— The following is a press release published by Yukon River Quest Media —
The race roster is set for the 17th annual Yukon River Quest, which will begin on Wednesday, June 24 in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada. This year’s field will feature 58 teams with 155 paddlers from all over the world—including a team from Canoeroots magazine!
Twelve countries are represented: Australia, Canada (9 provinces/territories), France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Ireland, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Switzerland, and the United States (10 states).
While the total number of teams is down a bit from last year’s 62 that started, the actual number of paddlers has increased by two. This can be attributed to an increase in the number of registered voyageur teams from 8 in 2014 to 10 in 2015.
Except for two mandatory rest stops totaling 10 hours, paddlers race non-stop over approximately 715 kilometers (444 miles) to Dawson City. Held annually in the north during the last week of June (around the summer solstice), it is a true “Race to the Midnight Sun” where many of the world’s best paddlers gather.
Following the race is a lot of fun, whether you are watching from alongside the river or sitting at home. All teams are required to have activated SPOT devices, which will greatly aid those following the race on their computers or mobile devices. Just follow the Results link at www.yukonriverquest.com and also watch for updates and photos on the race’s Facebook page.
The total possible 2015 race purse will be $21,541 (CAD) based on a final registration of 59 teams as of May 15 (one solo kayak team has withdrawn since that date). There are overall cash prizes for each class – tandem canoe, tandem kayak, solos, and voyageur canoes – as well as prizes for the top three in each division. There also are cash prizes for the top all-Yukon canoe and kayak teams, and the top First Nations team. Several special awards are also donated by Yukon and Alaska sponsors. But most of the paddlers are just aiming to get to Dawson and be awarded a coveted YRQ Finisher Pin.
Learn more at www.yukonriverquest.com.