Dusi organisers upbeat about tweaks to route

2013-12-27 00:00

SUBTLE tweaks and alterations to the 2014 Dusi Canoe Marathon route have organisers upbeat that the overall experience for both paddlers and spectators will be even further heightened. The tweaks will add to the already hugely popular recipe of the iconic three-day event from Camps Drift in Pietermaritzburg to Blue Lagoon in Durban.

A small shift in the positioning of the finish line on Inanda Dam at the end of the second stage on Friday, February 14 has organisers confident that paddlers will now have a better exit from the water of Inanda Dam whilst giving spectators an improved line of sight should a sprint finish arise.

“We have moved the finish line of day two ever so slightly to enable the paddlers to get out on a permanent slipway just a little further along the water’s edge than where the finish has been for the few years,” explained Natal Canoe Club’s general manager Brett Austen-Smith.

“The change will also give those watching the finish, especially of the leaders, a better view, particularly if there is a close sprint finish like there has been a couple of times recently.”

The second of the two changes sees the finish of the third and final stage at Blue Lagoon moved marginally upstream from its current venue.

These subtle tweaks follow on from the confirmation of the permanent implementation of the change in the starting order introduced in 2013, which received resounding support from all the paddlers.

“The change in the start procedure we tried earlier this year proved massively popular and we are very excited to see this progress even further next year,” said Austen-Smith.

“The new start procedure is guaranteed for 2014 and we are certain this will see even more than the three to five thousand spectators that lined the banks in 2013, to do so next year.”

The confirmed new start procedure sees B batch start the third day from Inanda Dam to Blue Lagoon at 5.45 am, followed by the regular departure of the rest of the lower batches before a two-and-a-half-hour break with no action.

“The break between the start of the last batch and the leaders gives the slower paddlers the chance to get far enough down the river without the worry of the leaders catching them.

“The first paddler will then depart Inanda Dam at 10.45 am and will be followed by the rest of the elapsed time paddlers and then all the A batch paddlers.”

Through the assistance of Umgeni Water, the 2013 introduction of the new procedure went off smoothly with only small adjustments required in future.

“The only issue we had in 2013 was trying to maintain a consistent water level from the start of the day to the end. This is something we will revise for 2014,” said Austen-Smith.

“Next year we will not look to keep the water level the same throughout the day but instead just keep it steady during the time the front runners will be on the water.

“We will also ensure that all major age category contenders will be included in A batch, if they aren’t already in elapsed time, to ensure everyone has a fair shot at their category’s awards by competing on as similar water level as possible,” he added.

The Dusi Canoe Marathon 2014 starts in Pietermaritzburg on Thursday, February 13 and ends in Durban on Saturday, February 15.

For more information, log on to the Dusi Marathon website www.dusi.co.za

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.