With 5 of the 9 weeks of the KWP Fun Run Series complete, last year’s winner Zack Fiddis is clinging to first place by just two points. But before anyone starts doubting Zack’s arsenal of kayaking skills, it should be noted that while last week’s event was happening on the river, Zack was taking one for the team, putting the finishing touches on an awesome post-paddle, pulled pork, homemade coleslaw and fresh baked key lime pie feast. The man not only paddles like a champ, he cooks up a mean meal as well. Hitting the kitchen meant sacrificing event points however, so after Week 5, Zack’s lead has been cut to just 2 points, slightly ahead of Cam, Rob C and Tom, all tied for second with 16. Rounding up the third ranked position in the standings are Leah and Sara, tied not only for third but for the top female paddler award as well. With 4 weeks to go, there’s still lots of time for another female to challenge for that honour however. Haley, currently sitting at 11 points, is well positioned to advance and make the competition for that award a contest. The participation award is also still very much up for grabs, with 6 club members in the hunt for that one. Full updated standings are included at the end of this post.
Week 5 water levels were again fairly low, a reality that seems to be affecting many parts of North America. As a result, the club has been running the far left channel consistently this summer, where
the water level does not seem to have affected running conditions as much. “Sketchy Left”, our creeking training ground, is also much lower than usual but on most weeks it offers up something to run that can definitely test bracing and eddy skills. Last week’s Fun Run event was a perennial staple of the Fun Run, the Beach Ball Boatercross. After partnering up, teams line up at the starting line with the objective of having both paddlers, and their beach ball, making it to the bottom of the falls first. The only real rules are that you cannot touch the ball with your hands or carry it on your boat and once over the falls, one of the two paddlers on the team must grab the ball and hold in on top of their skirt. Various strategies come into play, the most critical being how much time and effort you expend propelling your ball downstream versus time and effort you burn hitting opponent’s ball on to shore, the rocks, off course or anywhere else that will cost them time. An added hazard this year is the exposed rock, which if you are too focused on other things, will hang you and your boat up, costing valuable time. After all was said and done, Aurn and Derek took first place, just slightly ahead of Tom and Sarah, who once gained second place early in the race never gave it up. Coming in third was Cam and Haley, fourth was Todd and Tony, fifth Colin and Brian, sixth Marcie and Ben, seventh Clive and Kees, eighth Leah and Pat and ninth Bruce and Pattie. A total of 30 paddlers showed up for the night, a record for this season and a great testament to paddler dedication in light of the weak water levels.
As this is being written a thunderstorm is pouring down rain so maybe things will be looking up, level-wise, for the Week 6 paddle. Be there at 6:00 on Thursday this week to rack up some points and have some fun on the river!
|KWP Fun Run standings, end of Week 5|
|tie -2||Rob C.||16|