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News and views - June/July 2019
In our June/July newsletter, we bring you the latest news, action and results from our 2019 Euro Rafting Champs which finished this past Sunday on the Vrbas River, BiH.
We also give thanks to the Cassowary Coast residents and volunteers that helped make our 2019 World Rafting Champs in the region so awesome.
We present to you Ales Danek, the new Chair of the Athlete's Committee and share our new Honorary President, Rafael Gallo's, top 10 rivers world-wide, as well as some short stories from our 2019 WRC.
Although our two big events are already over for the year our competition calendar remains packed with events - so don't hang up the paddles yet! Besides many National Selections happening around the world we also have Pre-Worlds in China in late July, White Water of Siberia mid August, Euro Cup events in Czech Rep and Great Britain late August still to come, the World White Water Rafting Summit in Costa Rica in early October, and the British Rafting Winter Warmer at end of November!
Read on and see you on a river soon, International Rafting Federation
A short farewell to the Vrbas’ whitewater
The 2019 IRF European Rafting Championship is now over with friends old and new sharing our love of the river and our sport together as one river family. Together we make rafting sport the engaging, exciting and accessible sport that it is.
Regular podium winners were joined from other nations this year and we have welcomed teams from Serbia, Latvia and Croatia back to the IRF European Championships. Our love for rafting grows stronger each year and we welcome teams from all rafting nations from across the globe. Overall medals were hard fought especially in hot and sunny temperatures in the Vrbas canyon. The sportsmanship and camaraderie displayed by all teams has been an example for all other sports to follow. Thank you to everyone for participating . . . → continue reading . . .A short farewell to the Vrbas’ whitewater
Whitewater, distance and heat put Downriver competitors to the test
Vrbas has once again put competitors through their paces in the gruelling 14 kilometre downriver race at this year’s IRF European Rafting Championship. With a sailing start at Kamp Krupa, teams raced their way down the idyllic Bosnian and Herzegovina countryside pitting their tactics, strength and stamina to the test against fellow competitors.
The open men started racing at 09:00 and 53 minutes later the two Czech teams crossed the finish line followed closely by the Croatian men. Next up the youth men followed closely by the junior women crossing the line with the roars from Team Slovenia drowning out all other cheers!
The Vrbas canyon drew crowds in their hundreds for challenging Slalom in yesterday’s IRF European Rafting Championship. Through rigorous national selections, only the best of the best were racing this challenging course. Thus the tradition of raft racing on white water continued with IRF course designers using every feature to ensure the 14 gates did not disappoint for racers and spectators. The most challenging gates proved to be gates 2, 3 and 4 and then 9 through 13 with few teams clearing 11, 12 and 13 without at least one 5 second penalty.
The course proved a worthy opponent to teams from all age categories with Junior and Youth teams having times close to Open categories – these teams will surely be challengers for Open teams in . . . → continue reading . . .Challenging Slalom draws the crowds
Opening Ceremony of the IRF’s European Rafting Championships
Rafting Center “Kanyon” in Karanovac opened the IRF European Rafting Championship “Banjaluka-Vrbas 2019” last night, where about 250 rafters from 11 European countries will participate over the next four days.
The championship was opened by the Deputy Mayor of Banja Luka, Srđan Amidžić, who said that water sports are gaining importance and that rafting is seen as an exceptional opportunity for the promotion of the tourist potential of the city.
“Athletes from all over the world come to us. Vrbas is our great sporting and tourist potential. As far as I know, for all these years, no rafter from Banja Luka went unhappy. Everyone is thrilled with the river, which is most important, but we are extremely pleased when we hear they are also very satisfied with our hospitality, our . . . → continue reading . . .Opening Ceremony of the IRF’s European Rafting Championships
Warm weather and welcomes in Banja Luka for the IRF Euro Champs
Bosnia and Herzegovina has turned up the heat and the welcomes for the IRF’s 13th Euro Rafting Championship which starts in a few short days at the ever popular site on the Vrbas River just outside Banja Luka. Rafting Centar “Kanyon” have previously hosted the World Rafting Championship in 2009, Euro Rafting Championships in 2009 and again in 2015 at this picturesque spot between the steep walls of the Vrbas canyon.
All teams have now registered and are out training on Wednesday and Thursday.
The 2019 World Rafting Champs on the Tully River in Australia finished more than a month ago. Looking back at the event there are some lovely stories that have come to light.
Teams often say the best thing about rafting is the camaraderie between the teams despite competing against each other. The U23 Women’s Downriver race was a very close race, right to the finish line. New Zealand were out front a mere boat length ahead of Australia, who were half a boat length ahead of Indonesia! As they crossed the line, exhausted but elated, the New Zealand team celebrated. Then turning back they saw things were not right with the Australian so they quickly paddled over and discovered that one of their paddlers was . . . → continue reading . . .Short stories from WRC 2019
When you hang out with river runners, there are always stories to be told and heard. Talk invariably comes around to the favourite rivers rafted and the rivers still left to be challenged.
That’s how it was for Rafael Gallo, Honorary President of the International Rafting Federation and International Whitewater Hall of Fame (IWHOF) honouree, when he spent 10 days in May at the IRF World Rafting Championship on the Tully River in North Queensland, Australia.
Inspired by connecting with rafting athletes and fellow river runners from all corners of the globe and reuniting with international river guides who have at times worked for Gallo’s rafting company Rios Tropicales in Costa Rica, Gallo reminisced on his list of the most exceptional . . . → continue reading . . .Top 10 best rafting rivers in the world
Ales Danek – the new Chair of the IRF’s Athlete’s Committee
Congratulations to Ales Danek who has been voted in as the new Chair of the IRF’s Athletes’ Committee.
Alex is 39 years old, works as a sales manager for Würth. He’s been rafting since he was sixteen and for the last 10 years has been a member of team HIKO, a top Czech raft team, in fact, were the World Champions at WRC 2018 in Argentina and have medaled many times.
He sees this committee as a good opportunity for the opinions and comments of the athletes to be collected and to be voiced within the IRF. He feels it will be positive if the other committees on the IRF will be able to hear from the Athletes what they think and to discuss their opinions and proposals. He believes it will be helpful for the IRF and for rafting in general.
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