Challenge closes tomorow

2009-10-30 00:00

THE Capitol Caterers-Popes Canoe centre Interschools Challenge 2009 comes to a close tomorrow with the final event in Durban.

The 10-lap Enduro starts at 11 am at Kingfisher Canoe Club (KCC) at the Blue Lagoon. Schools will enter teams of up to four paddlers in the three age-groups, U14, U16 and open. The course is 10 laps of a 2,6-kilometre course with the change over zone in front of KCC.

K1s are compulsory for the first lap and thereafter K1s or K2s may be used. The race is over when the leading team completes their 10th lap, thereafter, as in F1 GP racing, the rest of the places are determined by the times taken by the rest of the teams to complete the lap that they are busy with.

The Enduro team event has been moved from its traditional home at Camps Drift in Pietermaritzburg to the Blue Lagoon in Durban as a show of support for the resurgence in schools’ canoeing in that area. The challenge has been a strongly midlands-based series for a few years now.

The Enduro will be followed by the final awards ceremony for the 2009 challenge. The individual Victor and Victrix Ludorum places were settled two weeks ago at the final individual event on the Upper Umgeni. While Maritzburg College and Epworth are safe at the top of the boys’ and girls’ school ladders, some of the minor placings may well be determined by the Enduro and tight racing is expected.

Final event on Upper Umgeni

KwaZulu-Natal paddlers have their final 2009 outing to the popular Upper Umgeni on Sunday when Ngwenya­ Canoe Club are hosts for their C Class race. The start is at 9 am from the usual place above the Albert Falls Wier and the finish is 18 kilo-metres downstream at the Baynes Drift Bridge on Truter’s Farm.

The early part of the KZN river season sees a total of seven races being held on variations of this course from July to October. The main reasons for this heavy use of the river are its great suitability as a learning ground for new paddlers and the important fact that a reasonable flow of water is usually available while the rest of the province’s rivers are waiting for the summer rains to begin.

By special arrangement with Umgeni­ Water, the flow in the Upper Umgeni between Albert Falls Dam and Nagle Dam can be manipulated by cutbacks and then increased releases to ensure good flow for the races­ while still maintaining the same net quantity of water flowing between the dams and no loss of water to the already stressed Umgeni/Umsindusi system.

SA K2 Vaal Marathon

While all this is going on in KZN, the country’s elite K2 combinations will be battling for the title of national K2 River Champions on the Vaal Marathon in Gauteng. The two-day marathon starts in the Vaal Dam on Saturday morning and finishes in Parys on Sunday. The KZN team nominated at the trials on the Hansa Powerade Ozzie Gladwin last weekend is as follows.

TEAM

Senior men – Len Jenkins and Hank McGregor – Nick Stubbs and Michael Aruthur.

Boys – Matthew Dean and Owen Gandar – Donavan Wewege and Andrew Adie.

Women – Hillary Pitchford and Abie Adie.

Girls – Jenna Starr and Jenna Ward – Tamika Haw and Brittany Petersen.

SV – Marc Germiquet and Warren Valentine.

V – Eric Hildebrandt and James Tutton.

SM – Glen Hilliar and Michael de Villiers.

SGM – Nigel Briggs (manager and captain) and Geoff Thompson.

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