IceBreaker Race marks start of paddling season

Overcast skies, gusting winds and cold did little to dampen spirits for Yukon paddlers competing in the IceBreaker Race on May 29.

Hosted by Flatwater North, the annual race began near the Marsh Lake Bridge and finished at the Schwatka Lake boat launch with a total of nine boats in three categories taking part this year.

The fastest boat on the day was a tandem canoe crewed by Jake Paleczny and Rob Spinks, who won the race with a time of two hours, 13 minutes and 50 seconds. Joël Girouard was the fastest kayaker – and second fastest overall – finishing in two hours, 24 minutes and 50 seconds.

Paddlers Abreast, the lone voyageur team in the field, finished in two hours, 50 minutes and 43 seconds as they begin their 20th season on the water.

The next major paddling event on the calendar in the territory is the Yukon River Quest, set to begin in Whitehorse on June 23 and ending in Dawson City after 715 kilometres of racing.

Other dates to circle are the Yukon Championship Regatta on July 31, the Chili and Beans Race on Aug. 11, and the Fall Classic on Sept. 25.

Race results

1Marathon C2Jake Paleczny & Rob Spinks2:13:50
2K1Joël Girouard2:24:50
3K1Thomas de Jager2:25:29
4K1Bruce Porter2:26:18
5Marathon C2Andrew Bruemmer & Daniel Girouard2:26:50
6Marathon C2Jason & Linda Biensch2:42:21
7Voyageur CanoePaddlers Abreast2:50:43
8Marathon C2Doon McDowell & James McCann3:18:38
9Marathon C2Marin Lewis & Makenna MacAuley3:19:37
Results from the IceBreaker Race hosted by Flatwater North on May 29, 2021.

Race photos