Blister Cream, Anyone? 444-mile Yukon River Quest Wraps Up in Great North

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There were arguably a lot of blisters. But what else would you expect from a gruel-fest that takes racers 444 miles from Whitehorse to Dawson City, Yukon? By all measures, this year’s 17th Annual Yukon River Quest held June 24-28 was a huge success, with 57 teams starting the event and 44 finishing – a pretty good showing for one of the toughest paddling races on the planet….

In all, 12 countries were represented in this year’s event, which started in Whitehorse.

“Overall the weather and conditions were excellent,” says co-organizer Jeff Brady. “Lake Laberge was calm and temperatures remained warm through the first night and into Thursday. Further down the river on Friday and Saturday, racers experienced some scattered thundershowers and head winds. The current was also a bit slow with the low water level this year, accounting for slower times.”

While low water meant no records were broken, there was still plenty of action and paddlers battled head to head for top honors. In the end, tandem kayakers David Hutchison (Montana) and Bob Ross (Ontario) placed first with a time of 44:51:07, despite the fact that Hutchison was on crutches when not in the boat.

The 18th annual Yukon River Quest will be held on June 29-July 3, 2016.

Info: www.yukonriverquest.com

Results
Solo Classes

[Recipients of hand-made canoe necklace from Gold Trail Jewellery as well as prize money]

Open C1:
1. Team # 33 Gold Oariented – Brian Allemang, Ontario, [62:13:36]

Women K1:
1. Team # 55 Erinfroglady – Erin Giesbrecht, Yukon, [64:15:23]

Men K1:
1. Team # 5 The Northshore Paddler – Martin Rother, British Columbia [49:29:30]
2. Team # 21 Paddling Forward – Shawn Corrigan, Manitoba [50:01:09]
3. Team # 6 Veni Vidi Vici – Thomas de Jager, Yukon [51:21:26]
3. Team # 14 Akita – Wayne Anderson, Alberta [51:21:26]

Overall Solo:
1. Team # 5 The Northshore Paddler – Martin Rother, British Columbia [49:29:30]
2. Team # 21 Paddling Forward – Shawn Corrigan, Manitoba [50:01:09]
3. Team # 6 Veni Vidi Vici – Thomas de Jager, Yukon [51:21:26]
3. Team # 14 Akita – Wayne Anderson, Alberta, [51:21:26]

Tandem Classes

Women C2:
1. Team # 32 Too Tall for Y’All – Rumi Kodama and Rhiannon Bronstein, BC/WA [63:19:42]

Men C2:
1. Team # 29 Perfect Storm – Gaeton Plourde/Jeff Brainard, Ontario [45:33:46]
2. Team # 23 Lazing Paddles XI – John Little/Ron Sorokin, Alberta [63:46:13]
3. Team # 4 Strokes of Genius – Mike De Abreu/Tom Phillips, Ontario [65:55:44]

Mixed C2:
1. Team # 46 Flannel Fantasy – Jake Paleczny/Karen Mann, Yukon [50:05:32]
2. Team # 45 Pure Insanity – Kendall McDonald/Nicole McDonald, NWT [51:10:55]
3. Team # 43 Dawson Before Dawn – Robert Spinks/Alex Jessup, Yukon [54:13:42]

Overall Tandem Canoe:
1. Team # 29 Perfect Storm – Garton Plourde/Jeff Brainard, Ontario [45:33:46]
2. Team # 46 Flannel Fantasy – Jake Paleczny/Kaern Mann, Yukon [50:05:32]
3. Team # 45 Pure Insanity – Kendall and Nicole McDonald, NWT [51:10:55]

Women K2:
1. Team # 19 Team NIGOR Parula– Mieke Acda/Annika den Ouden, Netherlands [68:27:27]
1. Team # 15 Team NIGOR Guam – Kim Menage/Marieke Kietselaer, France/Netherlands [68:27:27]
3. Team # 44 Alpine Start – Laura MacLean/Lisa Brougham, British Columbia [72:31:13]

Men K2:
1. Team # 25 Time to GO! – David Hutchison/Bob Ross, Montana/Ontario [44:51:07]
2. Team # 3 Bald and Sexy – Gus Oliveira/Chris Spoor, British Columbia [46:40:51]
3. Team # 42 MaD Kiwis – Murray Fowke/Dave Wade, New Zealand [60:41:36]

Mixed K2:
1. Team # 13 Spirit of America – Josh Friedman/Julie Kirk, Idaho [57:35:44]

Overall Tandem Kayak:
1. Team # 25 Time to GO! – David Hutchison/Bob Ross, Montana/Ontario [44:51:07]
2. Team # 3 Bald and Sexy – Gus Oliveira/Chris Spoor, British Columbia [46:40:51]
3. Team # 13 Spirit of America – Josh Friedman/Julie Kirk, Idaho [57:35:44]

Voyageur Canoes

Women Voyageur:
1. Team # 40 Team 3-2-1-Go – Canada and USA [49:29:17]
2. Team # 41 8 of Hearts – British Columbia and Yukon [52:47:35]
3. Team # 48 Paddlers Abreast – Yukon and British Columbia [52:54:49]

Open Voyageur:
1. Team # 55 Yukon Do It – Ontario and British Columbia [67:36:14]

Mixed Voyageur:
1. Team # 26 Team Ts’alvit – Yukon [50:34:18]
2. Team # 37 Gale Force – British Columbia [51:58:13]
3. Team # 50 Alfred E Paddlers – Alaska [52:43:08]

Overall Voyageur
1. Team # 40 Team 3-2-1-Go – Tina Hoeben, Canada/USA [49:29:17]
2. Team # 26 Team Ts’alvit – Pam Boyde, Yukon [50:34:18]
3. Team # 37 Gale Force – Don Sundquist, British Columbia [51:58:13]

Special Awards [Cash]
Top All Yukon Canoe: Team # 46 Flannel Fantasy – Jake Paleczny/Karen Mann, Yukon [50:05:32]

Top All Yukon Kayak: Team # 6 Veni Vidi Vici – Thomas de Jager, Yukon [51:21:26]

Top First Nation Team: Team # 59 CAP – Raelina Jobin, Yukon [67:18:31]

Special Awards [Sponsors]
Top Yukoner: Team # 46 Flannel Fantasy – Jake Paleczny/Karen Mann, Whitehorse [Yukon Brewing]

Top Women: Team # Team 3-2-1-Go – Tina Hoeben [Yukon Brewing]

Fastest Seniors 55+: Team #40 8 of Hearts – Katie Stein Sather and Ruthann Ross [Skaguay News Depot & Books]

Spirit of the Yukon: Team # 51 Cockleshell Endeavour – Mick Dawson and UK [Klondike Visitors Association]

Red Stove: Team # 7 Hungarian Ember – Dr. Istvan Munch/Dr. Kristof Szam, Hungary [70:38:55] [Haywire Industries and Harry Kern Photography] (Given to winner of back of the back, the next to last team to cross the finish line. They finished 02:06:42 seconds ahead of Team #44 Alpine Start – Laura MacLean/Lisa Brougham at 20:38:55 Saturday.)

Top Overall Team: Team #25 Time to GO![free entry for captain and same team members in 2016 YRQ and name on permanent trophy] first to finish at 18:51:07 p.m. on Friday.