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2004 Wildwater Race Venues Announced

Major races released by USACK Wildwater Committee

by Chris Hipgrave
USAWildwater K-1
Treasurer, US Wildwater Committee

October 22, 2003 -- Bryson City,NC

After receiving several bids from all over the country, the USA Canoe & Kayak Wildwater Committee today announced its decision on the location of its 2004 race schedule. The committee reported that they received race bids from more venues than normal possibly due to the popularity of last years California based International World Cup series.

2004 SENIOR TEAM TRIALS AND EAST COAST JUNIOR TEAM TRIALS were awarded to veteran event organizer Donnie Hudspeth of Summersville WV. Hudspeth, president of Mountain Air Productions, organized the 2002 Wildwater National Championships on the New River Gorge and annually runs the Captain Thurmonds Triathlon and the "Animal" Upper Gauley Race, now in its 11th year. 2004 Team Trials will be run on the Top Gauley above the infamous Upper Gauley, on a free flowing section of the river that is largely playful class three whitewater. Should the Gauley be at an unusually high level, the race will be moved to the near by Cherry River. Dates have tentatively be set for March 20th & 21st. Dates will be confirmed and announced shortly.

2004 WEST COAST JUNIOR TEAM TRIALS have been awarded to Chris Wiegand of Colorado. Wiegand is the competition director for the Colorado Whitewater Association and Executive Director of the Front Range Paddling Association. 2004 Junior Trials will be held in April in Browns Canyon just below Frog Rock and on the Numbers section of the Arkansas River.

2004 NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS (AND CAN-AM CHAMPIONSHIPS) have been awarded to Dan Murn and Harold Van Winssen. Both veteran event promoters and competitors in their own right, they have combined forces to provide a fantastic opportunity to North American racers. USA National Championships will take place on the Salmon River in New York on July 24th and 25th. The Salmon is largely class 2 and 3 and runs through an incredibly scenic part of upstate New York. Canadian Wildwater National Championships will take place four days later, July 29th, on the Rouge River. By combining results from both the American and Canadian National Championships, we will then crown the Can-Am Champions. There has not been a Can-Am Championships in well over a decade and will provide an opportunity for two closely matched countries to come together and duke it out.

Chris Hipgrave is Tresurer of the U.S. Wildwater Committee and a K-1 Wildwater racer living near Bryson City, NC. Reach him at