2014 Payette River Games

Athletes at the Payette River Games were in good spirits on Sunday, and fiercely focused on the huge prizes that would be awarded at the end of the competition. With a prize purse of over $100,000, and $10,000 top prizes in both men’s and women’s categories, it was the biggest money event in whitewater history.

With Saturday’s preliminary events complete, the long races for both SUPs and kayaks took place on Sunday morning along the flatwater above the main section at Kelly’s Whitewater Park.

Carnage was the name of the game in the 8-ball finals for both men and women. Heads were being punched by bows of boats as kayakers maneuvered around, and anyone had the chance of winning—being in the lead at any point meant several 8-ball opponents were trying to take you out. The competition was complete madness that had the crowd on their feet. Bryan Kirk and Louise Jull took home first prize in the men’s and women’s categories.

As the day went on, the crowd anxiously awaited SUP and boater-cross finals. In the boater-cross, favorites such as Isaac Levinson and Gerd Serrasolses were competing against a large field that could possibly take them down. The best in the world were exchanging paddle checks and quick lead changes. Serrasolses ended up on top after having a solid run out in front of the final group. The SUP-cross was stacked as well, with both professional SUP athletes and talented kayakers participating.  

As the sun came down and brought the crowd of spectators some much-needed shade, it was time for the last event of the Payette River Games: freestyle kayak finals. The women were up first with a talented group, it was hard to tell who was going to be in the top three. Some struggled on the feature and got washed out, while others, like winner Emily Jackson, dominated with incredible tricks that put her at the top of the category. The crowd went wild when Rowan Stuart threw a huge loop the size of tricks being thrown in the men’s event.

The men’s final was full of talent as well, with the focus being on combo moves—every competitor seemed to have a huge bag of tricks that pertained to their style. Mathieu Dumoulin came out on top, with Dane Jackson in second place and Nick Troutman third.

Click here for videos and the full list of results from the 2014 Payette River Games. 

John Webster is a professional adventure photographer based in Boise, Idaho. He has a degree in Communication with an emphasis on video from Boise State University. Passionate about the outdoors, John shares his experiences through the medium of digital photography. You can check out his work atwww.webstermediahouse.com or at Webster Media House on Facebook.


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