Flat water racers line up at the start of Flatwater Yukon’s Icebreaker Paddle-a-thon. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Yukon paddlers hit the water for Icebreaker race

‘Everyone had fun and enjoyed the race’

The racing season kicked off for paddlers of all types with the Icebreaker Paddle-a-thon hosted by Flatwater Yukon.

Racers paddled 28 kilometres from the Marsh Lake dam to the Schwatka Lake day use area in different types of canoes and kayaks.

Dan Girouard, executive director for Flatwater Yukon, said the race proved more popular than expected with the public.

“It went great,” said Girouard. “We had a lot more teams than I expected — it was a good turnout — and that was the whole purpose.”

This marked the first time Flatwater Yukon has run the event, having taken over from a group of volunteers. In total, the race drew 37 paddlers making up 16 different teams.

While previous races were largely only for youth paddlers, this year’s race included a number of adult teams.

“Last year was all kids, so this year there were more adults involved and I think it’s important to show that kids and adults are doing this race,” said Girouard. “Some were more competitive than others and some were just recreational, but everyone had fun and enjoyed the race.”

Girouard said organizers made a conscious effort to publicize the event beforehand in hopes of reminding the public that Flatwater Yukon runs races all summer.

“We made sure we posted it far enough in advance so people knew about it, and it paid off,” said Girouard.

The fastest paddlers on the day were Jake Paleczny and Rob Spinks in the two-person marathon canoe adult category with a time of two hours, 28 minutes and 25 seconds.

The fastest youth paddlers were Rogan Parry and Cole Wilkie-Hobus in the two-person sprint kayak youth category with a time of two hours, 43 minutes and 10 seconds.

Emily Crist was the fastest solo competitor, finishing the race in two hours, 45 minutes and 10 seconds in the sprint kayak adult category.

In the voyageur canoe category, Stix Together finished with a time of two hours, 47 minutes and 15 seconds.

Next up for Flatwater Yukon are a series of six-kilometre youth and 10-kilometre adult circuit races held on a number of Thursdays throughout the summer.

The Yukon Championships are set for July 28 at Schwatka Lake and the date for the Chilie and Bean Race from Rotary Park to the Takhini bridge is August.

For information on upcoming races, visit Flatwater Yukon’s website, flatwateryukon.ca.

Contact John Hopkins-Hill at john.hopkinshill@yukon-news.com

Results

C2 Marathon Adult

1 Jake Paleczny & Rob Spinks 2:28:25

2 Steve Mooney & Thomas deJager 2:29:13

3 Melissa Carlick & Shane Ringham 2:44:40

4 Suzanne & Dan Paleczny 3:02:00

5 Reanna Moore & Carly Weber 3:51:08

C2 Marathon Youth

1 Savannah Cash & Heloise Vanpoulli 3:52:24

2 Airianna Gibson & Danni Wilkie-Hobus 3:52:57

K2 Sprint Youth

1 Rogan Parry & Cole Wilkie-Hobus 2:43:10

2 Julianne & Joel Girouard 3:48:23

K1 Sprint Adult

1 Emily Crist 2:45:10

Voyageur

1 Stix Together 2:47:15

K1 Youth

1 Alex Sumner 3:01:10

C1 Marathon Adult

1 Alison Eramenko 3:03:38

2 Ian Jobin 3:07:10

K1 Sea Adult

1 Elisabeth Janus 3:50:50

C2 Rec Adult

1 Mélanie Lachapelle & Nick Krumsiek 3:53:27

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A canoe floats through Miles Canyon. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

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