2024 Marathon Series

Calendar

Nationals – Encounter Lakes, South Australia 5-7 Apr 2024

Paddle SA has released some information so it is time to do some preparatory thinking for this years nationals. James H has been asked to be team manager again for this year, and wants to try and help build team NSW/ACT for bigger and better things next year. Details of 2024 nationals:

  • Location: Encounter Lakes (man made winding course which promises to provide great racing conditions)
  • Portage: Beach style in and out at this stage
  • Dates 5-7th April 2024
  • Paddle SA info (watch for updates)

There are a number of houses in the area which you can book very close to the course, so round up your friends and get a group together. Websites like booking.com allow free cancellation so best to reserve your accommodation soon (other states are starting to do this). There are also caravan parks and hotels near by.

Links

2024 PaddleNSW Marathon State Championships 8-10 Mar 2024

Entries are now open for 2024 PaddleNSW Marathon State Championships Friday 8th to Sunday 10 March in Canberra.

  • Early Bird closes Monday 26th February
  • All Entries close Wednesday 6th March

GENERAL INFO:
Long course singles will be contested on the Molonglo River on Saturday 09 March from 10:00 (ICF portaging classes) and 13:00 (ICF and General non-portaging classes). The course is similar to last year and consists of a long lap of around 3.7 km with a short lap of approx 1 km and a portage on grass of about 120 m. The exit is onto a carpetted dock with a beach re-entry. The tables show the range of classes and distances on offer. If your class is not on this list or in the Webscorer entry portal or if a distance for your class is not shown here, please don't worry ... it is just because we haven't had entries in these classes before. Just contact Dianne at events@paddlensw.org.au and she will talk you through your entry and the distances you will be paddling.

Long course doubles and mixed doubles will be contested over the same course on Sunday 10 March from 08:30 (same gender doubles) and 12:30 (mixed doubles).

Masters ... yes ... the entries are in age brackets of 10 years BUT if a 5-year age group is constituted (in other words has 3 or more boats in it), that age group will run as such with medals awarded accordingly. We are hoping that the NSW marathon community comes together en masse so that no classes are unconstituted. This is a major reason for being part of this event - to have enough numbers that each 5-year age group is constituted. So dust off those boats and get on the water ... BGCC would love to see you in March in Canberra at the States for Mates.

Food and refreshments will be available for purchase from BGCC chef Maria on both Saturday and Sunday. Be sure to put in your orders for breakfast the night before. Maria does a mean kayaker/canoeist brekkie.

PROGRAMME;
FRIDAY EVENING - SHORT COURSE SINGLES

  • Session 1 @ 19:15 - ICF Class (Portage)
  • Session 2 @ 19:30 - All boats/All ages (No Portage)

SATURDAY - LONG COURSE SINGLES

  • Session 1 @ 10:00 - ICF Open, U23, U18, Masters (35-64)
  • Session 2 @ 13:00 - ICF Masters (65+), General Class (all ages), Para, Juniors (U10-U18), Novice Race & SUP

SUNDAY - LONG COURSE DOUBLES

  • Session 1 @ 08:30 - ICF & General Class Open, U18, Masters, Para & Juniors
  • Session 2 @ 12:30 - ICF & General Class Mixed - All ages

GENERAL

  • You can enter up to four (4) events.....(EG: Short Course Singles, Long Course Singles, Doubles & Mixed Doubles)
  • Your entry fee includes a unique "States with Mates" T-Shirt. Please ensure you advise what size T-Shirt you require, and it will be available for collection in Canberra.
  • Any questions on the event or entry can be directed to events@paddlensw.org.au
  • Friday evening BBQ will be available and catered by Chef Maria - always a great range of foods and always good value ($10pp paid on the night)
  • Saturday Dinner and Medal Presentations will be at the Capital Brewery from 6:30pm. Capital Brewery
  • Once again, huge thanks to Burley Griffin Canoe Club for hosting these Championships, now over three days.

Please note that Early Bird closes two weeks before the event.

Paddlers who enter before 16th February and nominate their required T-Shirt size will receive T-Shirts in the size ordered. Entries received after 16th February will be filled as best we can against available sizes. Get in early to secure the right size T-Shirt !!

Round #2 - Windsor - Sun 25 Feb

Race report sooooon.....


Above: Results for LCRKers

Why compete in the Paddle NSW marathon series
Over the coming months we have the opportunity to attend and compete in the Paddle NSW marathon 8 race series, and to encourage more LCRK members to participate we will provide some reasons and justification for doing so.

We will use the same format and simply add in the particulars of the upcoming event which will include some of the important details and information of the actual venue.

Karen Tipping has created “LCRKmarathon24race1wagga” Group WhatsApp portal, the intention will be to use this group chat for all Marathons going forward as a means of contact to all LCRK intending to participate.

Why: Because we can, It is a great event and as the opening event for the year it is an opportunity to reconnect with fellow paddlers from other clubs, compare boats, or just a quiet chat and reconnect, which is a very important aspect of our chosen sport, we love competing, however without others it is simply not the same.

We encourage all LCRK members to participate in these races, and apart from the racing. The social connection is what keeps us together, meeting up with the other paddlers etc.

We hope these short notes and information will encourage LCRK paddlers to enter these events, as they are not just fun and challenging but more importantly an opportunity to see parts of the country you may not have and to reconnect with paddlers from other clubs.

Without active participation we run the risk of losing these events, so embrace and enjoy.

Round #1 - Oura to Wagga - Sat 3 Feb


Above: Results for LCRKers

Race Report - Chris Johnson
THIS IS A GREAT RACE SO IF YOU DID NOT ATTEND THIS YEAR IT IS A MUST FOR 2025.

The Paddle NSW Marathon series kicked off on Saturday with the 26 km Oura to Wagga down river race. Race start time was 11 AM, temperature was circa high 20’s / low 30’s, with lots of sun. Paddlers arrived early out at Oura to get organised, catch up with friends. The SES had SIX rescue boats for the event (amazing support). The river was lower than 2023 but was running faster over the first 15 km (please don’t ask me to explain how a river is faster with less water).

Divisions 1 + 2 + 3 started together at 11 AM, followed by my Division 4 at 11:03 AM. All other divisions started before 11 AM. It was noted by a Div 3 paddler at the race briefing that Div 3 paddlers should preferably not have to start with elite Div 1 paddlers, a reasonable request – although timing systems were all set to go etc, so too late for a change.

For Wagga I was paddling a “new” Rocket which was a larger customise cockpit, which allows for full leg drive, rotation, similar to a K1. The Rocket is a very long down river kayak perfect for this event and much easier to control than an actual K1, in a swirling river. For hydration I had two bladders on the kayak floor so 2.5 litres of drink as it was hot.

In Division 4 there were 14 paddlers + a double + two other paddlers (ranking). Other Lane Cove Div 4 paddlers were John Duffy, Mike T, Roddy, Scott, Graeme J + Alison (Double Ski) & Jeff Hosnell. Warming up is interesting in a reasonably fast down flowing river, however with a little extra planning an upstream paddle for 200 metres, a quick turn and repeat(s) had most paddlers ready to float back in an orderly line across the river to the race starter.

The Race got underway with some swirly sections, a few paddle checks, but the Murrumbidgee’s flow + wide expanse allowed for a couple of packs to form, so after 1 km there was still 5 -6 paddlers stretched across the river. The pace in Div 4 was fast, but not crazy fast. I was placed with Scotty, Graeme’s double at the front, and a new ranking paddler. Scott provided some great tips , at 6 km David Lowe was catching us on the inside left, however we managed to stay in front. At 12 km a Tinny (fishing person) came upriver & this wash / bow wave upset several paddlers rhythm, thus providing a gap to open up for Div 4 paddlers who were more stable.

As the KM ticked over around 17 km it seemed to get hotter, and the river seemed to get slower, one of the two ranking paddlers who had taken a turn at the front suddenly declared they were “cooked” and dropped back. Then we got to the first road bridge, where I could not remember if the course was 23 km or 26 km, it was hot, must have been getting tired, then the water works on the left, OK so it must be 26km. By this stage I had slipped to second. We approached / passed the green bouy, final corner, effort to the line & finish. Very glad to get out of the kayak into the cool river. Very pleased to have all other Div 4 Lane Cove paddlers finish well inside 6 minutes!

Racing Insights

1. Being in the front pack it is hard to fathom how tired the other paddlers are getting. Plus if there are successive paddlers just behind is it best to let them have a turn, or go faster for longer or slow right down?

2. Being in the division lead for more than 30% of the event might result in excess energy expended / save some energy for the last 1.5 km and sprint home.

Well done Lane Cove River Kayakers great results see table on club website – next round is Windsor then the State titles in Canberra.


Above: LCRK team pre-race photo at Oura Beach

Why compete in the Paddle NSW marathon series
Over the coming months we have the opportunity to attend and compete in the Paddle NSW marathon 6 race series, and to encourage more LCRK members to participate we will provide some reasons and justification for doing so.

We will use the same format and simply add in the particulars of the upcoming event which will include some of the important details and information of the actual venue.

Karen Tipping has created “LCRKmarathon24race1wagga” Group WhatsApp portal, the intention will be to use this group chat for all Marathons going forward as a means of contact to all LCRK intending to participate.

Access to register: Is through the Paddle NSW – Webscorer portal here)

Race: 1 Oura Beach to Wagga Beach

Location: Start Oura Beach

Finish: Wagga Beach

Date: 3 February 2024

Distance: various options up and an including the 26klm down river

After: 5.30 pm Palm and Prawn Hotel

Why: Because we can, It is a great event and as the opening event for the year it is an opportunity to reconnect with fellow paddlers from other clubs, compare boats, or just a quiet chat and reconnect, which is a very important aspect of our chosen sport, we love competing, however without others it is simply not the same.

This is also a great event to take your respective partners to as the travel distance can be an issue so why not make a weekend of it. There is an abundance of accommodation on offer ranging from cabins at the many caravan parks, to leading hotel brands and all in between.

Some members will likely pool their resources and travel down together in single cars (means loading up the boats so spare kayak cradles suitable for long highway trips to be considered) and sharing accommodation costs.

See more details on the race and distance options on the competitor information sheets.

The race itself starts at Oura Beach, some 20KLM east of Wagga on the Murrumbidgee River, there is camping permitted at the start point which some LCRK have used In the past, from there it is an interesting and sometimes challenging course down river to Wagga Beach, it can be quite technical as trying to find the sweet spot where you can maintain a good speed and avoid the slow areas takes a level of focus as well as effort, there are eddies that can catch you out, last year down river speeds in some areas exceeded 16klm per hour, but get caught in the shallows (away from the channels will have an impact).

Once you settle into your rhythm and race speed, you get the opportunity to enjoy the picturesque river with Blackberries to pick (you have to stop), hanging branches from willow trees and tall river Gums along with the ever present Australian wildlife and river birdlife, this is a very special part of our county and it seeing from the water is something you do not tire from, you pass some of the most productive farming land in NSW so expect to see some very happy sheep and cattle catching a drink.

Seeing your fellow paddlers downstream ahead of you poses the challenge, do you try to chase them down by lifting your speed or run your own race and hope they fall off the pace??, (tactics) either way you have to keep a bit in the tank for the last 4-5klm, you know the finish line is out there and you just have to keep on pushing.

The finish line at Wagga Beach, will surprise many, it has been voted one of Australia’s Best beaches, (I have seen the sign) and the welcome from all is truly special as the local population do embrace this event, as it provides them with the opportunity to showcase Wagga, a genuine Australian Town stepped in History, with many beautiful colonial houses and buildings

We encourage all LCRK members to participate in these races, and apart from the racing. The social connection is what keeps us together, meeting up with the other paddlers on the Saturday night in the Pub for dinner and a beer/wine is a great way to maintain our connections and foster friendships, you can also compare race times or just enjoy the company.

Take the time after the paddle to take in some of the local sights such as the beautiful buildings or the Wagga Dam just a sort drive out of town, and seeing how these pioneering and hard working men and women built this impressive structure, using the limited equipment at hand, allows you to gain a better understanding of the ingenuity of the people involved and how the Australia we know today was built.

This is one of those regions in Australia where the tractors and farm equipment were repaired and kept operating by fencing wire and bailing twine, way before the Bunnings stores of today.

We hope these short notes and information will encourage LCRK paddlers to enter these events, as they are not just fun and challenging but more importantly an opportunity to see parts of the country you may not have and to reconnect with paddlers from other clubs.

Without active participation we run the risk of losing these events, so embrace and enjoy.