PADDLEZONE – Kayak Down River and Sprint Race
The roots of the Festival are in the whitewater kayaking events. This niche activity has a small but loyal band of paddlers, most of whom learnt how to paddle on the Palmiet River, so it has a special place in many hearts. And you can be sure that the kayaking fraternity will be there for the full Festival, enjoying it to the last – including the late night shift on the dancefloor.
This classic event has been for many years and is a legend. A mass start in a flat pool above Waterfall Rapid.” All kayakers line up Le Mans style, and go… Let the carnage begin. First to the bridge wins. Simple as that! Safety is provided at the major rapids. This is a 4 km sprint and local knowledge always pays off. The rules of this event have always been minimal and the emphasis has been on enjoyment, but over the years with kayak design having changed in leaps, things have been refined somewhat. Gone are the days of the 3.3m Swallow paddlers hogging the podium. This year max kayak length is 2.5m if you are going for gold!Warm up with a paddle down from the reserve put in or get dropped off at Mountain Rose Farm for the start.
Kayak Timed Sprint
This is a head to head race with the clock, down the last and most notorious on the River: “Judgement Day”. In the past this race format was in heats of 6 paddlers at a time on a knockout basis with a final. But this year’s format will be Man vs Clock. Each kayaker will have the chance to do 2 runs to post their best time. Fastest time on the day wins.
These events both make for great spectator viewing from the Palmiet River bridge, with its east access and superb view of Ju
dgement Day rapid, which always delivers great thrills and spills.
ANDREW KELLET – GRAVITY ADVENTURES
Date: Saturday 16th August 2014
Time: Downriver Kayak 12.00 / Kayak Sprint 13.00
Start downriver race: CNC Kogelberg Reserve put-in, Finish: Palmiet River Bridge
Start sprint race: Palmiet River Bridge
Cost: R130 (includes entry to Timed Sprint and Downriver race )
Registration: Waterfront, Harbour Road, Kleinmond from 08h00, Sat 16th Aug.