2017 Yukon River Quest Awards

Team Blondie Girls Who Yak – Lisa Brougham and Mara Leitane, from BC, Canada -- won this one for winning the race to not be the last to finish.

Approaching its 20th anniversary in 2018, this year’s Yukon River Quest’s 88 teams made it the third largest field in YRQ history (the record was 93 teams in 2016). In all, 69 teams finished, spelling 19 scratches, with paddlers experiencing calm conditions, light tailwinds and the usual blisters. It was the third low water year in a row, but the river came up just prior to the race, with times faster than the previous two years. Read on for an account of some of the more traditional and wackier awards…

First, some of the more wacky awards:

Special Awards [Sponsors]

Youngest Paddler (YRQ hat) – Amelie Latour, 15, in Stix Together.

Top Yukoners: Yukon men in Yukon Wide Adventures and Yukon women in Team T’slavit [Yukon Brewing beer packs]

Fastest Senior Team (55+): Team #70 The Bickersons (13th overall) [set of Best of the Skagway, Alaska Police Blotter books from Skagway Book Company]

Spirit of the Yukon: Long-time racer Joe Evans from Springfield, Oregon, who was one of three teams (44, 7, 69) that stopped and assisted Team 14 Paddle Jumper after it had a mishap in the 30 Mile section of the river and got wet. Joe in Team #44 Duck Juice stayed with his fellow K1 paddler Dr. Wolfram Schleicher of Germany for 40 minutes. Joe’s motto this year was “Paddle On” and leave a trail of Duck Juice behind him, and he made sure this team was able to paddle on as well.[Beautiful wooden paddle from Klondike Visitors Association]

Red Stove: Team # 84 Team Blondie Girls Who Yak – Lisa Brougham and Mara Leitane, from BC, Canada [69:29:06] for winning the race to not be the last to finish. They finished just over an hour before the last racer to cross the finish, Team #10 Emily Matthews. [Half of a Yukon stove donated by Haywire Industries, Griffith’s and Harry Kern Photography – the award honors the Pierre Berton story about two prospectors whose partnership fell apart upon arriving in the Klondike, to the point that they split everything in half, including their Yukon stove).

>b>Top Overall Team: Team #57 Yukon Wide Adventures, Thomas de Jager (capt.), Gus Oliveira, Stephen Mooney, Wayne Anderson, Pat McLellan, and Dave Hutchison [free entry for captain and same team members in 2018 YRQ and name on permanent trophy] first to finish at 16:47:08 on Friday, June 30. [YRMPA]

And now on to the more conventional awards…

Teams that finished under 55 hours receive prize money:

Solo Classes


[Recipients of hand-made canoe pendant from Gold Trail Jewellers of Dawson City, as well as prize money]

Open Solo Canoe C1:
1. Team # 3 Mr. Bill – William Siersdorfer, Houston, TX, USA [58:42:03] improved his 2016 time by 5 hours.
2. Team #8 Yukoned Me Into It – Esther Wheeler, Sydney, NSW, Australia [61:33:09] First female finisher ever in this class.
3. Team #30 For Rosie – Robert Lafontaine, Thompson, MB, Canada [68:29:05]

Women’s Solo Kayak K1:
1. Team # 80 Lootas – Kelley J. Watson, Port Townsend, WA, USA [52:15:45] $864.
2. Team #17 WTF – Where’s The Finish – Marieke Kietselar, The Netherlands [57:33:47]

Men Solo Kayak K1:
1. Team # 38 Arm Wriggler – Graham Henry, Toronto, ON, Canada [46:33:04] $864.
2. Team # 33 Chiswick Charger – Tim Hellier, London, England, United Kingdom [47:26:37] $384.
3. Team # 36 Outside Smoke – Mike Harlow, Inuvik, NWT, Canada [49:46:05] $192.

Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) - first year as official class:
1. Team # 6 Bart de Zwart - Bart de Zwart, Haiku, HI, USA [52:16:06] $864, beat last year’s time by nearly 2 hours.
2. Team # 29 Jason Bennett – Jason Bennett, N. Vancouver BC Canada, [53:12:54] $384, also improved his 2016 time by 2 hours.
3. Team # 5 SUP N IRISH – Peter Allen, Vancouver, BC, Canada [57:06:55]

Overall Solo Winners:
1. Team # 38 Arm Wriggler – Graham Henry, Toronto, ON, Canada [46:33:04] $864.
2. Team # 33 Chiswick Charger – Tim Hellier, London, England [47:26:37] $384.
3. Team # 36 Outside Smoke – Mike Harlow, Inuvik, NWT, Canada [49:46:05] $192.

Tandem Classes

Tandem Canoe classes (C2)
Women C2:
1. Team # 55 Love of Paddling – Margo Millette and Anjeanette LeMay-Crowtz, Whitehorse, YT and Middleton, NS, Canada [51:06:54] $1056.
2. Team # 7 River Arm Wrasslers – Shannon Mallory and Sarah Crane, Whitehorse, YT, Canada, [58:41:34]
3. Team # 40 Sisu – Heidi Virtanen and Kelly Reid, Calgary, AB and Ottawa, ON, Canada, [59:21:30].

Men C2:
1. Team # 82 Gorge Downwind Champs – Carter Johnson and Dave Jensen, Sausalito, CA, USA [44:38:56] $1056. Finished just 4 seconds behind top K2 in sprint to finish for 3rd place overall.
2. Team # 72 Strokes of Genius – Mike De Abreu and Tom Phillips, Arnprior and Ottawa, ON, Canada [46:40:34]. $504.
3. Team # 15 Maximum Capacity – Jason Biensch and Spencer Edelman, Whitehorse, YT, Canada [50:46:37]. $312.

Mixed C2:
1. Team # 58 That’s a Paddlin’ –Joanna deMontreuil and Chip McKay, N. Vancouver, BC, Canada [46:50:03], $1056, won this class after finishing 3rd in 2016 and improved their time by 5 hours to beat last year’s champs in this class.
2. Team # 64 Dawson By Dinner – Alex Spinks and Robert Spinks, Whitehorse, YT, Canada [47:09:37], $504.
3. Team # 70 The Bickersons – Bonnie Pankiw and Christopher Weber, Chelsea, QC, Canada [47:24:54] $312.

Overall Tandem Canoe:
1. Team # 82 Gorge Downwind Champs – Carter Johnson and Dave Jensen, Sausalito, CA, USA [44:38:56] $1056. Finished just 4 seconds behind top K2 in sprint to finish for 3rd place overall.
2. Team # 72 Strokes of Genius – Mike De Abreu and Tom Phillips, Arnprior and Ottawa, ON, Canada [46:40:34]. $504.
3. Team # 58 That’s a Paddlin’ –Joanna deMontreuil and Chip McKay, N. Vancouver ,BC, Canada [46:50:03], $312.

Tandem Kayak classes (K2)
Women K2:
1. Team # 84 Team Blondie, Girls Who Yak – Lisa Brougham and Mara Leitane, Bowen Bay and New Westminster, BC, Canada [68:34:30]

Men K2:
1. Team # 77 2 Numbnuts – Shaun Thrower and Steve King, Hereford, Herfordshire, United Kingdom [44:38:51], $1056, defeated top C2 team in sprint to the finish for 2nd place overall.
2. Team # 78 2 Trolls – Oliver Martin and Thomas Diaper, Hereford and Leamington Spa, United Kingdom [47:18:05], $504.
3. Team # SJR – Andre Church and Wayne Chamberlain, Rothesay and Saint John, NB, Canada [50:58:09], $312.

Mixed K2:
1. Team # 74 Yukon Rookies – Ariane Haensel and Carsten Haensel, Bernau, Germany, [54:09:26], $1056, came on strong to beat two-time defending champs in this class.
2. Team # 37 Spirit of America – Josh Friedman and Julie Kirk, Moyie Springs, ID, USA, [54:27:33], $504.

Overall Tandem Kayak:
1. Team # 77 2 Numbnuts – Shaun Thrower and Steve King, Hereford, Herfordshire, United Kingdom [44:38:51], $1056, defeated top C2 team in sprint to the finish for 2nd place overall.
2. Team # 78 2 Trolls – Oliver Martin and Thomas Diaper, Hereford and Leamington Spa, United Kingdom [47:18:05], $504.
3. Team # SJR – Andre Church and Wayne Chamberlain, Rothesay and Saint John, NB, Canada [50:58:09], $312.

Voyageur Canoes (includes new C4 canoes, 4 or more persons)

Women’s Voyageur:
1. Team # 91 3-2-1 Go – BC, Canada and MI, CA, WI, CO, USA [45:56:02]. $2016.
2. Team # 34 Stix Together – Whitehorse, YT, Canada [50:42:08], $768, shaved 4 hours off last year’s time.
3. Team # 54 Team Whoa – BC, ON, and YT, Canada [50:58:06], $432, shave 5 hours off 2016 time.

Open Voyageur (all or mostly men):
1. Team # 57 Yukon Wide Adventures – Whitehorse, YT, AB and BC, Canada, and MT [42:47:08]. $2016. This team led the race from start to finish.
2. Team # 67 CAP#1 – Whitehorse and Old Crow, YT [46:37:41], $768, improved 2016 time by 7 hours!
3. Team # 76 Goldilocks & 3 Bears (C4) – ON, AB & MB, Canada, [47:57:50], $432.

Mixed Voyageur (1/3 of team must be women):
1. Team # 65 Saranac 4 (C4) ¬ ¬– NY & PA, USA [45:48:16], $2016. First C4 ever to finish race and also 4th overall.
2. Team # 50 Ts’alvit – Whitehorse, YT, Canada [46:21:11], $768, knocked nearly 3 hours off 2016 time.
3. Team # 26 It’s Just Around the Bend (C4) – YT & ON, Canada [48:07:15], $432.

Overall Voyageur Canoe
1. Team # 57 Yukon Wide Adventures – Whitehorse, YT, AB and BC, Canada, and MT [42:47:08]. $2016.
2. Team # 65 Saranac 4 (C4) ¬ ¬– NY & PA, USA [45:48:16], $768.
3. Team # 91 3-2-1 Go – BC, Canada and MI, CA, WI, CO, USA [45:56:02], $432.

Special Awards [Cash]

Top All Yukon Canoe: Team # 50 Team Ts’lavit [46:21:11]. $480
Top All Yukon Kayak: No award this year.
Top First Nation Team: Team # 67 CAP#1 [46:37:41]. $480

2018 Race Dates: The 20th annual Yukon River Quest will be held on June 27 to July 1, 2018. Registration opens Nov. 1, 2017. Last year registrations filled by the end of November so register early!
Info: info@yukonriverquest.com, wjbradyak@me.com
www.yukonriverquest.com








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