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News and views - June 2020


Such strange and challenging times we find ourselves in now. Some rafters around the world are having the joy of getting back on the water, while others are hunkering down as the COVID-19 storm rages around them. We hope it soon passes and we can all have the joy of being back on the water.

This month has been a series of ups and downs. We shared news of our Honorary President and founding BOD member, Rafael Gallo's paddle down a Grade 6 solo, and our support for him during this time. Exciting news that we have  announced our 2021 and 2022 World Rafting Championship (WRC) plans, and clarified how this will impact the Junior (U19) and Youth (U23) age divisions.

Gone but not forgotten, we remember the tragic passing of Branka Štulić 10 years ago this month.


We share some thoughts on what to wear on the river;  celebrating Olympic Day on 22 June; sharing valuable links to ATTA's guidelines for adventure activities and a link to a worthwhile free 2 hour online course by World Health Organization (WHO). 

Look after yourselves and each other. Remember: we are #StrongerTogether even if it means we have to be physically apart for the short term.

See you on a river soon.

International Rafting Federation
#RaftersAreAwesome #RiverFamily #StaySafe

Additional information for a safe re-entry into rafting

We had many people from all around the world sending us their appreciation of our Guidelines for a safe re-entry into rafting. For some it has helped them get their operations back on the water and for others it has helped them present guidelines to their governments and/or health authorities who are in the process of opening up activities again. We hope it has worked well and that many of you are back on the water!

As a reminder, this is a ‘living’ document – meaning that as new information becomes available about COVID-19 and updated precautionary health measures are developed for confronting it, the document contents will change accordingly. We invite you to visit the document link on occasion to review . . . → continue reading . . . Additional information for a safe re-entry into rafting

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The Franklin River, Australia’s hidden gem

Tucked away in a quiet corner of Australia is one of the greatest gems of the Australian wilderness The Franklin River. This incredible river is no place for the casual adventurer and represents one of the most remote commercially run rivers in the world. The Franklin is typically run as an 8-10 day expedition where the only way out after you put in is either downstream or via helicopter.

The Franklin River flows for 78 miles (125 kms) from the Cheyne Range to the Gordon River through the Franklin-Gordon Wild Rivers National Park, a part of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. Rafting trips typically put in for their journey at the Collingwood River bridge,1116 Ft (340m) . . . → continue reading . . . The Franklin River, Australia’s hidden gem

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Stay active, stay fit this Olympic Day

Olympic Day was introduced in 1948 to commemorate the birth of the modern Olympic Games on 23 June 1894 at the Sorbonne in Paris. The goal was to promote participation in sport across the globe regardless of age, gender or athletic ability.

The modern version of Olympic Day developed into much more than just a sports event. Based on the three pillars “move”, “learn” and “discover”, National Olympic Committees (NOCs) deploy sports, cultural and educational activities all around the world with hundreds of thousands of people – young and old – participating in sports activities, such as runs, exhibitions, music and educational seminars. Some countries have incorporated the event into the school curriculum and, in recent years, many NOCs have added concerts and exhibitions to the . . . → continue reading . . . Stay active, stay fit this Olympic Day

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What to wear white water rafting

By James Eastwood from Venchas (Adventures)

Deciding on what to wear when white water rafting is essential as it provides that safety barrier against injuries as you white-knuckle down the rapids. The right gear can also offer a comfort level so you can stay out on the water for longer doing what you love to do. This article will help you determine how much gear you should wear and the essentials that you will need to keep you consistently comfortable throughout the varying seasons.

Consider the weather

Just the same as with anything you do, you have to take into consideration what weather you are expecting for that day. Traveling down the rapids on a baking-hot day is different from making the same trip in . . . → continue reading . . . What to wear white water rafting

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Age divisions for World Rafting Champs 2021 confirmed

Make sure you know which age category you can race in

As announced earlier, the IRF has completed the renegotiation of contract dates for the World Rafting Championships (WRC) 2021 and 2022, that resulted in our rescheduling the 2020 China and 2021 Bosnia World Rafting Championship events. These events were pushed back one year because of the uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic – as many other sports have done with their events of similar size and importance.

This change has impacted quite a few of our member nations who ran their R4 WRC selections in 2019 or early 2020, and many other member nations who have so far been unable to run their selections because of pandemic restrictions. The rescheduling of . . . → continue reading . . . Age divisions for World Rafting Champs 2021 confirmed

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Branka Štulić, gone but not forgotten

Branka Štulić

It is 10 years since the rafting world tragically lost Branka Štulić, the captain of Bosnia & Herzegovina’s Open Women’s team.

On the 10th June 2010, Branka Štulić, the eternal captain of Rafting Klub “Kanjon’s” Open Women’s team, left this world for the eternal rivers in the sky. Branka died at the European Rafting Championships in Val di Sole, Italy.

Each year, Rafting Klub Kanjon hosts an IRF Euro Cup in Banja Luka, in memorial to her strength, courage and friendship. Due to the pandemic this year, the Euro Cup has been postponed. On this, the occasion of the tenth anniversary of her tragic death, relatives, members of the club, and friends laid flowers at the monument to the eternal captain of the club.

Also in her . . . → continue reading . . . Branka Štulić, gone but not forgotten
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IRF World Rafting Champs 2021 and 2022 dates announced

IRF WRC 2021 – China | IRF WRC 2022 – Bosnia

Following the unexpected need to postpone our 2020 World Rafting Championship (WRC), the IRF has been working hard on delivering the best solution in these unprecendented times. Many meetings (virtual of course) and negotiations with all parties involved have delivered a robust solution that we feel will meet the expectations of all athletes and continue to deliver to the high standards that have come to be expected over the last two decades of organising the pinnacle of world raft racing.

It is therefore with great pleasure, that the IRF can now announce the schedule for our World Rafting Championships 2021 and 2022.

WRC 2021 will be held in China from 15 to . . . → continue reading . . . IRF World Rafting Champs 2021 and 2022 dates announced

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IRF Honourary President Rafael Gallo is paddling a G6 solo and we have his back

IRF President Joe Willis Jones presents Rafael Gallo with his title of IRF Honorary President

Last year at the IRF 2019 Congress held in Tully, Australia, the IRF voted to bestow the title of Honourary President on Rafael (Rafa) Gallo to honour his long and unrelenting support of rafting and in particular, the IRF. The IRF would like to give back its unrelenting support to Rafa in this, the hour of his need, as he finds himself paddling through a life threatening Class 6 – a rapid on the river of life called Pancreatic Cancer during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rafa is a long time legend in the rafting and conservation world, and one of the founders of the IRF. Together with Lee Porter, he motivated the key people in the raft racing world at the time to join . . . → continue reading . . . IRF Honourary President Rafael Gallo is paddling a G6 solo and we have his back

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