting that a rule be eliminated, a copy of the rule must be included in the proposal. When proposing a change to an existing rule, the proposal must include a copy of the existing rule, and the suggested change. When suggesting . . . → continue reading . . . Race Rules – proposing an update
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