International Rafting Federation - the official world governing body for rafting
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News and views - March 2019
The year is flying by - March already! And the racing scene is about to get very busy .....
In our March newsletter, we meet teams from around the world including Costa Rica Masters Women, legendary NZ Open Women, and Red Rose Rafting from GBR - fittingly all women's teams as we recently celebrated International Women's Day!
The benefits to local economies of hosting IRF events have already borne fruit in Argentina, we welcome a new river festival in Malaysia to our river family, and we're asking you to nominate candidates for the Athlete's Committee.
The 2019 Raft Race Rules update is now published - if you're a current judge or aspirant judge, we're running a Judges' course at the 2019 WRC in Tully. Don't miss out on the 2019 ERC - registration is now live!
And finally, the news that has excited our river family the most this year, is the invitational event on the Futaleufu early next year! This event is open only to IRF raft race teams.
Read on and see you on a river soon, International Rafting Federation
European Rafting Champs 2019 – all the details for planning your trip!
It is not only the great Vrbas River and location that makes teams want to go back here, it is also the awesome hosts, Rafting Club “Kanyon”, with their superb club house/bar/restaurant right on the river and their friendly, welcoming style. A great place to gather and catch up with all the other paddlers from around Europe.
Dates: 01-07 July, 2019 Location: Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina Organizer: Rafting Club “Kanjon” Banja Luka Categories: R6 (M/F) – Youth, Juniors, Open and Master Competition: R6 (M/F): Downriver, Sprint, H2H, Slalom River: Vrbas, Banja Luka, class 3 Rafts: RobFin 425
Rafting, tubing, kayaking and river conservation all in three days
At a loss with what to do with yourself in early July? Why not head to the tropical heat of Malaysia for some raft racing with a spice of tubing and kayaking thrown in. All with an aim to raise awareness of plans to dam the river (not something we condone!). This festival is set to welcome paddlers from near and far and raise community awareness of the proposed dam that will have huge adverse effects on thousands of people.
Hailing from Northern England, you will have met these women if you’ve attended any IRF European Rafting Championship in the last few years. Red Rose Rafting have held their flag high at several European competitions in the last few years, making their mark on the international stage at last year’s IRF World Plateau Rafting Championship in Yushu, Tibet. The team formed in 2009 by a group of friends keen to get involved in what was then a small sport in the UK. Persistence and determination has seen them push from being a group of friends getting together to have fun to a team committed to race and perform to their best ability (whilst having fun along the way).
A Judges course will be run during the 2019 World Rafting Championship in Australia. Anyone keen to do the course should email
The details are:
Dates: 14 – 20 May 2019 (during WRC)
Place: Event Headquarters, Tully, Australia
Cost: $US30 to be paid to Instructor on the first day of the course. This is a once off payment.
Schedule and what is expected of you:
14th May, 9am to 12am – attend Judges Orientation Workshop with all Judges and Jury 2pm to 5pm – attend Judges course run by Judge Instructors 15th May, 9am to 5pm – attend Judges course run by Judge Instructors 16th – 19th May, all day: work with Official Judges at the event as an Assistant Judge Trainee 20th May: write Judges exam. If you pass the exam and the assessment you will be . . . → continue reading . . .Judges course at WRC 2019
Following several months of discussion and voting on proposed improvement to the race rules, the updated IRF Race Rules are now published. The amended rules take effect from 01st March 2019.
Changes were proposed by your Athletes Committee, Sports & Competition Committee, Judges Committee, IRF Board of Directors and now been voted on by the Sports & Competition Committee and come into effect from 01st March.
Summary of main changes:
General layout changes to simplify sections and clarify penalties and protest times Define “ramming” Clarification of mixed gender teams Recognition of transgender athletes Use of gender-inclusive language throughout the race rules Further define Head-to-Head rules: refinements to general H2H rules define the construction and use of buoys/markers limit the number of buoys/markers to four (4) define . . . → continue reading . . .#AreYouReady to race? Updated Race Rules for 2019
The Athlete’s Committee is elected each year to represent the views of the Athlete’s within the IRF. The election will be done during the WRC in May in Tully, Australia. The committee is made up of 7 people from around the world.
We are therefore looking for candidates to stand on this committee. They will be on the committee until the following WRC in 2020.
Candidates must have competed in their IRF Race Rule compliant National Selections and the IRF WRC in either 2018 and/or 2019. And must be prepared to work with the rest of the committee on a regular basis, and to represent the Athlete’s in their region by finding out their opinions on issues.
We are river family – meet Team New Zealand Open Women
With the IRF’s World Rafting Championship 2019 being held in May this year, it means for the first time in 20 years (in fact… ever!), New Zealand teams get to train in summer months! This is something the New Zealand Open Women are relishing! This group of ladies love to spend their time playing on the beautiful waterways of (Aotearoa) New Zealand. A combination of surfing, out rigging, white water paddling and slalom paddling, is where you will find the New Zealand women’s rafting team spending there time under the sun.
Training consists of the above play time activities and meeting together 1 – 2 times per week to jump in a raft and thrash about on our local (awa) river, the Kaituna. Training in the summer makes . . . → continue reading . . .We are river family – meet Team New Zealand Open Women
Our river family is growing with great news from the welcoming and beautiful community of Villa Pehuenia and Moquehue in Neuquén, Argentina where we held last year’s IRF World Rafting Championship. The event created a buzz in the community and has grown into a demand for learning how to raft. Stepping up to the challenge was
Waikiki Rafting Masters (Argentina Masters Men who came second overall).
The new rafting school started this week on Lake Aluminé with participants of all ages coming to take part. Having witnessed the success of the IRF competition, students of the local Mapuche community are now also taking part in the rafting school. Participants are learning about raft racing, recreational rafting and some have expressed interest in learning to be a raft . . . → continue reading . . .Growing the rafting family in Argentina
#AreYouReady to race on the legendary Futaleufú River?
Futaleufú Mayor signs the IRF World Rafting Cup partnership agreement as the Regional Tourism Secretary looks on
It gives us great pleasure to officially announce that in March 2020 the IRF will once again pack our bags and travel to the legendary whitewater of Chile’s Futaleufú river to host an historic 20th anniversary rafting event – the 2020 IRF Invitational World Rafting Cup!
In 2000, the IRF organised the historic Camel White Water Challenge on the Futaleufú river in Patagonia Chile – a race that stands out in the minds of all who attended as one of the greatest race events in the history of rafting sport. Since that time, rafting athletes from all corners of the globe have placed the Futaleufú near the . . . → continue reading . . .#AreYouReady to race on the legendary Futaleufú River?
We are river family – meet Team Costa Rica Masters Women
If you thought getting your team together was tough for training, try getting everyone together when it’s not just one side of the country to the other but from three countries! This week we meet the team from Costa Rica looking to bring home medals at this year’s IRF World Rafting Championship in Tully, Australia. Those in Costa Rica have been getting together and training with a coach and competing in the national eliminations for R4. Others have been doing individual training to get ready physically… if not able to get on the water then on bended knee next to the bathtub paddling!! The plan is to meet in April in Costa Rica and train together on the river.
Exchanging rifles for paddles: Ticos and ex-guerillas of the FARC
Pato River in the background, Rafael Gallo (front) poses with ex-guerrillas Duberney (far left) and Hermides (far right). Centre are Costa Rican guides Max Solano (left) and Roy Obando
A Costa Rican rafting mission led by the company Rios Tropicales and the United Nations traveled to Colombia to meet with a group of ex-guerrillas from the FARC. Teaching them to tame the rapids of the Pato River, in complete peace, was the reason for the singular adventure.
It’s a quiet and a particularly cool night. A pair of crickets hum through the bushes and the river roars imposingly through the mountains. All is good without bullets, all is good without anyone dead. It is a quiet evening in the heart of the Caquetá . . . → continue reading . . .Exchanging rifles for paddles: Ticos and ex-guerillas of the FARC
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