LCRKers and the 2018 Hawkesbury Canoe Classic

Lane Cove River Kayakers are building a team (40+ boats) to tackle the 2018 HCC
With a long history supporting the event and with LCRK holding a good number of the HCC race records, we are very keen to again put in a strong performance. If you are contemplating taking on the event, then think about joining the Lane Cove River Kayakers team.

  • Our weekly 6:30pm time trials (6/9/12km) give you invaluable night time paddling experience,
  • Members have access to (free) organised HCC training paddles covering the HCC course and other courses.
  • Members include experienced HCC, marathon and ultramarathon paddlers - willing to share, advise and motivate. A series of HCC Workshops are provided after some of our Wed night Time Trials.
  • LCRK has a wealth of HCC information/tips/and resources built over many many years.
  • LCRK will be providing support crew and Club camaraderie at the various scheduled stops of the HCC.
  • The Hawkesbury Canoe Classic primarily supports the Arrow Bone Marrow Transplant Foundation, and every LCRK entry and the associated fundraising activity helps this great cause.

HCC Dates: Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 October 2018

'The Classic' was Started by NSW Outward Bound Ex Students Association in 1977. It now always runs overnight at the end of October (to fit with school terms) starting at Windsor and finishes at Mooney Mooney. In 1977 the race had 250 paddlers and raised $8,500 for the Arrow Foundation. In 2016 the 40th anniversary of the race, some 500 paddlers took part with fundraising approaching $200,000. Those paddlers just wanting to have a fun and social evening can enter the Brooklyn or Bust or Dash classes whilst the more competitive paddlers challenge themselves to beat previous records or their own PB's.

Above: LCRKers Paddlers and Support Crew at the 2017 HCC

HCC 2018 Tides and Weather and Moon

The conditions for 2018 (at least from a moonlight and tide perspective) are likely to see a high tide at Windsor at ~16:00 on Sat 27 Oct, a low tide at Wisemans Ferry at 19:30 in the evening noting the current change will have a bit of a lag [please check this for yourself!]. There'll be a big moon rising (~10pm on Saturday) and the tides will be correspondingly high.

Above: 2018 tides and moon (weather tba)

LCRKers at the 2018 HCC - Definites and Probables in random order

 LCRK PaddlerHCC/Dash?ClassAge DivBoatStart p.m.Record
1Richard Barnes (SU) & Chris StanleyHCCBoB2 Mirage 730  
2Wendy, Jana, Kerrie & AnjieHCCK4l40+Club K4  
3James PralijaHCCORS1OpenThink Ion  
4John DuffyHCCBoB1(50+)Sonic  
5Suzie Rhydderch & Mitch CoffeyHCCMix UN2OpenCarb. Blast Ski  
6Peter Fitzgerald & Brendan TrewarthaHCCUN240+?Epic V10 Double ski  
7Mark Hempel and Caroline MarchnerHCCMix UN2 Epic V10 Double ski  
8Tony HystekHCCUN160+K-Pro Vampire  
9Jeremy SpearHCCORS150+Carb. Vault  
10Ruby ArdrenHCCK140+Vajda Voyager  
11Kenji Ogawa & Luke Keanan BrownHCCBoB2 Pittarak  
12Trevor NicholsHCCORS1?Epic V10  
13Darren WilliamsHCCBoB1(50+)Epic V10S  
14Craig SalkeldHCCBoB1(50+)Epic V10  
15Tom SimmatHCC?70+?  
16Naomi Johnson, Sophie WallaceHCCK2OpenClub K2  
17Robert Llewellyn-JonesHCCORS160+Carb. Vault  
18Rich Yates & Duncan JohnstoneHCCUN250+?Slade Supersonic  
19David YoungHCCORS150+Epic V14  
20Peter ManleyHCCORS150+Epic V12  
21Rodrigo MatamalaHCCK1OpenVajda  
22Nick BlacklockBob?--Slade Flash  
23Seth BerrangeHCCORS1openFenn Elite  
24Gareth Stokes & Peter Faherty (SSCC?)HCCUN2OpenSlade Supersonic  
25Don JohnstoneHCCORS150+Stellar SEL  
26Chris ThompsonHCCBoB1(50+)Mirage 580  
27Merridy HuxleyHCCLR160+?SLR1?  
28Warren HuxleyHCCBoB1(60+)Elliott Matador  
29Rae Duffy & Alison CurtinHCCK240+??  
30Kathy MillerHCC?BoB?-Mirage  

Club Support

2018 HCC 'Calculator'

LCRK is please to provide this Microsoft Excel based 'calculator' which is preloaded with HCC 2018 Tides all the way up to Windsor and incorporating associated tidal and riverine flows (all other things being equal which they never are!!). To use, download the tool, open up Excel, adjust ONLY the yellow shaded cells ie:-

  1. Update your Windsor start time
  2. Update your expected base speed (either constant for whole 100km, or you can slow yourself down as your energy flags)
  3. Adjust your expected stop time (eg if it's 1/2hr then enter as =0.5/24 to keep excel happy!)
  4. The calculator will then derive your ETA at respective checkpoints, including adjustments for current.
  5. The course map (separate worksheet) will be automatically updated and can be printed out on a single A4 page for you &/or your landcrew.
  6. Print out different versions eg at 9km/h, 10km/h, 11km/h base speed - you'll know by your first stop which one you should be using!
  7. How do you work out your base speed? See Tom Holloway's excellent article for more detail but he recommends assuming you paddle at 90% of your time trial speed. Stops are additional as are delays waiting for one or more car ferries. Your average speed overall will probably be around 85% of your time trial speed, all else being equal. See:
  8. Note that whilst there's a bit of science behind this tool - there are many other important variables in play including wind, river knowledge, washriding etc - which can make the tool a bit of sideshow. Use the tool in conjunction with ALL your planning.

Download the 2018 calculator

Above: Calculator produces prepopulated map showing ETA's

For those wanting more detail. The new calculator identifies tides at Fort Denison (HH, LL, H, L), then adjusts that tide all the way up to Windsor some 5-7 hours later. Current patterns have been modelled for 4 sections of the river (between stops) using data from MHL, DPW etc. Your ETA at a particular checkpoint is adjusted based on your base paddle speed and the anticipated current at the time you are travelling. Short or long stops will affect the tide you catch (or are caught by). Further fine tuning CAN be done - but no point over-engineering it, you might be affected by winds, unplanned swims etc. Good luck!

LCRK Training Paddles

LCRK always provides a series of training paddles to prepare for the HCC. The set below are ALL on sections of the Hawkesbury River. The early starts are aimed to pretty much match the tidal conditions you will experience on the Hawkesbury - and get a head start avoiding too much river traffic (ie powerboats etc).

Sunday 29th July - Sackville to Wiseman's. Briefing: 7:30am First Start: 7:45am.
TIDE Sackville 07:15am LOW

'Sunday 19th August - Windsor to Sackville. Start:
TIDES: Windsor HIGH at 07:33am (1.21m) LOW at Sackville at 12:13pm (.6m)

Sunday 7th October Wiseman's to FINISH.

At Windsor - From 10am to 5pm

Above: Wisemans Ferry Support. Photo Jana Osvald 2015
  • LCRK Marquee for shade and meeting point
  • Club shirts and caps for sale
  • Issue paddler, start list and contact list
  • Experts to offer advice, smiles and positive vibes
  • Group photo 2:30PM (Be at the LCRK marquee at 2:25pm)
  • Mandatory race briefing is at tba pm
  • Marquee will be moved to Wisemans at 5:30pm

At Sackville - from 6:30pm until last LCRK paddler through

  • Radio warning to your land crew of your approach
  • Illuminated LCRK sign to identify our shared meeting point
  • Shared land crew support in landing and re-launching each paddler
  • Informal tracking of LCRK craft passing through\\Reminder to paddlers to check out at 2nd Sackville checkpoint

At Wisemans - from 8:30pm until last paddler through

  • LCRK meeting point 40 metres downriver from main launching ramp (see photos below - look for the red electronic timing board used for our Time Trials)
  • LCRK marquee
  • Free catering for LCRK land crew and social HCC paddlers (thanks Tony Carr!)
  • Informal tracking of LCRK craft passing through
  • Club support for land crews in landing and re-launching their paddlers
  • Reminder to paddlers to check out at 2nd Wiseman's checkpoint.

Low Tide Pit-Stop

If you need a last stop on your down-river run and succumb to the "sirens", you will, as usual, be offered smiles, "mud angel" landing and re-launching services, sometimes "paddle through" service; fire for warmth; smiles; hot food and drink; and more smiles - this is not a club facility but a wonderful service volunteered annually to all participants. Remember the location this year is about half a kilometre upstream from its old spot –it is at a boat ramp (= less mud!)

Preparation Reading

General Advice



Stretching/Injury Prevention

Landcrew Advice

Maps & Planning

Garmin GPX Track

  • Unzip, copy into your Garmin, and set to visible using garmin menu.

For planning and safety purposes please note: The HCC is not 111km, it is actually 100km. Also, it does not finish at Brooklyn, it finishes at Mooney Mooney (Deerubbin Reserve)

HCC - Current Class Record Holders

LCRK members past and present currently hold over 20 class records.

K1Vet60+Tom Simmat200911:09:12
K1Ladies Vet60+Ann Lloyd Green201613:57:29
K2Vet50+Bruce Goodall, Jeremy Spear20149:33:57
K4LadiesMargaret Cook, Merridy Huxley, Buzz Powell, Sandra Burwood20069:29:40
K4Mixed Vet40+Margaret Cook, Merridy Huxley, Warren Huxley, Bernard Craggs200810:07:36
K4Mixed Vet50+Margaret Cook, Merridy Huxley, Warren Huxley, Rob Cook201010:18:23
K4Ladies Vet50+Our Rae Duffy with Merridy Huxley, Dee Ratliffe and Clare McArthur201310:53:59
TK1LadiesMargaret Cook198510:44:49
TK2Ladies Vet40+Margaret Cook, Merridy Huxley200310:46:04
Short RecVet50+Tom Simmat20079:58:35
Short RecVet60+Tom Simmat201210:35:24
Med RecOpenToby Hogbin20109:18:22
Med RecLadies Vet50+Rae Duffy201210:55:09
Med RecVet60+Tom Simmat20109:54:05
Long RecOpenBruce Goodall20009:37:50
Long RecLadies Vet50+Liz Winn200810:59.33
Long RecLadies Vet60+Ann Lloyd-Green201314:02:57
Long RecVet50+Bob Turner201410:02:49
Long RecVet60+Tom Simmat20119:59:07
Long Rec 2MixedKristy Benjamin & Bob Turner20128:58:02
Rec 2Vet40+Kenji Ogawa, Genkai So200010:36:34
Long Rec 2Mixed Vet 50+Urs Mader, Arni Mader200710:06:20
Ocean Racing SkiLadies Vet50+Roz Green201512:47:59
Ocean Racing SkiLadies Vet40+Anjie Lees201411:08:12
Ocean Racing SkiVet40+Brendan Trewartha20178:38:47
Ocean Racing SkiVet60+Tony Hystek20169:06:32
SSK2Mixed Vet40+Joy and Rich Robinson20159:28:31
UnrestrictedOpenToby Hogbin20128:18:19
UnrestrictedLadiesJulie Stanton200610:13:30
UnrestrictedLadies Vet40+Anjie Lees201511:41:14
UnrestrictedVet60+Tom Simmat201610:16:02
UnrestrictedVet70+Adrian Clayton201711:54:12
Unrestricted 2Mixed Vet40+Bruce Goodall, Christine Lalor20078:57:57
Unrestricted 2Mixed Vet50+Alanna Ewin, Tony Hystek20178:50:42
Unrestricted 2Vet50+Tony Hystek, Timothy Hookins20078:57:00
SSK2Mixed Vet40+Joy and Rich Robinson20169:05:38

HCC - The Whiddon Trophy (Fastest Time)

  • 2009 Matt Blundell
  • 2010 Matt Blundell

HCC - Participation (incl 2016)

35 or moreRichard Barnes
20 or moreKenji Ogawa
15 or moreMargaret Cook, Don Rowston, Merridy Huxley, Peter Fitzgerald, Tom Simmat, John Duffy
10 or moreMartin Dearnley, Bruce Goodall, Rob Vallis, Warren Huxley, Urs Mader, Derek Simmonds

(go to LCRK's 2017 Hawkesbury Classic Pages)